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9 reasons to use a Colortrac scanner instead of a digital camera

Posted by Liz 19/12/2017 0 Comment(s) Prizma,

9 reasons to use a Colortrac scanner instead of a digital camera


If you have been browsing our selection of Colortrac large format scanners, you may have wondered why you necessarily need to invest in such a scanner at all. After all, a digital camera is similarly capable of producing image files from two-dimensional originals for subsequent viewing on a computer or printing.


With cameras also being a lot cheaper than large format scanners, it may seem a foregone conclusion that they are the superior option. However, there are also a number of key differences between the two to take into account.


  1. Lighting

A large format scanner can produce perfectly contrasted images without the need for special lighting conditions or to be set up in a particular way. When you use a scanner, the image is lit very close to the original for perfectly exposed results and minimal image disturbance from folds or creases. For this reason, far superior image results can be achieved when compared to using a digital camera.


  1. Speed

A large format scanner is capable of processing a single A0 document every 12 seconds at 600dpi, compared to the many minutes of preparation that digital cameras typically require.


  1. Mounting

Using a digital camera to capture a two-dimensional original requires you to lay the original flat or hang it on the wall when compared to feeding through a scanner once only.  


  1. Accuracy

The calibration of a large format scanner to provide length accuracy to within 0.1% and line quality to within a pixel enables large format scans to be used for direct estimation work, using the original drawing’s scale. Images that need to be produced to scale cannot be photographed using a digital camera.


  1.  Substrate flexibility

Another great benefit of using a large format scanner is its ability to easily process opaque, high gloss and transparent originals – even those mounted on card or board up to 15mm thick using the Colortrac SG scanner. Photographing images using a digital camera that have a gloss finish or are behind glass creates issues with reflective light.  


  1. Resolution

While even the images from high-quality digital cameras can have a resolution as low as 150dpi or less when used for an A0 original, a large format scanner is capable of producing crystal sharp images at up to 600dpi.


  1. Distortion

You don’t have to worry about your images suffering from lens barrel distortion and warping when they are produced by a large format scanner, whereas camera lens distortion often has to be corrected by those with Photoshop software and expertise in how to use it.


  1. Quality control

With a large format scanner, 1:1 viewing of your scanned images is possible seconds after the document has been scanned. You can opt for lossless or lossy compression through the scanning software. It takes time to download images taken using a digital camera to view on a computer.


  1. Colour control

Depending on your specific requirements, you can use a large format scanner to produce colour images in sRGB, Adobe RGB or machine colour spaces. Such colour management benefits can extend to your colour printer if you use the scanner to copy or produce physical hard copies.




Here at Prizma Graphics we recommend the following Colortrac Scanners for your specific requirements :


For scanning technical documents and CAD drawings, the Colortrac SmartLF SC Scanners are the perfect option. 


For scanning photographs, artwork and posters, the Colortrac SmartLF SG Scanner uses CCD lens technology to produce the very highest scanning accuracy and sharpness.


Trust Prizma Graphics as your source of wide format scanners from Colortrac that enable you to gain the best results from your projects. Remember that if you would like to discuss your specific requirements with us, you can call us via 01296 393700. 

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