Scanner Buying Guide
At one time, your choices in scanners were limited. But, now there are many different choices on the market. Today’s computer scanners have benefited a lot of households – from parents who want to keep hard and soft copies of some of their important documents to students who find them useful enough for their school and research needs.
Scanners also made it possible for families to preserve their old photos and then keep them for personal use or share it with the rest of the world to see on the Internet. More importantly, scanners have also been around fulfilling all the text and graphic reproduction functions for businesses. Indeed, the old copiers of yesterday have already been replaced with today’s scanners.
Flatbed scanners are great if you are going to be scanning a large variety of different options. This is usually the best option for the home user, though the large footprint can be a drawback. The trade off is to buy a flatbed scanner that is only capable of scanning 8 X 11 in sheets, though you’ll not be able to scan legal sized documents. Canon Scanners offer low-priced, quality scanners for the home user. Often you can find a good flatbed scanner for under $100.
Sheet-fed scanners are convenient for a number of users, though they also come with a wide range of options. Fujitsu Scanners have earned excellent reviews among business users, especially in the sheet-fed scanners category. If you are a business user, you might want to consider one of these.
How to Choose a Scanner
If you have a business that involves the processing of data and you want speedier scanning results, then, you might want to consider investing in scanners that come with the ADF or automatic document feeder feature. Although some flatbed scanners already have more or less a fifty page ADF feature, you might want to look at other options especially if you are also particular about how much space a flatbed scanner can occupy.
One of the first thing to be considered is the number of passes taken by the scanner to scan the image. A pass is the sweeping movement that the scanner takes to cover the whole document and scan it completely. A single pass scanner is a very good one, as it saves time and also scans the whole document in a single sweep. As the number of passes or sweeps increase, the image clarity and resolution decreases, thus decreasing the image clarity. So, the lesser the passes, the clearer and good the quality.
If the scanner is to be used in a photo shop or for scanning slides, then having a transparency scanner can prove useful. This is useful to scan negatives, slides etc. And the most important thing is the warranty. It is important to see how much warranty a scanner gets, as more the warranty, the more reliable the product.
- Flatbed Scanner: A device that scans images in a manner similar to a photocopy machine; the original art is positioned face down on a glass plate.
- Color Depth: Number of bits for each pixel in an image. The higher the bit depth, the greater number of colors there are. This is also sometimes referred to as bit depth.
- DPI (Dots Per Inch): A measure of the resolution of a printer, scanner, monitor, or mouse. It refers to the number of dots that are fit into a one-inch line. The higher the DPI, the more accurate the image/information will be.
- USB (Universal Serial Bus: Connection port on a computer that is universally compatible with many types of electronic devices.
Also read: Best Portable Projector