12/22/219:00 am Using Image Capture To Scan Documents Instead of trying to use the software provided by your scanner's manufacturer, use the built-in Image Capture app on your Mac instead. You can scan documents and photos with a variety of settings and options. Video Transcript: Hi, this is Gary with MacMost.com. Today let me show you how to scan documents using Image Capture. MacMost is brought to you thanks to a great group of more than 1000 supporters. Go to MacMost.com/patreon. There you can read more about the Patreon Campaign. Join us and get exclusive content and course discounts. So often hear from people that are trying to use their scanner and maybe the software that came with the scanner doesn't work with the Mac or they can't seem to get it installed. My question is why use any third party software at all. Mac already comes with an app that's built for accessing your scanner and scanning documents and photos. This app is called Image Capture. You've already got it on your Mac. It's part of the system. Go to your Applications Folder and scroll down to i and you'll see Image Capture right there. If you use this a lot you may want to add it to the Dock somewhere so you can get to it easily. Now when you run Image Capture if your scanner is attached to your Mac you should see it here on the left. So notice I don't have my scanner attached directly to my Mac with USB, I've got it through the network. So it's here I have to reveal the Share devices. This is a multi-function printer and scanner. Yours might just be a regular scanner. Now there may be some drivers you need to install. Every scanner is going to be a little bit different. For mine I didn't have to install anything. Mac OS recognized it just by either connecting it or accessing it over the network. If you go into System Preferences and then to Printers & Scanners you should be able to add a scanner here with the Plus button. If the scanner is on your network you should see it here. But follow the scanner's documentation or contact the manufacturer for the right way to do it if you don't see it right away. So let's assume that you've got it connected and you can see it here. If you select it then you can use the scanner. Now you may see a simple interface like this. But what you're going to want to do is click Show Details to see everything. If you've got something loaded in the scanner it should give you an Overview Scan. Now I should warn you that every scanner is a little bit different. So what you see here is going to be a little different for your scanner. So for my scanner it shows me the Preview here and then it tries to predict what I want to scan. In this case it gets it wrong. It sees an image here and thinks well, that's all I want. So the first thing I want to do here on this Preview is I want to expand to capture the entire page. On the right I've got a lot of options. Yours will be different but mine give me the Flatbed or Document Feeder since my scanner has the ability to feed pages into it. Then I could pick the type of scan. Text would be the simplest. It would be low resolution just for capturing the text on there. Use that for very simple documents that you maybe want to scan just to save copies of it digitally. Black and white would be for black and white photos but also for documents that have more details in them like graphics and such. Color is for photographs. In this case let's do black and white, since we have a combination of text and a black and white image. Resolution is very important. DPI stands for dots per inch. Now 75 dots per inch on a printed piece of paper is going to look very pixelated. It's great for having compact image that's not going to take up much space but it's not going to look very good. You want to go to something higher. Maybe to 300 DPI where you actually get a pretty decent image. This is probably the lowest that you should use for photos. For documents like this it's going to look really great. But you probably want to experiment. When you have a document like this try each of these and see what the results are. Figure out which one you want to use for that document or for documents like it in the future. Now here the reason it auto selected this image is because it had Auto Selection on. Detect Separate Items. I can do it Detect in Closing Box or just turn it off. Then you get to select where you scan to so it's going to default maybe to the Pictures Folder. Let's do it to the Desktop. I can name it whatever I want. So let's name this one Test. Then I could set a format. Now with jpeg as the format it's going to save this as an image file. I can select several other image file types. With PDF it's actually going to save it as an image embedded inside a PDF. The advantage of this is that I could fill a document with multiple scans. So I can scan this and then check Combine Into a Single Document. The next scan I do will actually add to that PDF document. So as long as I keep the name the same it's going to keep adding to that file. So I can scan document after document and it will just keep adding a page to the PDF each time. But anytime I want to start a new document I just change the name here and now it's going to create a new document with that name and any pages I scan after that are going to be added to that document. I also have an option for Image Correction and you could see I could set it to Manual here and I can adjust brightness and contrast. If ever I want to regenerate this, like maybe I put the wrong page in there and I want to see the new page, I could do Overview and it's going to do an overview scan again. So now let's set this to Resolution say 300 DPI. It's going to Save it as a jpeg image. It's going to save it to the Desktop. So I'll go to Scan but since I had Auto Selection turned off there's nothing to scan. So I'm going to select Everything here and see how it snaps to the end. Then I'm going to scan this. There's a little window here for Scan Results and I can use the button here to jump right to it. I don't need to since it's right there on the Desktop. Let's take a look at what we've got here. If I double click it will open up in Preview and it looks pretty good. If I zoom in I could see the quality there. Let's get the file size on that. You could see it's 815K. Not too bad. Now what would happen if I were to go to 75 DPI and scan it that way. You can see Alice's name isn't conflicting with the existing name there. It's going to put a number on it. Now if I zoom in on this you could see the quality is way down because it's 75 dots per inch. But the result is the file size is now 109K. So it's always a compromise between file size and quality. So