Re: [Gimp-developer] Scanning coins

On 01/13/2016 12:11 PM, billgoldbeach frontier com wrote:

     Greetings, I have heard Gimp is great for scanning images of coins to be sold internet. Can you tell me 
to set up Gimp to do this?Regard,William.
Sent from my Verizon 4G LTE Tablet

Disclaimer: I am a stamp guy, not a coin guy, but we do use Gimp. I do not have any coin scanning experience.

As others have said, Gimp does not scan by itself. And even if you have the TWAIN plug-in built, that is still not the "secret sauce". Once you have the scan made, Gimp may have features that are (or are not) easier to use than some other programs for manipulating the images to make the coins look their best. You really have to have an in-depth conversation with those from whom you "heard" that Gimp is great for coins. If they are able/willing to tell you their "secret sauce", the workflow may be technical and a bit complicated, but take good notes. Included in these notes must be the make/model of the specific scanner(s) people are using. Since coins are three dimensional, it all becomes about the light source and mechanical operation -- and that can vary greatly from one scanner model to another. I would not be surprised to discover that it is a specific make/model of scanner that is really the "secret sauce".

However, IMHO what you need -- regardless of whether you use Gimp or not -- is a standalone scanning program (usually _not_ from the scanner's manufacturer -- those tend to be much too dumbed-down). From my professional (again, in stamps) experience, I recommend Vuescan Professional (VSP). A free/lite version can be downloaded from but if you find that works for you, then I _strongly_ recommend paying the FEW dollars for the full Professional version. By the way, this is a family operated company and when I have run into tricky issues (because of my stamps, not their software), Mr. Ed Hamrick himself has been quick to assist with ideas.

VSP supports "over 2800" of makes/models of scanners, including scanners not supported by your operating system! They have Windows, Mac and Linux versions.

VSP can also build and load a "profile" (think color calibration) of your scanner. You will probably need to obtain a "color target card" separately(see that link for the source where I got mine; it is in Germany; I did not find an American source). VSP can make and load scanner profile files that you can create using VSP (specifically/separately for each scanner machine you use). This profile allows you to have much better understanding and control of the color range (sorry, I am not technically qualified on this subject) that the scanner machine is sending to the VSP software and it allows VSP to more closely turn that into what you really want to see. In this way, using multiple scanners -- which can have slightly different output even if the same make/model -- you can have virtually identical color output (and control of same).

Best of luck,


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