Tag Archives: Digital

Bell and Howell 8125DB Scanner Review

 The Bell & Howell 8125DB duplex scanner is the JJ Watt of scanners. Big, bulky, yet terrifyingly quick. If you’ve got a little extra room in your office and a need for an ultra quick scanner, the 8125DB is calling your name!

Bell and howell 8125db

Dimensions:

  • 18 in. x 23 in. x 27 in.
  • 103 lbs.
  • A pretty big machine. It’s heavy and semi-bulky, so if you’re super strapped for space it may be a tough fit.

Scan Resolution:

  • 400 DPI.
  • Not amazing scan resolution, but will still give you a great text scan. Images, though, won’t look amazing.

Speed:

  • 125 PPM.
  • Holy cats. That is so fast. That’s more than 2 sheets EVERY SECOND!
  • If you need an incredibly fast scanner, the 8125DB is your new best friend.

Media:

  • Maximum scan size of 11.7 in. x 40 in.
  • Plain paper products, as it’s a sheet-fed scanner.
  • Since there’s no flatbed, 3D objects are out.

Other Features:

  • Automatic document feeder with 500 sheet capacity.
  • Easy-to-use buttons and digital panel for quick and easy scanning.

Overall Rating: 8.5/10

Though there are some things about the Bell and Howell 8125DB scanner that leave you wanting more, it still got a high rating because its high points are so incredibly high. It has a decently good scanner resolution, which when paired with its unbelievable quickness and huge 500-sheet automatic document feeder makes it perfect for any business with a high scanner load.

The 8125DB scanner is big, bulky, and doesn’t have a ton of the “extra” features some businesses are looking for. However, any business with a lot of scans to do should seriously consider this scanner as it is one of the fastest, most efficient scanners available. If you are looking to buy one, they’re sold on Ebay and ScannerParts.Biz!

 

Fujitsu fi-4750C Flatbed Scanner Review

The Fujitsu fi-4750C scanner is a flatbed and sheet-fed scanner all rolled into one. It has great features that could prove to be perfect for your business.

fujitsu fi-4750c

Dimensions:

  • 27.4 in. x 20.6 in. x 9.2 in.
  • 48.4 lbs.
  • Definitely not the smallest of scanners, but it’s not a behemoth either. You’ll probably want some space just dedicated to the scanner, though.

Scan Resolution:

  • 400 DPI.
  • Not amazing, not awful. Your text documents will look crisp and clean. Your images, though, might not be so fantastic.

Speed:

  • 50 PPM in black/white.
  • 24 PPM in color.
  • Pretty fast! Averaging about one sheet per second, you definitely won’t be stuck in line for the scanner.

Media:

  • Minimum scan size of 2.1 in. x 2.9 in.
  • Maximum scan size of 11.7 in. x 17 in.
  • Because it has a flatbed, you can also scan 3D objects. Basically anything that fits on the glass can be scanned.

Other Features:

  • Page-end Detection.
  • Automatic document feeder (ADF) with 100 sheet capacity.
  • Infrared document double feed detection, which prevents misfeeds.
  • Digital display with easy-to-use buttons.

Overall Rating: 8.5/10

The Fujitsu fi-4750C is a fantastic scanner for basically any business. It has amazing high-points that will enable your business to work better and smarter. Some of those highlights were:

  • The fact that it’s a flatbed scanner and a sheet-fed scanner. The scanner allows for so much versatility. Have a stack of papers to scan? Use the ADF and walk away while it scans. Have a book page that you want to scan without ruining the book? The flatbed has you covered.
  • ALL the little “extras.” The digital display, the ADF, the infrared detection to keep your scanner jam-free. All of those “little” things add up! They make using the scanner easier and more enjoyable.
  • The speed. Though it’s not the absolute fastest scanner there is, it’s still pretty dang fast. Even in color, it’s putting a sheet out every other second. It could definitely save you some time if you have a heavy scan-load.

