Before you make any decisions or speak to someone about buying a wide format scanner, it’s best to first ask yourself some basic questions about how you want to use your scanner.

 

What are you scanning?

- Photographs, artwork or line drawings
- Paper versus thicker media or images mounted on board
- Width required
- Crisp new drawings or older originals

 

How do you work?

- Scanning single documents, via batch runs or with the scanner in constant use
- Scan to file or scan to copy/print

 

 

What are you scanning?

 

Photographs, artwork or line drawings

There are 2 main types of scanning technology.

1.)   Contact Image Sensor (CIS)

2.)   Charged-coupled Device (CCD)

 

 

Generally, CCD is considered better for photographs and art applications and CIS is designed for use with technical drawings.

 

Both CCD and CIS will scan colour, though if that is your primary focus and you need true colour fidelity you may wish to consider CCD.

 

Paper versus thicker media or images mounted on board

All scanners will work with standard paper thickness, you can also purchase carriers to hold very thin media as it is scanned. Some scanners are also designed to take thicker media, frequently up to 15mm or 0.6 inches. Only CCD scanners can maintain quality while scanning thicker media.

 

Width required 

Scanners are available in both small and larger sizes, “large format” scanners generally come in sizes up to 56 inches or 1422mm.

 

The most common large format scanner sizes are 24 inch, 36 inch and 42 inch, these accommodate standard US and European paper sizes.

 

 

Crisp new drawings or older originals 

All scanners will produce good scans of crisp new drawings. If you have older originals you may require a more specialist solution.

 

1.)   A higher end scanner and specialist software will work together to reduce marks in the image.

2.)   Delicate media may require a carrier to protect it as it travels through the scanner.

 

                    Original image                          Image after scanning on a Colortrac scanner
                                                                           and clean-up with SmartWorks Pro

 

How do you work?

 

Scanning single documents, via batch runs or with the scanner in constant use 

Your scanner requirements will vary depending on whether you work in a production environment or with a shared scanner used intermittently.

 

Production environment

If your scanner is in constant use, a low energy model using LED’s will reduce your running costs and a high-speed scanner will also allow you to create scans more quickly.

 

Shared office scanner 

If you focus on walk-up scanning, you need a scanner which turns on instantly. This can be achieved by LED lighting which has no warm-up time.

 

Scan to file or scan to copy/print 

Scanners are almost always quicker than printers, if you usually scan to print then the scanner speed will not impact the speed of your work.

 

Now you know your requirements, shop below to find out which Colortrac scanner meets your needs.