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Recommendations for portable scanner??

Recommendations for portable scanner??

Posted: 1 Feb 2012 9:50PM GMT
Classification: Query
Edited: 14 Feb 2013 4:09AM GMT
Looking for a portable scanner to take with us when we visit relatives to scan their pictures and also to take to other places to scan documents, eventually to upload to Ancestry.com.

We bought one at Best Buy but not sure it's the best one. It's a little distorted. It's a VuPoint Magic Wand, Model PDS-ST415-VPS. It will do both jpegs and pdfs although I'm not sure if I will ever need to scan pdfs while doing genealogy work, will I? The Magic Wand got excellent reviews but willing to pay a little more money to get better results.

Re: Recommendations for portable scanner??

Posted: 2 Feb 2012 12:27AM GMT
Classification: Query
I've heard good things about the flip-pal. It runs about $150 and doesn't need a computer at all to work. I don't personally have one and have gone back and forth on if I really need one or not.

As for PDFs, I use them just as much as I do photos. I scan all of my documents as PDFs, it makes it easier to keep them all together if there is more then one page. This works well for wills and probates and such.

Re: Recommendations for portable scanner??

Posted: 2 Feb 2012 3:07AM GMT
Classification: Query
I bought a Canon CanoScan LiDE 110 last year and it works great. Powered by the USB cable. I put it in my backpack with my computer and take it to reunions. Only weighs a couple pounds.

Re: Recommendations for portable scanner??

Posted: 2 Feb 2012 7:38PM GMT
Classification: Query
Thanks Bryan for recommending the Flip-Pal. I read some great reviews on it. When I Google reviews for flip-pal, I get lots of great ones but it's interesting that when I just Google portable scanners, this one never comes up. Hmmm. Most of the reviews were from people who were doing genealogy work and they seemed really happy. Only one person says it doesn't work if the photo is in the frame under glass and I fear I might find that when visiting relatives. But it sounds like a great little machine. Thanks for the tip.

In case anyone else is reading this looking for a good portable scanner, one of the nicest features is that you don't need to turn off the scanner, hook it up to the computer, find the icon, check it, then unplug it and go back to scanning. It has a little SD card which you can either put directly into your computer or into a little flash drive looking device which is really a USB--stick your SD card from the scanner into that, plug the little USB into your computer and there it is. It also has software to edit it and also if your document is larger than the scanner, it will stitch it together once on your computer. The Magic Wand I first got and will return does not have that feature, nor does it have editing software that works on a Mac.

Re: Recommendations for portable scanner??

Posted: 2 Feb 2012 11:00PM GMT
Classification: Query
Thanks Andrew. Looks like a good one but I think the one Bryan recommended will be better for our needs. Really do appreciate your responding, though. It helps to know what is working for other genealogy people.

Re: Recommendations for portable scanner??

Posted: 16 Feb 2012 9:31PM GMT
Classification: Query
In case you haven't already made a decision, I would also recommend the flip-pal. I've had mine for over a year now. I've taken it to people's houses and scanned photographs with very good results. I've also had good results scanning photos mounted in old photo albums, newspaper clippings and post cards. In addition to genealogy I do digital scrapbooking and have used the flip pal to scan buttons, ribbons and other flat items.

Re: Recommendations for portable scanner??

Posted: 16 Feb 2012 9:46PM GMT
Classification: Query
Thanks jmdt, we did buy it. Still learning to use it. We have a Mac so there are more hoops to jump through. Had to wait to talk to them on the phone and kept playing phone tag--they are a small organization. She walked me through the steps of finding my scans which I had been unable to do.

Now I'm just starting to play with it. The small pictures are perfect. On two that needed stitching, it worked great. On two others, I get an error message in the middle of the stitching that they weren't able to find an overlapping image. They aren't huge--one and a half scans would have worked--maybe that's the problem. I'll figure it out or call them back.

But this truly is an amazing tool. Can't wait to hit the road and copy relatives' photos and historical societies and copy their documents. We are so hooked on this. Anyway, thanks again for the recommendation. Your rec will serve to let others know they should buy it.



It

Re: Recommendations for portable scanner??

Posted: 11 Feb 2013 6:21PM GMT
Classification: Query
I haven't tried a portable scanner yet, but have had much success with a digital camera. Just be sure to set the resolution on the highest settings and get close enough.

When working in an archive, I've been permitted to use a tripod, set up so it's looking down at a table. Canon T1i

Re: Recommendations for portable scanner??

Posted: 13 Feb 2013 9:19AM GMT
Classification: Query
I don't have a portable scanner. I use my digital camera after getting permission to use it.

However, there are favourable reports for the Flip Pal scanner which is a stand alone piece of kit. Scans are stored to a USB memory stick.

HTH

Re: Recommendations for portable scanner??

Posted: 13 Feb 2013 1:38PM GMT
Classification: Query
Whilst I would agree with the reports that flip-pal is an excellent bit of kit and very versatile

You don't store images to a memory stick but to an SD card (which is supplied along with a usb SD card adapter)

Images can be scanned at 300 or 600 dpi and the flip-pal also comes with stitching software so you can scan overlapping images of a large picture, then stitch them back together again

Flip-pal uses 4 AA batteries and is stand alone

I also use a digital camera but the flip-pal gives superior reults
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