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Best Flatbed Scanner to Buy in 2019 (Our Top 9)

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Last Updated: 28 January 2019

It seems that humanity has created a huge amount of text and graphic materials during our existence. We inherited a voluminous legacy of fiction, graphic images and much more. But over the last hundred years, technology has jumped so much that the volume of new information almost exceeds everything previously accumulated. Of course, in the age of universal computerization, physical media are useless – the electronic versions run the show. Something is initially created in digital form, the other you have to digitize in various ways.

The easiest option is to use the best flatbed scanner. In our flatbed scanner reviews, we will talk about the most simple and familiar to the ordinary user models for scanning documents, books, magazines, photos, etc. The best flatbed scanner will be useful in several areas at once: for a home user to digitize memorable photos, office workers to create an electronic copy of a document, for photographers to create a digital photo for subsequent retouching. There are a lot of usage scenarios. In any case, in our best flatbed scanner rating, you will find the best devices, among which there is definitely a model for your needs.

What Is It?

A scanner is a device designed to digitize paper documents, photographs, and other originals. And not only the quality of “electronic” copies directly depends on its characteristics, but also the ease of use, the speed of work, as well as other operational parameters.

A flatbed scanner is named so because of the glass plate on which the original source is being scanned. Its colleague, a drum scanner, uses a glass drum for this purpose. The advantage of the flatbed scanner over the same drum is that it is enough to place the original source on the flatbed for scanning without exposing it to any impacts (pressure, bending, deformation, vibration). Therefore, it is suitable for fragile or even three-dimensional objects.

Why Do You Desperately Need This Product?

Documents accompany modern society at every turn. It is already difficult to imagine your life without workflow. And often we are confronted with such a problem, when we urgently need to transfer documents from paper to electronic form, or transfer photos from an old film to a hard disk or USB flash drive. For this purpose, we need the best flatbed scanner and scanning software.

Furthermore, everyone has pictures from cameras with a film at home. In the digital age, it is becoming increasingly difficult to find a quality atelier that can digitize memorable moments. Fortunately, there are digital scanners that can make a quality copy. With the help of a scanner, you can extend the life of your images for many decades.

Such devices are of great help at work or in school. But the variety of best flatbed scanner devices is large, and you can easily get confused.

What Is the Best Scanner for Home Use?

On the modern market, products of this type are represented by a variety of manufacturers, among which it is rather difficult to select the best flatbed scanner for home use. However, according to most buyers, the Japanese representatives deserve the most attention. Canon is one of the first scanner manufacturers, whose product parameters are targeted at both small business and private individuals.

Epson is at the forefront of being the most environmentally friendly product manufacturer. Among the top companies is also a well-known HP ScanJet. These brands are located on an approximately equal level in terms of product quality, its functional equipment and other characteristics that are key to a potential buyer. Therefore, the following models can be deservedly considered the worthiest among a number of analogs.

If you want to purchase the best flatbed scanner 2019 for home use for periodical digitization of photos or documents, and you are not a professional in this area, you can be completely satisfied with the amateur Canon flatbed scanner CanoScan 9000F Mark II.

What Is the Fastest Scanner?

Speed ​​is a rather important criterion for choosing the best flatbed scanner because no one wants to wait a full minute while the device scans any document. And if you want to scan a thesis or even a book ... then speed is generally an extremely important parameter. So you should consider this feature of the scanner. Remember: sometimes manufacturers specify scanning speed in different ways: some indicate the time during which the device will scan the A4 page; others indicate the scan time of a single line.

According to numerous Epson Perfection V600 review, it is a good CCD scanner with a maximum scan resolution of 6400 × 9600 dpi A4 originals. The speed is impressive – just 4 seconds per color A4 page. The scanner also provides the ability to scan films, and the bundled software includes licensed software, comprising Fine Reader, Photoshop Elements, etc. There are a lot of scanners today, so there are difficulties with the choice for buyers. If you already know the criteria for choosing a scanner, but do not know which model to prefer, we will give you a rating of the top 9 devices with the most positive flatbed scanner reviews.

