Hand Help Scanners Roundup – Fujitsu S1300i ScanSnap Instant PDF Sheet-Fed Mobile Document Scanner
Posted in: Tec Blog

Hand Help Scanners Roundup – Fujitsu S1300i ScanSnap Instant PDF Sheet-Fed Mobile Document Scanner

$284.99 on amazon.com at time of writing.

A compact portable scanner that will scan documents sized up to 8.5″ x 14″ (international A4 sized), the Fujitsu S1300i will slip comfortably into a shoulder bag or briefcase, so that you would hardly notice it. Capable of scanning up to ten pages at a time from its integrated automatic document feeder (ADF) at up to 600dpi, this scanner should make an ideal accessary for businessmen away from the office.

The ten page paper-shoot doubles as a protective cover and the unit can be powered using the provided mains adapter or by USB connection. When powered by USB however, the scan time can take up to twice as long, but the option does improve the scanners portability.

Scanning is a simple matter of loading up the tray and pressing the single blue button, and can be done in full duplex (both sides of the paper scanned in one pass) at almost no loss in speed. Any additional setting changes need to be done using the supplied ScanSnap Manager software, which is functional, is a little sparse.

Once scanned, documents appear as PDFs in the ScanSnap Organizer where they can be converted to all standard Microsoft office formats or converted into a searchable PDF using the included, and rather Abby Finereader OCR software, which produces reasonable results.

Image quality is pretty good, certainly good enough for accurate OCR coverage (although better software such as Omnipage would produce better results), and the scans are performed quickly, with each page taking under 6 seconds on the default 150dpi settings.

However, it should be noted that scan time more than doubles when powered by USB instead of by the mains adapter but scanning in duplex has almost no impact on the speed, which is impressive. Image scans also produce good results, with 300dpi scans taking an extra four seconds and 600dpi scans giving a clear, detailed result.

The Fujitsu S1300i ScanSnap can also scan business cards using the bundled CardMinder program which could be better and gets to the heart of the biggest problem with the Fujitsu S1300i ScanSnap. It is a good quality, functional bit of hardware that is let down somewhat by being bundled with a bunch of ok programs that really should have been combined into a single user interface. The result is a bit a mess, but not fatally so as it all works and the hardware is pretty good.

The Good

  • Compact portable scanner
  • Up to 600dpi
  • Good quality scans

The not so good

  • Uninspiring software

Conclusion

This is a decent bit of kit and with the right software, it would really shine. As it is, the Fujitsu S1300i ScanSnap provides all the functionality a businessman on the move is likely need. A good alternative, however, offering a similar range of features at a similar price point, is the Canon image FORMULA P-215, which might also be worth considering.