let's leave it at 75 since this is a document and that seems to be good enough to read the text. Let's change this to a PDF and I'll call it something and then scan it. So I get this PDF here. I open it up and it looks the same but it's a PDF document. Now let's put another page in the scanner. Let's do an Overview scan and I didn't strictly have to do an overview. I could have just hit Scan again knowing it was just going to scan the entire page anyway. But this is useful if you want to resize things. Now since I left the name the same and it's a PDF and I have combined into a single document when I scan it it's not going to create a new document. But it's going to add a page 2. So now I can double click on this right here and I could see I have page 1 and page 2 in one document. So I can keep adding pages to it and it will keep growing that file. If I ever want to start a new document I can just change it to something else and now it would save out to that new document. So what about photos? Well, I put a photo in the scanner now and let's do an Overview Scan to see exactly where that photo is. So there it is right there. Let's go and adjust the area to just capture the photo. So I can get in pretty close to it. I can maybe adjust the angle a little bit if I didn't put the photo down perfectly and crop it in. Then let's go and set this to Color and let's have a nice higher resolution for this. I'll call it something else. I'll select the image type. I could select jpeg but let's do the good high efficiency image compression format. Then here would be useful, definitely, to play with Image Correction. You see with color I have many more options right here. Let's scan this picture in and here I've got my image and I could view it and then maybe try it at 600 DPI to see if I like that or if I'm trying maybe to scan a bunch of images and I don't want them to be well compressed I can maybe try 200 and see if that's acceptable before I start scanning the rest. My scanner is also equipped with a document feeder so if I set it to Document Feeder here then, of course, I can't see a preview of it because the pages aren't in the scanner. They are sitting in the feeder. But I can set everything up. Let's do maybe Text instead of black and white. Let's do 100 DPI kind of as a compromise. Kind of better than 75. I know the page size here and the orientation of the pages. Scan it to the Desktop. Let's call this Doc and I'm not going to do TIFF format. I want to do a PDF so it could put multiple pages in a single document. So I've got that checked. Now I can scan. You can see the document forms right here and it scans both pages. Now if I look at the PDF here I get both pages. Now you can see what it looks like to use the Text format. It's basically black and white but just black and white pixels. You don't have the grayscale there. So at 100 DPI's, so-so. Maybe 200 would have been better but it's definitely a smaller image. So you may want to consider actually having a 200 DPI if you're going to use this format. Maybe try it in grayscale as well to see if you like the quality there a little bit better and the file size is worth it. I guess the coolest thing about this is that you can use, you know, color with the flatbed. If you had several photos on here you could select the photos like that and then you would get three different images in the format. You could see it select the first one, the second one, and the third one. So if I actually had photos there I'd actually be getting three different images here. You can see it saving it as Images, images 1 and it will be images 2. So that can make quick work of scanning a bunch of photos without having to do it one-by-one. One more tip. You can also choose Scan 2 and choose to scan directly to the Photos App. Open it up in Preview so you get it open in Preview and then you get to choose there to Edit it, Mark It Up, before you save it. Or send it directly to Mail to create a new Mail message and then you could just send it right to somebody. You can also choose Other and choose another app. So I could choose, for instance, a graphics app like Pixelmator, Acorn, Affinity Photo, and it will just open up the image in that. So play around with this. For a lot of people this is more convenient. It's quick. It's easy. It's already on your Mac. For others you may find that the software that comes with your scanner is better than this. Maybe it has Optical Character Recognition, OCR, that's actually converting the text to characters so you can search for it. These pdf's here that Image Capture saved didn't actually do that. So you can't search and find these documents by the words inside them. I usually compensate by naming the file well so I can easily find the document later on. So if you're having trouble scanning documents or you can't use the software that came with your scanner give Image Capture a try. Hope you found this useful. Thanks for watching. Related Video Tutorials: Creating Smaller Screen Capture Recordings On a Mac ― macOS Shortcuts: Capture Text From Your Screen ― Using the New Convert Image Quick Action On a Mac ― macOS Shortcuts: Add a Watermark To an Image Comments: 7 Responses to “Using Image Capture To Scan Documents” Jimmy 2 years ago I have been using Preview to scan. Is there a difference between Preview and Image Capture as far as scanning? And if so what are the advantages either has over the other? - JamesJM Gary Rosenzweig 2 years ago Jimmy: They are basically the same, but Preview will always just give you the document as a new Preview document. Image Capture gives you the full range of options, like saving directly to a file, going to Photos, going to Mail. Chris in CT 2 years ago I have been using System Preferences> Printers and Scanners> Scan. Is this the same as using Image Capture? The screens and choices appear the same, but Image Capture seems so much quicker, especially when using the Spotlight launch trick I learned from you this morning - Cmd space> i. This is a good example of why I watch your videos religiously. Thanks! Dick English 2 years ago Great tip! I've been using the HP app to scan and it looks like Image Capture is seamless and easier to use. I was totally unaware of the app - I wonder what other surprises are waiting to be unlocked... Thanks! Eric 2 years ago This looks worth giving a go. I have been using VueScan (from Hamrick) for years and have never felt the need to try anything else. Randall Reetz 2 years ago OCR? Gary Rosenzweig 2 years ago Randall: Image Capture doesn't do OCR. But if you need to scan the text you can certainly use Live Text on the image when you are done scanning. Comments Closed.