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152 of 153 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Not really ready for the office
I was looking for a scanner to allow me to bring my trusty ScanSnap S510M Instant PDF Sheet-Fed Scanner home from the office. A scanner offering 20ppm scanning with a 40 document auto-feeder and a name like Workforce seemed to fit the bill.

Unfortunately I will be using this scanner at home and keeping my Snapscan at the office. What happened?

Well...
Published on March 27, 2009 by G. Ware Cornell Jr.

versus
115 of 123 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Great scanner, terrible support
This scanner uses LEDs as a light source and so has zero warm-up time. The paper feeding system is very fast and and handles irregular sheets and ragged corners with no trouble. The scanner itself beats the HP 5550C I've been using.

Epson's scanner interface is not to my taste but has presets for office and graphic professional scanning needs. What keeps it...
Published on December 2, 2008 by Amazon Customer


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152 of 153 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Not really ready for the office, March 27, 2009
This review is from: Epson WorkForce GT-1500 Document Image Sheet-Fed Scanner with Automatic Document Feeder (ADF) (B11B190011) (Office Product)
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I was looking for a scanner to allow me to bring my trusty ScanSnap S510M Instant PDF Sheet-Fed Scanner home from the office. A scanner offering 20ppm scanning with a 40 document auto-feeder and a name like Workforce seemed to fit the bill.

Unfortunately I will be using this scanner at home and keeping my Snapscan at the office. What happened?

Well the major thing that happened is the interface. A scanner may print at 20 pages per minute, but if you have to spend a couple of minutes getting it to start scanning (in spite of the zero warm up time) and a few more minutes post scanning getting it into the correct file, the pages per minute input is misleading. By contrast the Snapscan goes to work immediately and then offers you a default storage location or the opportunity to change quickly to another location.

The other feature I wanted was a flatbed scanner, missing with the Snapscan, and the GT-1500 definitely has one. However I realized this feature was more suited for home use where I have photos than the office where I am storing documents.

The ADF is another problem. It works fine with a stack of documents but is greatly resistant to just one page.

Now for the good stuff, the scan quality is excellent and the OCR program that is included performs reliably. I personally prefer IRIS ReadIris Pro 11.0 (Mac) but I cannot complain about the output quality.
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115 of 123 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Great scanner, terrible support, December 2, 2008
By 
Amazon Customer (Atlanta, Georgia) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Epson WorkForce GT-1500 Document Image Sheet-Fed Scanner with Automatic Document Feeder (ADF) (B11B190011) (Office Product)
This scanner uses LEDs as a light source and so has zero warm-up time. The paper feeding system is very fast and and handles irregular sheets and ragged corners with no trouble. The scanner itself beats the HP 5550C I've been using.

Epson's scanner interface is not to my taste but has presets for office and graphic professional scanning needs. What keeps it from getting highest marks is the abysmal customer service.

I couldn't get the twain driver to work under Windows Vista. The WIA driver did work, but doesn't support acquisition from the sheet feeder (which defeats the whole purpose of buying this scanner). Lack of sheet feeder support is a crippling blow to the usability of Paperport (which I have used for years). Epson should not be bundling software that their own product does not support.

I spent hours on the phone with three levels of Epson's technical support to no avail. They tried to pawn me off on Nuance to get Paperport support (Nuance's policy is that software bundled with hardware is supported by the manufacturer of the hardware!)

One of the technicians I spoke to did not even know that twain and WIA were different drivers. How can they possibly address my problem when they have such poor background in the product?

The answer of course, is that Epson's support is provided by a call center in India or some such place and the support people are reading canned responses off a computer screen.

The level two technicians knew nothing more that the level one technicians. After a lengthy conversation with a level three technician I was promised a resolution and a return phone call, which as you might guess, never happened.

In the end, I was left to my own devices and discovered a workaround. Scan using the Epson interface (which does support the document feeder) and set its destination directory to the main Paperport directory.

