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on April 2, 2008
My reasoning: (Vista Ultimate laptop)

1) It intelligently waits until the computer is idle, to auto-perform OCR chores. You have the option to do so as you scan, but this slows down scanning. There's also a menu click which yields a list of scans awaiting OCR-- really nice touch!

2) Unlike proprietary organizers, the "cabinets" created within the organizer software are actual directories on your hard disk. Likewise, folders created within the organizer's cabinets are subdirectories on your disk. So, you get the best of all worlds-- use the organizer knowing you're not locked in, as it's just a slick interface for what is actually existing on your drive. (i.e., Create a cabinet = create a directory)

3) Thermal receipts, even trying-to-fade ones, come thru crisp and clear, miraculously, when scanning.

4) I have Adobe Acrobat Professional 8, which is a necessary evil in my business. I can now avoid that bloated monster altogether when it comes to receipts and anything else I choose to scan using this system. That alone is worth the price of entry!

5) The duplex scanning is wondrous-- paper goes thru only once, with both sides captured simultaneously -- speedily. This still blows my mind (I have a duplex Canon MP830 multifunction-- for all practical purposes, its scanner has been blown away by this device.)

6) Let's face it-- sometimes, paper jams. This is the FIRST machine encountered-- since the late 80's when I started computing-- which makes it so easy to fix things. You just push the little square silver arrow atop the scanner, open, get the paper, and close it. Incredibly easy and no-fuss! And yes, the wrinkled paper then flows thru fine (I gently kept a finger on that one item as it scanned thru, just to be safe.) BTW, I had scanned upwards of 300 items before a jam occurred.

7) Lots of options, re speed, resolution, etc. All easy to get to, all quick to implement. These folks actually used this thing during the creation process, as it seems they didn't miss a trick in making this a genuinely consumer friendly device!

8) The consumables are comparatively cheap. The pad assembly (Part # PA03541-0002) needs replacement every 10,000 sheets or a year-- google the actual part # to see the $8 retailers); the pick roller (Part # PA03541-0001) lasts about 100,000 sheets-- about $12. I noticed a huge price variation among retailers while googling, so I placed my order today; they're not in stock at most places, but I have plenty of time so who cares. This is bound to be a profoundly popular scanner per word-of-mouth, and consumable prices may increase accordingly. BTW, right-click the ScanSnap Manager tray icon for "check consumable supplies" to get a tally on current sheet usage, which you can reset during the replacement process.

9) Small footprint-- lives in a bookcase shelf atop my desk.

10) One of the rare occasions where I've had absolutely no post-purchase regrets with an electronic item!

Long and short of it is this: I've finally lived long enough to see one hardware manufacturer get everything right. There's a pdf manual, but I read it only to investigate consumables (thought it would be a "gotcha!" but was pleasantly suprised at the reasonable cost). I assume you're reading these reviews carefully (as I did), trying to decide between the ScanSnap and a lower priced alternative. For once, I decided not to play cheapskate, and boy oh boy, am I glad!! (The price here has already escalated a bit, so do it now, my friend!)
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on March 16, 2008
I had been looking into replacing my flatbed scanner, but was intrigued by this small, mainly PDF unit. I decided to go for it for 2 reasons: 1) 99% of what I scan are documents perfect for PDFs, and 2) the scanner's small size. I am so happy with this scanner! The PDFs are crisp and clear, much better than my flatbed scanner. The scanner reads both sides of a page at once and automatically removes blank pages. It's also quite a bit faster and much quieter than my other scanner (which I'm keeping for handling photos and other types of scans). The software that comes with the scanner is nice - not hard to use/learn.

I'm using a PC running Windows XP, not a laptop. Don't feel that you need to be mobile to justify using this scanner, although I'm sure that would be a main selling point for those who are on the go.
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on February 29, 2008
This is not a heavy duty scanner. It is not the scanner to buy if you do a lot of 200 page documents. And it's not the scanner to buy if you scan 500 pages a day. But it is the scanner for most of us who scan 10 or 20 or even 40 pages a day who don't need a flatbed. It's simple. It's been great (but not perfect) at feeding one page at a time. The results are excellent. It's quiet. It gets both sides of the page at the same time (if there's anything on the backside, and eliminating the backside if it's blank). It's portable and runs off the USB alone (albeit at a slower rate) on the go. It's small enough to take with you in the laptop bag to bring to work or bring to home or out to a site. I have great difficulty imagining how this small, simple device could be better without sacrificing the things that make it great (small, simple, portable, runs off USB alone if necessary). I HIGHLY recommend this if it seems like it fits your needs. It really is a performer, and I'm VERY happy with it. One thing Fujitsu could work on: it would be nice if it did not require proprietary software and could be driven by programs such as Adobe Acrobat alone. But the proprietary software is actually pretty good. Everything should work as well as this product has for me.
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This is an outstanding scanner. It really lives up to its name as it makes scanning a snap. The Scansnap's software is very user friendly, making it very simple to adjust things such as file type (JPEG vs. PDF) or scanning level. I also like how the Scansnap can scan both sides of a document or photo. The archiving systems also seems like it works quite well. The Fujitsu Scansnap is easy to setup and easy to use. I highly recommend it.

