How to Scan within Photoshop CS6, CS5, CS4

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I initially wrote this post in July 2010. Today, I updated it with information regarding Photoshop CS6 and OSX 10.8.2 Mountain Lion.

I’ve always preferred doing my scanning from within Photoshop, since it offers a fuller range of control than most scanner software. It obviously interprets the RGB data extremely well. After turning on the scanner, launch Photoshop and scroll down the FILE menu to IMPORT, where you will see either the TWAIN option or the actual name of your scanner. That’s your ticket to scanning success.

In 2010, when I upgraded to from CS3 to CS5 and Snow Leopard, I was no longer able to scan from within Photoshop. At first, I thought Adobe had simply moved the menu item to another spot, but quickly realized that it simply wasn’t there any longer. I was able to use the scanner software easily enough, and the scan was moderately good quality. Yet, I was still dissatisfied, so I did some research and discovered a few interesting things, which solved the problem:

CS6-5-4-twain

  1. Make sure you have the latest version of the scanner driver and software. The manufacturer will often provide downloadable files for free on their websites.
    Without the current driver, curious things may happen: I was unable to see the preview in CS6 until I installed the newest driver.
  2. On some discussion boards, people mentioned that CS5 cannot handle 64-bit scanning settings. To solve this, find the Photoshop CS5 file icon, Get Info (Command-I or FILE  > GET INFO), and select “Open in 32-bit mode”. It’s important that you do this, because Adobe CS5 does not support 64-bit TWAIN scanners in either 64-bit or 32-bit Photoshop, and says “use at your own risk”. CS6 only runs in 64-bit mode: if your scanner driver can’t handle 64-bit mode, you may not be able to use TWAIN. My Canon PIXMA does work well in both modes, so I am fortunate.
  3. CS6 does not install several legacy (pre-CS4) plug-ins, extensions, and presets, including TWAIN. You can download the optional TWAIN plug-in at the Adobe website, for Windows or  Mac OS. The CS6 plug-in supports 64-bit, while the CS5 plug-in supports 32-bit, on both Windows and Mac OS platforms, as well as 64-bit using Mac OS 10.6. For CS6, I placed the TWAIN.plugin file inside my Photoshop Plug-ins folder. For CS5, I placed the “32bit_only” folder (which contains TWAIN and other goodies) inside my Photoshop Plug-ins folder. Then I restarted Photoshop. Voila! Problem solved!

Windows Limitation

Note that TWAIN is available on the Windows platform only in 32-bit mode:

Windows

In Windows, the Photoshop TWAIN plug-in can be used if you run Photoshop CS6 in 32-bit mode. TWAIN is not supported in Photoshop when it’s run in 64-bit mode. If you need a scanning solution when you run Photoshop CS6 in 64-bit mode, use the WIA (Windows Image Acquisition) interface for your device, if it’s available. WIA is also available for use when running Photoshop in 32-bit mode. Contact your scanner manufacturer for more information.

After putting the TWAIN plug-in inside your Photoshop plug-ins folder, open Photoshop the usual way, but in 32-bit mode.

Adobe’s “HELP PAGE” on this subject is very useful, if you’d like more information.

Share with us what steps you took to solve this problem.

Comments

  1. says

    Thanks Anne, I was JUST wondering the same thing about an hour ago. was going to look it up at some point but you saved me the time! Perfect!

  2. bruce erikson says

    How do you get PS to recognize your CanoScan scanner preferences? I was lucky enough to get my scanner recognized, but now it closes the Canon scanning dialogue box after each scan and disregards all of my other scanning preferences. What a nightmare! Please advise.

  3. askdesign says

    I think you have to choose just one set of preferences. If you want to scan from within Photoshop (after activating the TWAIN plug-in for CS5), then Photoshop probably overrides the CanoScan preferences. Whatever you’ve got set up in Photoshop will be the default.

  4. Shea says

    THANK YOU! Worked perfect. Gotta wonder sometimes why certain things “disappear”

  5. Johan says

    Thank you so much!!!It worked perfectly!!But as you said earlier it works only in 32 bit mode..

