How to Scan Images on a HP Printer

by Dillard Stone

Scanning images on a HP printer allows you to recreate old and new photos, email photos to family and friends, make a collage, convert an image into a digital file and so much more. But, before you can turn those old pictures into vibrant new prints, you must first learn the basics of digital scanning.

Decide how the scanned image will be used. For example will the image be printed, digitally edited, used in a digital photo frame, or resized? These factors, along with others, will determine the resolution and file format as described in step 4. DPI dots per inch affect the resolution--the more dpi, the sharper the image. JPEGs, GIFs, and TIFFs are examples of file formats for a scanned image when saved on a computer.

After deciding how the image will be used, start the computer scanning software. The computer program can be an image editing software, like Photoshop or the HP scanning software program, including drivers, which came with your printer. You can also download scanning software and drivers from HP's website. Clean the scanner's glass before placing the image on it.

After preparations, select FILE>ACQUIRE (or SCANNER or IMPORT, depending on the scanning software used). Adjust the resolution (standard setting 300 dpi, see step 4 for details), color mode, add a filter effect, size and other settings to achieve the best quality scan. Run preview to confirm the results before the final scanning.

Save the scanned image as a TIFF for archiving. TIFF files can be resaved and edited without compression loss, thus maintaining the high quality of an image. If you are enlarging an original 4 x 6 photo to 8.5 x 11, save the scanned image as a TIFF at 600 dpi resolution. TIFFs provide more detail than other file formats. Scanned images for email and posting on the Web, which are to be viewed on a monitor, should be saved as JPEGs at 75 or 100 dpi. JPEGs generate smaller file sizes, which download faster on the Internet. Increase the resolution to 150 or 300 dpi only if you are emailing a scanned JPEG image for the recipient to print. Save JPEGs at the maximum quality setting.

Share your scanned images. Now you know the basics of scanning an image. Restore old photographs, edit images in your favorite software program, add text, create a scrapbook, load your scanned images into a digital frame or simply frame your photo and hang it on the wall. Digital technology is only limited by a person's imagination. Don't let your imagination restrict your infinite power to create and dream.


  • check Use premium plus photo paper to sharpen the print of a scanned image. Some HP scanners allow you to scan and attach an image to an email in one quick step, with the touch of one button. HP Photosmart all-in-one multifunction printers are capable of scanning images directly onto a CD or DVD for archiving. Save line art in a GIF file format. A file format is recognized by the extension or last three or four letters after the dot in a filename. For example image.tif, image.jpg, image.jpeg, or image.gif


  • close The HP printer must have scanning capabilities to scan an image. HP multifunction and all-in-one printers offer scanning features. When printing scanned images, check your printer's property settings. Select the correct quality option (draft, text, text image, photo, best photo). Be sure to set paper options and orientation.

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About the Author

Dillard Stone has been a writer and multimedia producer in Chicago, Ill., since 1990. His work includes educational media published by Pearson Scott Foresman, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Prentice Hall and other media companies. Stone's work appears in school districts throughout North America. He has a B.A. in communications from Northern Illinois University and Columbia College. Stone is also an A+ certified IT technician.