How to Improve the Quality of Your Scans

by Contributor

Your scanned photographs, graphics and documents can be improved with a few adjustments to your scanning software or graphics-editing software.

Scanning Software

Set the color setting to match the item to be scanned. Scan photographs with color (or comparable setting); scan simple color graphics with lower color setting (256 colors or less); scan line art with line art setting; scan documents with optical character recognition (OCR) software.

Set the resolution to 200 dpi or greater for optimal resolution of a photograph.

Increase brightness setting for underexposed photographs, decrease for overexposed photographs.

Adjust colors for photographs that are too green or red.

Graphics-Editing Software

Use brightness and contrast settings to adjust underexposed or overexposed photographs (similar to scanner software, but finer adjustments).

Adjust colors for photographs that are too green or red. Also, use your program's color settings for touchups (to improve skin tone) or effects (to make landscape pictures greener or bluer).

Sharpen fuzzy pictures or line art with the Sharpen or Sharpen Edges setting.

Reduce graininess or dirt specks in a picture with Reduce Noise setting.

Items you will need