Really Fast Scanner?

Electronics Computer Programming Q&A
User avatar
reloadron
Posts: 519
Joined: Sat Jun 28, 2008 8:57 am
Location: Cleveland, Ohio
Contact:

Re: Really Fast Scanner?

Post by reloadron » Fri Oct 23, 2009 11:02 am

First I need to find something better to scan or photograph other than the brisket of beef recipe I have been working with. I keep getting hungry for brisket while trying to experiment. :smile:

I agree with CeaSar as to the spine curve and that was one of the things that dissuaded me from opting for the camera method. I think for what it is worth you really need to shoot from above and straight down on the document. Though using my tripod I can shoot straight down, when doing so on the horizontal plane I doubt I can get the camera out there over the document centered. I guess time will tell.

Depending on the camera used something that would be useful is the ability to remote control the camera. This is a feature offered in the software bundled with many cameras these days.

Haklesup mentions a copy stand which would be a big plus, especially if it was marked so a document could be easily indexed.

Overall I favor scanning. I did notice on this note that lamp adjusting did take time on the first scan but subsequent scans just went along without lamp adjusting using my old scanner set for multiple scans.

Later I'll mess with the camera and see what develops (no pun).

Ron

User avatar
CeaSaR
Posts: 1626
Joined: Sat Nov 08, 2003 1:01 am
Location: Phoenixville, PA USA
Contact:

Re: Really Fast Scanner?

Post by CeaSaR » Fri Oct 23, 2009 11:17 am

That's what is so interesting on my old Acer scanner AND the new HP all in one - no lamp adjustment
period. Just fire up and go. I have had experience with Lexmark and, IIRC, Cannon scanners that had
that situation, although, as you mentioned, once turned on and adjusted, the scans skip that step.

CeaSaR
Hey, what do I know?

User avatar
reloadron
Posts: 519
Joined: Sat Jun 28, 2008 8:57 am
Location: Cleveland, Ohio
Contact:

Re: Really Fast Scanner?

Post by reloadron » Sat Oct 24, 2009 8:26 pm

I tried the camera today. I set it up on a tripod pointing down. I was able to get a small stand between the tripod legs. I fixed the camera settings. I placed a paper cutting board on the small table as it has a nice grid marked. I fired the camera remotely using software figuring I didn't want to shake things using the shutter button. The camera is an older Canon EOS 10D and I used a standard 24 to 85 mm lens. I adjusted the zoom to fill the frame with the document. Focal distance was about 2'. I tried a few settings as to resolution and overall given a choice the old scanner gave better results I think with less work and effort. Just my take on this but using the scanner and doing .pdf just seemed to work out better.

Ron

User avatar
MrAl
Posts: 3854
Joined: Fri Jan 11, 2002 1:01 am
Location: NewJersey
Contact:

Re: Really Fast Scanner?

Post by MrAl » Sun Oct 25, 2009 12:47 am

Hi Ron,


Do you have any samples you can show to us just so we can get a good idea how this
works? I take it the cam was 10 megapixel?

Thanks very much.
LEDs vs Bulbs, LEDs are winning.

User avatar
reloadron
Posts: 519
Joined: Sat Jun 28, 2008 8:57 am
Location: Cleveland, Ohio
Contact:

Re: Really Fast Scanner?

Post by reloadron » Sun Oct 25, 2009 10:05 am

Here is what I sort of literally tossed together. I created a folder with samples of things in general such as some 150 & 300 DPI PDFs, some scanned images saved as .jpg in 150 & 300 DPI and a few camera shots. The whole collection is in a 6.5 MB zip folder which can be downloaded from here. Look for the Scan Test Stuff link and click it to download the folder.

The actual pictures were hand shot as I tossed what I did yesterday. The camera is a 7 MP camera but that means little as the file sizes and actually how good the images are depend on shooting modes and a host of variables.

Ron

User avatar
MrAl
Posts: 3854
Joined: Fri Jan 11, 2002 1:01 am
Location: NewJersey
Contact:

Re: Really Fast Scanner?

Post by MrAl » Sun Oct 25, 2009 3:27 pm

Hi Ron,


Oh ok, i see the difference now. The Camera shots dont provide as much contrast.
I tried using an image enhancer, and it helps a little, but the scanner does a better
job for sure.
LEDs vs Bulbs, LEDs are winning.

User avatar
reloadron
Posts: 519
Joined: Sat Jun 28, 2008 8:57 am
Location: Cleveland, Ohio
Contact:

Re: Really Fast Scanner?

Post by reloadron » Sun Oct 25, 2009 4:37 pm

That was just my opinion based on my experience. I am sure with a better setup that a camera could also do well.

Ron

User avatar
MrAl
Posts: 3854
Joined: Fri Jan 11, 2002 1:01 am
Location: NewJersey
Contact:

Re: Really Fast Scanner?

Post by MrAl » Sun Oct 25, 2009 4:49 pm

Hi Ron,


Oh you mean there are other ways to do it too?
BTW i left you a couple PM's. One is about the Ubuntu on your web site.
LEDs vs Bulbs, LEDs are winning.

User avatar
reloadron
Posts: 519
Joined: Sat Jun 28, 2008 8:57 am
Location: Cleveland, Ohio
Contact:

Re: Really Fast Scanner?

Post by reloadron » Sun Oct 25, 2009 6:11 pm

The problems I see with the camera are among those mentioned. Spinal curve is an issue unless the camera shoots the image straight on. Now someone could build a table so each sheet was correctly indexed and centered. Then there is lighting to worry about so photo floods could be added to the table for uniform light. The camera could shoot a blank white piece of paper and a white balance level set. There just gets to be so many variables to contend with. Can a camera be used? Absolutely.

