Phillyman's Work In Progress...

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So recently I upgraded to a higher quality scanner. I now am the proud owner of a iX500 title="Search for Fujitsu ScanSnap iX500" rel="external nofollow">Fujitsu ScanSnap iX500. When I started Retromags I was using a $99 Epson flatbed, I then tried out an HP All in One, Canon All in One and then finally back down to at $50 Canon flatbed. This new Fujitsu scanner is a much higher quality product, which leads to a much more productive Phillyman :)

As many of you know my magazine collection is close to 1900 magazines at the moment. My wife hates seeing magazines all around our 1 bedroom apartment. Most of these magazines are stored in banker boxes in a small utility room. Over the years I have done a very poor job of keeping track of what I actually own. This is something that I need to rectify before moving forward. I get emails from members wishing to donate magazines, but I really don't want to accept magazines that I might already own. The same can be said for eBay auctions, I need to know what I already have. The inventory list that I am working on right now, is going to be detailed. This isn't just a name and date list. I am writing down conditions of magazines and also scanning any missing covers for our Gallery.

Once this inventory is done, it will be published on Google Docs and be publicly available to everyone. This way members can see exactly what we need donated. I will also be trimming down my collection of gaming magazines. Anything that has already been preserved, or that I have multiple copies of will be put up for sale. Funds from these sales will be used to acquire magazines that we are missing.

What happens after the inventory? Well then we put this Fujitsu ScanSnap to work! I have tons of magazines that are just begging to be digitally preserved. Stacks of PSM, Expert Gamer, EGM2, Electronic Gaming Monthly, Game name it. I will only be using the Fujitsu scanner for perfect bound magazines. Any magazine that is stapled together will need to be manually scanned on my Canon flatbed. I am also planning on a total rescan of all Nintendo Power magazines, along with finally filling in all the missing issues. When we started this project in 2005, we did the best job we could with the technology of the time. We reduced down file sizes because of hard drive limitations and Internet speeds. It is now time to return to our roots and give Nintendo Power a proper preservation with today’s tech.

With this Fujitsu scanner, since the pages are fed thru a handful at a time....there is always a chance that multiple pages get pulled thru. So the one thing that somewhat slows me down is the prep work that I need to do before debinding a magazine. I need to count how many pages a magazine has, so I know how many images to expect at the end. Sounds simple right? Yeah, except for the fact that some magazines don't count the cover or the inside of the cover as a page. Sometimes the poster is counted as page numbers, other times it is not. The other fun part is writing down any pages that do not have page numbers in the corner. You would not believe how common this is, but sometimes as many as 5-20 pages of a magazine have no page numbers on either side of the page.

Now with the Nintendo Power rescans, I really don't have to do that prep work, because we already did it back in the day. If I come across a page that I am not sure where it was located, I can look back at the previous scan to figure out where to put it. I believe that 2016 will be the year where we have all 210 issues of Nintendo Power available to download. I will also be working to fill in any holes in EGM and GamePro with E-day. As I start my inventory list I will be pulling aside an initial stack of 100 magazines to preserve. Look to this thread to keep track of what I am scanning. This Fujitsu makes me quite fast once I get you might be away from Retromags for a few hours and come back to find I scanned 5 magazines :)

My list of 100 scans will initially consist of....

  • 10 Nintendo Powers (missing ones)
  • 10 GamePro
  • 10 EGM
  • 10 Game Players
  • 10 Expert Gamers
  • 10 Gamers Republic
  • 10 PSM
  • 10 Electronic Games
  • 10 PS Extreme
  • 10 Tips and Tricks

Stay tuned :)


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Here is something I have found useful since I started using my ADF. I go through and count how many pages there are based on the last page number that is in the issue. Any cardboard bonus page,ad or mail form isn't counted as a page. When I debind the magazine, I pull all of these out and set them aside, with post it notes on them designating their page number (26a, for example). Then I pull and pages that fold out like a centerfold because most of the time the page that you see when you fold out the ad don't count as actual pages. I scan all of these along with the front and back covers on my flatbed scanner and name the files based on their page number in the magazine.

Everything else goes through the ADF, and then I use Bulk Rename Utility to name the files based on the page number they should be and check to make sure they match. That is when I find out if two pages got pulled in at the same time. It's a bit more of a hassle for me since I can only scan one side at a time. So I have to rename them in increments of two. But it still saves me a ton of time.

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After I rename my files I just do physical issue check. It only takes a minute or two. I just open the pages in preview and arrow through them in order while turning the pages on the actual mag to ensure I have every page and they are in order. With these stapled issues I'm doing where I take out the staples not too much of a problem because I'm naming them 4 pages at time while I scan them. Hard to make a mistake but not impossible. But when you debind s glue bound magazine easy to miss a page if you don't go back and do the physical magazine check.

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I cannot tell you how happy the wifey has been since I started scanning and throwing out a bag of magazines into recycling every other week since I got the Fujitsu 5650c. It's fast and furious. And as the guys on my site have scanned issues I own I just check theirs to see if my cover is in better nick than theirs or use mine to fill in pages they were missing that I might still have (think missing posters in the middle of the mag) and then I throw those out too :)

The basement is slowly clearing out. Only 1200 odd mags to go ...... maybe ..... Damn. I forgot the 200 Look & Learn issues I bought recently.......

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5 minutes ago, E-Day said:

I've had two scans edited and ready to go for about a year now, just  waiting. And waiting :D

In my defense my daughter is now 15 months old....and is a handful :P Recently we have started reaching the stage where I can plop her in front of cartoons on the TV and give her a bowl of dried Cheerios and a sippy cup and get 15 minutes to watch someone yelling at an old game on Youtube :lol: 

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23 hours ago, Phillyman said:

In my defense my daughter is now 15 months old....and is a handful :P Recently we have started reaching the stage where I can plop her in front of cartoons on the TV and give her a bowl of dried Cheerios and a sippy cup and get 15 minutes to watch someone yelling at an old game on Youtube :lol: 

I hate to tell you this, Philly, but it doesn't get any easier. I'm 40 and still a handful. I've no idea how my wife puts up with me. ;)


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2 hours ago, E-Day said:

Now that I have to do everything at home, how long will ittake me to edit this issue? Any wagers?


I only managed to scan and edit 29 mags in a year's time working completely at home.  But it also left me with almost zero free time left for actually playing games (10 of those 12 months were 100% game-free).  In hindsight, what we do is pretty effin' stupid, and I can see myself on my deathbed years from now lamenting all of the precious hours of life lost to Photoshopping magazine scans.  So, err...I guess what I'm saying is, um...


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It's going to become a thing where I will edit scans when I have spare time, but I won't neglect doing other things in order to edit. I wonder if there are any sites online where you can hire Chinese people overseas for a couple of dollars to do grunt work for you. Like a click farm, but for repetitive Photoshop work.

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