Sheet Music Scanning Procedures
This document was prepared to guide student assistant scanning technicians in scanning, correcting, saving, and quality control of files in the Historic American Sheet Music Project.
Table of Contents
Illustrated Title Page: The first page of a piece of sheet music, the "cover."
Halftone: Printing process by which images are rendered by hundreds of tiny dots.
Moiré Patterns: Interference patterns appearing in a scanned halftone image. They often appear as stripes, checkers, or patches. (See example below)
Descreening: Process used to minimize moiré patterns.
Image without descreening (with moiré patterns)
Skew: Image which is turned incorrectly due to movement on the scanner bed.
Filenames follow this template:
[call number (four digits)]-[image number].jpeg
The image number represents the number of the image only and is not related to the page numbers of the music.
Create a folder and name it the same as the call number. Save the individual image files in this folder. The structure should be:
[Working folder] \ b0170 \ b0170-1.jpeg b0170-2.jpeg b0170-3.jpeg b0170-4.jpeg etc... b0170-10.jpeg b0170-11.jpeg
The image number should simply increase to two digits after 9 (01, 02, etc. is not necessary). This will cause 10 to appear after to 1 in the directory, but this is will be accounted for later.
Multiple pieces, parts, etc.
2 or more copies of the same title: Check the pieces carefully to determine the differences.
b0001-1.jpeg Title page 1
b0001-2.jpeg Title page 2
b0001-3.jpeg Interior ads 1
b0001-4.jpeg Interior ads 2
b0001-5.jpeg Music (best copy) ...
b0001-8.jpeg Back interior ads 1
b0001-9.jpeg Back interior ads 2
b0001-10.jpeg Back cover 1
b0001-11.jpeg Back cover 2
Multiple parts: If there are multiple parts within the music, i.e. a piano part, horn part, vocal, guitar arrangement, etc., scan each part in sequence.
Scanning with the Umax Scanner
Prepare Scanner (Beginning of Shift)
Magic Match: off
For halftone images set to "Art Print 175lpi"
For line images set to "No Descreen"
DO NOT change any other software settings.
Let someone know if anything doesn't seem right after scanning your first image so we can make sure the software settings are correct. Be aware of color inconsistencies - the imageís color should closely match the original.
Editing and Saving
About JPEG: The JPEG compression process is known as "Lossy," meaning that data is thrown away when an image is saved. As a result, a JPEG which is opened and re-saved is "second generation" and does not have the quality of a "first generation" JPEG which has been saved only once. The level of quality goes downhill very fast - a third generation JPEG is very poor quality and unacceptable for use. For this project we are planning to create 72dpi images and thumbnails for access, which will be second generation. It is INCREDIBLY important that all of the 150dpi images be first generation, otherwise the quality of these access files and the project in general will suffer greatly.