Then open Paperport and manage your documents from there. Not as good as scanning directly from within Paperport, but it gets the job done.
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34 of 34 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Moderately Priced Solution for Book Scanning, August 20, 2010
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This review is from: Epson WorkForce GT-1500 Document Image Sheet-Fed Scanner with Automatic Document Feeder (ADF) (B11B190011) (Office Product)
After many false starts with several scanners the Epson GT-1500 has earned a permanent place in this book scanner's office (until the prices on commercial units come down). Most of the reviews for the Epson GT-1500 are, quite reasonably, predicated on the idea that most customers will use the product in a small or home office environment. This review is from the perspective of one who wishes to use the GT-1500 as a book scanner or archival tool.

Pros:
- The GT-1500 is extremely fast. Much faster than any of the Canon or Brother scanners that I tried and faster even than Epson's own multipurpose scanner/printer/fax machines.
- Document handing on the ADF (Automatic Document Feeder) is remarkably reliable. From glossy magazine papers to heavily milled 32lb papers to newsprint-quality paperback paper the ADF seldom jammed and never grabbed two sheets of paper.
- Resolution is great for OCR (Optical Character Recognition.

Cons:
- Epson Scan software is clunky and far from convenient. More on this later...
- For a Mac user, the scan to PDF function does not allow for an editable text layer behind an optical scan. In fact, it does not even seen to allow for editable text at all.
- No duplex functionality and worse yet, very limited naming option makes recreating double-sided documents (like the pages in a book) a real pain.
- Included Abby FineReader Software is a joke unless you plan to scan only a few documents or are willing to take whatever the scanner spits out with its auto "scan to PDF functionality."

On the pros, the scanner is remarkably well built and seems to handle automatic document feeding well with a minimum of hassles. While the scanner is able to scan at a native 1200 ppi its ability to perform OCR and automatic deskew is capped at only 600 ppi. Functionally then, the scanner is only useful for document archival up to 600 ppi unless one wishes to run through each page with Photoshop and manually correct the image before sending it through a second round of OCR conversion. However, 600 ppi is sufficient for OCR with all but the most demanding (Hebrew or Sanskrit) documents so this is not a huge issue. Also, this is not a fault of the scanner itself but Epson's included software. This note will be struck again and again: the scanner is great but the included software hobbles it.

On the cons, book scanning means being able to handle a high volume of pages in an orderly and efficient manner that does not suck your life away. My first couple days with the GT-1500 were mind numbing, soul stealing excercises in document renaming and workflow headaches. This was due, largely, to two oversights on the part of Epson's software: 1) the scan naming functionality is weak. Documents may be named with a re-occuring string of alphanumeric character plus a strip of ascending numbers beginning with 001 and topping out at 999. While this is fine for single sided documents, it makes for frustrating dual sided scans. The workable solution is to scan a book's first 40 odd pages that will be labeled something like "Book 001" and so one and then rename them all so that they read "Book 001b, Book 002b, etc." Then scan all the even pages with the normal "Book 001, Book 002, etc. so that they fall into the correct order. This batch renaming can be accomplished in Photoshop for PC users or in Mac's Automator program that resides in OSX. Would it have killed Epson to include the ability to name files with multiple fields, descending numbering, or just the ability to designate a batch of pages as "odd" and the other "even?"

This brings us to the joys of Epson's included Abbey FineReader software. First, unlike the IRIS software included with Canon's scanners, the the FineReader software is largely a stand-alone product. The exception is in the automatic "scan to PDF" functionality. However, as a stand alone product it reveals itself to be a cheesy sut rate version of Abbey's otherwise outstanding OCR products. First off, the software does NOT for the creation of editable text. Thus, whatever the OCR reads on the page is what will be included in your PDF or stripped out as a text document mistakes and all. For PC users, one can opt to buy the full software for an additional $500 and actually get something that does the job. For Mac users, the only option is to pay an additional $100 and get the "Express" version which does at least allow for batch processing of file folders (something that Epson's included version of the Abbey software does not). This is nearly unforgivable in my opinion. If one wants images that are straight beyond the narrow abilities of Epson's automatic deskew they must manually correct the skew in a program like Photoshop and then sit and manually open each individual file and save it as a converted OCR'ed PDF while manually typing in the name of the new document. NO, Abbey's software can't even be bothered to default to the name of the original file. Instead ever file is called "TEXT" until you manually enter in its proper name. So, for a person scanning books the included software is a joke unless you are willing accept wonky text angles and mistakes in your searchable PDF files. The only complete solution is to buy Abbey's full version of the FineReader OCR software that includes the ability to batch process and edit the resulting text before resaving the whole document as a converted PDF file. The work-around solution for MAC users is to pay an additional chunk of change for the "Express" version to get batch processing and just deal with the mistakes that the OCR software throws-up periodically.

