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206 of 209 people found the following review helpful
on June 4, 2012
Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )Verified Purchase
UPDATE: The new model of the Fujitsu, the s1300i, apparently does not require the scanner to be plugged into an outlet, unlike the s1300. However, you need 2 free USB ports compared to 1 free USB port on the Canon. I don't have experience with the s1300i, so I can't comment on the other aspects.

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If you're looking at the Canon P-215, there's a good chance you're also looking at the Fujitsu S1300. There's also a good chance you've read many glowing reviews of both. So which do you choose?

I own both the P-215 and the S1300, and I can vouch that both are excellent products. I'd go so far as to say they've changed my life because I work with a ton of paper and don't have a ton of space. Here are my recommendations. If only one of these statements applies to you, or all the statements that apply to you point toward the same scanner, then your choice is easy. If more than one statement applies to you and points you toward different scanners, then it's a bit trickier.

1a. You don't have a program that will organize and modify PDFs. WINNER: Fujitsu. The software that comes with the Canon is horrible, whereas the Fujitsu provides a nice file manager program.

1b. You want to do OCR but don't have a good OCR program such as Adobe Acrobat. WINNER: Fujitsu. As mentioned above, the software that comes with the Canon is horrible, whereas the Fujitsu provides a nice OCR program. More on the horrible Canon software later.

2a. You scan a lot of business cards and don't need/want OCR for those cards. WINNER: Canon. It has a great little slot just for business cards.

2b. You scan a lot of business cards and need/want OCR for those cards. WINNER: Fujitsu. See 1b.

3a. You have a USB 3.0 port that is free for you to plug your scanner into. WINNER: Canon. If you have a USB 3.0 port, then just plug one of the USB cords into the scanner, and you can do high-speed scanning.

3b. You have a free outlet on your power strip/wall and only one free USB port (2.0) on your computer. WINNER: Fujitsu. The Canon doesn't come with a power adapter. You have to buy that separately. You can scan with just one free USB 2.0 port with the Canon, but it's slow.

3c. You have two free USB ports (2.0) on your computer and no free outlets on your power strip/wall. WINNER: Canon. You can do high-speed scanning by plugging into both USB 2.0 ports. You don't need a power adapter and don't have one unless you buy it separately.

3d. You have one free USB (2.0) port on your computer and no free outlets on your power strip/wall. WINNER: Canon. The scanning will be slow, but you still can scan with just one USB 2.0 port. If you don't have a free outlet, you can't scan at all with the Fujitsu.

3e. You're in a situation in which you're on a laptop but don't have the laptop charger, but you do have an extra outlet. WINNER: Fujitsu. The Canon will eat up all your laptop battery because it's not getting power from anywhere else.

4. You want to scan a stack of legal-size paper or heavier paper. WINNER: Fujitsu. The pull-out easel--I don't know if that's the term--on the Canon is way flimsy, and legal paper doesn't go in as straight as it does with the Fujitsu.

5. You want to travel a lot with this scanner. WINNER: Canon. The Canon is smaller and more portable. Note, however, that when the easel is pulled out, the footprint on the desk is about the same because the easel stands up straighter on the Fujitsu.

6. You want a scanner that will last. WINNER: Fujitsu at least ties with Canon and may be better. I haven't used the Canon enough to test its durability, but I've scanned well over 15,000 pages on the Fujitsu, and it's still going strong. It's not like I've been particularly careful with the Fujitsu; many times I've accidentally forgotten to pull out staples, have yanked the paper halfway through a scan after realizing that I wasn't supposed to scan it, etc. Perhaps the Canon is just as durable, but if you don't want to take that risk, then I recommend the Fujitsu.

So that's a decision guide. Since this review is of the Canon scanner, here are some additional comments about it. I have Windows 7.

First, I strongly recommend reading both the User's Manual printed in the box and the Reference Guide on the Canon website. I find it odd that they give you a printed copy of one but not the other, considering that the Reference Guide is just as important, if not more so, than the User's Manual. I don't find either manual particularly clearly written, though.

