How To scan a photoMost of us have photo prints without the digital image or the negatives. So reproducing or duplicating the same photo can be done easily using a scanner. Simply scanning a photo using the default settings may not give you good results. It may make the resultant photo blurred, pixilated or grainy. So it is essential to use the correct settings while you scan a photo. Here are some basic photo scanning tips you should keep in mind while scanning a photo.

Scanning Photo for Large Prints

Scanning Photos For Large Prints

If you are thinking of an enlarged printout of the current photo, then obviously the file size too becomes bigger. Usually for taking large print outs make sure you scan the photo with the highest quality settings as possible. Usually for extremely good results File formats like TIFF are used to save the scanned photo. DPI is an important factor to be considered while scanning a photo. DPI means the number of dots per inch. It basically denotes the resolution or the clarity of the photo. The more the number of dots per inch, the better the photo will be.

If you are into printing large photos then make sure you take a look on How To Optimize Photos For Poster Printing . If you want to make a 8.5 x 11 inch photo from a 4 x 6 inch photo, make sure the original photo is scanned at a resolution of 600dpi and the scanned image is saved as a TIFF file. The resultant photos will be huge in size (a few MB) and wont be fit for web and email use.

Scanning Photo for Normal Printouts

standard photo scanning

For simple standard photo prints, the scanning setting’s doesn’t need to be put very high. For taking copies of 4 x 6 inch and 3 x 5 inch photos, you can scan them using a less dpi setting. A DPI settings of 300 will be sufficient for such works and there will be almost no loss in the quality of the photo. In this case you can save the photos using the jpeg extension which uses the image compression techniques and will compress your photo without compromising on its quality. As a result of the reduced DPI setting and jpeg compression the photo will be less in size (a few kb). These scanned photos will be ideal to store in your photobucket, flickr or facebook accounts.

Scanning Photos For Web & Email Use

small photo scanning for web and email use

For quick distribution of the photos via web or for sharing them with your dear one’s the photo size matters. Here the photos can be scanned at a resolution of 100dpi and can be saved in jpeg formats. The photo size will be very small in this case (few kb). But dont think of making those photos larger because enlarging those photos will make it blurred or pixilated.

Also you can play with settings inside the software that come along with the scanner. You may find various other options for optimizing the photos, resizing it etc. You can tweak those settings to ideal values to get good scanned photos.


Amal Roy is the Founder-Editor of Computing Unleashed. A Technology Enthusiast, Windows Adept and a Proud Geek! | Connect with him on Google+