That brings us to the most easily fixed broken-link in Epson's "Epson Scan" software: there is no manual de-skew. The auto de-skew is barely functional in general--far less so than Canon's script to do the same-- and without manual control some pages are bound to wind up a bit wonky. Fortunately, Epson's ADF is quite competent at pulling the pages in relatively straight as long as the feed arms are kept tight to the edges of the stack. However, generally first and last pages tend to get pulled a few degrees (or thirty) off of straight.

For those who are unwilling to pony up thousands for camera based book-scanning solutions or unable to build DIY projects that do the same, the Epson GT-1500 can turn an average book into an archival string of bits in about four hours start to finish. This is fast enough to equal cheap college text books (borrowed from friends or libraries and digitized) and easy enough to allow for a person to convert often used reference books into searchable digital PDFs. However, for those with deeper pockets there are better camera based options available. So while the Epson's scanning software greatly limits the scanner's native abilities there are no other options available in the sub $500 range that turn a book into a file as easily. The duplexing abilities of Fuji's Scansnap series of scanners would be a great step up for those willing to pay $500 (and sacrifice a document table) or so but the reality is that most people are still going to pay an additional fee to buy scanning software capable of producing editable text.

The final words on Epson's GT-1500 is "good enough" and worthy of five stars only in that it does the job that very few others do--even while it does it poorly.
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44 of 48 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fast, April 16, 2009
This review is from: Epson WorkForce GT-1500 Document Image Sheet-Fed Scanner with Automatic Document Feeder (ADF) (B11B190011) (Office Product)
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
I opened it, inserted the CD into my Mac Quicksilver G4 Dual 1GHz, spent the next 6 minutes installing unbelievable amounts of software (been a while since I owned an Epson, I guess I forgot how much there is, though I believe my HP stuff is bloated too) and removing unbelievable amounts of green immobilizing tape. It's light, as I expected. Connection was a cinch, and the software recognized immediately.
In the OFFICE MODE, it took one document, a stack of 12 of various types (B&W & Color text, picture, and text with pictures), and scanning was very fast - I didn't measure it but less than 8-seconds per sheet. The scans themselves looked perfect. I tried scanning photographs, and as long as they were the same size and thickness, no problem. It "ate" a stack of various sized photos all at once (no damage, just couldn't take one-at-a-time)
In the HOME MODE, I put various collections of photos on the flat bed and scanned them. Again, very fast... 5-seconds or so. I did run into a glitch, but it was my error. I attempted to scan three old photos and correct their Color & Back Lighting. The scan froze every try. I then remembered, ALWAYS REPAIR DISK PERMISSIONS AFTER INSTALLING NEW SOFTWARE!!! Once that was complete, scans fast and correction is good.
I will now start scanning all of our photos...
This is the best flatbed scanner I've used...
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26 of 27 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars TERRIBLE TECHNICAL SUPPORT, December 22, 2010
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This review is from: Epson WorkForce GT-1500 Document Image Sheet-Fed Scanner with Automatic Document Feeder (ADF) (B11B190011) (Office Product)
I use my Epson Workforce GT-1500 about four times per week. The Copy Utility software that came with scanner has never worked properly. After spending over an hour on the phone with Epson tech support, they tell me there is no fix. I'm running Windows 7 and have a new HP printer, so it's not like I'm using legacy software and devices.

Now, just six months after purchasing the scanner, whenever I scan a document using the ADF (automatic document feeder) there is a vertical black line that runs down every page (not caused by a dirty or scratched glass). The scanner is still under warranty, but Epson tech support tells me that my only option is to drive an hour to the nearest repair center to get the problem fixed.

