A scanner is a stand-alone electronic hardware device which converts a document or image from its paper hardcopy form into a digital format. Document scanners are connected to a PC via an interface cable, typically a USB connection but some older models may connect with a parallel or SCSI cable. There are also portable variants available that operate wirelessly.
How does a document scanner work?
The scanning unit works by shining a light at the document or image that will be digitised. Using a series of mirrors the reflected light is directed towards a sensor head. The sensor head contains a range of light sensitive components that convert the brightness levels into an electronic signal. The signal is then converted into a digital image.
What do document scanners do?
As we mentioned before, scanners are able to convert images and text into a digital format. Being able to store valuable information this way is vital. It is not only safer, as documents can get lost stolen or damaged it also preserves high-resolution images forever. Using software, images and documents can be easily edited and sent as e-mail attachments or recorded on to CD's or DVD's.
Why do we need them?
If every office were to keep a hard copy of every document, can you imagine how much storage space we would need? Not to mention the amount of paper used and what impact that would have on the environment. Storing vast quantities of paper work is a huge cost to any business. Having an office scanner saves time and allows a high- volume of information to be stored electronically.
Types of scanner
There are many different types of scanner available in the market today. Finding the right high-speed device depends on a few key factors. Most are easy-to-use and offer high-quality scanning capabilities.
A sheetfed scanner will feed the paperwork or image via an automatic document feeder. Information passes over the scanning beam on a roller. This type of device is ideal for copying multiple pages as some models can scan two-sided sheets.
A portable or handheld scanner works by passing the device over the item to be scanned. Portable scanners are ideal for scanning receipts. The wireless one-touch operation make these units ideal for on the move employees.
A Flatbed scanner have a lift up lids with a glass face underneath. Documents to be scanned are placed face down and copied. A great basic high processing device.