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book scan - Camera Setup Answered

Hi all, So I was scanning the book manually today using camera. Everything turned out to be ok, except the final pictures file size was staggering big(little over 1MB), which finally will compiled into a single PDF file. I was using resolution of 1600*1200 and found it to be the minimum accepted resolution in my situation. So my question was under what kind of camera setup should I get the smallest picture size but relatively clear picture. Thanks,


I don't quite understand what you mean. Why was 1600x1200 the minimum? Is that the smallest your camera takes? If so, you could zoom out and set up an action to crop all of your pictures down to a smaller size using photoshop or (probably) GIMP.

my camera has 3072*2304, 2592*1944, 2048*1536, 1600*1200 and 640*480 options, but I found "1600*1200" to has the best quality and compression rate. With that I get little over 1MB per pictures. With a few hundreds pages of book, I end up with a very "big" digitized book. P.S I don't plan to use OCRs, just picutures into PDF. So the question - how to reduce the size but retain the quality? Thanks,

Quality is proportional to size, smaller file sizes = poorer quality. If you convert the images to B&W bitmaps or tif images you've got probably the best format for plain text. If you need more than two colours anything legible is going to require big files.
(Of course, this is what scanners are for, photographing books is not the best way)


We scan an awful lot of A4 documents at work, 200dpi B&W; tifs come out at less than 100K each. More than two colours they can get very big, but as monochrome they're fine for scanning of things you just want to read. L

I would zoom out some with your camera and then crop each photo. You can have some editing software do it automatically. Black and white is also a good idea.

Are you shooting the pages in black and white only or does it need to be color? I would think a B&W; photo is smaller filewise. Maybe the graphic print experts like gmjhowe could tell you some tricks of the trade but I would also think you would try to scan or capture at best or better quality and use the pdf software to do the compression in the end to reduce the size to acceptable quality. Good luck.