Unsharp masking (USM), also known as detail enhancement, is a process of combining an unsharp representation of an original image with the original image to obtain the effect of greater detail. USM can be performed photomechanically with additional exposures, electronically with the color scanner, and digitally with the aid of a post-processing program. Electronic methods of USM per formed during the scanning process offer productivity benefits over both the photomechanical and post-processing methods. Mid-range PMT/drum scanners offer several methods of unsharp masking from which to choose. These meth ods, optical USM, digital USM, and hybrid USM each have advantages and dis advantages which are identified in this study. The study also offers an extensive reference of the available USM techniques for identification by the mid-range scanner operator. Three different midrange scanner/ interface applications are evaluated to identify their unique USM methods and each is evaluated for ease-of- use as well as the effectiveness of it's unsharp masking function. Multiple scans from each scanner/interface combination were completed and analyzed at high magnification. It was expected that more directional limitations would have been evident in the optical method, however it is shown that it's effectiveness does not suffer. Each of the USM techniques used on midrange PMT/Drum scanners has its own merits.
Library of Congress Subject Headings
Color printingColor separation; Scanning systems
Department, Program, or Center
School of Print Media (CIAS)
Neumann, Eric, "An Analysis of available unsharp masking techniques used with mid-range PMT/drum scanners" (1998). Thesis. Rochester Institute of Technology. Accessed from
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