Need scanner recommendation

I need a reasonably priced flatbed scanner that will create a crisp scan of text. (My multifunction printer/scanner/fax produces fuzzy scans.) The documents I will be scanning will end up online. The scanner will be connected to a iMac.

Any suggestions will be greatly appreciated.

It’s been a long time since I went shopping for a scanner, but here are some tips for getting good quality scans from the hardware you’ve got:

  • Consider third-party scanner software. The software bundled with hardware is often lacking important features. My recommendations:

    • VueScan. Not very expensive and has a free trial so you can test it before buying. The “Pro” version includes OCR support, which you may want to use if you’re scanning text.
    • SilverFast. More photo-oriented than text and has a relatively limited set of supported scanners, but works really well. The basic “SE” edition doesn’t cost very much. It’s what I use on my scanner.
  • Scan at high resolution. I would recommend at least 600 dpi. Even though it will produce very large files, you can reduce the resolution later. The extra pixels will minimize “round off” error resulting from digital processing.

  • Use an “unsharp mask” filter. This does a great job of removing the fuzzy edges of high contrast objects, like text.

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Betty, you don’t say what you’re scanning, books or magazines I take it given the need for a flatbed?

Otherwise the Fujitsu scansnaps are the best option for paper documents, multiple sheets can be stacked, a nice crisp PDF the final outcome.

Lately, for books etc., I’ve been content with the outcome of Scanner Pro on the iPhone and iPad, again multipage PDFs, not perhaps as clean a scan as a flatbed but perfectly legible nonetheless.

To actually answer your query, I would imagine any Epson flatbed scanner would be perfectly fine, the upper models having application primarily in visual art or photography.

I regularly use the Image Capture app to manage and capture scans from an HP 8020 Officejet Pro. It has many useful features such as selecting flatbed or document feeder, selecting black & white scans, creating multi-page PDFs etc. The app comes with macOS (at least up to Mojave).
Have you tried this app with your scanner?

BTW - I have switched to a simple laserjet printer for most printing as there have been no stocks of ink cartridges for the Officejet 8020 in Australia for months.

Thanks for the information. I will be scanning documents, some posters and maybe some photos.

Thanks for the recommendation for software.

Thanks. I’ll need have a scanner that’ll copy 11 by 17 so I do need to buy one.

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Let me know if you find a scanner that scans 11 x 17. I have been looking for a while and have not found a suitable one. The scanners look large and sometimes advertise large scans, but when you look at the platen size, it is standard letter.

Starting with Mojave, you can use your iPhone as a scanner on the Mac. Several applications work, but I usually use Preview. Under the File menu, there is an ‘Import from iPhone’ with a ‘Scan Documents’ option. See here and select the appropriate OS.

If you are doing a lot of this, you can build or buy a rig to support the phone and document. For example, here is an Amazon page for one of them with a chart showing some other options.

You could also scan to the phone either via a 3rd party app or into the Notes app./

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