Then print them out in a scrapbook
These days, most people use digital cameras or smartphones to take photos, making it incredibly easy to store both digital and printed versions of your photographs. But, many families have years worth of physical photos that need to be protected.
Using a high-quality photo scanner is best to digitize and back up your photo collection. So, here are our six best photo scanners to save your old pictures without further ado.
1. Epson FastFoto FF-680W
The Epson FastFoto FF-680W is a highly recommended all-in-one photo scanner for home archivists. With a range of quality options, the FF-680W won’t disappoint. And, with an excellent document feeder mechanism (one of the fastest ways to scan large numbers of photos), scanning has never been so easy.
- Batch-scan up to 36 photos at once
- Variety of scan options from 300dpi to 1,200dpi
- Scan both photo and any handwritten notes on the backside at once
- Auto-upload and back up photos to cloud services including Dropbox or Google Drive via Wi-Fi
- Scan documents
- Windows and Mac support
The major downside to the FF-680W is the price. At over $600, it probably breaks the budget if you’re only looking to scan a few photos. Sheet-fed scanners usually come with the added risk of damaging your originals, but the Epson FastFoto line is designed to treat your prints carefully.
Price: Starting at $529 from Amazon.
2. Epson Perfection V600
The Epson Perfection V600 is a flatbed scanner designed for enthusiasts. It won the Best Photo Scanner award at the 2010 Technical Image Press Association awards and can handle up to A4 scanning at a reasonable price.
- Triples as a print, negative, and slide scanner
- High-quality scans up to a 6,400 dpi resolution
- Digital Image Correction and Enhancement (ICE) technology can remove dust, tears, hair, and creases
- No warm-up time with energy efficient LED light source
The Epson Perfection V600 is an excellent choice if you’re on a budget. Even though it’s a few years old, it still performs well – especially for amateurs and enthusiasts. However, if you’re looking for a professional-level scanner, you might want to consider its big brother, the Epson PerfectionV850 Pro.
Price: Starting at $399.00 from Amazon.
3. Epson Perfection V850 Pro
More than four times the price of the V600, the Epson Perfection V850 Pro is a professional tier photo and film scanner which is perfect for archiving. It uses a dual-lens system to scan slides or pictures at up to 6400 dpi. So, what are its features?
- Comprehensive software including Silverfast SE 8 (sophisticated digital ICE technology)
- Professional-level color and detail
- Calibrate colors for improved accuracy
- Various film holders to scan film strips, old photos, and prints
- 48-bit color photo depth
- Compatible with both Windows and macOS
The Perfection V850 Pro is primarily aimed at professional photographers who like to digitize their photographs, and the price reflects the professional level. With a steep learning curve, it may also present a challenge for people who are new to scanning.
Price: Starting at $1335.20 from Amazon.
4. Canon CanoScan Lide 400
The Canon CanoScan Lide 400 is an entry-level photo scanner. At an affordable price, it’s great for people who have a collection of family photographs that they’d like to digitize and back up.
- Affordable price-point
- Slim, space-saving, practical build
- 48-bit color depth and maximum optical resolution of 4,800 dpi
- Scan speed of 8 seconds per photo at 300 dpi
- Software bundle with dust and scratch reduction
The CanoScan Lide 400 is great for an entry-level scanner and offers realistic color, contrast, and details. It’s also faster than the similarly-priced Epson Perfection V39. The major downside is that it will take a long time to scan through photos in bulk compared to feed-through scanners like the Epson FotoScan range.
Price: Starting at $148.00 from Amazon
5. Plustek ePhoto z300
The Plustek ePhoto z300 is another great entry-level choice for those looking to back up their physical pictures.
- CCD image sensor for greater detail
- Affordable price
- Automatic feeder for faster scanning
- Soft roller mechanism to protect fragile originals
- Image enhancement software included
With a maximum scanned image quality of 600dpi, the Plustek photo scanner isn’t going to blow minds, but it will be suitable for most uses. Other scanners in this list will offer deeper dynamic range, more accurate colors, and higher scan resolutions, but the speed-per-photo for this price point is unmatched. Its small, sleek design also helps to minimize the desk space it takes up.
Price: Starting at $199.00 from Amazon
6. Doxie Go SE
Unlike the other entries in this list, the Doxie Go SE is a portable photo scanner. These are perfect for when you’re visiting a relative who’d like to archive some old photo albums. Rather than making two trips, simply take the portable scanner, and you’re good to go.
- Rechargeable battery with up to 400 scanned photos per charge
- Store up to 4,000 pictures with an 8 GB SD card – no computer required
- Doubles as a document scanner
Sounds great, but being portable comes with the cost of lower dpi and longer scans. The maximum resolution is 300 dpi, and scanning takes up to 8 seconds. However, with the included software bundle, the Doxie Go SE can produce quality scans that should be suitable for most users.
Price: Starting at $179.00 from Amazon.
Backup Your Favorite Memories
Storing physical photos without having digitized backups can be anxiety-inducing. What happens if they get damaged accidentally? Investing in a high-quality photo scanner can be a great way to ensure those memories are available for years to come.
Do you use a photo scanner? Let us know which scanner you use in the comments below!