I found a bunch of my old school-books that I wanted to digitally capture. I do have a flatbed scanner, but most of my 1980s workbooks were far too large for it. So I decided to build a cheap scanning table.
The Bluetooth selfie-stick button was necessary because tapping the screen on the phone made the somewhat-unstable tripod bounce around a bit. Not great for in-focus shots.
It took a few attempts to find a secure angle for the phone and tripod – and a position which didn’t cast a shadow.
The battery on the selfie-stick button died, and I couldn’t be bothered waiting for a replacement – so I decided to build a foot-pedal. This meant I could use both hands for flipping pages, and tap my toe to grab a photo.
- USB OTG converter – £1.50
- Old USB keyboard
The Android camera uses the space-bar as the camera-click key. So a fairly large target to hit! The USB connection also proved a lot more reliable than the Bluetooth one.
Pretty good! I set the camera to maximum resolution and highest quality – so most photos weighed in at 2MB.
I was able to scan about 500 pages in an afternoon. Are they “archive” quality? No. But they’ll do for my purposes.
I manually set the exposure, white-balance, and focus. But, occasionally, a duff one crept through.
I had through the white background would be plain enough to do some image-detection auto-cropping magic. It wasn’t. Perhaps, one lazy afternoon, I’ll manually trim them.