Over the weekend, a friend and I were discussing scanning our old 35mm era photos. While we both have functioning and capable flatbed scanners, they are older and are very slow. When scanning at 600 dpi1, my scanner sounds like the opening three notes to the Star Wars Imperial March, with each beat representing less than 1% of the lines scanned. I learned how relatively slow this was when using a newer flatbed scanner at my old job, which I was quite sure wasn’t actually scanning the image properly because it was just moving too damn fast. I suddenly had one of those curmudgeonly moments: you dang keeds and yoor technolargy!
So now I’m in the market for a new flatbed. I’d like one cheap, but that can scan quickly at 600‑1200 dpi. I realize that with the popularity of digital cameras, scanners aren’t nearly as common as they once were (or were going to be). However, if anyone has any tips or recommendations they’d like to pass on, I’d love to read them. I’m currently leaning toward buying another Canon, just because I’ve been so pleased with my old one (quality, if not speed). However, low prices and rave reviews have been known to sway my attitudes.
Eventually, I’d like to scan in all our old 35mm photos (as well as wedding photos). If I can automate the files saving process and cut the scan time down to seconds per photo, that will be much more likely to happen.
1 — This is, by my calculations for a 3“x5” photo, roughly equivalent to an image taken with a 5 Mega pixel digital camera.