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Thread: Camera to copy documents?

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    Senior Member stephengilbert's Avatar
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    Camera to copy documents?

    Can anyone suggest a solution for a friend who wants to copy old documents?

    She wants copy copy old diplomas and other records in order to preserve the data on them, but doesn't need a very high quality image of the documents. They're in libraries and such, where copy stands and high tech gear would be forbidden.

    Is there a small camera/lens combo that would work for this sort of project?

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    Subscriber Member Jorgen Udvang's Avatar
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    Re: Camera to copy documents?

    One with a flip-out screen is convenient for situations when a viewfinder isn't useable. Reasonable high-ISO, since libraries don't always have a lot of light, even if they should. G3 sounds perfect.

    Then the lens. No field curvature is a requirement for this kind of work. Usually macro-lenses are best at that, but then she loses zoom. The PanaLeica 45 is a bit expensive and may be a bit long sometimes. How about the Zuiko 35mm in 4/3 mount? It's cheap, very sharp and the focal length shouldn't be too bad for this kind of work.

    An alternative is the new Panasonic 14-42mm X. It's small and light and has OIS, which means that she will be able to use smaller apertures making field curvature less of an issue. And zoom is clearly an advantage if the size of the documents varies.

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    Re: Camera to copy documents?

    I think you're right. I just shot a copy of my dog's vaccination record to keep on Ipad in Goodreader and used the G3 and Panny Leica 45/2.8. Worked really well but a 35 should do fine I would think.

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    Senior Member pellicle's Avatar
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    Re: Camera to copy documents?

    Quote Originally Posted by stephengilbert View Post
    Can anyone suggest a solution for a friend who wants to copy old documents?

    She wants copy copy old diplomas and other records in order to preserve the data on them, but doesn't need a very high quality image of the documents. They're in libraries and such, where copy stands and high tech gear would be forbidden.

    Is there a small camera/lens combo that would work for this sort of project?
    copystanded a few thousand pages or so with my G1 and a FD 28mm f2.8 lens. The lack of AF and a tripod makes it a very rapid click and flick with excellent image quality. MF lenses are light on battery (done nearly a thousand pages to a charge) combined with flip out screen for easy previewing when working on a table top

    hard to beat it

    PS and use manual exposure, take a few test shots and you won't have your exposure all over the place caused by diagrams, less than full pages or other funny influences in the copying. Expose right and easily apply some post processing to make it a simple matter to print out on a laser printer too

  5. #5
    cosinaphile
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    Re: Camera to copy documents?

    your best bet is a ricoh gxr or a gx 100 200 they have a document feature that will take any polygon shaped document or flat art that is less than viewed straight on and turns it back into a perfect rectangular document in camera ,

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