As I mentioned above, the Canon software is horrible. If you want to install the software, do a System Restore first because you may regret the software installation; I did. I ended up removing all the software because it was such a pain in the butt. The Caputure OnTouch software didn't detect when I plugged in the scanner, nor when I pressed the button. The PaperPort program is not only confusing but annoying. You're bugged to register with the software company every single time. There's no option for it to stop bugging you. The software sets itself to Auto Start. It tried to auto-update but failed.

Instead, use the software that's stored in the scanner itself. It's described confusingly in the manual; it's actually much simpler. When you plug in the scanner and turn it on, it'll show up as a drive called ONTOUCHLITE. Open the folder in that drive, and click on the file called ONTOUCHL.exe. Set "Enable continuous scanning" to On and "Full auto mode" to Off. In the Scanner Settings, set Use Advanced Options to On and click the star next to the option. This gives you the ability to do most scanning functions without the nuisance of the software. If you want to modify the pdfs, use another software program such as Adobe Acrobat or the other PDF editing programs I mention in my review of Adobe Acrobat X Professional

I should mention that the ONTOUCHLITE software is annoying if you're scanning documents to different folders. You can choose your destination folder, but the "Save in folder" box is too short and doesn't show file trees. Unless you save everything to the desktop or to the main Documents folder, you almost always have to click Browse. It doesn't sound like a big deal, but trust me, it gets very annoying.

While I've ended the review on a negative note, I really think this is a great product. In fact, I bought another one as a gift for an accountant friend. I'm merely trying to point out the one big downside to the Canon that you should be aware of.

Full disclosure: I received a test model for review but was not otherwise compensated. As mentioned above, I liked this product enough to buy another one for a friend, so my 5-star rating reflects my true opinion. Because I have a test model, it's possible that the software problems described do not apply to non-test models.
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280 of 291 people found the following review helpful
Verified Purchase
Those boxes of documents, love letters, photographs from both my wife's family and mine have weighed on my mind for almost 20 years. In fact, 15 years ago I ordered a Visioneer portable scanner with the intention of getting a load off my mind (and out of the attic). The device proved buggy, partially effective and extremely time-consuming, leading to my aborting the project and selling the scanner. But in the past several months, the regular television commercials for Neato portable scanners renewed my interest.

After reading some of the reviews for Neato portables, I questioned whether the technology had advanced far since my first Visioneer. But before abandoning the project a second time I investigated other possibilities, with the following findings: You can spend several dollars on one of many scan "apps," designed to work with the camera of an iPhone or iPod (good for a couple of documents, maybe). In the 50-100 dollar price range you might pick up a Magic Wand (make sure your hands are steady and your patience long) VuPoint Solutions Magic Wand Portable Scanner (PDS-ST410-VP). In the 150 dollar price range there's a decent Brother personal scanner (looks good for occasional use and when on the go) Brother DSMobile Scanner (DS-600) and a wireless device called the Doxie (be sure to read consumer reviews as well as the maker's claims) Doxie, the amazing scanner for documents.

Getting to devices for the more "serious" user, there are several reputable scanners in the two hundred dollar range, above all the Fujitsu Scansnap S1100 Fujitsu SCANSNAP S1100 CLR 600DPI USB Mobile Scanner (PA03610-B005) and the HP Scanjet 1000 HP Scanjet Professional 1000 Mobile Scanner (L2722A#BGJ). These deserve consideration from users who plan to move about and travel, taking the scanner with them on business trips, etc. But besides size and weight, be sure to to note the presence or absence of features like duplex printing, drivers, automatic feed.

Once you're at the $200 mark, it's difficult not to notice what's available for an extra fifty to eighty dollars. The two scanners in this range that stand out--combining the convenience of a portable, USB-powered scanner with the features of a professional office machine--are the Fujitsu S1300 (Fujitsu is clearly the champ with Amazon purchasers) Fujitsu ScanSnap S1300 Instant PDF Sheet-Fed Mobile Scanner (PA03603-B005) and the Canon P150 Canon imageFORMULA P-150 Portable Document Scanner(Scan-tini).

