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File Size or Image Quality?

Predict storage requirements with the File Size Calculator
Another great tool from Image Access!

Often, customers want to evaluate the actual file size of individually scanned documents upfront to get an idea about the storage requirements for a project. With storage memory and Internet bandwidth increasing constantly, it is time to re-evaluate quality versus storage requirements.

The File Size Calculator is a simple, easy to use tool which will assist in getting an estimation about the expected file size. It should be noted that only the file size computed for raw data is comparable with other scanners. Scan2Net® scanners from Image Access and their licensees use very specific, highly optimized compression algorithms which take all camera parameters into account.

Details about these compression strategies can be found in our White Paper "Compression and Losses".

In the early days of scanning, black & white was common not only because of file size but also because color scanners were slower than monochrome scanners by magnitudes. Today, Image Access CCD based scanners are running at the same speed in monochrome or color and CIS based scanners are running at 50% of the monchrome speed, outperforming many competitors by a margin. Color versus monochrome is therefore not a real speed issue in most cases -- which makes file size a final criteria for making a purchasing decision.

The following should also be considered. File size in TIFF G4 compression is significantly smaller than a normal JPG but this comes at the expense of reducing 24bits of color to only one bit before the run length compression is applied. It takes 30,000 full color DINA0 or E-size scans at 300dpi and stored as 24bit JPEG to fill up a normal 500GB hard disk. Is it really worth reducing the image quality so significantly as is done with TIFF G4 and be able to store only five times more on the same drive?

Nearly every other vendor uses some kind of third party compression algorithms which cannot take the camera specifics into account. As a result, a comparable image from a non-Scan2Net® scanner can contain up to 100% more data (i.e. JPEG compression) than on a Scan2Net® scanner. If you use this calculator for other than a Scan2Net® scanner you should add 50-100% to the estimated file size if JPEG compression is used and about 20-50% if Tiff-G4 is used.

Click here to try out the File Size Calculator and get a feeling for the storage requirements you will have for your imaging projects.