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book scanning
scanning quote

Fast, Accurate Book Scanning, Conversion and Digitisation
We have scanned thousands of books, magazines and newspapers to hundreds of formats


Book Scanning, Digitisation & Conversion Services

(PDF, Searchable PDF, Fully Editable MS Word, MS Excel and XML Formats)

  • Low cost
  • Quick Turnaround
  • Guaranteed Care
  • Free Sample
  • Fully Compatible Digital Conversion

Go digital with your books, magazines, and newspapers

Scanning your book library is the best way to create digital reproductions of your paper-based books. With the introduction of the IPad, Kindle, e-reader and similar mobile devices, the book scanning and digitisation market has grown in popularity by 100% as more and more people are putting down the books and picking up a tablet.

Whether you have old, fragile, historical manuscripts, bound books or the latest full-colour, glossy magazines or publications, we provide the digital scanning solution for your project. We are a book and document scanning company based in London and Manchester with more than 10 years’ of experience in the UK, our scanning process goes through a strict supervision and we use the latest in image processing technology to guaranty the best results. Over this time we have acquire multiple ISO certifications that backs-up the quality of our work.

After we had scan your precious favourite book, family diary or your collector’s edition comic books, we can transfer it to your desired electronic format such as: PDF searchable, Word document, Amazon Kindle (.mobi), ePub and Apple's ePub2 format.

Read our blog article of How Book Scanning and digitization is helping The National Library of Norway making books available to read online.

  • Book Scanning
  • Process
  • What We Scan
  • Rare Books
  • Formats
  • Request a quote

How does book scanning and digitisation work?

Our digitisation bureau uses state-of-the-art book scannersScanners
A device that connects to a computer allowing the user to turn (scan) documents into images they can manipulate on the computer.
which use an overhead scanner (using true linear scanning technology) with sophisticated image capture processing. Image enhancement and restoration is applied to any poor quality or aged books in order to optimise the scanner

Once the book scanning process is complete the images produced go through our quality control procedures. Scanned books are then converted to your desired digital formatDigital Format
These can be TIFF or JPEG, which are computer files used to store pictures or graphics. We also use PDF (Portable Document Format) which are designed for easy printing and sharing.
such as PDFPDF
PDF is a very popular multi page file format that is used by many companies because it can be opened by almost anybody using free software most people have already on their computers.
JPEG is a single page per file image format that is popular among graphic designers and web designers it is advised to use this format if you're scanning colour images for presentation purposes.
- A type of computer file used for storing pictures, these can be full color, grayscale or black and white. A multipage TIFF file can contain many pages in a single file.
or even Microsoft Word format.

Many e-bookE-book
A book that is available in a computerised format such as Adobe PDF, Microsoft Lit or the eBook Reader format.
features can be applied to a PDF book such as converting them into text searchable PDFPDF searchable
PDF Searchable is type of PDF File that has been processed using OCR so that its contents can be searched.
files, adding PDF bookmarksPDF bookmarks
PDF Bookmarks are a tool to allow you to easily navigate through a PDF document by placing links to sections which appear on the right hand side of the PDF when opened.
or PDF linksPDF links
PDF Links allow you to create buttons in your PDF documents that link from one page to another, these buttons can be text or image, or just an area of the scanned image that you want to make clickable.
from the index page or glossary of the book to the relevant sections.

E-book versions can then be distributed or sold on the Amazon store and Apple iBooks store and it is always useful to have publications backed up safely in an electronic format in case of damage or loss. These are just a couple of reasons why book scanning is an excellent choice for the future of your books.

In 2013, Pearl Scan invested in another two top of the range book scanners. Each year we invest in new hardware to provide the very best scanning for our clients.

Utilising our book scanning and conversion services we have digitised many commercial, personal and out-of-print books and publications. If you'd like to find out more about our book scanning service or would like to request a quote, please email us or call us using the details below.


The Book Scanning Processbook scanning process


+ Scanning Types

The first thing to consider when getting book(s) scanned is the type of scanning you would like. This is a typical option across the industry albeit that many companies only offer the destructive option below:

  • Unbound / Destructive Book Scanning
  • destructive scanningThough not as harsh as it may initially sound, unbound or destructive book scanning will involve the removal or 'slicing' of the spine of the book. The spine or staples, if a magazine or leaflet is being scanned, will be removed and the pages will be processed through one of our feed scanners.

      + Advantages

    1. The process is very fast.
    2. The service is at a lower cost.
    3. Results can be clearer (depending on level of detail in the book itself)


  • Intact Book Scanningintact book scanning
  • Intact scanning is exactly as it sounds. Books are scanned in the condition in which they arrive on one of our upright book scanners, using technology specifically made to cater to books and magazines, whether delicate, rare or in perfect condition.

      + Advantages

    1. Books remain in the same condition in which we receive them.
    2. Books are exposed to considerably less light than other scanning methods for those concerned about fading.
    3. Ideal if your book is one-off, rare, valuable or has high sentimental value.

One of the first questions we'll ask when you call or email us is which of these processes you would prefer, so it's always best to know the facts about what is offered.

The Process

After you have chosen your book scanning service type, we do the rest.

  • Scanning
  • scan bookDepending on your preference, we will begin the scanning process itself. If you have chosen unbound/destructive scanning, we will remove the spine of the book or the staples of your magazine before the process begins. Scanning is done to your preference of colour, black and white or greyscale.

