Edit scanned PDFs

When you open a scanned document for editing, Acrobat automatically runs OCR (optical character recognition) in the background and converts the document into editable text and images. By default, only the current page is converted to editable text in one go. As you move to another, the page in focus is made editable.

Watch a quick video tutorial and get started

Edit a scanned PDF document now. Click Get Started to launch Acrobat:

Edit text in a scanned document

  1. Open the scanned PDF file in Acrobat.

  2. Choose Tools > Edit PDF. Acrobat automatically applies OCR to your document and converts it to a fully editable copy of your PDF.

    Pastaba:

    A prompt on the upper-right corner appears showing you the recognized OCR language. To change the language, click Settings in the prompt or in the right pane. For more information about the various options, see Options for editing scanned documents below.

  3. Click the text element you want to edit and start typing. New text matches the look of the original fonts in your scanned image. For more information on editing text, see Edit text in PDFs.

  4. Choose File > Save As and type a new name for your editable document.

Options for editing scanned documents

When you open a scanned document for editing, the two scan-specific options are displayed in the right pane under Scanned Documents:

Options for editing scanned documents
(Tools > Edit PDF) Options for editing scanned documents

●   Settings: It shows options to select OCR language, use system fonts, and make all pages editable at one go. For more information, see Settings - OCR language, system fonts, and all pages editable.

●   Recognize text: It allows switching from text-to-image or image-to-text editing mode. For more information, see Enable or disable auto-OCR for scanned documents.

Settings - OCR language, system fonts, and all pages editable

Use the settings to change OCR language, choose whether to use system fonts, and make all pages editable at one go. In the right pane, click Settings under Scanned Documents. The dialog box shows the following three settings:

Settings for editing scanned documents
(Tools > Edit PDF) Settings for editing scanned documents

  • Recognize Text in (OCR language): By default the OCR language is picked from default locale.
  • Use available system font: If this option is checked, during the process of scanned to editable text conversion, the converted text is displayed in a font that is installed on the system and is a closest match to the original font in the scanned page.
  • Make all the pages editable: if this option is checked, then all pages of the current document are converted to editable text in one go. It is a relatively slower option. Use this option only if you want to edit all pages or convert all pages to editable text.

Initially, the language is set to the default locale and the other options are disabled. Any changes to these settings remain persistent and are applied when you enter in the edit mode (Tools > Edit PDF).

Turn off or disable automatic OCR for scanned documents

The OCR is turned on by default. Therefore, when you open a scanned document for editing, the current page is converted to editable text. Depending on whether you want to convert your scanned documents to editable text or not, you can turn off/on the automatic OCR option.

To turn off/on automatic OCR:

  1. Choose Tools > Edit PDF.

  2. To turn off automatic OCR, do the following:

    • In the right pane, clear the Recognize text checkbox. From next time, Acrobat won't automatically run OCR.
    Turn off automatic OCR
    Option to turn off automatic OCR

  3. To turn on automatic OCR, do the following:

    • In the right pane, select the Recognize text checkbox. From next time, Acrobat will automatically run OCR and convert a scanned document to editable text.
    Turn on automatic OCR
    Option to turn on automatic OCR