But wait! There's also the pictured machine, the Canon P215, the newest offering and one which, though slow to be discovered by consumers, is gradually rising in Amazon's sales rankings (it's moved ahead of the Canon P150 in just the past week). Admittedly, the feature differences between the two Canons are almost as small as the price difference. Size and performance of the two machines are practically identical. The P215 is .2" wider and 2 oz. heavier. The P215 comes with "Advanced Text Enhancement," "Character Emphasis," and several user-adjustable color settings not advertised with the P150; it has a "dedicated" card reader (which accepts thick, laminated cards as well as paper biz cards); its high-speed interface includes USB 3.0 along with USB 2.0; finally, Mac users can be assured that it's "Lion-ready." In short, the P215 seems slightly more "future-proofed" than the P150.

On to the showdown: Canon or Fujitsu? The Fujitsu S1300 accepts 10 sheets in auto-feed mode; the Canon P150 and P215 both accept up to 20 sheets ; the Canons have built-in Twain drivers for guaranteed out-of-the box plug-and-scan convenience; the Fujitsu does not. The Fujitsu includes an AC adapter; the Canons list it as an option. In sum, if I had any hesitation between the two brands, it was because of the Fujitsu's bundled OCR software program: the well-regarded ABBYY FineReader. But once I considered the two brands from a broader perspective, noting my satisfaction with my printer (Canon MP640) and camera (Canon SD780), the final decision became inevitable. ("PC Magazine," for one, seems to agree, rating it "best of breed.")
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49 of 50 people found the following review helpful
on March 3, 2012
Verified Purchase
This scanner will scan documents/receipts up to 39.4 inches in length in long document mode. (See Page 32 of the manual on how to set this up.) This is the longest out of any scanner I researched. When scanning register receipts of a long length one does have to guide it by hand. Since I have not tried any other non-flatbed scanners, I cannot give a comparison to the Neat Receipts, Visoneer Road Warrior, etc. The duplex feature is great for documents and when scanning checks for e-deposit. The built in utility on the scanner is great for when scanning checks. My wife had no problem using this to scan checks on her laptop and deposit. I use PaperPort 14 for scanning and filling my other documents with the built in utility turned off. Note: The scanner comes with PaperPort 11. I went ahead and purchased PaperPort 14 due to the great deal that Nuance was offering for it. The size is great as it does not take up much space and when not in use I can close it up and place on a shelf.

By the way you do not need an AC Adapter to utilize the high speed scan feature if your computer has a USB 3.0 port that is marked SS for SuperSpeed and you plug it directly into the computers USB 3.0 port. This will provide sufficient power for the high speed scan. Note: This is explained in the manual. If you only have USB 2.0 ports on your computer in order to utilize high speed scan you will need to do one of two things: Utilize the included USB to power adapter cable thus using two of your computers USB 2.0 ports or purchase the AC Adapter if you only want to use one of your USB 2.0 ports.
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79 of 85 people found the following review helpful
on February 14, 2012
Verified Purchase
I wanted to have a scanner to archive documents, reports, bills, etc. and eliminate paper storage for my home. I didn't need a super fancy business scanner, but I did want an ADF and duplex scanning.

The obvious choices are the Fujitsu ScanSnap S1300 Instant PDF Sheet-Fed Mobile Scanner (PA03603-B005) and these new Canon Scan-tini products (Canon imageFORMULA P-150 Portable Document Scanner(Scan-tini) and Canon imageFORMULA P-215 Portable Document Scanner (Scan-tini)). I read a lot of reviews for the various scanners from these two companies. The Fujitsu scanners are very well regarded in terms of hardware but their software is a little antiquated. The Canon software is supposedly a little better. I don't have the Fujitsu and only played with my new Canon P-215 briefly, so I don't know this for sure.

I decided to go with the Canon P-215 instead of the Fujitsu S1300 because:

* USB 3.0 (only P-215, not P-150), so can work optimally with just one cable connection
* Comes with software for both Windows and Mac (again, only P-215 apparently)
* Supports TWAIN driver compatibility
* Better default app software (Windows)
* Slightly larger ADF capacity (but quality is unclear based on reviews, thought it worked fine for my 2 tests so far)
* Scan-tini products minic a flash drive when connected via USB, containing a mini version of their default app software, so you don't need to install any software at all -- Nice if you're using it on other computers while traveling
* P-215 also has a cute card-size scanning slot, nice touch

The USB 3.0 feature implies to me newer (better?) hardware design. The TWAIN driver compatibility
allows other programs to scan directly into them. And I like the option of using it with both Windows and Macs (we use both at home). Those are the biggest advantages for me.