With all these amazing features, why didn’t I give it 10/10? Well, there were a couple of red flags…

  • The size. I know, I know. I’m sure plenty of businesses have the room for a somewhat bulkier desktop scanner. And that’s great. But not everyone does. This one is larger than many, and it’s about 50 pounds, making it not the easiest to move around. Is it a huge issue? No, probably not.
  • The scan resolution. It’s not terrible, don’t get me wrong. But it’s also not at the same level as many other similar scanners. It’ll give you a good black and white text document, but a scanner with so much more capabilities should have a scan resolution to match, right!?

Overall, the Fujitsu fi-4750C is a great scanner, especially because it is less expensive than many other similar scanners! It could be perfect for your business!
If you’re looking to buy one, they’re sold on Ebay and ScannerParts.Biz! Happy scanning!

Kodak Digital Science 3520D Scanner Review

The Kodak Digital Science 3520D Pass-Through scanner is a paper-heavy-business’s dream. Though lacking in some areas, it holds its own (and more) in many others. Let’s get into the details.

Kodak Digital Science 3520D

Dimensions:

  • 21 in. x 27.6 in. x 12.5 in.
  • 64 lbs.
  • Definitely a bigger machine, but at least it’s not too heavy, right? You’ll definitely want to designate a table just for this scanner.

Scan Resolution:

  • 300 DPI.
  • Not great. But this scanner is a powerhouse, meant for massive scan loads of (usually) black and white text documents. If that’s what you need it for, it’ll do the job.

Speed:

  • 86 PPM.
  • Yes, I typed that correctly. 86. Pages. Per. Minute. Like I said, this scanner is a beast meant for heavy-duty scanning. That mound of 500 pages to be scanned? 5 minutes later you’re pretty much done. Amazing.

Media:

  • Maximum scan size of 25.5 in. x 12 in.
  • Capable of handling A3 paper.
  • Needs to be plain paper, as it is a pass-through scanner and not a flatbed.
  • Basically, scan to your heart’s content so long as it’s not some funky paper from God-knows-where.

Other Features:

  • Automatic document feeder (ADF) with 250 page capacity.
  • Kodak Perfect Page scanning technology (the scanner automatically deskews scanned images, making for more consistent, him-quality images).
  • It’s quiet. Which speaks for itself. If you’re scanning all day, it’s nice not to have that constant humming-whooshing sound.

Overall Rating: 8/10

That number may seem high to you, especially when looking at my other reviews. Let me explain myself. This scanner isn’t pretending to be anything it’s not. It’s made for, and marketed towards, businesses that have a high production of daily scans, and those scans are almost exclusively text-based. Yes, it’s bulky. Yes, its scan resolution isn’t great. But, its high points totally outweigh those negatives, especially for its target audience.

  • It is SO fast. Almost 1.5 pages per second. For anyone with hundreds of scans to do every day, this scanner will save you so much time (and thus, money).
  • Its Kodak Perfect Page technology makes it a no-fuss, easy to use machine that helps guarantee great images. Yeah, the resolution’s low, but with this technology added in, that scan resolution doesn’t matter quite as much.
  • The ADF is huge. 250 sheets is a lot. Again, this machine was made for businesses that are scanning all day.

If you’re looking to scan pictures here and there and a few sheets of paper every day, this is not the machine for you.  You’d do much better to invest in a less-expensive, smaller, high-resolution scanner. But, if you are constantly at the scanner with stacks of documents, the 3520D could probably be a great investment for your business. They are sold on Ebay and ScannerParts.Biz!

Ricoh IS330DC Flatbed Desktop Scanner Review

The Ricoh IS330DC Flatbed Desktop Scanner is one of the best scanners for its price. It comes with great features, versatility, and gives a great scan for a price much lower than more steeply priced scanners. Let’s get into the details.

ricoh IS330DC

Dimensions:

  • 23.2 in. x 21.5 in. x 10.4 in.
  • 61.7 lbs.
  • The IS330DC is big, but not huge. You’d probably want some counter space cleared for it, and maybe a coworker to help you lift it.

