OT question - scanning for facsimile edition

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mmike
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OT question - scanning for facsimile edition

Post by mmike » Sat Oct 03, 2020 11:10 am

I'm sure this has been asked (and answered) before, but again ...
when scanning handwritten (pencil on large A3 score paper) orchestral scores, for a printed edition at a reduced size (perhaps something like 35% of the original), for best printing results, what would be the best file type (EPS, JPEG, PDF, TIFF, etc.?) to scan to, and at what resolution?
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Re: OT question - scanning for facsimile edition

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Re: OT question - scanning for facsimile edition

Post by miker » Sat Oct 03, 2020 2:38 pm

I would try PDF, at about 400.
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Re: OT question - scanning for facsimile edition

Post by mmike » Sat Oct 03, 2020 2:57 pm

Is PDF really better than the other graphic formats? I have of course often scanned to PDF, and they look quite good at 600 dpi. I have also tried the same at 1200 dpi, but I can't really see much difference (same when printing to PDF from a musx file, don't see any particular improvement at a higher resolution). But I probbaly don't understand the technicalities of PDF vs. other formats, and/ot how to tweak for best results.
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Re: OT question - scanning for facsimile edition

Post by ebiggs1 » Sat Oct 03, 2020 3:24 pm

... for best printing results,...

This is the key to me. Who is doing the printing? At home, something like Office Depot, or a real printing shop?

Overall, I think the best general printing format is still going to be pdf. Perhaps you should ask the person or company that will be doing the actual printing. I have a small local printing shop, in Spring Hill, they like and I always send them a pdf.
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Re: OT question - scanning for facsimile edition

Post by motet » Sat Oct 03, 2020 3:53 pm

JPEG is lossy--in the name of smaller files, in compresses images in such a way that when you decompress them for display or printing, you don't get the exact data back. I use PNG, which is compressed but not lossy. TIFF is not lossy, either, but sometimes is not compressed, so the files are large.

EPS is PostScript vector graphics, e.g. "draw a line of this thickness from here to there." It's not going to help you with scanned stuff, I don't think, but rather is useful when graphics are generated from a program like Finale or a graphics program.

I don't know that PDF is a format--I think it stores what you give it, so if you have scanning software that creates PDFs, you need to investigate what it's doing.

I reprint some public-domain stuff. What I do is scan it at either 300 or 600 ppi grayscale as PNG, and then make PDFs from the PNG files. The grayscale is important to prevent jagged edges at the border between black and white.

But why not do some experiments to see what looks best?

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Re: OT question - scanning for facsimile edition

Post by mmike » Sat Oct 03, 2020 4:02 pm

It will be done by a real printer, so that is probably who should tell me what would be best to use.
Thanks to all for the info.
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Re: OT question - scanning for facsimile edition

Post by David Ward » Sat Oct 03, 2020 5:08 pm

FWIW a 600 page A3 pencil manuscript of mine from the year 2000 was scanned about 15 years ago and was assembled as a PDF (or rather 6 PDF files, one for each scene) and has been successfully printed to A3, B4 & A4 (a bit small that last one, but still legible). I have since been able to add various annotations digitally to the PDFs.
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Re: OT question - scanning for facsimile edition

Post by mmike » Sat Oct 03, 2020 5:19 pm

David Ward wrote:
Sat Oct 03, 2020 5:08 pm
600 page A3 pencil manuscript was scanned and was assembled as a PDF
I'm curious - would you know/remember how it was scanned? directly to PDF? or some other intermediary format? at what resolution?
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Re: OT question - scanning for facsimile edition

Post by miker » Sat Oct 03, 2020 6:45 pm

I can't remember what my address was, 15 years ago! If David can remember what resolution a file was scanned at, my hat's off to him.
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Re: OT question - scanning for facsimile edition

Post by David Ward » Sat Oct 03, 2020 9:56 pm

I can't remember the resolution, I'm afraid, but it seems clear enough (the upper pic is a much enlarged, but still clear detail from the lower). This page was originally 28 stave A3, so the manuscript was definitely somewhat smaller than the detail here shown. A small number of pages were A2 in the original MS, which then had to be photocopied in two halves and reduced for scanning.

It was scanned one page at a time via a scanner linked by cable to whatever desktop Mac (2004 iMac maybe) I had at the time. Unless it was coincidence, it wore out the scanner as that ceased to function almost immediately afterwards.
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Re: OT question - scanning for facsimile edition

Post by mmike » Sun Oct 04, 2020 6:40 am

David seems to remember quite a lot, so ... hats off to him!
Thanks for the useful info and pictures, that's about what I'll be doing and it looks quite readable, even when reduced.
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