But the Canon scanners have these disadvantages:

* They don't include other third-party software, i.e. ABBYY FineReader for ScanSnap 4.1 which sounds like it does some OCR of the scanned images. I found that the PDFs generated from Canon's default CaptureOnTouch app could search for some words but cut-and-paste of the text from a financial report was very garbled. I found the ABBYY FineReader 11 Professional Edition from a different retailer for a bit less and with a rebate, so I ordered it to perform proper OCR. I don't have it yet but tried the free trial, and its PDF was much smaller and had all the proper OCR recognition performed so cut-and-paste worked very well.
* Fujitsu scanning hardware sounds like it may be the best
* Scan-tini scanners don't come with the AC adapter (optional accessory)
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26 of 27 people found the following review helpful
on November 11, 2012
Verified Purchase
I'm experiencing feed errors. Specifically, when there is only one page left in the feed hopper, it won't feed without a bit of a nudge on the paper. This occurs when trying to scan a single page or on the last page of a multi page scan job. This problem occurs regardless of paper weight. I chose this over the Fujitsu in order to have the option of TWAIN or ISIS compatibility, but this scanner is unusable due to the continual feed errors. I'll be returning this for the Fujitsu.

Update 11/19/12: Returned this and replaced it with the Fujitsu S1300i ScanSnap Instant PDF Sheet-Fed Mobile Document Scanner. Although I prefer the Canon software slightly, the Fujitsu has not misfed or missed a page in a few hundred pages of scanning. Far superior paper handling than had been my experience with the Canon.
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23 of 24 people found the following review helpful
Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
From the moment I opened up my Canon image FORMULA P-215 I was in absolute awe. Before going on, let me just state for the record that I am a "gadget guy" all the way and have an entire office full of sweet equipment, but as far as scanners go, this one really takes the cake.

Here's my breakdown:

Size:
This thing is tiny! It sits about a little over an inch tall, three inches deep, and 11 inches wide. This can easily be plopped right into an attaché without adding any more bulk than a 300 page book. Miraculously, even though it is so small, it feels really well built and sturdy. And while we're talking about looks, even though I am a function over form guy, this think is darn right sexy. Can a scanner be sexy? If you see this thing in person, you'll see what I mean.

Installation:
This scanner does not even need to have any software installed to run on PC or Mac. I don't own a Mac, but on the PC I just plugged it in to my USB 3.0 port and a pop-up came, I clicked the scanner file (which is located WITHIN the scanner), and the software was up on my screen in less than half a minute. Next, I walked over to my wife's computer and plugged it in there with the dual USB 2.0 connection and it was up and running in the same amount of time. Although not necessary, this dual connection will allow you to scan at high-speed (like USB 3.0) on a USB 2.0 computer. In either configuration, there are NO POWER CORDS! This means that when you want to use it at work or at a client's location, you don't have to get on your knees to plug it in. Also note: this thing doesn't even have a power button! It just turns on when you open it up to scan! Brilliant!

Software:
When running the software built into the scanner, you can have it run in full-auto mode, or change all the settings to your liking. Settings include color mode, page size, DPI, skip blank pages, straighten skewed images, rotate to match text orientation, and even more if you want to use the advanced settings. You can also save the file in the following types: PDF, TIFF, JPG, PPTX (Powerpoint), or BMP. Also note that this scanner automatically uses OCR (optical character recognition) so that your PDFs are immediately searchable from within. ( In fact, in Windows you can download a small patch from Microsoft and make all your PDFs content searchable right from Windows Expolorer.)

Performance:
I scanned things like crazy to put this thing through the paces. The claim that it can scan a 20-page stack is indeed accurate. The scans look fantastic and the OCR was accurate as well.