Scan Resolution:

  • Optical resolution of 600 DPI.
  • That’s pretty good. Any text document will look great. Pictures are doable and will look professional, but if you’re always scanning photos you may want to upgrade.

Speed:

  • 26 PPM (color).
  • 38 PPM (B&W).
  • A perfectly acceptable scan speed. It’s not crazy fast, but also not crazy slow.

Media:

  • Maximum scan size: 11.7 in. x 17 in.
  • It’s a flatbed scanner, so you have the ability to scan 3D objects as well.
  • The maximum scan size is pretty big, which means you can probably scan literally anything you need.

Other Features:

  • Automatic Document Feeder (ADF) with 50 sheet capacity allows you to leave your papers to be scanned without the hassle of loading each one individually.
  • Auto document size detection makes your documents come out looking professional every time.
  • Digital operations panel allows you to easily follow instructions and prompts to make scanning easier.

Overall Rating: 9/10

The Ricoh IS330DC scanner literally has everything. Almost. It would work amazingly well in almost any small or big business. Here’s why:

  • Its scan resolution will work well for almost any of your scanning needs. Crisp, clean scans is what you’re looking at.
  • It is a flatbed scanner with an automatic document feeder. You get the best of both worlds. The freedom of scanning anything on the flatbed, yet the convenience of an ADF that allows you to do other things while the scanner does its job.
  • The extra features (like the digital panel and the auto document size detection) make your scanning process quick, easy, and painless.

However, the bulky size and low-end of the speed spectrum made the IS330DC not a complete home run. That being said, if you have ample space and aren’t worried about the speed, by all means this scanner could be perfect for you!

If you’re looking to buy the Ricoh IS330DC Flatbed Desktop Scanner, it’s sold on Ebay and ScannerParts.Biz!

Canon CD-4070NW Digital Document Recorder Review

The Canon CD-4070NW Digital Document Recorder is one of the best business-oriented scanners around. It’s compact, quick, and can handle pretty much all of your scanning needs.

canon-cd-4070nw-1

Dimensions:

  • 10.4 in. x 13.9 in. x 16.2 in.
  • 33.1 lbs.
  • Super compact and not too heavy. The 4070NW could definitely fit into any small business’s cramped space.

Scan Resolution:

  • 300 DPI.
  • It’s okay. Not blowing anybody’s socks off, but it gets the job done.
  • If you’re mostly into text documents, 300 DPI is perfectly fine. If you’re always scanning pictures, though, this could be a deal-breaker.

Speed:

  • 41 PPM (B&W)
  • It’s quick and won’t create a line at the scanner. Are there faster ones? Sure. Are there much slower ones? Definitely.

Media:

  • Minimum: 2.2 in. x 2.8 in.
  • Maximum 10.1 in. 14.3 in.
  • You can scan most anything paper-based and within the size restrictions.

Other Features:

  • Automatic document feeder (ADF) with 100 sheet capacity.
  • Large, high-resolution touchscreen panel that makes it easy to preview documents and scan with just a touch.
  • OCR capabilities that allow you to search within the scanned PDF file.

Overall Rating:  9.5/10

The Canon CD-4070Nw is a great scanner for basically any business, big or small. It’s size, speed, and other features make it a great asset. Its highlights, you ask?

  • It’s super compact and lightweight. You can comfortably fit it anywhere.
  • Need for speed. This scanner is fast enough for any business. No lines, no waiting, no problem.
  • OCR capabilities built in make it even better. You don’t have to hassle with finding software, installing it, or anything else. Just scan and search.
  • Its large digital display screen makes previewing and scanning the document so much easier. No wasting time between scans because it didn’t turn out perfectly. You can preview it and adjust with ease.

Why didn’t it get 10/10? One little bitty problem. The resolution is just a tad on the low-end of things. Yes, it’s great for documents, but scanning images could be an issue if you want a nice, clean picture.

