In this tutorial, learn how to OCR PDF or convert PDF to text to improve the appearance of a PDF scan using Acrobat X or XI.
Donna Baker March 23, 2012
Sometimes the documents you scan don’t look very clear. The text may be blurry, you might see color from the paper background, or even stains or fold marks.
In the Document Processing tools, click Optimize Scanned PDF to open the Optimize Scanned PDF dialog box. Optimizing means to create the best quality document at the most efficient file size. The default setting for scans uses a lower quality file. For higher quality (and larger file size) drag the slider right.
Click Edit to pick Filter settings. Deskew squares up the contents on the page (on by default). Background removal brightens background areas to white. Select an amount: (Off by default), Low for textured paper, Medium or High for newsprint or colored paper. Descreen (On by default) removes small dots on the paper from ink like newsprint. Text sharpening increases the contrast between the edges of letters and the background. Choose an option: (Low by default), or try Medium or High for blurry text. When you’ve picked filter settings, click OK.
Make Searchable is checked by default to capture the text on the page. When you’ve finished choosing settings, click OK. Acrobat processes, or optimizes the document. The scan appearance will improve, but you might have to repeat the process. If you’re pleased with the appearance, save the file. If you want to try again, close the file without saving, reopen it, and adjust the settings.
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