Since I’ve recommended the VueScan software, I thought I’d also mention this book.
While it advertises itself as “…the missing manual for new, experienced, and prospective users of VueScan” it’s really not essential as documentation for the software. However, this book is one of the best resources I’ve found for understanding how to get serious about the business of doing scans of photographic products.
Here’s an example of the many tidbits l found useful:
8.1.22. Input>> Scan dpi
This option pops up whenever you set Input >> Scan resolution to Custom. You can either type in the required scan resolution manually or use the slider for the same purpose. The maximum value is the optical resolution of the scanner. As with Input » Preview dpi, this is not really a useful feature.
A scanner can scan properly only at its optical resolution (e.g., 4800 spi) or parts of it (e.g., 2400, 1200, 600, or 300 spi). If you choose 297, the scanner will actually scan at 300 spi and scale the image down to 297 spi. Avoid this, as image quality does usually not benefit from rescaling. Its better to choose one of the values that VueScan proposes in the Input > Scan resolution dropdown list.
Nowhere else have I seen an explicit statement that says I’m better off scanning at specific resolutions. It makes sense, but it’s nowhere in the documentation for the scanners or even the documentation for VueScan.
Before discovering this book, I sent folks to Wayne Fulton’s Scan Tips internet site. Lots of good stuff there and Wayne offers a self-published and printed version of the material on his site which I also bought a few years ago. Despite its age and the fact that Wayne doesn’t update his site very often, the site is still worthwhile and covers some things that Steinhoff doesn’t. But unlike Fulton, Steinhoff can assume you’re using VueScan which lets him focus the examples and he structures his discussion as a thorough walk-through of VueScan.
In any case, if you’re going to launch into a major scanning project, I think you’ll want to know about both this book and Wayne’s site.