Overall, it’s almost the perfect scanner. And if you’re not going to be scanning many pictures, it could very well be the perfect scanner!

If you’re looking to buy, they’re sold on Ebay and ScannerParts.Biz!

Hewlett Packard HP 9250c Digital Sender Review

It’s our first review for the blog! We’ve filled you in on all the confusing scanner lingo, how to choose the right scanner, some of the best scanners for your budget, and even how a scanner works.

It’s time for some legit in-depth reviews of specific scanners that we are big fans of here at Imaging Systems. Without further ado, I give you the HP 9250C Digital Sender.

hp 9250c

She’s a beaut. But beyond her natural good looks,  the 9250C has got basically anything and everything you could need for basic office or home scanning. Let’s go over the specifics.

Dimensions:

  • 17.8 in. x 28.5 in. x 13.4 in. (with the keyboard extended) and 45 lbs. The depth of it would shorten up by say, 6 inches or so, when it’s retracted back inside the machine.
  • Basically, it could fit on most desks comfortably, but you’d probably rather have it on a table not designated to a specific person.

Scan Resolution:

  • 600 x 600 DPI. Perfectly great for any text-based documents you’re scanning.
  • If your workload involves heavy volumes of pictures, it’ll still do the job, but maybe not as crisp of a picture as you’d prefer.

Speed:

  • 55 PPM, with an ADF sheet capacity of 50 sheets.
  • Pretty dang fast. That’s almost one sheet every second.

Media:

  • The maximum horizontal scan size is 8.5 in., and the maximum vertical scan size is 14 in.
  • What that means is you can scan things a bit larger than a standard piece of printer paper.

Other features:

  • As already mentioned, the 9250C has a pull-out keyboard that allows you send scans straight to emails, your address book, etc.
  • USB connection.
  • Easy to use and intuitive scanning buttons and digital screen.

Overall Rating: 9/10

  • The 9250C Digital Sender is a great asset to any small business. It’s size and capabilities make it perfect for any business (or home, even) with a moderate to large amount of scanning needs. It’s easy to use, gives a great finished scan, and is capable of handling any heavy-duty volume of scans.
  • The downside to this scanner is that it’s picture image isn’t amazing. It’ll still give you a good scan, and its resolution for text documents is way more than needed, but if you’re doing tons of picture scanning, the 9250C could fall short.

Where to buy:

  • Brand new ones would cost you around $3000.
  • Scannerparts.Biz and eBay both have professionally refurbished ones for sale for just $1000.

Know Thy Scanner, Love Thy Scanner

I have no idea how my car’s engine works. Literally, just absolutely no clue. I know gas makes it go. If you think about it, I’m sure there are an endless number of things you use every day that you don’t really understand how they work. We all take these things for granted, which is fine since there are many hard-working people whose jobs it is to fix these things for us if something should go wrong.

But isn’t it nice to be in the know about these things? Not just for your Trivial Pursuit repertoire, though that’s very important, but to know if something goes wrong you’ve got the knowledge to go about fixing it. I know any time I need to have any work done on my car, I call my dad immediately. He knows so much that I don’t, so I want to make sure I’m getting the best deal, and getting what I actually need from my mechanic. When I’m buying a cell phone, though, I go it alone since I’ve got that stuff pretty well figured out. It’s so much easier not having to rely on others to help me with these types of things.

Your scanner is one of those things. The concept of its function in incredibly simple, but the actual execution is pretty complex. As Office Space has shown us, scanners can (and do) stop working, sometimes for seemingly no reason. Equipping yourself with some basic knowledge of how scanners work could end up saving you your time and sanity. So let’s dive in!

The scanner goes through multiple steps between you pressing the scan button and the file showing up on your computer. After your document is placed on the glass plate and you close the cover, that’s when the magic happens. As you probably have noticed, the inside of the cover is most likely white (most are). This makes it so that the background is consistent, making it easier for the scanner to recognize where the document begins and ends. Once you press “scan,” the lamp beneath the glass is used to illuminate your document.

