A few scanning tips

by Wayne Fulton

The Scanning section is BELOW


A few attempts to clarify some mysteries about the basics of flash and digital photography, hopefully helpful. More detail about fundamentals for those interested, more about how the details actually work (which is good to know when you're ready).

Essential Fundamentals About Digital Images

Pixels, Printers, Video - What's With That?  First Basic Fundamentals

Image Resize - Cropping, Resampling, Scaling  This is about the Least we need to know to use digital photos

White Balance Correction  Click on White things

Why Should I Shoot Raw?  It's the easy way to go

File Types, Bit Depth, Image size, Memory size

What are JPG losses?  JPG Artifacts

RGB color  What is Digital Color?


How Light Meters Work  (maybe not as assumed)

Details about Metering Principles (including TTL)

A Histogram is Not a Light Meter  Incident vs. Reflected meters

18% Gray Card - What's the Idea?

EV - Exposure Value  and EV Chart

Sunny 16 Rule of exposure

Do I need a handheld light meter?  Sekonic L308S

Surprises in the Use of Histograms  Avoid the camera single gray histogram

Histograms are Gamma Encoded  The numbers may not be what you think

What and Why is Gamma?  (with calculator).

Flash Fundamentals We Must Know

Introduction  Basics about light and flash

Inverse Square Law  Flash falls off with distance

Guide Numbers with calculator (and a HSS calculator)

Bounce Flash, and TTL Flash Compensation

Camera Distance Does Not Affect Exposure

Continuous light vs. Flash - Shutter Speed

Other Differences, Continuous vs Flash

Maximum Flash Sync Speed

HSS - Auto FP flash mode - What is HSS?

What is Soft Light?

What Hot Shoe Flashes Do

Flash pictures are Double Exposures - Important

Flash Outdoors - Fill Flash in Sunlight

Flash Indoors - Factors affecting TTL metering exposure

Auto ISO - for flash?

Rear Curtain Sync - for Blur from Ambient Motion Trails

Matching White Balance of Room Lights - Colored Filters on Flash


A Beginners Guide to Select a Hot Shoe Flash   Part 2, chart

Comparing Power of Flashes with Guide Number Ratings

Review of Yongnuo YN-565EX Speedlight ($84)

Review of Aperlite YH-700N Speedlight ($90)

Review of Neewer NW-985N Speedlight ($63)

Review of Neewer VK750 II Speedlight ($53).

Nikon TTL BL with D-Lens Distance  Lens distance accuracy is poor

Third Party Flash Brands Bypass D-Lens Distance Problems

Speedlight AA Batteries

Comparisons of Optical Slave Triggers

Speed of Flash Units for High Speed Photography

Nikon TTL history - TTL, D-TTL, iTTL


A Standard Portrait Lighting Setup

What is Soft Light?

What Umbrellas Do

Mounting Speedlights in Umbrellas

Methods to Trigger Flashes

Nikon CLS Commander Wireless Remote Flash System (AWL)

Lighting Kits for Home Setups  Flash is good for Portraits

Comparing Properties of Speedlights vs Studio Lights

Which is Softer, Reflected or Shoot-through Umbrellas?

The Main Trick is to Learn to Actually "See" the Lighting


Scanning Thousands of old Slides with a digital camera

Depth of Field  Plus a better way to blur the background

Field of View  Of Lens and sensor

Crop Factor  also Equivalent Focal Length, and the WHY of the Magnification illusion

f/stops and shutter speeds  Understanding the numbers, and a few lens properties

Charts of Nominal and Precise numerical values  f/stops, shutter speeds and ISO

Math tips of EV and precise camera numbers - f/stop, shutter, ISO

Have we hit a megapixel limit?

Diffraction Limited Pixels?  Really?

Memory Card Speed  How much do we need?

Camera Exif Data  Need a good Exif viewer?