I just see scanning the documents as a simple reliable approach that should consistently produce good results. Maybe someone sees a difference in the .pdf files I made but to me the 150 & 300 DPI scans look about the same unless they are very enlarged. Scanners with good enough features are pretty inexpensive and when couples with good free software like Infranview seem to get things done.

Ron

User avatar
MrAl
Posts: 3854
Joined: Fri Jan 11, 2002 1:01 am
Location: NewJersey
Contact:

Re: Really Fast Scanner?

Post by MrAl » Mon Oct 26, 2009 1:47 am

Hi Ron,

Just curious now...did you try setting the camera even closer yet, to get 1/2 page only?
That could improve resolution.

I guess what i am after in the end is a very fast way of digitizing hand written text and
hand drawn pictures and perhaps smaller pictures like from figures in books.
I'd say im looking for 5 seconds or less, not including setup time for the whole setup
such as stand, tripod, etc.
For example, if the camera took 1 full second to shoot the pic that would be great,
as long as you could read it fairly well when it was done. I could rig up a stand
and mount for the camera so that it doesnt move once i set it up, and a guide
bar (similar to a table saw guide) that would allow me to quickly stick a page or
something under the camera.
LEDs vs Bulbs, LEDs are winning.

User avatar
reloadron
Posts: 519
Joined: Sat Jun 28, 2008 8:57 am
Location: Cleveland, Ohio
Contact:

Re: Really Fast Scanner?

Post by reloadron » Mon Oct 26, 2009 2:19 am

MrAl

When I get home today I'll do the basic setup and take a few pictures of it. The camera I used was my Canon EOS 10D which is a digital SLR and affords using different lenses. The lens I used was a 28 to 85 mm zoom. The half page was just a matter of zooming in a little. The idea is short of using a macro lens or lens with a macro setting you still need to be at a distance where the camera will focus.

I also had the camera connected to a laptop so I could remotely trigger the camera shutter. That precludes the need to manually press the shutter button on the camera.

More this afternoon as time to get going to work....

Ron

User avatar
MrAl
Posts: 3854
Joined: Fri Jan 11, 2002 1:01 am
Location: NewJersey
Contact:

Re: Really Fast Scanner?

Post by MrAl » Sat Nov 14, 2009 5:27 am

Hi again,


Ron, how's that test going?


I found some scanner reviews and found that the scanner speed for one page can
vary quite a bit. From about 30 seconds up to 2 minutes and 30 seconds. Quite a range.
That was for price range 100 to 200 dollars US.
Not sure how i would buy one since they dont seem to publish the scan speeds for
all scanners, not even for most.
LEDs vs Bulbs, LEDs are winning.

User avatar
CeaSaR
Posts: 1626
Joined: Sat Nov 08, 2003 1:01 am
Location: Phoenixville, PA USA
Contact:

Re: Really Fast Scanner?

Post by CeaSaR » Fri Jan 01, 2010 12:38 pm

I know I said I'd get some info for you regarding scan speeds, but the limited amount of scans I have done
since have shown that home scanners still run about the same speed they have for over a decade. However,
I have come across other people's rigs for cameras that may shed more light (groan!) on how to get good
results from your digital camera.

Single camera, small, book sized
Single camera copy stand This one has more links on the first page.
Single camera Portable copy stand
Single camera stand Similar to what was discussed
2 camera setup I saved this one for last, as it looks to be the best of the bunch for consistency and speed.

Instructibles requires a free sign-up to see multiple pictures per page (unregistered viewers can see the
default picture only) and is safe, as far as I have found.

As for converting to PDF's, I can point you to some PDF print drivers if you want one of them.

CeaSaR
Hey, what do I know?

User avatar
MrAl
Posts: 3854
Joined: Fri Jan 11, 2002 1:01 am
Location: NewJersey
Contact:

Re: Really Fast Scanner?

Post by MrAl » Fri Jan 01, 2010 10:50 pm

Hi Ceasar,


Thanks for the great links there. Very informative and exactly what i had in mind.
One thing they dont mention though is the pixel count of the camera...5 megapixel,
10 megapixel, etc. I wonder if 5 would work.
LEDs vs Bulbs, LEDs are winning.

User avatar
MrAl
Posts: 3854
Joined: Fri Jan 11, 2002 1:01 am
Location: NewJersey
Contact:

Re: Really Fast Scanner?

Post by MrAl » Sun Jan 03, 2010 2:22 am

Hi again,


I dont know why i didnt think of this before, but since a page is roughly 8 by 11 inches, that's
88 square inches, and at 150 dpi it would take 88*150*150 or just under 2 Megapixels to
scan a sheet 8 by 11 at 150 dpi. At 300 dpi, it should take 88*300*300 or just under
8 Megapixels. This of course is if the sheet was the same shape as the pic the camera
takes.
I have done 150 dpi on the scanner with pretty good results, so i would think 8 Megapixel
or better should do it. That would give me probably around 200 or so dpi with a camera
that doesnt quite fit the page frame (200 dpi on one edge and 300 dpi on the edge that
fits well). I think that should be good enough.

Now to worry about the lighting. It would have to be very very even to get a nice 'scan'.
I'd have to rig up some LED's i guess :smile:
I tried some tests using a 1.3 Megapixel web cam and up close i think i can get 1/4 page
with that nasty resolution, except the lighting is really hard to get even enough to make
the whole page light up with the same brightness.
LEDs vs Bulbs, LEDs are winning.

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 5 guests