USB 3.0 connection
Improved paper handling mechanism
It cannot scan books
No TWAIN support
I know I am not the only one who is having difficulty finding a good-quality all-in-one printer these days. These units are manufactured to work for 12 to 18 months. When they break, you can't fix them ... so you end up donating more plastic to the local landfill. Even ... Read full review
I know I am not the only one who is having difficulty finding a good-quality all-in-one printer these days. These units are manufactured to work for 12 to 18 months. When they break, you can't fix them ... so you end up donating more plastic to the local landfill. Even when they do work, the document feeders jam, scanning performance is slow, and you inevitably find yourself regularly doing battle with the bundled buggy scan-to-PC software! (Can I get an "Amen" from the choir?!)
Predictably, my all-in-one broke during tax season. I managed to limp through, but decided I would find a better, more reliable solution for scanning my tax records for 2013 and beyond. Honestly, I tried REALLY hard to find a decent all-in-one, heading out to the local consumer electronics and office supply stores with an open mind about my budget. I just couldn't pull the trigger. Everything out there -- HP, Epson, Canon, Brother, blah blah blah -- looked like the same old crap. That was when I had a radical thought: why not go back to the basics and separate the scanner from the printer?
I work for a large hospital and am responsible for recommending hardware devices for various departments. We have been using Fujitsu scanners for years. They are built like tanks, very fast, and feed straight & true. The ScanSnap iX500 is the consumer version of Fujitsu's high-end, commercial scanners. However, it features the same, solid construction and smooth document feed system as the scanners we use for digitizing patient ID info at the hospital. The iX500 isn't quite as fast as Fujitsu's commercial scanners, but it absolutely smokes the feed/scan speed of any all-in-one printer out there. Also impressive: a single pass through the scanner automatically captures both sides of a double-sided document.
But the best part about the iX500 is its elegant simplicity. Anyone can use this thing. You load your document, and press the button on scanner (there's only one). A few seconds later, a menu pops up on the computer screen, that prompts you to choose the destination for your scan. Want to print copy? Just click the printer icon. Need to store the image as a PDF in a local folder or in the cloud via Dropbox? No problem. Maybe you need to send the image as a PDF email attachment. There's an icon for that too.
The integrated OCR (optical character recognition) and CardMinder software allow you to scan and organize business cards, intelligently converting the pertinent info on the card to text fields for contact management. The OCR technology can also convert scans to fully editable Word, Excel, or Powerpoint files. ScanSnap software provides menus for advanced configuration -- like fine-tuning the color depth and resolution of scanned images, or creating custom "scan-to" destinations and program links.
Unlike the commercial models, the iX500 features integrated wi-fi, which allows you to scan documents directly to your mobile device (via the free ScanSnap mobile app). Once the mobile device is configured to communicate with the iX500, scanning to a tablet and/or smart phone is just as easy as scanning to the computer. My wife is somewhat of a technophobe, but even she is amazed at how easy it is to scan to her phone.
The only disadvantage to the iX500 is that it cannot scan books. This is an inherent limitation of sheet-fed scanners. This unit has a very small footprint and, therefore, has no flat surface for laying out books, magazines, other large items that cannot be fed thru the input tray. For this reason, this scanner is probably not a good fit for graphic design professionals.
If you're looking for a solid, easy to use scanner for document imaging, this the one to get. It's not the least expensive option out there, but it will be around long after your cheaply made all-in-one printer bites the dust!
Note: best price for this scanner, check this -> Scannerspicking.blogspot.com/p/fujitsu-scansnap-ix500.html
I hope it helps, good luck!