  6. Z says

    Hello, I am operating in snow leopard 10.6.8. I too have a canon pixma. After I do the “get info”, there is no “open in 32 bit mode” as mentioned in your fix. I have had this problem when playing netflix in safari or chrome and was told to click the “open in 32 bit mode” where I did not find it for that either. Is there anything else you have learned regarding this problem? I just want to scan from photoshop again. Or is it possible to scan from Adobe Bridge? Thank you for any advice you can offer.

  7. Patrick says

    Thank you so much for this post. I was struggling and wondering why I could not get access via CS5 yet CS3 still allowed me to scan. This post clarified the issues and it is working fine! Appreciate you taking the time to post this.

  8. askdesign says

    @Z: Be sure you are using the Photoshop CS5 icon when you “Get Info”. The option to select “Open in 32-bit mode” does not exist in CS3, and I’m not sure if it exists in CS4.

  9. Gigi says

    You are my savior:)))

    I am not the computer savvy lady and I actually could follow your instructions and IT WORKS!!!!

    THANK YOU!!!!!
    Merci

  10. Alan says

    I’ve just purchased a new Mac for Xmas, and of course it came with Lion, and of course I’ve had to spend a small fortune upgrading lots of software, among which was my PS-CS2.

    So thanks very much for this great advice. This was just one of many problems and you’ve saved me flipping my lid!

    XXX

  11. askdesign says

    Alan, it’s good to know that this plug-in works with Lion. Thanks for sharing that. Enjoy your new Mac!
    best, Anne

  12. bloodstriker says

    dude 10x a looot .
    u really helped me!

    i am totally grateful to u .

    really 10x man …
    best wishes :)

  13. Eva says

    Hi Anne,
    I just uppgraded to a mac with snowlion (OSX 10.8.2) and I use a Canon Pixma MP610 to scan. Of course my Photoshop CS6 is not able to scan anymore and I’ve tried to do just as you described but with no success. I downloaded the latest version of the TWAIN-plug in and I saved it in Ps/Plugins but I still can’t see my scanner in Ps/File/Import. What am I doing wrong, do you know?
    I am grayteful for any help.

  14. Anne says

    Hi Eva,
    It sounds like you may not have the latest version of the scanner driver and software. Canon provides downloadable files for free on their websites. Without the current driver, curious things may happen: I was unable to see the preview in CS6 until I installed the newest driver.
    If you’re on OS10.8.2, that is Mountain Lion, so be sure you select the driver and software that matches your Operating System.
    Also, it’s a good idea to restart your computer after installing any new drivers or software.
    Good luck! Hope it works, Anne

  15. Eva says

    Hi Anne,
    Thank’s for your answer! I downloaded the latest drivers today and also restarted the computer after but with no luck. I ended up scanning with the scanners own programme wich worked ok but was timeconsuming. I’ve read so much about others that have the same problem so I guess I have to do with the scanner programme for now. Thank’s again for your help!

  16. Anne says

    Hi Eva, There are scanner drivers as well as print drivers, so make sure that you’ve downloaded the scanner driver. There are also some software upgrades available that you might as well download. Here’s the link to the Canon Pixma MP610 drivers and software for OS 10.8.2:
    http://www.usa.canon.com/cusa/support/consumer/printers_multifunction/pixma_mp_series/pixma_mp610#DriversAndSoftware

    Some scanners are not compatible with TWAIN. I thought your Canon would be ok, though, so check the Canon site for troubleshooting details.

    Good luck! Anne

  17. Carol says

    Bless you! I’ve been keeping an old version of photoshop on my computer just so I could scan from it. Now I can dump the sucker and use the new version. Thank you thank you thank you!

  18. gali burshtein says

    hello anne.
    thank you for your post.
    i’ve done all you say (downloaded twain 32 plug in, copied it to th plugins folder, reinstalled the scanner) but i still cannot scan from photoshop cs6. the scanner does work from its own toolbox. my os is windows 7 pro, 64 bit.
    what else can i do?

  19. Anne says

    Hi Gail,
    The CS6 plug-in supports 64-bit, while the CS5 plug-in supports 32-bit, on both Windows and Mac OS platforms, as well as 64-bit using Mac OS 10.6. For CS6, I placed the TWAIN.plugin file inside my Photoshop Plug-ins folder. For CS5, I placed the “32bit_only” folder (which contains TWAIN and other goodies) inside my Photoshop Plug-ins folder.

