web cam versus digital camera

I need to determine the best imaging method for my book scanning
robot. Up to this point I have been thinking of using a standard
digital camera to capture the images. However I realized with the
limited battery life and storage capacity of a standard camera, I
would have to purchase an additional AC adapter and use a camera
capture software program which usually only works with higher end
cameras. All in all the cost would be at least $400 but probably
closer to $500. It seems reasonable that I could probably get a
decent web cam at a lower price that could give me a good enough
quality image. Most of the web cams I have looked at have a 1.3
megapixel capability but with software enhancement can take a picture
of about five or six megapixels. Would I be able to record a fairly
good image of a page so the text is legible?
Reply to
dmehling
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Probably not. Cameras generally don't do well taking pictures of flat surfaces up close. Get a cheap flat bed scanner instead.
Reply to
Si Ballenger
A flatbed scanner is totally out of the question. It is much too difficult for imaging a book and is too slow. A regular digital camera can do a great job of taking a picture of a single page. I would definitely not be taking a picture up close. What I really want to know is if a web cam can take a still image that approaches the quality of a digital camera.
Reply to
dmehling
...
Don't be fooled by claims of software being able to increase your resolution. The camera's resolution is what it is. It cannot be improved with software. Sure, the software can interpolate pixels and make a bigger file, but that just "fuzzifies" everything. It doesn't increase resolution.
BRW
Reply to
BRW
A web cam is no where near the the quality of a digital camera. Web cams are noisy and most I think are just 640x480 resolution. My digital cameras highest resolution is 2048x1536 and is a few years old. You don't say how you intend to download the images to a computer or what optical character recognition you intend to use? The slow part with the camera might be downloading each image to the PC.
-- jc
Reply to
JGCASEY
Here's something I tried after reading this thread. I used a Kodak Easy Share CD40 that I got refurbished for $70 about a year ago. With a 512mb card in it it will take about 614 pictures at a 4 megapixel level. I took some pictures of a paperback book I'm reading and ran it through some OCR software. The text came out fairly well. I would still have to clean up some of the mistakes if I was making it an ebook. If you're going to do a whole book, 614 pictures are going to cover most books.
Tinker
Reply to
Zopilote
This annoys me, the likes of "CSI" who take a photo taken by a digital camera and despite the object they are looking at being about 10x10 pixels and jpeg'd into 3 sections of the same colour they claim its possible to clarify it and end up with an image that looks like a vaguely compressed 800x600 shot of it including text - how annoying.
Reply to
CoyoteBoy
To give a quick answer, NO. You generally get what you pay for. If you want to go cheap (wanting to use a "webcam" is a warning sign) you will generally get cheap results. Your camera questions are probably more appropriate for the below news group.
rec.photo.digital
Reply to
Si Ballenger

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