Camera Scanning books

Len_cline

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Jul 6, 2013
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I'm making a jig to photo book pages. I want to give my son my complete library in a box of disks rather than a semi-truck. I need a camera that I can reach under the table, turn the focus and check it on the computer screen, then, lock it in place so it takes pictures without having to focus each time. Secondly, I need the camera to be activated by a button that I can place in the top of the table OR that I can bump with my knee or foot. Any suggestions on what name brand, model, other equipment you would recommend to do the job and why would be appreciated. Thanks, len
 

USAFRet

Illustrious
Moderator
Look for a camera with manual focus. Set it at te required distance and all is good.
Also, look for one with an intervalometer or time lapse. Set it for 2-3 seconds. Click, flip page, click, flip page. A Canon with the CHDK firmware will do that, I think.

The camera search at DPReview might get you started.

What format will you put these in? And you have to compensate for the inner curl of the pages.

But there's nothing like holding an actual book in your hands.
 

Len_cline

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Jul 6, 2013
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__________________
The curl of the binding will be eliminated because I had planned to lay the book over a piece of glass
much like the plustek3600. Mound the camera below the glass on a tripod.

A switch or lever or button to make shutter move is another problem I haven't figured yet. I'm not
familiar with CHDK yet. I just read enough to know it's software added to the camera. Still learning.
Cameras and brain surgery are things in life I never learned anything about. Now that I need it, I have to cram...just like school. ;)

Focus--if I can set the camera in focus once, I think you are right. The glass and tripod will hold that
same distance throughout all books that same size.

Another problem--How would the camera handle the different size pages. Some books are bigger than others?

Thanks for your help.
 

USAFRet

Illustrious
Moderator
Hanging the book over the edge of the glass will work. Twice as many images, though.
Some cameras are 'remote shutter' aware. Either wired or IR triggered.
The CHDK is pseudo firmware for some/most Canon cameras. It gets installed on the AS card, and enables a bunch of features not available in the actual camera software. If I had A Canon, I'd definitely use it/try it.

As far as book size...there are a few standard sizes. Paperback, hardback, coffee table. Do several of the same size all at once. Change to a different size and readjust the camera for the new size.

A deeper question, though:
How old is your son, and how many years until he presumably reads these? Which is why I asked what format will these be in. And how will you store them.

Let's say 20 years. A DVD written in 1993 may well be unreadable today. Bit rot. A hard drive from 1993 would require extra crap to connect it to a current PC.
What will we/he be using in 2033?

There are a crapload of books online, already free in the public domain. And Amazon, for instance, has a couple hundred thousand available for free, in their Lending Library.
 

Len_cline

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Len_cline

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Yeah...it is the "deeper questions" that brews. We may not even have a country in 20 years. It is for certain, I will not have to worry about it any longer. Perhaps I can ease the deeper question by saying, "He'll have to worry about that." What a cop-out am I.

Thank you for making me think and for all your camera know-how.

.
 

USAFRet

Illustrious
Moderator


Whoa...that's a whole different direction than I was going with that question.

20 year timespan - 1993-Today.
If I had saved a bunch of stuff back then for use today...the recipient would have to go through many gyrations to extract it.
3.5" floppies? Have you seen/used one lately? Do you own anything that will read them?
CD? Likely unreadable.
Hard drive? Again...gyrations to simply plug it in to a modern PC.

What will we be using in 2033?
 
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