Good Books on Flash Photography

Photo Editor Curve Tool  (compared with Levels)

Solenoid Valve for Water Drop photography

Calculators, with a few Extra features

Compare two camera Exposures

Compare two f/stop, shutter, or ISO values

Guide Number calculator

HSS Guide Number calculator

Scanning and Printing DPI calculator

Four Crop Factor calculators

EV Chart and EV calculator

Calculate Exact Aspect Ratio

Find Distance or Size of an object in image

Cropping to match print paper size

Calculate Histogram Gamma

Maximum image dimensions from Megapixels

Calculate Diffraction - In support of Depth of Field

Calculate motion blur or camera shake in pixels

Convert Bytes to KB, MB, GB, TB

Compare two Guide Numbers for relative Flash Power

Compare two Distances for Inverse Square Law

Guide Number of ganged flashes. Also exposure of metered Main & Fill

Field of View calculator and Chart, and Math

Depth of Field and Hyperfocal - And a better way to blur the background

Chart of "The Numbers" for many sensors & film sizes - More about Depth of Field

Nominal & Precise Actual Goal values of each f/stop, shutter and ISO

Improved “500 Rule” about Milky Way star trails

Copying slides with camera - macro lens or extension tube math - Image size, magnification, resolution

Percentage Fill Flash of TTL Flash Compensation and Lighting Ratio calculation

S&P 500 calculator concerned with a 4% Rule

Count of annual S&P 500 record highs

Compare performance of 50+ stocks


This scanning material is about the basics of scanning. It may be older material, but the basics are all still very valid. The purpose here is to offer some scanning tips and to explain the basics for scanning photos and documents. It is also about the fundamentals of digital images, about the basics to help you get the most from your images from your scanner and camera. How it works, for those who want to know.

Included here are the general questions that we've all asked about digital images. The material is about the basics, certainly not superficial, but it is not at all difficult either, it is just simply about how it works. It describes in plain language the things we need to know to efficiently get the most from our images, in the various ways that we can use them. Do realize that digital camera photos are already digitized (scanned, so to speak, meaning, first preference is to use your original camera file if you have it).

Many newbies want to scan a photo at the greatest possible resolution. We'll explain why that's the wrong answer, with tips about how to choose a more appropriate answer to match the actual job. That and many other scanning basics are covered here, and it's intended to be a fast jump start to aid newcomers to graphics and scanning. There will be a little technique to learn, but when you've seen it once, then it's rather simple.

Never used a scanner before?

Evaluating Scanner Features

Quick Summary of Digital Basics

Scanning / Printing dpi Calculator

Scanning 101
The Basics

START * Fundamental Concepts

Video Resolution - How much to scan?

Say No to 72 dpi - It's a false notion

File types, Bits, Image size, Memory size

Images for television or PowerPoint

Printing Resolution - Scaling and Resampling

The Scaling Menu - Scaling Output Size

Finding the Scaling and Resampling Menus

Printing Guidelines - Printing dpi

Printer Resolution - How much to scan?

Line art and Threshold - Copy, OCR, Text

Line art and Grayscale

Scanning for Fax

Descreen to remove Moiré Interference
   Images in printed media

Interpolated Resolution

Photo Resolution - How much can we scan?

Image File Formats - Which format?

Transparent Media Adapter - 35 mm slides?

What about Film Scanners?

Dynamic Range - 12 or 16 bits?

A few Links to Other scanning sites

A few Frequently Asked Questions - FAQ

Scanning 201

A Simple Way to Get Better Scans


UnSharp Mask sharpening

Curve Tool

Clone Tool

Restoration of Genealogical Photos

Correction of Faded Slides

A few Typical (discontinued now)
Scanner Software

Acer Mirascan

HP PrecisionScan LT

HP PrecisionScan

HP PrecisionScan Pro

Microtek ScanWizard 5

Microtek ScanWizard Pro 6

Minolta Scan Dual II

Polaroid 4000

Umax VistaScan

Umax MagicScan

VueScan - still going strong!

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Please report Here any problem with the calculators, or with any aspect of any page. Reporting of problems will be very much appreciated, thank you.

I do try to help with questions about the basics or about my material, but I cannot help with the "what hardware to buy" or "my hardware doesn't work" questions, so those two email types probably necessarily get no response.


Copyright © 1997-2021  by Wayne Fulton - All rights are reserved.