Comparison to my Fujitsu ScanSnap s1500
This unit, which is approximately half the price of my Fujitsu, compares favorably to it in terms of ease of use and output. The only differences (for me) are that the Canon scanner is a tad slower and doesn't hold enough sheets. If I wasn't such a heavy scanner-user then I would definitely switch over to the Canon because of its small footprint, but as it stands, I will definitely be using this as my go-to travel scanner.

Additional Software:
This scanner also comes with CaptureOnTouch software, which is a more permanent solution for using this scanner as a desk scanner (as opposed to a portable on-location scanner). Also note that you can download the latest software/drivers from the Canon website including: ScanToEvernote, ScanToGoogle, and ScanToSharePoint.

Final thought:
All in all, this scanner gets my HIGHEST RECOMMENDATION. It is a 5-star product in every way.
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26 of 29 people found the following review helpful
Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
After testing out the P-215 Portable Document Scanner in a variety of settings, here are my comments, in no particular order:

INSIDE THE BOX ARE:
- Scanner P-215
- USB cable
- USB power supply cable
- Installation DVD
- Reference Guide and other paperwork

PROs:

- Easy, straight-forward installation; just make sure to install the software before connecting the scanner.

- Small footprint and light weight: This scanner is small and light-weight enough to fit into a briefcase or even a large women's purse.

- Build quality is good, and the scanner feels solid.

- TWAIN compatibility.

- Fast: After playing around with the software settings, I found that the automatic setting (where the software automatically picks the dpi setting) is extremely fast and puts my big flatbed Canon scanner to shame. I almost could not believe my eyes how fast a regular sheet of paper (text only) went through. The speed slows considerably when scanning at higher resolutions (up to 600 dpi is possible) but a regular document scan takes no time at all. And even at the high dpi settings it is still not slow-slow, just slow-er...

- Paper Sizes: The scanner, for all its small size, accommodates quite a wide range of paper widths, up to letter size width. I especially liked the fact that it had no problem with small sheets of paper. I was able to scan a paper ticket which was only 3 1/2 x 2 1/2".

- Scan quality is quite good but note that no software is included to fine-tune scanned images afterwards. But since most people use Photoshop or similar software anyway, this is not a huge problem if any.

- Multiple sheet capacity, up to 20 sheets can be put into the feeder, a significant time saver compared to scanners that allow only one or a few sheets at a time.

- Duplex scanning ability: Easily my favorite feature of this scanner. This allows me to scan the two sides of a sheet of paper in one step, no need to turn the sheet around and scan a second time. There is even a software setting that helps to prevent or at least weaken the "see-through" effect one occasionally encounters when writing bleeds through and can be seen from the backside. Very clever.

CONs:

- Versatility: I installed the software on a 2009 Dell desktop computer and a 2008 Dell XPS M1330 and everything worked fine. However, installing it onto a 2010 ASUS Netbook 1015PEB got me nowhere. The netbook simply did not supply enough power to operate the scanner and I got a consistent "Device Not Found" error. Which brings me to my second point:

- Separate A/C Adapter: I really dislike the fact that Canon did not include an A/C adapter. The price of this scanner is not bargain basement and forcing the consumer to buy an A/C adapter separately looks certainly a bit cheap, especially in light of the portability factor. I regularly travel overseas and intend to take this scanner with me on the road. To keep my load as light as possible, I usually travel with my netbook rather than the bigger laptop. But the scanner does not work with the netbook out of the box and requires the A/C adapter which I now need to buy separately unless I want to lug the much bigger and heavier laptop around with me. Not to mention that this adapter is not exactly cheap and runs at around $30 at the time of this review.

- Slightly uneven paper feed: The paper was pulled through the feeder slightly unevenly, with a stronger pull on the right. This held true for both large sheets of paper (letter size) as well as card size paper (using the separate slot on the right). This is a rather minor point because the paper guides do help, even though I found it a bit difficult to adjust them perfectly to counteract this behavior.

SUMMARY:

I would love this scanner if it weren't for the A/C adapter issue. I suppose Canon figures that it would work out of the box with most computers/notebooks and so they decided to not include the adapter. Nonetheless, it doesn't work for me and my preferred road gear... This is where my one-star deduction comes from. Call me nit-picky.

