How to Use an Automatic Photo Scanner

There are a number of reasons why an automatic photo scanner may be a great idea for you if you are looking into purchasing a new scanner. If you do decide to purchase an automatic photo scanner, you will want to make sure that you are using it in the proper manner to avoid limiting the quality of the scans you produce. Below you will find instructions on how to properly operate an automatic photo scanner. With a little patience and attention to detail, you will be well on your way to producing high quality image scans with your automatic photo scanner.

Tools and Materials Needed

  • Photo Scanner with Automatic Feeder Tray
  • Computer
  • Photographs

Step 1: Know Your Scanner

There are a number of different automatic photo scanners available on the market. Fortunately, for the most part, all of the scanners available on the market function in the same way. There is typically an automatic photo feeder built into the lid of the scanner that will individually feed photos through your scanner.

Step 2: Place Photos on Feeder Tray

You will want to carefully read through your owner's manual or experiment with your automatic photo feeder to determine the proper way to insert your photos. As a general rule, you will want to insert your photos face down in an even stack with the tops of the photos facing away from you. This will vary from scanner to scanner, however, so you will want to make sure you have inserted them correctly before continuing. You will also want to make sure that you are not inserting too many photos at a time. This will also vary from model to model, but as a general rule, you should be able to insert somewhere between 24 and 36 photos at a time without too much problem.

Step 3: Adjust Your Settings

Another important step you will need to take when scanning photos is to determine what type of photos you will be scanning. In many cases, an automatic photo feeder will allow you to scan photos that are larger than the actual scanner bed by feeding the photo through at a slow, steady pace. This is a feature that cannot be replicated manually, and one that could prove to be a major selling point for an automatic photo feeder. In other cases, you will be scanning individual photos one at a time. Just be sure to select which feature you will be using before continuing.

Step 4: Scan Photos

Once you have your photos properly loaded onto the scanning tray, you will be ready to begin the scanning process. Press the scanner button to begin scanning pictures. The photos should feed through one at a time. If at any point a problem arises with the way that the photos are being fed through the scanner, you may need to open the lid and manually adjust the path of the photos through the scanner or remove any jams. Check the results on your computer to make sure that the scans are showing up in the correct order and are coming through in good quality and are not crooked.


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