Photo Scan Disassembly: PhotoScan Vs. Photomyne

For years, you have said that you are going to scan all the photographs in the shoeboxes in the basement. Now is the right time. There are several smartphone apps to help you with this, so you don’t have to pay anyone or pull a scanner to do this, but Photomyne and the recently released Google PhotoScan are two of the best choices.


Both PhotoScan and Photomyne have one main purpose: to scan and digitize your paper photographs. Both are available on Android and iPhone. Let’s take a quick look at each application:

  • PhotoScan : PhotoScan was released this month, but it’s already a great option for scanning photos. With PhotoScan, you take a photo, point your smartphone’s camera at it, and then PhotoScan walks you through the process of creating four images. These four images are combined together to remove glare and improve image quality. PhotoScan also automatically finds the edges of each photo and crops them accordingly. If you use Google Photos , you can automatically upload your scanned images to your free Google Photos account.
  • Photomyne : Photomyne only takes one shot for each shot, so it doesn’t use PhotoScan’s fancy four-shot method to improve quality. However, with Photomyne, you can scan multiple photos at once by simply cropping them all in one shot from your smartphone camera. Photomyne has a free version for iOS , but it’s too limited to be useful. So we’ll stick with the $ 4.99 version. If you just want to give Photomyne a try, be sure to check out the free version, but look forward to shelling out an extra dollar if you really want to back up your paper photo collection. The Android version is free, though. Photomyne integrates with an optional paid Photomyne cloud storage subscription ($ 2 per month). Like PhotoScan, you don’t actually need to use this cloud storage if you don’t want to.

The important thing to remember here is that while both PhotoScan and Photomyne offer cloud storage, it is not required, so if you use another service like Dropbox or Flickr to back up your photos, that’s perfectly fine. So let’s take a look at what it’s actually like to use these apps.

Photomyne can scan multiple photos at the same time, organize them at the same time

The biggest argument in favor of PhotoMyne over PhotoScan is simple: you can capture one image to scan multiple photos at once.

The Photomyne workflow is built to quickly view tons of photos. Point your smartphone camera at four or five photos, take a photo, and move on to the next set of images to scan. When you’re done scanning them, you can go back and crop each photo and create an album. It is significantly faster than the PhotoScan workflow.

With PhotoScan, you can only scan one photo at a time, and even that takes extra effort. With PhotoScan, you point your phone’s camera at a photo, press the scan button, and then you have to move your phone to take four shots. Then they are combined into one image. If you scan a lot of photos, it is much more cumbersome.

Photomyne Album Creator makes it easy to organize your photos. When you create an album, you can start scanning your photos and they will all end up in that album. You can create albums for the holidays, years, or any other way you prefer to organize your photos. It’s easy to use and makes sense if you’re scanning photos into albums rather than a disorganized mess of boxes. However, this is only really useful if you plan on staying in the Photomyne ecosystem, which means purchasing their cloud storage package. If you export photos to camera roll, they do not preserve album data.

PhotoScan does not have these photo management functions in the application at all. This is all governed by Google Photos or whatever third-party photo organizing tool you use. So, when you scan photos, they are all just dumped into one big folder so you can organize it later. This is great if you don’t want to use Google Photos for storage , but adds an extra step to your entire organization process.

If you just need to scan a batch of photos as quickly as possible, Photomyne’s ability to scan multiple photos at once really makes things faster. The fact that you can scan those photos directly into albums makes it easy to organize while you’re comfortable in the Photomyne cloud storage ecosystem.

PhotoScan photos look better with improved automatic cropping

Although it takes longer to actually use PhotoScan, the end results are well worth it. PhotoScan scanned photos look better and the auto cropping feature used by both apps was much more accurate in PhotoScan in my testing.

I’m not going to pretend to be a photo archiving expert, but in my opinion PhotoScan photos have colors that look closer to the original, look better when zoomed in, and the app does a better job of correcting problematic perspective if I didn’t hold my phone straight. PhotoScan also eliminates glare and reflections, which is handy when all your photos are glossy.

For its part, Photomyne doesn’t do a huge amount of post-production work. It does seem to do a little color correction, but it doesn’t get rid of glare or reflections, so you need to be careful when scanning photos to avoid accidentally catching glare from a light source above you.

Both apps automatically crop the digitized images, removing whatever is in the background, leaving only the photo. While it’s nice that Photomyne can scan multiple photos, I found it not very smart at finding the edges of a photo, which meant I had to manually adjust cropping for many images. I also had to do this in PhotoScan, but not so often. Photomyne is probably still the faster of the two, but the more practical approach to framing may put some off the table.

PhotoScan is the best option for most people, but Photomyne is fine if you’re in a hurry

In terms of usability and image quality, I found PhotoScan to perform better. While Photomyne speeds up photo scans, it takes a little more effort after the fact and does not produce consistently good results.

Photomyne also makes you very tired of signing up for their cloud service. It’s not required, and at $ 2 a month for unlimited photo storage it’s on par with other options, but it doesn’t change the fact that annoying pop-ups appear asking you to sign up for their service every time you go to do whatever they want. application.

However, Photomyne is a more feature-rich application. You can create and edit albums, edit photo details with date and year, and use various filters. Photomyne is more of a one-stop shop whereas PhotoScan is just a scanning tool. Which works best for you depends on how you are currently archiving your digital photos.

If you just want to scan and you don’t mind taking your time, use PhotoScan. If you’re in a hurry or need a complete photo management tool, check out Photomyne.


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