TOP 9 Best Flatbed Scanners Compared and Reviewed

  • 1 place :
    Best Overall: Epson Perfection V600 Review

  • Best Overall: Epson Perfection V600 Review

    Epson Perfection V600 is an excellent photo scanner that is perfectly suited for both home and office use, in other words – it is universal. If you need to digitize the archive of old films and slides, then this model of the flatbed scanner is great for its purpose. According to the Epson v600 review, you can scan standard 35 mm negatives, medium size films, and slides. Epson Perfection V600 Photo scanner with CCD sensor type has a resolution of 6400 x 9600 dpi, and the interpolation resolution is 12,800 dpi with a color depth of 48 bits.

    The scanner has an optical density of 3.4 Dmax, which helps to reproduce great shades. And the useful Ready Scan LED technology saves energy and preparation time for work. Turning on the scanner will be immediately ready for operation, which is very convenient.

      • pros +
      • Very fast in a standard mode Automatic scan quality enhancement modes High resolution Digital ICE dust removal technology Excellent OCR work
      • cons -
      • Bulky Noisy operation of the scanning head
  • 2 place :
    Best Price/Quality Ratio: Epson Perfection V550

  • Best Price/Quality Ratio: Epson Perfection V550

    The purpose of the model from Epson becomes clear from the name - V550 Photo is ideal for digitizing photos for storage and processing in graphics editors. The resolution of a CCD sensor is 6400x9600 dpi, which is enough for any conditions. Although the engineers decided to add the ability to raise the rate even higher – up to 12800х12800 dpi. Color depth is 48 bits. Judging by the Epson v550 review, there are no claims to the quality of the device.

    Also, Epson Perfection v550 photo color scanner review notes the adapter for film slides included. With its help, you can scan an old archive of negatives. The dimensions of the device are not the largest in the class, but it is difficult to call the V550 a “kid” in the Epson perfection v550 review.

      • pros +
      • High-quality scanner for a reasonable price Scans negatives, slides, prints and medium format film Digital ICE scratch and dust removal for films Direct upload to cloud services and Facebook
      • cons -
      • Sometimes the scanner “misses” with the color rendering Frame under 36 mm of captivity is shaky
  • 3 place :
    Best Dual Lens system: Epson Perfection V800 Photo Scanner Review

  • Best Dual Lens system: Epson Perfection V800 Photo Scanner Review

    Epson Perfection V800 Photo flatbed scanners allow you to digitize both opaque originals and photographic films. This scanner is equipped with three pairs of CCD (Epson Matrix CCD) photosensitive lines, an Epson Dual Lens optical system that can be reconfigured, and LED light sources (ReadyScan LED).

    Hardware resolution when scanning in reflected light is 4800 dpi; in passing – 6400 dpi. The specification declared the ability to scan originals with a maximum optical density (Dmax) up to 4.0 D. The model uses Digital ICE hardware and software technology that automatically detects and eliminates various image defects (including scratches, fingerprints, hairs and dust particles). The scanner is equipped with an external power supply and is connected to a PC via USB 2.0. SilverFast SE 8 scanning control software is supplied with the Perfection V800 Photo scanner.

      • pros +
      • Dual lens system for optimized film scanning (6400dpi) and photos (4800dpi) High optical density (4.0 DMax) for accurate color reproduction Support for various source formats High performance: fast warm-up thanks to Epson ReadyScan LED technology and the simultaneous use of two sets of frames for scanning films Digital ICE image recovery technology
      • cons -
      • No ADF
  • 4 place :
    Best Fast: Canon CanoScan 9000F MKII

  • Best Fast: Canon CanoScan 9000F MKII

    CanoScan 9000f mark ii review proves that this is an excellent scanner with a CCD sensor and a slide adapter with a real resolution of 4800 × 4800 dpi, which can be programmatically increased to 19,200 × 19,200 dpi.

