Book Scanning

Professional Book Scanning and Digitisation

ProScan offer a book scanning service throughout the UK to both corporate and private institutions. So if you are looking to convert a single book to PDF or have a large collection of books digitised for editing and re-publishing or simply want to preserve and archive some rare books then we can help you.

Depending upon your requirements we can scan and convert your books to the most suitable digital format using either our non-destructive or destructive scanning method.

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Hardback Book Scanning

Non-Destructive Book Scanning

Binding remains intact

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

Destructive Book Scanning

Binding is removed

The bindings of the book are carefully removed using a guillotine so that the book then effectively becomes a loose leaf document which can be carefully fed through a high speed book 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.


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.

We dont just scan standard books

Our service is open to anyone wanting to digitise any form of bound book, journal, diary, publication, magazine etc... You name it we've probably scanned it.

We have worked with a number of different professionals and organisations, each for a different reason but all with a common cause:

Archivists – scanning and digitising books is the ideal option for archivists wanting to preserve rare and valuable books whilst still maintaining public access to the contents of the publication. The digital copy can be made available for research and interested parties whilst the original is preserved.  

Authors and Publishers – conversion of out of print books that require editing prior to republishing in either digital or print form. This would typcally be in Word format. After editing we can convert the file into Kindle format or produce a new digital PDF suitable for printed publication.

Collectors – we are experienced in scanning large collections of books, journals, magazines and periodicals for private collectors. This enables such collections to be preserved and shared digitally in a format such as PDF making searching for a particular article or issue a simple task thanks to the searchable PDF format.

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 quote 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.

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