digitising books

Book Scanning

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At ProScan we digitse your books by scanning each page in turn so that they can be converted into a variety of formats that are easily readable on almost any device such as E-readers, iPads, Android and Kindle.

Once a book has been scanned it becomes much more versatile in terms of distribution, on screen reading and reproduction. Optical character recognition (OCR) can also be used which then allows the text to be edited, reformatted and searchable. We can export scanned books into Microsoft Word format which can be useful for editing prior to republication.

Formats

We begin by scanning the book and saving each page as either a JPEG, TIFF or PDF image. The most popular formats are explained below:

  • Image only PDF - The PDF will look identical to the book as these are the original scans compiled into a multipage PDF document. The file size will be quite large and any imperfections on the page such as smudges or tears will show up. This is book scanning in its most basic form and is best suited to long term archival storage of a valuable books.
  • Text under page image - As above but with the added advantage of being able to search for text within the PDF. You can also select text and copy and paste into other applications such as Word or Excel.
  • Editable PDF & Word document - The text is extracted from the original PDF scans using advanced OCR technology. The result is a fully editable Word document with a layout similar to the original book. Once any corrections have been made we use the Word document to create a new PDF. This is the ideal format for re-publishing old titles and is ideal for use on e-readers and tablet PCs due to the small file size and high clarity images.
  • Plain text Word document - The text is extracted from the original PDF scans using advanced OCR technology. The result is a plain text Word document which has most of the formatting removed with the exception of page breaks and paragraphs. This is the ideal format for those authors wishing to have their books converted into one of the popular digital book formats such as epub or Kindle.
  • Kindle Format - Using the Word document created from your scanned book we carefully follow the guidlines set out by Amazon Kindle to convert your book into html and save it ready for you to upload to the Kindle Book Store. We also include a colour scan of the front cover which you can upload to use as the image for your book cover.
book scanning

Scanning Bound Books

Our book scanners are manually operated by an experienced member of staff, all pages are carefully turned before a glass platen holds the page flat for scanning. The spine of the book sits in the middle of a moving cradle which ensures the book lies as flat as possible during the scanning process. Scanning is normally carried out at 300dpi although for special applications we can go as high as 800dpi. After scanning we use various software processes to crop, deskew and edit the images in any way that will improve the appearance before finally releasing it to the desired format where a final quality check is carried out.
 

Destructive Scanning

For book scanning on a low budget, we do have the capability to remove the bindings of a book using a heavy duty guillotine. This is possible on books up to 40mm thick. The book then effectively becomes a loose leaf document which can be carefully fed through a document scanner. Whilst this may not be the best solution for very rare or valuable books it can be useful where a replacement can be obtained at reasonable cost.

How Much Does Book Scanning Cost?

The cost of scanning a book can vary quite considerably and is dependent on a number of factors. Consideration is given to the size and age of a book, whether a bi-tonal, grey scale or colour scan is required and at what resolution you require the images to be.

If you are considering having some books digitised then please call us on 023 8063 0050 to discuss the various options available, or alternatively  complete our online form. We provide quotations without obligation and in most cases offer to do a sample scan so that you can see for yourself the quality of the scanned image.
We also scan office documents and large format plans, please call us on 02380 630050 or contact us online for more information.

 
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