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You are here: MacNN Forums > Hardware - Troubleshooting and Discussion > Consumer Hardware & Components > Yet Another Scanner Question

Yet Another Scanner Question
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denim
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Oct 2, 2003, 11:54 AM
 
I'm looking for a new scanner.

It's not my current scanner's fault. My current scanner, an HP ScanJet 4p (300dpi, US$500 in 1995), has worked for 8 years and has given me few, if any, problems. However, its SCSI-1 interface will be a bit of an issue when the G5 comes.

So I'm looking for a replacement. I'm avoiding UMAX and Epson due to problems I've heard of in the past. Given my history with HP, I'm giving them first shot. I'm specifically looking at the HP Scanjet 8250, which is a flatbed scanner with "OH MY GOD!" specs: 4800dpi, comes with a 15ppm ADF for automatic, double-sided scanning, and has a lighted lid for transparencies. The pain comes with the price, of course. Newegg.com has it for US$747, which is much better than list price, but I wonder if I'm over-buying if I get it.

I want to scan just about everything: books, pictures, prints, negatives, whatever. My current scanner can't really do transparencies of any sort, since it has no lighted lid, and I'd like an ADF with the ability to handle double-sided pages. I don't know how much better a dedicated film scanner would be compared to a scanner like this. Would I be better off getting a cheaper flat-bed scanner and a separate film scanner? Is there a better flat-bed scanner for my purposes? What's the story?
Is this a good place for an argument?
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Vaderís Pinch of Death
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Oct 2, 2003, 02:37 PM
 
Oh God... HP. Yuck.

You are right in a way though, 10 years ago HP's rocked. Now they are just a junk consumer company.

I HATE Epson printers but I have to admit they make damn good scanners. I would recommend them.

"If it's broke, you choke."
     
denim  (op)
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Oct 2, 2003, 05:00 PM
 
What kind of problems do you know of with HP?

I've heard of too many times where Epson, and UMAX, has dropped support for a scanner after one year or so. That's not good.
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Back up 15 and punt
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Oct 2, 2003, 05:17 PM
 
Originally posted by denim:
What kind of problems do you know of with HP?

I've heard of too many times where Epson, and UMAX, has dropped support for a scanner after one year or so. That's not good.
The hardware works just fine. The problem HP is facing is that their drivers are just horrible for OS X. I own an HP scanner (scanjet 5500) and the drivers work but they won't permit my system to sleep. I also own the Deskjet 5650 and the drivers for this printer are so bad that I'm thinking about returning the printer to Costco.
     
Vaderís Pinch of Death
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Oct 2, 2003, 05:19 PM
 
Originally posted by denim:
What kind of problems do you know of with HP?
All scanners have the same specs more of less. The real test is:

1) the software
2) the colour accuracy

From what I have seen the HP's in the past 5 years fail miserably on both.

"If it's broke, you choke."
     
denim  (op)
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Oct 2, 2003, 05:40 PM
 
Originally posted by Vaderís Pinch of Death:
All scanners have the same specs more of less. The real test is:

1) the software
2) the colour accuracy

From what I have seen the HP's in the past 5 years fail miserably on both.
3) software support

Okay, so where do I get
  • software support for more than 5 minutes
  • software quality
  • good control
  • color accuracy
  • at least legal size
  • can handle transparencies
  • ADF for less than an arm and a leg
Is this a good place for an argument?
Peace on Earth, Good Will Toward Me
     
aaanorton
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Oct 2, 2003, 05:55 PM
 
Originally posted by denim:
3) software support

Okay, so where do I get
  • software support for more than 5 minutes
  • software quality
  • good control
  • color accuracy
  • at least legal size
  • can handle transparencies
  • ADF for less than an arm and a leg
Right here. Well, all but those last 3. I agree that all the manufacturers are about the same now, hardware-wise, so just pick one with trans. and ADF features. 8.5x14 is pretty much the standard these days. If you want bigger, it'll cost you big time. I like Canon and Epson scanners, in that order.
     
rhogue islander
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Oct 2, 2003, 06:34 PM
 
I just wanted to say:

I agree, UMAX sucks.

They have yet to release an OS X.2 compatible driver.

Whatever drivers they have, they want you to pay for.

This has left me having to scan into a Winxp box and then import the results over the network.

sheesh
     
aaanorton
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Oct 2, 2003, 07:00 PM
 
Ya, I forgot... ANYTHING but Umax.
     
Ron Goodman
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Oct 2, 2003, 07:04 PM
 
If you want to scan slides and film, buy a film scanner! The amount of money you you're talking about would nearly buy a medium price film scanner plus a flatbed. Whatever you buy, make sure it is a scanner supported by Vuescan, which beats most of the software offered by the scanner manufacturers.
     
denim  (op)
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Oct 2, 2003, 07:05 PM
 
Originally posted by aaanorton:
Right here. Well, all but those last 3. I agree that all the manufacturers are about the same now, hardware-wise, so just pick one with trans. and ADF features. 8.5x14 is pretty much the standard these days.
I just looked, and the SJ 4p had those dimensions also, so a new scanner with those dimensions will do.

I'm already using VueScan to drive my 4p under MacOS X. It's the only way to run the thing. However, I expect a new scanner to run more natively in the OCR and Adobe software.
Is this a good place for an argument?
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