    This color flatbed scanner is definitely worth the money! It scans quickly the old film that suits not only an amateur but even a professional. The colors correspond exactly to the photographs taken from the negatives. As for software, there are no problems with it: all important functions are provided.

      • pros +
      • The presence of an adapter for film slides High-resolution scan Cute appearance High scan speed
      • cons -
      • Noisy Size
  • 5 place :
    Best Selling: Epson Perfection V370

  • Best Selling: Epson Perfection V370

    Epson Perfection V370 is quite a popular flatbed scanner with a real scan resolution of 4800 × 9600 dpi. Also, the manufacturer indicates an improved resolution of 12800 × 12800 dpi. An important parameter of this scanner is the CCD sensor and high scanning speed for color and black and white documents - it is only 16 seconds.

    Given the characteristics, it is logical that the model collects positive feedback. It scans quickly, is instantly ready to work, and has flexible settings that allow you to adjust the color correctly. Also, the device has good construction quality, which makes it one of the best.

      • pros +
      • High scanning speed High-resolution scan Understandable and convenient software The presence of an adapter for film slides Price
      • cons -
      • Buttons on the case may not work in conjunction with some operating systems
  • 6 place :
    Best Large Format: Plustek A3 Flatbed Scanner

  • Best Large Format: Plustek A3 Flatbed Scanner

    Plustek OpticSlim 1180 scanner of the A3 format is designed to scan the spreads of large books, newspapers, magazines, and maps. The area of ​​the scanned surface of 297 × 431.8 mm makes it possible to reduce the number of fragments of large-sized paper carriers for subsequent combining and reduce the probability of problem cases.

    This large format flatbed scanner has a maximum optical resolution of 1200 dpi. Scanning speed in color mode with a resolution of 300 dpi for A3 format is 15 seconds. The driver uses the TWAIN interface; Windows XP, Vista, 7 and 8 operating systems are supported. Given the Plustek scanner review, its retail price is rather affordable, which is very unusual for wide format scanners.

      • pros +
      • A3 format Optical resolution of 1200 dpi TWAIN interface Compatible with Windows XP, Vista, 7 and 8 OS Software for recognition of scanned texts: Abbyy FineReader Sprint, NewSoft Pagemanager, Plustek DocAction, Plustek DocTWAIN
      • cons -
      • The scanning options are not fully equipped The driver found to be less stable
  • 7 place :
    Best for Professional: Epson 12000XL-PH

  • Best for Professional:  Epson 12000XL-PH
    12000XL-GA is a large Epson flatbed scanner with the useful scanning area of 31 x 44 cm. The maximum resolution of the obtained images is 2400 x 4800 dpi. There is only one button to control the device – “Scan”. Epson Expression 12000XL Graphic Arts Scanner allows you to scan photos and illustrations in ultra-high resolution. It took 22 seconds to scan an image of 22 cm x 28 cm in the resolution of 300 dpi, and 30 seconds to scan an image of 28 cm x 43 cm in size. Epson Expression 12000XL Graphic Arts is a scanner for professional photographers and designers who often need to scan high-quality photos and illustrations in high resolution. It also supports the scanning of several small images with each saved in a separate file.

    The scanner is quite easy to install – plug in the scanner to the network and then to the computer. Two software tools are available: Epson Scan 2 and SilverFast Ai IT8.

      • pros +
      • High-quality scan Resolution 2400 x 4800 dpi Software SilverFast Ai Batch processing
      • cons -
      • High price The default version of SilverFast cannot automatically create frames for batch scanning
  • 8 place :
    Best Mid-Range Price: HD 3 in 1 Flatbed Scanner

  • Best Mid-Range Price: HD 3 in 1 Flatbed Scanner

    Cobra Digital HD 3 can scan documents up to sizes of 8.5-inch x 11.7-inch. The device is also capable of taking all information on a file, and it can also scan film negatives by means of a TWA or a transparent media adapter. The device produces high-quality images. Best flatbed scanners are also bigger, so they are capable of capturing excellent replicates of the document or image on both sides without even moving the item.

