Three Things to Consider Before Buying a Document Scanner

Create a digital archive of old photos, receipts, or any other vital document you might need in the future.

document scanners
Document scanners can help you turn paper files into digital files, saving you space, time, and money.Joshua Fuller

The home office has never been more functional or productive than it is today. With video conferencing, online workspaces, and group communication apps, about the only thing missing is a virtual water cooler. That said, there still are certain hardware components that every remote worker should own, and one of those is a document scanner. From replicating confidential office forms to digitizing film slides and photos for personal use, the scanner is a tool that really does not have a substitute. When you need it, you need it. Here are several variations on this critical home-office device.

Brother Monochrome Laser Printer
If you just need to scan pages of text from time to time, a straightforward black-and-white scanner/printer might be all you require.Brother

For every page a person scans, he or she will likely print fifty others. That’s why, for most people, it makes sense to consider an all-in-one machine. In addition to black-and-white or color printing, you’ll also be able to scan, copy, and fax all from one device. Look for wireless capability as well as USB and ethernet ports, which will give you maximum flexibility in configuring and networking this workhorse of the home office.

Epson Perfection V600 Color Photo
A scanner that also processes old film, negatives, and photographs can help you archive old memories.Epson

Those who require dedicated scanning capabilities may prefer a flatbed unit. These are the tools of professional artists, photographers, or anyone who needs high-quality reproduction of print, film, photos, or other graphic media. When shopping flatbed scanners, compare the DPI (Dots Per Inch) resolution rating. The higher the numbers, the sharper the reproduction. Optical Character Reader (OCR) technology is also a huge plus as it allows you to create editable digital documents from print originals.

Fujitsu ScanSnap iX1500 Color Duplex Document Scanner
To keep your workspace clutter free, look for a scanner with wireless features.Fujitsu

To quickly digitize everyday documents, an upright scanner may be all you need. What these devices lack in photo-reproduction capability they compensate for in speed and efficiency. Scan receipts, invoices, handwritten letters, business cards, and other print records directly to a smartphone, tablet, or computer, and instantly digitize the paper trail of your life as fast as you can feed it through the machine.

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