Be forewarned that Epson tech personnel are untrained and just work from scripts. If you decide to buy an Epson product and need to call tech support for any reason, be sure you have something else to do while they are reading up on what to tell you to do next.
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23 of 24 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Scanning issues, January 8, 2011
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This review is from: Epson WorkForce GT-1500 Document Image Sheet-Fed Scanner with Automatic Document Feeder (ADF) (B11B190011) (Office Product)
This unit was easy to install and set up for home use but after 20 scans through the document feeder vertical lines began appearing on the scans. Customer service suggested cleaning the glass but this only happened when using the document feeder. When this was demonstrated they wanted to ship it elsewhere for repair. I am returning it instead, smells like a lemon to me so beware.
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Terrific For Photographs . . . ., May 16, 2010
This review is from: Epson WorkForce GT-1500 Document Image Sheet-Fed Scanner with Automatic Document Feeder (ADF) (B11B190011) (Office Product)
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
This is an expensive, dedicated document scanner, but don't worry if you want to scan photographs, too. Just choose the "Home" mode--or the "Professional" mode, if you are an advanced photo scanner--and you will find a very easy to use photo scanner box. There are a lot of choices you can choose from to do the type of scanning you need, and even more choices if you go to the "Professional" mode. The last time I scanned photos was many years ago with a terrific Canon photo scanner. But I fear the features of that Canon seem quite obsolete compared to this Epson.

In fact, I can't imagine any dedicated photo scanner having more features than this one...except this scanner does not do negatives or slides. One of my favorite features of the photo scanning is the "Restore Color" feature. It really does do an excellent job of making older, faded photographs look newer. One 1940's portrait, on matte type paper, that I scanned this weekend, surprised me to no end when I saw the finished scan. I just leave the "Restore Color" and "Remove Dust Specks" boxes checked all the time. There is also a "Fix Backlit Photos" feature and a "Descreening" feature. And the photos can be saved in various "jpeg" and "tiff" formats . . . more than I possibly can understand. That is my one complaint about this very nice scanner--I only wish Epson would have included a detailed paper manual, instead of having only an online manual. It's just not the same.

Update May 2012: This scanner also does a great job of scanning old photographs that you are trying to sell online, and need a very accurate scan of the photo. Just don't check any boxes to correct the photo, and your potential buyer online will see the photo as it truly is. I scanned some 100-year-old photos for someone to sell on eBay, and this Epson did the job easily and most accurately.
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great for multi-page PDF files, April 22, 2010
This review is from: Epson WorkForce GT-1500 Document Image Sheet-Fed Scanner with Automatic Document Feeder (ADF) (B11B190011) (Office Product)
I bought this scanner primarily for document scanning, specifically to scan multiple documents into multipage pdf's. I was not disappointed.
I'm running a Mac Mini Power PC 1.25 Ghz, 512 megs RAM, OS 10.4.11. I was looking for a sheetfed scanner that would accommodate my OS and Mac platform. There aren't very many out there that do that, I found. (Update: In July 2010 I upgraded my Mac Mini to a new Mini with an Intel Core duo 2 processor running Snow Leopard and the software installed just fine on it too)
The hardest part is waiting for the lengthy software installation. The disk automatically reads your system and disk space and installs what you need. (I should mention that the software installed MUCH quicker on my new Intel Mac, so the slow installation was mostly due to the slower processor speed of my old Mac)
After installing the software, I shut down my computer, connected the scanner to the AC adapter and USB cable connect to my Mac, and then re-booted my computer.
Then I put a stack of 10 documents face up into the sheet feeder, and Turned on the scanner.
Then I clicked the "Epson Scan" software, brief wait for software to open. Selected Black and White scanning at 150 dpi to pdf. (It also does grayscale and color, and other DPI's of course--I usually use 150 DPI/B&W for pdf documents because it cuts down on file size.)
Clicked the "Scan" button on the software-- it sucked the documents through one-by-one in record time-- and 35 SECONDS LATER I was looking at the multi-page pdf of the 10 documents that it deposited nicely on my desktop.(188 kb for the 10-page file).
The scans are *amazingly* fast--of course, you should understand that my previous scanner was a Canon Lido 100, which took about 35 seconds PER PAGE for B&W pdf documents.
Do be advised that some of the software features don't work on my Mac. It won't scan to email, for instance. (not a problem for me)
But just being able to scan medical documents quickly into a single pdf file was my goal and this machine really fills the bill for me.
Another plus: you can put the 40 sheets in the feeder and scan it-- when it's done, the machine kindly asks you if you would like to add more pages to the file--so you can then re-fill the sheet feeder and keep on scanning in that manner until you get all of them into one single pdf file.
Oh, BTW, later I scanned all 40 documents through the sheet feeder and they were all fed flawlessly into one file. This thing is gonna spoil me for sure!
---
Today (April 26) I'm scanning medical reports into multi-page pdf files and this scanner is still super! I'm getting a very consistent 19-20pgs/min in B&W at 150 DPI, and on greyscale I'm getting about 5 pgs/min. An 82-page grayscale file had 11.2 MB, which is still not bad for grayscale. A 122-page B&W file had 2.3 MB, which is very good.
The sheetfeeder has so far worked almost flawlessly except for a few dog-eared pages that wouldn't go through without a little straightening. Other than that, total success. The real beauty is hearing those sheets go through without my having to do anything except re-fill the feeder. It's nearly impossible to re-fill the feeder while it's working--I've tried to do it 3 times with only one success. Anything that disrupts paper flow for even an instant seems to hang up the sheet feeder. No problem, though, as I can wait until it finishes and then re-fill the feeder and select "add page" and it keeps right on a tickin'.
=====
OK, I've been using the scanner for a while longer now (aug 5), and I've found a way to prevent stopping after each 40-page stack in the tray goes through:

