There’s nothing like holding an actual photograph. Developed, printed, and looking glorious. The trouble is that real photos are difficult to share and vulnerable to damage. The best solution is to digitize your photos by scanning them.
Whether you have boxes of old family photos or you’re a new member of the film photography revival, you need the best photo scanner. Thankfully, we’ve done the research and compiled a list of the best photo scanners available today.
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What To Look For In A Photo Scanner
Analog photography is in the midst of a revival. Many photographers a going back to film and analog cameras. And as a result, more people are looking for the best photo scanner to digitize their prints. The manufacturers have taken note and produced some excellent machines.
Many photographers will be happy with a single-purpose scanner. These machines are dedicated to scanning and have no other functions, such as printing or copying. All of them on this list are flatbed or tray-fed scanners.
If you’re looking for something more versatile, an all-in-one unit is what you need. A multi-function printer has printing capabilities but is also equipped with a flatbed scanner. They’re great if you want to duplicate your photos. But the scanning quality usually isn’t as good as single-function scanners.
Other models have more film-friendly features, with hardware for scanning slides and film negatives. These home photo labs are for serious film photography buffs. And they often have printing capabilities too.
The price can vary a lot with scanners. Single function scanners are often at the cheaper end of the spectrum. And as you add more features, the price tends to go up. But some specialist units can have high prices.
The Best Photos Scanners to Digitize Your Prints
Think about what you need. Are you scanning old photos for posterity or sharing them with family and friends? Do you just want to scan them, or do you want to print them as well? And are you scanning photos for fun or for business?
We’ve included something to meet the needs of every film photographer. We’ve hit all the price points. And there are scanners ranging from the very simple to the very complex. Here’s our selection of the best photo scanners.
The Epson Perfection V600 is the best photo scanner for serious film enthusiasts. It’s a single-function scanner without printing or copying features. But it’s a versatile scanner for people with a passion for film.
It’s a flatbed scanner, which allows you to scan A4 documents. But the main appeal comes from its ability to scan photo prints, slides, and film negatives. And it has the option for 35mm and medium-format (120mm) film types. And once you scan the negatives, you have excellent options to enlarge them.
The scan quality is superb, with a 9600 PPI scan resolution. And the scan quality is improved by the digital ICE (digital image correction and enhancement) technology, which removes dust spots and scratches. The Epson Perfection V600 has digital ICE for photo prints and negatives.
The Epson Perfection V600 software also has one-click photo fix options, restoring faded color in older photos. Combine this with the ICE technology and you get pristine digitized photos.
The Epson Perfection V600 is powered by the Ready Scan LED light. It’s energy-efficient, and there’s no warm-up time required. You can start scanning straight away, saving you time.
The Canon CanoScan 9000F Mark II is a flatbed photo scanner specializing in negative scanning. Its photo-centric features make it perfect for analog enthusiasts and professionals.
The CanoScan 9000F MII has a flatbed making it a functional document scanner. And this also works well for scanning printed photos. But film photographers will love the film holders used for scanning negatives. You get holders for 35mm and medium-format negatives.
The image quality of the scans is perfect, with a resolution of 9600 DPI. The digital versions of your prints have incredible detail and a high dynamic range. The My Image Garden 2 software brings out the colors and details in your photos. And it offers excellent organization options for photo libraries.
The high image resolution means the file size of each photo is quite large. But if you’re serious about photo scanning, you should have some ideas about external storage. And the CanoScan 9000F MII allows you to scan directly to cloud-based services like Google Drive.
The Canon CanoScan 9000F MII is on the pricier side of the market. But the image quality is exceptional. And if you need quality and reliability, this photo scanner won’t let you down.
The Epson FastFoto FF-680W is a specialist photo scanner for home use. It’s one of the best batch scanners for digitizing your back catalog. And it’ll have your photo albums scanned and filed in no time.
The Epson FastFoto FF-680W uses a document feeder system rather than a flatbed for scanning. While aimed at photos, you can also use it for A4 document scanning. And Polaroid pictures aren’t a problem either.
The automatic document feeder holds 36 photos at a time. And it scans the whole album automatically. You don’t have to insert a new print for each scan. It’ll pull the next photo through, scanning one photo after another. The Epson FastFoto FF-680W offers the fastest photo scanning solutions.
The Picture Perfect imaging system restores old photos with color restoration and enhancement. The software also removes red-eye and dust spots for better-quality photos. And it’s a wireless machine, so you can scan directly to computers and mobile devices.
The Canon CanoScan LiDE400 is an excellent photo scanner for home use. It’s a slimline scanner that uses a flatbed for scanning photos and documents. It’s simple and straightforward, and the scan quality won’t disappoint.
Photo scanners don’t come much more streamlined than this one. It takes up very little space in your home office. And it’s versatile, scanning photos, documents, and thicker media like books. Documents can be saved as editable PDF files.
