MATLAB Answers

Jed F.
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Automatic crop scanned photos with nonwhite background.

Asked by Jed F.
on 27 Jun 2013
Latest activity Answered by Khorian
on 14 Feb 2019
I have an Epson 2480 Limited Edition scanner with document feeder. It makes scanning photos easy... maybe too easy. I've cranked through around 1000 photos in the last few days.
I use VueScan instead of the Epson Scan utility because it works under Windows 7. (And if I ever want to scan in Linux or Mac OS X the license is cross platform). It doesn't autocrop from the photo because the background is dark. I have a few photos of 'nothing' because the sheet scanner will occasionally draw a blank.
For example this photo: http://i.imgur.com/fs9r9lih.jpg
However the holes in the treads is never in the exact same spot (because otherwise I'd just parse that out). And the photos are in all sorts of orientations, sizes, formats, and the document feeder never puts the photo in the same spot twice so I can't just autocrop the same dimensions. A few of the photos also have dark backgrounds and I don't want it to accidentally crop it.
I've tried to subtract off a mean of the background images I have I'm still having trouble figuring out how to crop the photos. I've played around with edge detection and I'm stuck there.
Here's an album of the photos: http://imgur.com/a/N6E8J
I know my way around Matlab and Simulink rather well but I'll admit I'm completely clueless when it comes to the Image Processing power of Matlab. I focus mainly in controls. I know Matlab has some ungodly powerful image processing stuff I just have no clue how to use it.

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1 Answer

Answer by Khorian
on 14 Feb 2019

Vuescan isn't really good at autocropping. Dark or patterned backgrounds make image separation / recognition pretty difficult for any tool. If you have uniform dark backgrounds you can use any photo scanning software for this kind of job, for example AutoSplitter is pretty good with all kinds of autocropping against uniform background - regardless of background color.

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