    There are scanner drivers as well as print drivers, so make sure that you’ve downloaded the scanner driver. There are also some software upgrades available that you might as well download.

    I’m more familiar with the Mac, so if you continue to have trouble, you might want to go to the Adobe website for more help.

    Good luck!!

  20. says

    To solve this, find the Photoshop CS5 file icon, Get Info (Command-I or FILE > GET INFO), and select “Open in 32-bit mode”. I went directly to the Adobe Photoshop Icon (Photoshop.exe) and looked for your suggested FILE -> GET INFO. I even tried right clicking the icon, which was not what you wrote. However, right clicking does not offer any open in 32 Bit.The only place there is a FILE -> GET INFO is in the Photoshop program, but that is referring to the file you are editing in Photoshop. This statement does not seem to make any sense with windows 7 (64 Bit) – There is no such thing as FILE -> GET INFO or Command-I. Since this command does not exist, what am I missing? Maybe this article needs updating? Is this command for MAC? If so, do you have a command for Windows 7 (64 Bit) that will open Photoshop 64 bit program in 32 bit? Lastly, please, if I can get my 64 bit Photoshop program to open up as 32 bit, would that not defeat the purpose of buying a 64 bit Photoshop program? Thanx

  21. Anne says

    Hi David,
    You bring up several good points, and I apologize for not providing the info. for Windows platforms. First, yes, the CMMD-I keyboard shortcut is for Macs. I only have Photoshop on my Mac, so I can’t guide you accurately for Windows. The Windows equivalent might be Right-Clicking on the Photoshop icon to get a drop-down menu of options: scroll down to “Properties”. With image files at least, that opens a new window of information with 4 tabbed areas: General, Security, Details, and Previous Versions. It’s the Details tab that will show you the bit-depth. Beyond that, I’m not sure if you can change anything in Windows to open it in 32-bit mode. You could try Removing Properties and Personal Information in the Details area and/or click the Advanced button in the General area.

    We only need to open Photoshop in 32-bit when using CS5 and the TWAIN plug-in. If you’d rather leave Photoshop as is, that’s fine, you can always use the software that comes packaged with your scanner. Hope this helps a little bit.

    If any Windows users out there can shed more light on this, please let us know!

  22. David A. Clark says

    I heard Photoshop CS6 was tricky to use, but your blog encouraged me. I installed CS6 (64 bit Windows 7), and then tried to download the TWAIN software. (so I can use Canon MG5220 scanner which is part of my printer scanner.) Adobe directed me to http://download.adobe.com/pub/adobe/photoshop/13.x/Win_Optional_Plug-ins.zip, which when opened, has an Optional MultiPlugin folder (1,095 KB). Opening that opens the blue Ps window and gives an error message,

    “Photoshop detected graphics hardware that is not officially supported. If you experience problems, please uncheck the Graphics Processor checkbox in the Performance panel of the Preferences dialog.”

    However, Adobe fails to say how to access the Performance panel of the Preference dialog. It also failed to say what graphics hardware it didn’t like. The only hardware I see is the printer/scanner. Any suggestions appreciated.

  23. Anne says

    Hi David,
    Your comment got me curious, so I downloaded the TWAIN plug-in for Windows. There is only a 32-bit option, no 64-bit plug-in. That got me more curious, so I went to the Adobe site and found this information:

    Windows

    In Windows, the Photoshop TWAIN plug-in can be used if you run Photoshop CS6 in 32-bit mode. TWAIN is not supported in Photoshop when it’s run in 64-bit mode. If you need a scanning solution when you run Photoshop CS6 in 64-bit mode, use the WIA (Windows Image Acquisition) interface for your device, if it’s available. WIA is also available for use when running Photoshop in 32-bit mode. Contact your scanner manufacturer for more information.

    I will revise my post with this information.

    So, try putting the TWAIN plug-in inside your Photoshop plug-ins folder. Then open Photoshop the usual way, but in 32-bit mode. Don’t click on the plug-in icon itself to open Photoshop.

    Check out Adobe’s help page for good instrux. on how to do what I’m describing: http://helpx.adobe.com/photoshop/kb/twain-plug-photoshop-cs4-cs5.html

    Good luck, and let us know what happens!

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