Finally, just to mention it: This scanner will not work with books or, let's say old 19th century carte de visite photographs which are too thick and stiff to go through the device. This is rather self-evident from the type of scanner this is, but I wanted to mention it anyway. I do genealogy as a hobby and while this will be great to scan letters and other documents, books and said photographs will either have to go on a flatbed scanner or need a wand-type scanner such as the VuPoint Solutions Magic Wand Portable Scanner (PDS ST415 WM).

Overall I do like the P-215 a lot, and once I will have forgotten that I had to buy the A/C adapter separately, I am sure I will love it. :-)
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
on May 25, 2012
Verified Purchase
I have used the P-215 for most of a day and I have to echo what many of the other reviewers are saying: Speed is very very impressive, especially for the small footprint. It does tend to pull a bit more from one side, causing the page images to be slightly tilted in many cases. This is not a huge deal for me, because during the OCR process in Acrobat, the page is automatically rotated anyway, alleviating much of that problem. Scan quality is excellent. It does miss grabbing onto the occasional next page, but this also isn't a showstopper, as again Acrobat can be configured to prompt for more pages, at which time I just reseat the current stock left in the feeder and continue. I won't spend a great deal of time on the features, as the other reviewers have done an excellent job covering them. I opted to use the software-installed Twain driver, so I can't comment on the built-in driverless option. In summary: for the money and portability, this is a very impressive product. Minor quibbles aside, I can't imagine anyone being disappointed.

I also bought the power adapter which I think deserves a bit of clarification - it is the one for the P-150, and works just fine. Nowhere on that adapter page on Amazon could I find a reference to the fact that it works with the P-215, I just had to assume, since it was the only one listed, and was fortunately correct. The adapter product page should be updated to reflect this.

EDIT: The soft case is not included in the package by default. You have to add it as part of your order at checkout per the instructions near the top of the page. I did not see this when I ordered mine - it may not have been "live" yet or I may simply have missed it. Thank you Northern European for pointing this out!!

I've used the scanner quite a bit more since my original posting and am amazed by the power and quality you get in such a small package. I keep thinking that something this small shouldn't be handling page feeding as effortlessly as it does, but it keeps on impressing. I have a few older books that I've been wanting to convert to electronic documents, and I do notice that it has a bit of difficulty with the thicker covers. Since I also have a regular flatbed scanner, this isn't an issue for me either, as the page feeder and duplex scanning more than make up for having to scan 2 pages manually! Very happy.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
on February 27, 2013
Verified Purchase
This is a review of the Canon Scan-tini P-215. Note: Because Amazon allows me to edit reviews, I'll post my problems and later I'll update with the resolutions.

Problem 1: I'm having intermittent connection problems with the provided USB data cable. Out of the 20 or so USB ports on various computers available to me, I find that the Canon USB cable with its USB 3.0 (type A male) connector needs to be jiggled or physically supported in order to maintain connection in about 4 ports of two different computers: One is a laptop and one is a desktop. Both computers have absolutely no connection troubles with other USB devices. I've called Canon. They're sending me a replacement cable. I'll post an update after it gets here.
PROBLEM 1 UPDATE: The replacement USB 3.0 cable came yesterday via FedEx Priority Overnight. It fixed the intermittent disconnect troubles that I was having. With the new cable, I can reliably connect to every USB port. I can't determine the point of failure in the original cable even using a 10x loupe so I presume it's an internal wiring defect. I'm not going to investigate that problem any further. It works. I'm happy.

Problem 2: In order for this Canon P-215 to scan long papers (like longer than 14 inches up to its 39 inches max size), you've got to fire up a little software utility to make a settings change in the scanner hardware. This little utility has to be installed on a computer. It isn't available through the software on the scanner's built-in flash drive. This little utility couldn't find the scanner through my main desktop computer. It was only after I drilled down through Canon available drivers and utilities that I found their little "fix" for this problem. If you have the same problem, look for the "RepairReg.exe" file at the Canon site. After I took a chance that it wouldn't obliterate my Windows Registry, the Canon long-page setting utility was finally functional and it found my scanner. All seems to be okay now. My Windows 7 Registry seems to have suffered no ill effects. Also, the utility titled "Canon imageFORMULA Utility" finds my scanner and I can change the long page enabler and I can read the life of the roller and pads.