FOR MAC USERS
I made the mistake of assuming that the Fujitsu Scansnap would also work with a Mac. These days most things work easily with Mac, not the Fujitsu. Actually the Scansnap works nicely while I run Windows XP Pro on Parallels. The good news for Mac Users is that Fujitsu now makes a Scansnap for Mac. The bad news is that it's going to cost over $50 more! Apparently the different color and MacOS-specific software justifies the extra cost.
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on June 25, 2009
After approximately 2,000 scans, I think I have a good handle on the pro's and con's:

Pro's: small footprint, easy setup, intuitive controls, duplex (scans both sides), saves scans as PDF files, straightens out scans that feed crooked, OCR permits searching of your scans.

Con's: document has to be carefully fed or won't scan, the software freezes frequently (the remedy is to unplug the scanner for a few seconds and then reconnect), the searchable PDF requires purchasing Adobe Acrobat (which is expensive -- make sure you factor this large expense into your calculations), the software has difficulty identifying and deleting blank pages.
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on February 25, 2008
The is not a super-power ultra fast scanner, and it should be be judged as such.

But it is a auto feeder duplex scanner which fits nicely in your travle bag or takes very little space on your desk. I picked this scanner because it would fit in my office without becoming a huge fixture. at 8 pages a minute it deals well with my load of paper and the start button on the scanner makes things easy.

The software is effective but not something which will change the way you see the world. I personally store all scanned items by subject on a server for this purpose so the scan storage software is not too interesting for us. We use Windows Desktop search to index and OCR all documents, easy and fast. why make things more dificult than they have to be.

Note this scanner can not be used from photoshop or similar, it does not show up as a option in paperport either. It is a dedicated maker of PDF documents.

Scanner is highly recomended for what it is - a small compact scanner with great quality scans.
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on February 19, 2008
This is the only product I've ever purchased that worked exactly as advertised. Within 2 minutes I went from unboxing to scanning (not including reboot time).

I did extensive research before purchase, and it looked like there would be no option of buying a reliable ADF scanner for less than $400-500, and my intention was to get the Fujitsu S510, but saw this and thought it would be just as good (granted, slower speed and less sheets, but it's portable).

HP scanners just have the marketing, they are garbage based on what I've owned before and what I've seen in all the reviews. If you want a reasonably priced ADF, you won't get it for $99, spend the $250 and get this one... remember, you get what you pay for.

In three days I scanned almost 3000 documents, I may have gotten a paper jam every 200-300 docs which is very easy and fast to fix.

I have zero *major* complaints about this product, I do wish it had TWAIN drivers so I could use it with Photoshop easier, but my primary use for this is document archiving so it's no big deal.
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on March 25, 2008
I am a real estate agent, and I wanted to be able to scan docuuments while out in the field. I already own the S510 by Fujitsu, and I am very happy with it. I plugged in the Scansnap S300 portable scanner into both my USB ports (one is for power, the other for data), and voila! it really does work! The must-have feature for me was the sheet feeder.

The scansnap software that came with the S300 has a higher revision number than what came with the S510. I installed the S300's version of the software, and it works flawlessly with both scanners. The tray icon is solid blue with the S510, and solid white with the S300, so the software definitely knows which scanner it's talking to.

Overall, it works perfectly and does the job. This is a premium tool for my business and I didn't want to save money & get an inferior product. I know this will work when I need it to.
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on March 29, 2008
I bought this mainly for scanning newspaper clippings and magazine articles that I want to keep without having to keep the hard copies. It works really well for both types of paper. The only time I've had a problem is when the newspaper article I cut out is oddly shaped. The scanner will only scan a square or rectangular shape and cut the rest off. I haven't tried attaching the article to another sheet of paper, maybe that will work. The organizer software is easy to use - I figured it out without having the read any instructions. It is very easy to delete pages from the PDF files (if you have ads on some pages for a magazine article, for instance) and it's also easy to copy and paste pages between files.
This Scansnap doesn't come with the full version of Adobe, but if you don't have a need to edit the files you are scanning then you don't need it and you can save some money over the more expensive Scansnap.
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on February 20, 2008
Just like the previous reviewer, this thing worked right out of the box. I installed the software (got the update from Fujitsu) and started scanning. I don't own anything manufactured by Fujitsu and didn't even know they had a scanner option like this. I was actually looking at the Pentax scanner, but glad I stumbled onto this one.

I almost purchased the desktop version, however this portable device suits my needs better as I do medical consulting and often need a way to copy patient documents while away from the office. Right out of the box I tried more than the recommended number of sheets to scan at once. It scanned 27 double-sided documents in 4.5 minutes on USB power (apparently AC power allows for quicker scanning) and no hiccups/jams.

For what I need it for I am not too concerned about the TWAIN drivers for other programs and I have a PDF editor that I can edit anything if I need to. If you use Microsoft Office Live it also has the Sharepoint option as well. The business card scan feature is also nice if you like putting all of your contacts in vCard format. Who wants all those biz cards floating around their office?

If you are looking at this scanner and hesitate because of the price, remember it is an investment and time is money. This will save you a lot of time and clear out your filing cabinets if you want to go paperless.
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