This is where things start to get a little tricky. Scanners use multiple mirrors, a lens, a filter, and a charged coupled device (CCD), which altogether make up the scan head. The scan head is moved slowly across the document by a belt attached to a stepper motor. The scan head is attached to the stabilizer bar to make sure that nothing is moving around when it passes over the document.

When the scan head is moving across the document, the image is reflected through multiple mirrors until finally being reflected through the filter into the  CCD. The CCD has light-sensitive photosites arrayed along it that read the level of brightness into electronic signals. These levels of brightness are then processed into a digital image.

Did that make sense? I’ll try and put it in layman’s terms.  The light is shot at the paper. The reflection goes through a few mirrors. Then the reflection is shot into the neat light-sensitive board. That reads the level of brightness it’s sensing. A black letter will give off a lower level of brightness than a white blank spot. This is then converted into the digital image we see on our screen. Hopefully the picture helps.

how scanners work

But how does it get there, you ask? Great question. The scan is pretty useless unless we can access it on our computers. Scanners have a few options of how they connect to the computer. A parallel connection, a small computer system interface (SCSI) connection, USB, or FireWire. USB connections are probably the most often used because they’re fast, easy, and affordable.

Other than that, the last piece of the puzzle is to have software that knows how to communicate with your scanner. It’s often referred to as the driver. Think of it as a language barrier. Most scanners speak the same language: TWAIN. Your scanner converted your document into TWAIN. With the help of your software (driver), you’ll be able to turn that TWAIN into readable English on your computer. Though obviously it still works if you’re scanning something in Spanish. I really hope you got that joke. If not, go re-read the entire post and try again.

That’s it! You should feel smarter. I do. Now when something goes wrong with your scanner, you will look like the smartest guy (or girl) in the office. Spew off a few key words and everyone will think you are a genius. You’re welcome. If this doesn’t help you actually fix your scanner in the future, at least you’ll know what the repair guy is talking about.

5 Steps to Preserving Old Photos

old photos

A few years ago, my parents’ basement flooded. Like, a foot of water in the basement, save all the electronics before the water rises, oh my gosh our carpet is ruined, kind of flood. My parents, of course, were upset about the state of their basement, but all of that could be fixed with time (and, of course, money). Unfortunately, the basement is also where all of my mom’s old pictures were stored. Priceless family memories that nothing could bring back, all irreparable. Watching my mom stand over the box of sodden photos, crying, trying to pick out old Polaroids that weren’t completely destroyed, was so, so sad.

An experience like that certainly left me wishing that we had made some sort of effort towards preserving the photos beyond just keeping them in a box in the basement. Maybe we felt like nothing would ever happen, maybe we were all just a tad too lazy to take that first step, who knows. The end result is the same: pictures are gone, mom is crying, this sucks. You don’t want this to be you. Segue into today’s blog post!

Digitally preserving your family’s memories is so simple, inexpensive, and worth every minute and penny. You can use basically any scanner, though we encourage a flatbed since it’ll be the easiest to use, as long as it can connect with your computer. Beyond that, there are some simple steps to making this as quick and painless as possible!

Step 1: Clean house. If you’re anything like my mom, you have saved everything. Every blurry picture of some child’s left eye because they were messing around with the camera, every “why did you take it, I wasn’t ready!” moment. Everything. They’re great for your basement-box, but maybe not worth saving to your computer. Do yourself a favor, and sort through your photos. Pick the best ones, the ones where everyone is looking at the camera, the ones where you can’t believe Grandpa Joe made “that” face, the ones on which you’ll want to look back at and smile. Those are the ones worth digitally preserving. The others, though they’re great in their own respects, you probably don’t need to spend time scanning.