Now on with the review:

For small papers like point of sale (POS) receipts and cancelled checks and business cards, it seems scanner choices on the market are quite limited. Best I can tell only Fujitsu and Canon scanners can do those little cash register receipts and such that are only about 2.5 inches wide. (The current user manual specifies 2.0 inches as a minimum width capability.)

It seems Fujitsu forces propietary drivers that restrict compression to their own lossy scheme and they only license the driver for one computer based on what I read at the Fujitsu web site. Those two aspects disapointed me about the Fujitsu scanners. I don't want to have to decompress the lossy Fujitsu files in order to feed the digital files to my own chosen software application. I also don't want to be limited to just one computer. In my mind, if I pay $250 or more for a scanner, it's insulting to be told I can't use it on all the computers that I own. (I might also want to lend my scanner to my wife if she's really good to me.)

Canon on the other hand, provides a universal TWAIN driver so that an unadulterated stream of digital bits can be fed from the Canon to a computer. I like that idea better. That allows me to choose the software application that will do the compression and aggregation of my digital files and the compression only has to be performed one time. It also lets me use the Canon on any Windows computer I want.

This P-215 has a built-in "flash drive" containing a light version of the Canon "On Touch" application. So, you don't even need to install software on a Windows computer in order to use the scanner. It will scan and compress into jpeg, tiff, or pdf. Or, it will feed an uncompressed tiff or bmp to your chosen directory. It will create searchable pdf's as well. So, not only can you use it on any Windows computer you want, but you can use it without installing any software. I have to admit its faster than I expected it to be working from its built-in flash drive application.

Canon also provides Nuance ScanSoft PaperPort 11. It installed on on all my Windows computers here at home. It seems to work well. You can let it do the compression and aggregation. (I use the term "aggregation" to mean assembling multiple pages into a pdf or milti-page tiff file). I am guessing that full fledged computer software can do compression better than that which is on the Canon's flash drive. In my search for best compression, I'm setting aside money to get Adobe's Acrobat. It's going to be a while before I can afford it. I want to compare compression of Canon's OnTouch, Nuance PaperPort, and Adobe Acrobat. I want the best compression I can muster so my archives are as small as possible. I'm a poor man who can only afford free or low cost "clouds" and I'd like to have an optical backup on M-Discs. I'm not sure M-Disc will ever be available on anything larger than 4.3GB single layer DVD's and I don't want to have to maintain a slew of them in addition to my encrypted archives in public clouds.

Does the Canon mis-feed sometimes? Yes. Not a lot but it happens. And, like others have said, it sometimes requires a tap on the top of the last sheet in the stack to get it to feed that final page. I find that if I clean the rollers and pad it then works more reliably. After I clean the roller and pad, it will usually take that last page without tapping. Strangely, though, there's a delay of a few seconds before it finally grips that last page. For the most part, however, if I fan and stack pages with some attention to crinkles and folds, the P-215 takes all pages. I will say this P-215 takes a stack of POS receipts or cancelled checks much better than I expected. I know that I always have to manually check for completion no matter what auto feeder I've used in my life.

To do long pages (more than 14 inches and up to 39 inches), you've got to install Canon drivers on a computer and utilize a little software utility to set the P-215 for long page mode. The little utility isn't on the Canon's built-in flash drive. That's annoying.

Why doesn't the P-215 just do long pages when it comes from the factory? Once set for long page mode, you'll find that the P-215 then hesitates several seconds after each scanned page of a stack. While set for long page mode, it seems to need this time to determine the end of the page was really the end of the page. If you want to to go back to faster scanning without those hesitations, you've got to fire up the utility and reset the scanner to expect only paper up to 14 inches. It's bizarre and annoying. Why isn't there just a little hardware DIP switch on the P-215 that allows us to change the length detection? Or, at least, why isn't this availble in the built-in flash drive? I don't know.