If you want to add pages, while the first stack is scanning, have the next stack ready in your hand for insertion into the feeder as your first stack is finishing. (tip: don't count the pages, just be sure the stack is thin enough that you're sure you are under the 40-page limit)

When the last page of the stack that's currently feeding finishes, you can wait just a second for that last page to go through (watch the paper output tray, or listen to the scanner, you can tell when that page goes through), and then quickly stick your next stack into the feeder and it'll kick in and automatically take the second stack. You can repeat this as needed, but don't forget to empty the paper output tray. I scanned 97 pages in 5 minutes using this technique, and the scanner kept right on running when I re-filled the paper tray. (file size for the 97 pages was about 3.4 MB)

It does hesitate just a moment at every 40 pages (because this is the maximum amount that the tray would normally hold), but then after the momentary hiccough, it resumes scanning.

Really, if you need a scanner for documents, I highly recommend this one.
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20 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfect for old magazine scans, August 21, 2010
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This review is from: Epson WorkForce GT-1500 Document Image Sheet-Fed Scanner with Automatic Document Feeder (ADF) (B11B190011) (Office Product)
I researched scanners under $400 to try to find the perfect home scanner for cutting down on my massive collection of old sewing and craft magazines. I chose this one and could not be more pleased. After trimming off the spine edge of the magazines with a paper cutter, this scanner automatically fed each and every page through perfectly, no jams with the 20-30 pages at a time I fed through it.

I flipped the stack over and ran it through again for the back side of the page. The software that came with the scanner collated the pages perfectly. Best of all, as mentioned above, there were no paper jams, even with some extremely glossy paper.

It does exactly what I purchased it for, which is digitizing and archiving collections of old magazines.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Low Budget Scanner, January 27, 2010
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This review is from: Epson WorkForce GT-1500 Document Image Sheet-Fed Scanner with Automatic Document Feeder (ADF) (B11B190011) (Office Product)
Only one complaint about this scanner. The document feeder will not feed the 40 pages advertised. You have to manually feed about 5 sheets at a time and remove the docs from the exit tray or it will jam. Don't know where the problem is with the paper path but I am suspicious because there were numerous refurbished ones at the Epson web site. You may want to save $100.oo bucks and go with refurbished but they advise that you may not get the original software which really make this scanner. BEST PRICE WAS AT AMAZON for new. I like the flatbed & doc feeder feature and really don't need a double sided scanning unit for home use. I can work around the doc feeder issue as the excellent software asks if you'd like to save or add more pages when scanning stops. However, it would be nice to be able to load a full 4o pages as advertised. In addition I tried loading 20, 10 and then 5 pages and it looks like 5 is the magic number.
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