Scanning Coins vs Photographing Coins, Which Method Is Best

There’s some debate about the best way to capture a picture of a coin. As I launch this site, I’ve opted to use my scanner on the first batch of coins and medals I post. There’s not really a good reason for that – I simply can’t find where I packed my camera and the scanner was easy to get ahold of. šŸ™‚

Do you have a preference for scanned or photographed coins? The consensus seems to be that cameras do a better job of capturing depth and fine detail, while scanners offer more consistent and often faster results. I’ve run into some trouble using my scanner on slabbed coins. The scanner definitely focuses on the label of the slab, which leaves the coin itself out of focus.

Here are two results from the same scanner: notice the problem?

"In focus" scan
“In focus” scan
"Out of focus" scan
“Out of focus” scan

After reading a handful of articles on the topic, I went meta and wrote a page of tips for each method. Try these out and let me know what works for you.

Tips for getting the best results with a scanner

Tips for getting the best results with a camera

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