I do find that lots of my POS receipts are longer than 14 inches even if I only buy a few things It seems that stores insist on adding advertisements, surveys, and multiple other gigs on their tissue paper thermal printings. I can't just whack off those useless and annoying parts because the bottom of the receipt has date, time, transaction number, return policies, and so forth.

So, to scan a stack of receipts, I've got to run that utility to set the P-215 to long page mode. Then, when I think I'm done with long papers for a while, I"ve got to run that utility to set it back to standard page lengths so I can avoid the hassle of the added several seconds every time a page feeds from the stack.

Really Canon? In the future can you just put a switch on the scanner? Please?

But? The IRS says it will accept digital scans of receipts so, at least, I don't have to keep a box of those things around any more.

The P-215 does seem to provide a high quality scan as far as the optics and digital sensors are concerned. I'm not saying it's better than my Epson photo scanner but it's better than the Xerox Documate 3220 I trialed and it's better than the years old Brother Multi-Function Center that has been our workhorse without fail.

The P-215 has a small footprint. It's portable. Nice. That means I can do the tedious digital archiving chores anywhere I want ... even outside on the patio. I'm not tied to the desk in my little home office down in the basement. It doesn't seem to discharge my notebook computer to any great degree. I haven't done any time trials but I've had the P-215 connected to my HP G7 Pavillion for a couple of hours while doing intermittent scanning and still had time left on the battery. I've only got the standard size battery in the HP notebook. It's not an extended capacity battery version.

I'm liking this Canon P-215 so far. Just the duplex capability is amazing. Several years ago, duplex was unheard of in the home. I have tried the old method of feeding a stack into a single sided scanner, flipping the stack, feeding the other sides of the stack and then verifying that my little software application had correctly assembled the pages in order. I'm really happy that this P-215 scans both sides of the page at the same time.

The P-215 seems to do a great job of automatically adjusting exposure. But, it also provides multiple manual controls. Whether using the driver from its built-in flash drive or using the TWAIN driver installed on the computer, you can make adjustments to its detection of page ends, make adjustments to its detection of bleed-through, and make adjustments to its detection of blank pages. From what I have read, the Fujitsu scanners have problems with bleed-through from the other side of a scanned page. Apparently, they don't provide any means of adjusting exposure and such. That's not acceptable.

Canon's OnTouch driver provides a preview and monitoring interface so you can view pages as they are scanned. It also gives you an opportunity to preview each page, rotate each page, or delete pages before you send the digital stream to Canon's pdf/jpg/bmp/tiff compressor or before you send the digital stream to your application like PaperPort of Acrobat.

The only real gripe I have is that the auto feeder isn't 100% reliable. I guess none are. I probably expect too much. I'd give this Canon P-215 feeder function about a 95% rating, though. That plus the fact that it is duplex and has a great user interface with some powerful and detailed control functions, has made me feel that it was worth the price I paid at Amazon.

All in all, it's a pretty nice piece of hardware. If someone want to take this P-215 away from me, then once the data cable connection problems are fixed, it's like Chareton Heston said, "You'll have to pry it from my cold,dead hands."

UPDATE 02/28/2013
So, with the replacment USB cable, all major problems are fixed. I like this scanner.
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16 of 18 people found the following review helpful
VINE VOICEon April 27, 2012
Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
I've tried other portable scanners before and have not been able to find something that is a) actually portable, b)scans well, c)light enough to lug around.

That said, I'm fairly happy with the Canon Scan-Tini for

a) it weighs about 2 lbs and does fit easily into my laptop bag

b) software is good for both Macs and PCs, easy to install. However, you can start scanning as soon as you plug the scanner up to a PC without installing drivers

c) nice card slot for scanning business cards; can also scan checks

d) accepts up to 20 sheets of paper and the scan results are clear. Scans fast for portable scanners - 15 pages per minute

e) scans receipts up to 39.4 inches long and the results are clear as well (I've had issues with scanning receipts on other scanners I've tried)

On the downside, there's no included AC adapter - in Canon's mind, that's an accessory - but I haven't really had the need for one. I'm perfectly fine with using just a USB.
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