  • OCR (Optional)
  • ocr booksOCR (Optical Character Recognition) is an option which will make your desired format in which you have chosen to have the book converted completely text-searchable on computer, tablet and mobile devices. This is useful if you're looking for particular passages or reference points, plus segments can be highlighted copied and pasted as you wish. For the Microsoft Word format, OCR is a necessity during conversion.

  • Conversion
  • conversion of booksAfter the scanning and optional OCR is done, all pages and images within the book will be converted to your desired format. This is usually PDF, but please see our 'Formats' tab above for a list of digital formats we typically convert to.

How to get your book converted to a digital format

If you're interested in getting your book converted to a digital format, please let us know!

We'll happy write up a free, no-obligation, custom quote simply by contacting us through our contact form here, directly emailing us by clicking here or calling us on any of the below numbers.

We typically scan and convert:

types of book
  • Old books
  • Rare and Fragile Books
  • Large Format Books
  • Bound Volumes
  • Magazines
  • Newspapers
  • Artwork

These are some general examples of the types of books and publications that we have scanned in the past, but we aqre able to offer scanning for publications of all shapes, sizes, conditions and ages. Please contact us for more information.

Rare Book Scanning, Digitisation & Conversion Services

rare book scanning

The greatest of care is taken when it comes to the scanning, digitisation and digital preservation of older and more delicate hard to find books with Pearl Scan. Books can be scanned to PDF as well as editable formats such as MS Word. We place the requirements around the condition of the books and the speed in which we process them can be reduced to make absolutely sure that the books remain in the same condition that they came to us in.

Of course we treat all the books we scan with the greatest of respect but we understand that there will always be a few cases that need special attention, and we use only our most experienced scanners to complete this work who always wear gloves to protect the pages and print of your books which is all part of our rare book scanning service.

We deal with hundreds of rare and one-off books per year and have been trusted with books from right back in the 16th century up to the present day. With Pearl Scan Solutions you can be assured that we will treat your books and scanning with the greatest of respect.

We use state of the art specialised overhead liner book scanners to scan and capture bound, rare, historical, out of prints and fragile books, magazines and journals. The books are carefully scanned, images are captured, either in colour, black and white or greyscale as necessary (depending on the nature of the books, contents, e.g. pictures, text, illustrations, drawings etc). Once scanned, the images are then processed and converted to the required image formats (e.g. PDF, Text Searchable PDF, ASCII Text, Microsoft.Word, XML, HTML and even Excel for directories. They are then supplied on a required storage medium such as CD or USB.

Formats that we scan to

We offer a wide range of book scanning and conversion solutions in order to offer you a choice of formats to convert your books to. These include the very latest e-book formats as well as classic formats such as PDF, PDF searchable and conversion to Microsoft Word so the content can be edited and sent to be republished if you wish. We offer all of these services at excellent value pricing with guaranteed results. Find out more about some of the formats our book scanning service can offer you...

convert book to pdf


We can scan your book to PDF format which is viewable on computers, mobiles and tablet devices.

convert book to kindle

Amazon Kindle format

The most popular e-Book format, the Kindle is also the most popular e-reader around.

Learn more here...


Flipping Book

With the fully interactive Flippage format, you can display your files and brochures online or send them on disks.

convert to pdf searchable

PDF Searchable

Like a standard PDF, but all the text contained will be readable and searchable on your computer for searching.

convert book to epub

.ePub format

The .ePub is the most widely recognised e-book format and is used by thousands of e-readers across the world.

Learn more here...

convert book to html


By having you book converted to HTML, this allows you to display is online as a functional website.

convert book to word

Microsoft Word

Converting to Word, enables you to edit the content of the publications and prepare for further printing in the future.

book to ipad

iBooks for iPad / iPhone

The popular iBooks platform is exclusive to the iPad and iPhone, Apple's multi-million selling tablet devices.

Learn more here...

book to xml


XML provides an underlying technology that gives portability of information across platforms, and applications.


We have a full example pages coming shortly to show the type of work we have done before. In the meantime, please ask to see some examples when you contact us.


Comic book scanning

Here at Pearl Scan we know how much you value your comic books, that’s why we offer comic book scanning service. With this you will never have to worry about your comic book treasures getting damage. We will scan comic books from all the major publishing houses and export them to .pdf or kindle if you wish. We scan comic books in full colour or black and white. We provide digital scanning service in London, Manchester and the rest of the UK. Read more in our dedicated Comic book Scan page.


Download our free guide to Book Scanning

Our guide to book scanning details the processes, the advantages and how we can help. All in an easy-to-follow PDF.

Contact us

For more information on book scanning and other ways in which we can help your organisation, please email us here for a quote or feel free to give us a call:

London 0207 183 1885Manchester 0161 832 7991 Birmingham 0121 285 1900Nationwide 0845 22 55 923


how to scan books pdf

book digitisation guide

Our Book Scanning Service


We typically scan:


To digital formats like:

Free Trial

free sample

With our book scanning we offer a free trial so you can see the quality of what we offer.

email pearl Contact us

Why Choose Us
  • 10 Years of Conversion
  • ISO 9000 Accredited
  • ICO Certified (data protection)
  • Experienced, friendly staff

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