Step 2: Get organized. Now that you’ve picked out only the creme de la creme of your family photos, it’s time to organize them in a way that suits you. Maybe it’s by year (or decade), maybe it’s by holiday, maybe it’s just by who is in the picture. Whatever way makes the most sense for your pictures, go with it. I’d go with the pile method; that is, pile the pictures in their respective categories. It’s fancy.

Step 3: Check your scanner settings. Are you just scanning the pictures in order to preserve them? Are you emailing relatives or posting them to various social media sites? Are you making a huge blown-up picture to put in your living room? Whatever it is, make sure your scanner settings are working in your favor instead of against you. If you’re just in it for preservation, 300 dpi should be just fine. If you’re going to be emailing them or even using #tbt on Twitter (throwback Thursday for you old folks), we’re thinking you could even get away with 200 dpi. If you’re going to make a print that’s bigger than the original, go for at least 600 dpi. If what I just said sailed right over your head, visit our scanner lingo breakdown post for help. Don’t forget that you can change the scan color between gray scale or color!

Step 4: Scan! Well, start off by cleaning the scanning glass to ensure optimal scans. But then, scan! Most of the time you’ll have an option of “previewing” the scan before you actually scan it into your computer. Utilize this to make sure you don’t have to double back to re-do scans, and to make sure you’re not duplicating scans into your computer. You’ll probably want to save them as JPEG files, thought it’s up to you. Your computer will give you an option of where to save the files to, so for each grouping you did when you were organizing your photos, make a new folder with a relevant name (like, “Christmas 2014” or “1995 Pictures”) to save time trying to sort them post-scanning.

(optional) Step 5: Edit. Though this step isn’t necessary, I definitely recommend it. Even a simple, cheap photo editor can do wonders for your pictures. Many times, all you need is an exposure adjuster to change the brightness/shadows of your picture. There are so many inexpensive photo editors to choose from, but here’s a site that reviews some of the best that are under $100.

That’s it! You should be done! Now just let that feeling of peace of mind wash over you. No flood, tornado, freak accident, or fiery comet of death causing Armageddon can destroy your family’s memories and legacy. Maybe the comet. But you’ve got bigger fish to fry if that’s happening, so for now just revel in that feeling of accomplishment.

Why Microfilm Still Matters

The digital world is amazing. I mean truly, absolutely amazing. The things we are able to do today with just the swipe of a finger or the click of a mouse is stuff that dreams were made of 50 years ago. So why, in this incredible, high-tech world, do we still need microfilm? It’s a valid question, and one with which we at Imaging Systems are familiar.

Microfilm will continue to be relevant for the storage and preservation of documents because of, not in spite of, the fact that it isn’t this high-tech medium. To read microfilm, all you need is a magnifying glass and a light source. Magnifying glasses are pretty easy to come by. As for a light source…well, there is that giant ball up in the sky we call the sun. Basically, microfilm won’t all of a sudden need a software update or a new system or anything to be read. Of course, microfilm readers make the whole process of reading microfilm much easier, but in a pinch you could make-do without one.

Digitization, on the other hand, is subject to becoming obsolete. And quickly. New, “better” smartphones are coming out yearly. Software and hardware alike are constantly changing and improving. These improvements to our technological lives could leave your digital records unable to be read because of obsolete hardware. Take floppy discs. They’re basically extinct, though in their day they were thought to be an amazing technological feat. It can be hard to find computers that will read them, and if a floppy disc is damaged, it’s unreadable. Similarly, what today may seem like a perfect way to digitally store documents can easily become tomorrow’s old news.

This is not to say that digitization of documents does not have its place. Making digital copies is a great way to make your files more searchable and also protect old materials that could be damaged by handling. Digital files are a great back-up medium. But again, we think they serve best as a back-up.

With the ever-changing technological world we live in, it’s best to keep a tried and true method of storing important documents. The fact is, we just don’t have enough information on how digitally stored files last in the long run. Microfilm can last up to 500-1000 years if stored and cared for properly. The best solution, if feasible for your company, is to create a hybrid archive system that incorporates both microfilm (for security and longevity) and digital files (for greater access).