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Review the scanning techniques graphics professionals and photographers use, while delving into workflow considerations and the advanced image-quality controls available in most scanning software. Author Taz Tally explains the core concepts, such as how resolution and interpolation affect scans; introduces the industry-standard SilverFast scanning software; and shares the settings to achieve the best results from a scan. The course also covers keeping your scanner and its parts clean and free of dust, and includes a variety of start-to-finish scanning tasks.
Now let's discuss scan mode, and in particular, the bit depth that we're going to scan our images. We're talking about this portion of the frame right here where it says Scan Type, different scanning surfers use different terminology. They may say Scan Mode or who knows, but this is what we are going to choose the basic number of channels in the bit depth, the number of bits/pixel that we are going to have in our resulting scan image. It's a little bit complicated when you first look at it, but notice that there is a variety of different grayscale choices here, several different color choices and then this one, 1 Bit black-and-white Line Art.
So let's start with a simple and then move to the more complex. When we get through I think you'll see it's a little bit less daunting than it first appears. 1 Bit black-and-white Line Art, this is going to create an image that has one channel. That's going to have one bit/ pixel, just like you see here. It's either going to be black or white pixels. We obviously don't use this for continuous tone images. This is the Scan Type or mode choice, with the bit depth choice we're going to choose, when we are scanning simple Line Art, that we intend to convert into vectors or just print as high -quality pixel-based images.
That's the 1 Bit black-and-white Line Art. We're going to use this when we're trying to capture edges. Grayscale, we've got several different choices here, we have got 16-8 Bit Grayscale, then we've got 16 Bit Grayscale, then we have 16 Bit HDR Grayscale, just take them in order. This one, honestly this is the most likely mode in which you're going to scan your images, unless you do a lot of image-editing or you like to work in enhanced bit depth images, in terms of your editing and output. This is the most common mode which you'd choose for grayscale images and I'll recommend you start here.
When you choose this, the scanner captures in 16 bit grayscale data, which means it captures 512 shades of gray, and then will deliver you 8 bits of grayscale, after the scanner captures the image and you apply all the corrections you're going to do during the scan, then it delivers an 8 bit image So as long this scanner supports, which most scanners do these days, this to medium to high-quality ones, and then delivers an 8 bit grayscale image. So that's the most common one that you'll choose. The next one is it captures in 16 bit, and delivers a 16 bit grayscale image, full 512 shades of gray.
It's going to be twice the file size of the 8 bit and more importantly, it's going to have that 512 shades of gray, and if you're working in Photoshop, you can do a lot of editing in 16 bit mode, not all the editing, but most of the editing and if you are again doing lots and lots of editing in Photoshop in the postscan, this may be a good choice for you. And increasingly, there are printers that will actually print 16 bits of grayscale. Now honestly there is a good deal of debate about whether you can actually get better quality out of a 16 bit image on certain kinds of images.
My suggestion is test it, with your images, your type of editing and your type of output device. Do a couple of the same images in this mode. print them out, see if you see any difference, and if you do, then use it. The third grayscale mode here is 16 bit HDR and notice when we choose this, all of the editing modes are basically shut off over here, and when you choose 16 bit HDR, you're selecting this, if you intend to really perform most of your editing in the postscan phase, you might be working in the HDR software that LaserSoft makes, so you may be working in your 16 bit images in Photoshop or some other application that can actually work on 16 bit data.
So here you're really minimizing the amount of work you're doing during the scan and you would plan for your workflow to where most of these image-editing is occurring somewhere else. We have the same set of choices in color, we have 48 bit to 24 bit color, here the scanner is capturing in 16 bit/pixel/channel. Remember from our earlier discussions that a color image is really a scan which has three grayscale channels. If you capture in 16 bits/channel, 3 time 16 is 48, you capture 8 bits/channel, it's 3 time 8 is 24, so it's very much like the grayscale, but we're just doing three channels and we're doing the initial sampling and capture in 16 bit mode, then apply the scanner corrections and then deliver a very high quality 8 bit image, 8 bits on each channel, 3 time 8 is 24.
On the other hand, if you want to work in 48 bit color, that is 316 bit grayscale of channels, work in Photoshop that way, do most of your corrections in Photoshop or another application that can handle that, terrific, but you'll apply corrections during the scan and then work on the corrected 48 bit image, and then similarly to the 48 bit HDR, if you want to do most of your corrections somewhere else rather than into the scan, what this allows you to do is it would capture all of the raw data with very little of any corrections and then move that raw image into some other applications.
It really kind of depends upon what your workflow is like, where you do most of the correction. This boils down to three choices, right, where you can go 1 bit black-and-white, one of the three version to grayscale, or one of the three versions of the color image. If you're trying to decide between the 16-8 bit and the 16-bit grayscale or the 48 bit-24 bit color, or a full 48 bit color image, which one you want to actually create off the scanner. Run some tests with your images and your output devices, and test to see if the additional bit depth actually provides you with better image quality in the final analysis.
When we choose something like 48-24 bit color, there's a lot of other Filters that you can choose sharpening and descreening, we'll come to that later. For now I'm going to suggest for most of your scans is we are going to apply no Filtering, no Sharpening, no Descreening, unless we really want to do that during the scan, and we'll address that later on in the course. Notice we have an Image Type selection here, these are Presets for a lot of the tools that you see up here and a lot of the corrections that you would do up here, and that's kind of a semi- automated scanning technique, and we'll talk about that little bit later on in the course.
So choose a Scan Type, no Filtering, choose Standard Image with no Preset corrections, and then we're going to go apply most of the corrections using these correction tools that you see up here.
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