    The Cobra Digital HD 3 scans images and other sorts of printed material for up to 3000 DPI. It is connected to a laptop or desktop computer by means of a USB or USB 2.0 interface. Like the majority of scanners, the device is made for 35 mm formats. However, any format can be replicated if the print fits the frame.

      • pros +
      • For photographs, film negatives, and slides Has flatbed glass top for easier scanning procedures Has a 2.4-inch color display screen Can save files to SD card
      • cons -
      • Problems with glossier photos Erroneous output whenever the negative is positioned improperly
  • 9 place :
    Best Two-Sided: HP ScanJet Pro 2500 F1 Flatbed Scanner Reviews

  • Best Two-Sided: HP ScanJet Pro 2500 F1 Flatbed Scanner Reviews

    The HP ScanJet Pro 2500 f1 is an effective tool for performing everyday scanning tasks. This flatbed scanner with ADF offers fast two-sided scanning, automatic document feeder for 50 pages, daily working cycle of 1500 pages and quick function call with one button. In addition, you can quickly capture and edit text from documents. HP's full-featured TWAIN driver allows you to scan directly into applications without the need for third-party programs.

    Up to 1200 dpi resolution ensures clear and realistic reproduction of documents, graphics, and photos. The auto image processing features of the included HP flatbed scanner software help improve scan quality and remove blank pages.

      • pros +
      • Automatic document feeder (ADF) Up to 1200 dpi Up to 1500 pages (automatic document feeder) Duplex scanning in one pass
      • cons -
      • The software converts the files to PDF format only

Types of Best Flatbed Scanners

All scanners can be divided into 2 types: for home and industrial use. Industrial models, as the name implies, are used in production. The devices of this best flatbed scanners type are subject to increased requirements for speed, load, reliability, and other performance characteristics. Home units are designed, as a rule, for non-everyday use. Due to this, they are much cheaper and simpler than industrial ones.

In any case, any device can be used to scan documents; the only question is how it does it and at what speed …

Today, there are three main types of devices on the market, which differ in both design and characteristics. They are:

  • flatbed;
  • sheetfed;
  • slide scanners.

Flatbed Scanner

Flatbed models are the most common. The best flatbed scanner 2019 consists of three basic elements: a glass platform, a cover and a key element with which the picture is processed. You can still hear the characteristic buzz with which the light element rolls along the runners. The image is static and does not move, due to which the maximum quality of the final file is achieved.

Sheetfed Scanner

These devices are able to read information from only one sheet, books, magazines, and other print media is too tough for them. Externally, they can resemble a printer into which you insert a page, it is pulled through with rollers, and exits from the other side. The paper is fastened between two rollers, which with a certain speed drive the document through itself.

Slide scanner

Slide units are designed exclusively for digitizing and converting a photographic film into a full-fledged digital image. They are highly specialized and are suitable for only one task. By the way, there are also flatbed models with a similar module.

Best Flatbed Scanner Buying Guide – What to Look At?

When you invest in the purchase of the best flatbed scanner, you should be aware of what you will buy. There are so many models on the market that it is very easy to get confused. This guide will help you in such a difficult task as buying a scanner and explain the differences between the models. After reading this guide, buying a scanner will not be a costly mistake for you, but will allow you not to think about buying a new scanner for many years.

The choice of a scanner does not seem to be difficult for most users. However, in reality, it is worth considering a few important features:

Type of the Scanner

The two most common types of best scanners are sheetfed and flatbed. The first ones are intended only for digitizing documents and photographs/pictures on separate sheets of paper. The second type of scanner is designed to scan both individual documents and books and other media. It should be noted that the scanning speed of the sheetfed scanners is much higher – when using the flatbed model you will have to put a new sheet on the glass manually. There are also some other types like a portable flatbed scanner, a handheld, a drum, a photo and film ones.

