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Scanners


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Scanners

Scanners form an important part of essential office equipment in the modern office environment and are used in conjunction with computers. They are increasingly being used for newer applications and with prices becoming more and more competitive, while their cost to performance ratio is constantly improving.

Scanners are used in desktop publishing for creating documents like newsletters, brochures and technical manuals all of which contain text and graphics in black and white/color. When used for document imaging, they scan documents and file them in an electronic format. They are used for optical character recognition (OCR) in which, by using a suitable software program with OCR capabilities like FineReader or Textbridge, the computer is able to 'read' each letter of a scanned document and convert it into a word processing document. In web designing, they scan text and images/photographs to create web content.

Photo editing is another field where they contribute unparalleled service to improve or change the quality of colored or black and white photographs. They are also able to scan and email documents and eliminate the need for using a fax machine if and when required.

Different scanners incorporate different features and can be either colored or black and white scanners. There are flatbed scanners, sheet fed scanners, film/slide scanners, card scanners, hand held scanners and drum scanners.

A flatbed scanner is best for scanning originals of varying thickness like photographs, books, magazines etc. Automatic page feeding is also possible by fitting suitable adapters. The scan area can be anywhere from 8.5 inches by 11 inches to 13 inches by 18 inches. Optical resolution is usually up to 5000 dpi.

Sheet fed scanners are less expensive. The resolution can be up to 400 dpi and scanning is limited to 'sheets' of paper up to a specific size. A handheld scanner is a fairly inexpensive option and is small enough to be carried while being on the move. It can be dragged over pages of books and other documents to scan select sections. However, it does not provide a sharp image everytime as it is hand held, and has a tendency to create a distorted image if moved slower/faster than necessary.

Drum/rotary scanners are very expensive and used for higher applications requiring resolutions up to 12000 dpi.

Card scanners are used to keep a record of business cards.


 

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