Tip: How to take a good PCB photo

A small database of PCB photos and PCBs references.
fzabkar
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Tip: How to take a good PCB photo

Postby fzabkar » Wed Apr 17, 2013 2:28 pm

Q: What is the best way to get a good high resolution photo of your HDD PCB?
A: Don't use a camera. Use a scanner instead.

My hires "photos" were produced by a Canon multifunction printer/scanner/copier, model MP370.

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Re: Tip: How to take a good PCB photo

Postby LoboX » Fri May 10, 2013 1:26 pm

What!!!!!! no way really a scanner? funny i tough it was a good camera :o

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Re: Tip: How to take a good PCB photo

Postby Spildit » Sun May 19, 2013 6:28 pm

This scanner tip is a very nice "trick" to get a good quality PCB picture when a high quality camera is not available.
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Re: Tip: How to take a good PCB photo

Postby fzabkar » Tue Jun 11, 2013 9:06 pm

For those who may be wondering why their scanner doesn't produce good results, it could be that theirs is a CIS type whereas mine has a CCD sensor.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Contact_image_sensor
http://www.carlmcmillan.com/dof/depthoffield.htm

(Thanks to "Keatah" at HDD Guru)

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Re: Tip: How to take a good PCB photo

Postby hipo » Wed Jun 12, 2013 8:50 am

You can make a nice shot with camera too. Just press Macro and put OFF for flash.
I have Sony point and shot small camera and works great.
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Re: Tip: How to take a good PCB photo

Postby HaQue » Thu Jun 13, 2013 12:24 pm

I use good lighting, a desk lamp pointed at a white wall so no reflection. Then I use my iPhone quite close, I press on the screen so the phone can focus properly. I normally take a couple and choose the best one. Then I use software to crop, adjust lighting a little and save as this creates a better picture and smaller file size.

This method is probably best suited for flash drives, maybe not PCB.

The good part about using a scanner is that the resolution is great, so you can zoom in and read the chip numbers without as much degrading because of zoom.

some tips:

1. Windows screenshot: To take a screenshot of your current window in focus, hold ALT and press PrntScr. now go to paint and press control+v or Edit, Paste.
2. Windows screenshot: To take a screenshot of your whole Desktop, press PrntScr. now go to paint and press control+v or Edit, Paste.
3. Make a smaller .jpeg size from your camera: Open in paint, now save. That's it. Normally at least halves the filesize.
4. To make a picture the right size for a standard computer screen: open the picture in picture preview. Zoom out to make the picture fit the screen. Look at the status bar and see at what % of the picture you are viewing it at.. say it is at 39% because it is a huge pic. Yes the browser will resize it, but it is annoying to wait for a picture to load for no reason. Well just go to your image editor, resize it keeping the L x W ratio to 39% of its original size and it will show on the screen exactly the same as you viewed it. save it as a .jpg.
5. keep a backup folder of the originals so if you need a good resolution one for reference, or you stuff up the editing, it is there.
6. Crop everything unnecessary that is not needed to convey what you are intending. We don't need to see all your taskbar full of Skype and facebook tabs. ;-)
7. Just be aware of the metadata stored in photos.. it may bother you it may not...
8. don't make your picture take up the whole screen unless you need it to for clarity of a trace or something. resize it. a good resizer is calle pixresizer and it is free. it does batch jobs as well and has some standard presets. The interface is as ugly as hell, and takes a smidgeon to get used to, but it is powerful.

cheers,

HaQue


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