Sensor Type

In modern scanners, two types of sensors are used – CIS and CCD. The first type is used in low-cost and mid-budget models, as well as in sheetfed scanners. It allows you to achieve good quality materials and make the scanner quite thin.

CCD sensors are much more complicated, more expensive and more dimensional. They are used in high-quality flatbed scanners that are designed to scan photos and other media that require high accuracy. CCD scanners have excellent color reproduction and depth of field. The disadvantage of such scanners is large size and slowness.

Type of Light Source

In the overwhelming majority of best flatbed scanners, LEDs are used to illuminate the scanned materials – they are small, warm up quickly and consume little energy. Sometimes there are xenon lamps (which offer significant energy consumption, excellent quality, small size and minimum warm-up time) and cold cathode fluorescent lamps (with long warm-up time, excellent image quality). Most likely, your future scanner will have a LED backlight.

Maximum Paper Size

Most scanners scan A4 sheets or less. If you are going to scan larger media, then be sure to purchase the appropriate model – it will be larger and more expensive, but will allow you to scan A3 sheets without having to cut or fold them, and then further process the data on the computer. However, in most cases, the A4 scanner is enough.

Resolution, dpi

The main characteristic of any flatbed scanner. It describes the accuracy of transferring analog information into digital form – the number of pixels per inch. If you are not engaged in professional work with printing materials and photographs, then a resolution of 600×600 (horizontally and vertically) or 1200×1200 dpi will suffice. If you need maximum quality, then the limit of perfection rises to 4800х4800 dpi. Naturally, the models with the higher resolution are significantly more expensive.

Color Depth, bit

This is another important characteristic of all flatbed scanners, which determines their purpose. Most office and home scanners are 24-bit, that is, they use 8 bits for each of the colors of the RGB palette. Scanners for professional photographers and designers are more capable – they use 48-bit color, which makes it possible to achieve almost perfect color reproduction and process the received materials on a PC without loss of their quality.

Scan Speed

It mostly depends on the type of the best flatbed scanner. As it was already mentioned, sheetfed models cope with scanning much faster. If you need a printer for a large number of documents – purchase a sheetfed scanner, if for high-quality photos and printing – take a look at slow flatbed models.

USB Powered

Not too large models of scanners allow you to power up through the USB port of the computer, so you can use a USB flatbed scanner with a laptop (or simply do not clutter up the workplace with another wire). As a rule, this applies to low-cost models.

Connection Interfaces

The vast majority of modern scanners are connected to a PC using a USB port. Some top models can also use the fast FireWire port (IEEE 1394). In addition, sometimes there are models with an optional connection via a local network – wired (Ethernet) or wireless (Wi-Fi). The wireless flatbed scanner is intended for use in offices with multiple client computers.

Slide Adapter

Such an adapter allows you to scan documents on transparent media – for example, on film. These adapters are rarely used, but if you need to scan such media in your work, you cannot do without them.

AFD

The presence of an automatic feeding device allows you to scan a large number of documents quickly (usually 30-60 sheets). This device can be one-sided or two-sided.

The Best Flatbed Scanner. Final Advice

Asking the question “Which is the best flatbed scanner to buy?” you need to start from the nature of your activity. If you work with design, advertising and all that requires visual perception, you should pay attention to such parameters as color depth and scan quality. If all you need is a printout of documents, then there is no need to spend too much money on useless functions. Perhaps you are satisfied with the cheapest best flatbed scanner.

And in our case, the best flatbed scanner is Epson Perfection V600 Photo. No matter what source materials you have: documents, traditional paper photographs, film or slides, medium format transparent originals or 35 mm format, this best flatbed scanner will cope with their transferring into electronic format perfectly well. It features high performance and color accuracy, delivering better results than most scanners at a similar price.

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