I would like to extract the images from the following pdf:


I run pdfimages -j file.pdf image

but I get strange figures and the pages of the book empty (as if the text was other image that is lost in the process). The images seems to be parts of the very raw pictures the person who digitized the book took.

with pdfinfo file.pdf I get

Creator:        Canon CLC5151  PDF
Producer:       ilovepdf.com
CreationDate:   Tue Sep  1 19:50:40 2009 CEST
ModDate:        Mon Sep 24 16:11:26 2018 CEST
Tagged:         no
UserProperties: no
Suspects:       no
Form:           AcroForm
JavaScript:     no
Pages:          233
Encrypted:      no
Page size:      690.764 x 1039.76 pts
Page rot:       90
File size:      101724898 bytes
Optimized:      yes
PDF version:    1.6
  • 1
    The images or the pages? Because the whole thing is a scanned book. Every page is an image. Jun 21, 2020 at 17:06
  • Would it help to export all pages (or just the ones you need) as images?
    – Freddy
    Jun 21, 2020 at 17:16
  • I needed the pages!
    – fich
    Jun 21, 2020 at 21:18

1 Answer 1


Note that your PDF holds an image for each page, and each image holds the whole scanner area. PDF can show just a part of the information they actually have, via transformations, scaling ...

enter image description here

An alternative to get the pages is:

$ pdftoppm -cropbox -jpeg file.pdf prefix

That will get the images and crop them according to the "crop box" in the pdf file (see comment below).

  • 1
    No need to crop manually, use something like pdftoppm -cropbox -jpeg file.pdf prefix for cropped JPG images, the "crop box" value of the PDF is set to the correct size.
    – Freddy
    Jun 21, 2020 at 17:30
  • @Freddy, that's so useful! I'll update the answer, thanks. Jun 21, 2020 at 18:38

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