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Scanner recommendations

Posted: Mon Jan 26, 2015 2:52 pm
by ZincRider
I'm thinking about getting a new scanner. I've gotten decent results with my old one so far, but I think there is room for improvement.

Are there any affordable models out there that have a flush scan bed? It would make scanning 12'' vinyl record covers so much easier. A recessed scan bed makes positioning of documents easier, but I have to bend record covers to make a proper scan. No problem with flimsy european covers, but american covers are impossible to scan without damaging them.

Good scan quality would be a huge plus as well. I need something that doesn't bring out scuffs, dings and warping of booklets so much.

Re: Scanner recommendations

Posted: Fri Apr 24, 2015 3:53 pm
by ZincRider
I couldn't find anything suitable in my price range, so I got an Epson Perfection V37.
While it doesn't have a flush scan bed, the design of the enclosure is much better than that of my old scanner, so I don't need to bend covers as much anymore. The lid can open more that 180°, so it's out of the way when scanning bigger objects. Good thinking, Epson!

It uses a CCD sensor, so it has great depth of field, which makes it less problematic if there is a little bit of a bend.
Colors are very accurate and profiles are embedded. I'm also having no issues with clipping and overexposure with this one. Gradients are smooth. Quite an improvement over my twelve year old HP. :D
There is no warm up time, because it uses an LED light source. Very nice.
The Epson scan software is easy to use and has a professional mode that puts me in control about all parameters I care about.

I selected this device rather carefully, but I was still positively surprised about the quality of the scans. I did feel that my old scanner left some things to be desired, but my scans were still quite good compared to most of the images on or allcdcovers.
This will make creating high quality images a lot easier for me. If you're looking for a new scanner, I cannot recommend this model enough. :D

Price wasn't bad either. You can get these from €55 new if you shop around a bit. You may also be able to score one of its predecessors (V30, V33) used for very little money.

Edit: It does have one weakness: Scans of silver discs don't look any good. Luckily I can live with that. :mrgreen:

Re: Scanner recommendations

Posted: Sun Feb 12, 2017 6:33 pm
by ZincRider
Here's a neat fix for the CD scan problem:
Alternatively one could simply used a scanner with a CIS sensor for scanning discs. Their limited depth of field is really useful in this case. I do like Kepstin's results with the diffusive plastic better, though. It eliminates the dark rings as well as the rainbow pattern.

I should probably add this to the scanning tutorial...

Re: Scanner recommendations

Posted: Fri Apr 07, 2017 12:24 pm
by Kode
Did you ever come across a scanner you would have decided was perfect, regardless of cost?

Re: Scanner recommendations

Posted: Tue Apr 11, 2017 10:22 pm
by ZincRider
For 12'' covers a large format scanner would be the ideal solution, but most are several thousand $. Way outside my budget, so I didn't look much into it. Large enough flat bed scanners do exist.
I found an affordable scanner large enough to scan a record sleeve in two passes (instaed of four), but it was a CIS model and I really wanted to have depth of field. When everything is in focus I can descreen properly, so I went CCD. With four passes stitching is more complicated, but Hugin does a great job at that.

I believe I haven't found anything with a flush scan bed. Everything seems to have at least one lip for aligning documents. As it's better to shift the cover around on the scan bed instead of rotating it (a scanners output may be a little stretched or compressed in one direction, so stitching could be problematic) I didn't look any further into those.

The one I got does the trick for me. It's more effort than with a large enough scanner, but I can deal with it.

There are scanners with other useful features out there, though. I believe Epson's v600 model doesn't scan paper texture (unless it's set to). Certainly more convenient than having to scan at two different angles, superimposing the scans and then picking the right blend mode - but then again it's over four times as much as I paid for my V37.