With a scan resolution of 4800 DPI, your digitized copies will look as good as the original prints. And the Canoscan LiDE400 enhances colors and removes blemishes automatically.
The different scanning modes are intuitive and make storing and organizing your photos easy. You have options for documents, photos, and customized scans. And you can direct the files to specific locations on your device. Or you can scan directly to OneDrive or Dropbox.
The Canon CanoScan LiDE400 has energy-efficient performance. It connects to your computer with a USB, and that’s all the power it needs. And the photo scanner wastes no time warming up.
The Epson Perfection V850 Pro is one of the best photo scanners for professional photographers. With stand-out scan quality and fantastic photo-centric features, it has everything a film photographer could want in a photo scanner.
The Epson Perfection V850 Pro works well as a document scanner, with a flatbed scanner big enough for A4 sheets. But the photo scanning is where the V850 Pro stands out. You get film holders for 35mm and medium-format film.
The scan resolution is 9600 DPI, with exceptional color quality and tonal range. And the high dynamic range brings out the detail in dark and light areas. You’ll get high-quality scans for both photos and film negatives.
The digital ICE technology puts the Epson Perfection V850 Pro in the league of professional-level photo scanners. The digital ICE removes defects from your photos, removing scratches and spots. And it restores faded colors and detail with very impressive results.
The Epson Perfection V850 Pro uses patented ReadyScan LED lights and a Dual-lens system for scanning. It isn’t cheap, but it’s one of the best photo scanners for serious professionals.
The HP Envy Photo 7855 is an all-in-one unit with printing, copying, and scanning abilities. But the HP Envy Photo 7855 specializes in photo scanning and printing. It’s perfect for the home and easy enough for the whole family to use. And the price is very reasonable for an excellent all-rounder.
It doesn’t have film negative scanning options like some of the more professional photo scanners. But it’s ideal for scanning and reprinting family photos. The scan quality is terrific. And the printing is good enough to replicate or enlarge your prints.
The HP Envy Photo 7855 is wireless, so you can print from any mobile device. And you can scan photos and send them to a mobile device or cloud storage like Google Drive or iCloud.
The HP Smart App makes wireless scanning even easier. You can scan a photo and share it on social media in just a few clicks. And you can print original photos directly from the camera roll on your smartphone.
Photo scanners don’t come more straightforward than the Plustek ePhoto Z300. It’s a basic photo scanner without complicated functions. If you’re looking to digitize your photos without investing in professional-level equipment, the Z300 could be the right photo scanner for you.
There are no options for scanning film. But the Plustek ePhoto Z300 supports photos sizes of 3×5, 4×6, 5×7, and 8×10. You can also scan letters and A4 documents.
You need to feed each photo into the scanner one at a time. While that might sound time-consuming, it only takes two seconds to scan a 4×6 photo. You’ll have full albums done in no time. And it has a scan resolution of 600 DPI.
The Plustek ePhoto Z300 software includes image enhancement functions. The simple interface allows you to restore faded photos or enhance colors and details. You also have options to do minor edits and organize your photos.
The Plustek ePhoto Z300 is a simple and affordable solution to your photo scanning needs. And it is supported for Windows and Mac users.
The Epson Perfection V39 is a cheaper Epson Perfection model than those previously listed. It doesn’t have some of the features film photographers might want to see. But it’s still one of the best photo scanners for home use.
The scan resolution is 4800 DPI, which gives you stunning digital versions of your photo prints. And you have color restoration and enhancement options in the bundled software.
The Epson Photo Scan software allows you to scan photos directly to Google Drive or iCloud. And the high-rise removable lid makes it easy to scan larger media like books.
The scanner has a sleek and slim body. And it’s easy to hide away in any home office. It’s powered by the USB connection to your device, so it’s a low-energy scanning option.
The Canon P-208II is a portable solution to your photo scanning needs. It’s a tiny piece of equipment, taking up practically no desk space. It’s one of the best photo scanners if you’re always on the move.
The scan resolution is 600 DPI. It’s not ground-breaking, but the quality is more than respectable for photos and documents. And while you have to feed each photo into the scanner, it can scan both sides of a document at once. And it runs at a rate of eight pages per minute.
It can scan documents as PDFs and photos as JPEGs. And you can scan to a device via the USB port. Or you can scan directly to cloud storage spaces like OneDrive, Dropbox, and Sharepoint. It’s supported by Windows and Mac systems.
That’s our list of the best photo scanners available right now. We’ve covered all the bases, with expensive scanners and more budget-friendly options. There are photo scanners for digitizing the family albums and more advanced options for the film-based pros.
Digitizing your photos, negatives, and prints has never been easier. And there’s a photo scanner to meet the needs of all photographers.
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