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Review of the Canon CanoScan 9000F Flatbed Scanner

About.com Rating 3.5 Star Rating

By

CanoScan 9000F
Photo courtesy Canon

The Bottom Line

It's big, and the buttons are a bit cryptic, but the CanoScan 9000F does a fine job scanning documents, photos, and magazine images. Optical character recognition was spotty at lower resolutions, but seemed to improve at higher resolution; however, the end product of OCR scans comes out in Notepad, which isn't the most useful program ever. The scanner comes with an excellent set of software including Adobe Photoshop elements, which helps defray some of the $250 cost. Color scans looked great, with the white LED light finding colors barely visible on the original image. The scanner will be available from June 2010.
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Pros

  • Scans up to 11.7-inch documents
  • On-board button choices for easy conversion to PDF or send to e-mail
  • Comes with good suite of software, including Adobe Photoshop Elements

Cons

  • Large footprint
  • So-so OCR at low resolutions

Description

  • Flatbed CCD scanner
  • LED light source
  • Auto scan, copy, e-mail, and multiple PDF-conversion buttons
  • Hi-speed USB
  • Compatible with Windows 7, Vista, XP/2000, Mac OSX v10.4.11 to 10.6x
  • Includes CD with driver, plus Adobe Photoshop Elements, ArcSoft PhotoStudio, MP Navigator EX
  • Can scan 35mm film and 120 format film

Guide Review - Review of the Canon CanoScan 9000F Flatbed Scanner

The first thing you'll notice about the CanoScan 9000F flatbed scanner is that it's quite large--that's so it can handle documents up to 11.7 inches long. That's handy, though you have to really need to scan paper this long since it means the scanner eats up as much desktop space as a typical all-in-one printer. You'll also notice that it's fairly minimalist, with only seven buttons on top (and an on-off button). Four of those buttons help create PDFs; unfortunately you'll also notice that the icons on each button are abstract enough to be unintelligible. However, a quick browse through the Quick Start Guide indicates that they are for scanning in color (at 300 dpi as default); scanning in black and white; custom scanning; and a "finish" button that "ends the operation and saves the scanned image in a PDF file." Actually, each time I pressed a button, a window opened asking me if I wanted to use HP Button Manager, MP Navigator, or OmniPage. The correct answer is MP Navigator--the other two don't seem to do anything.

MP Navigator is part of the extensive suite of software that comes with the CanoScan 9000F, which also includes version 8 of Adobe Photoshop Elements, which is excellent photo-editing software. MP Navigator gives you choices including scan to e-mail, scan to PDF, and scan directly to OCR software. This last one was a bit odd, I thought, as it uses Notepad rather than Microsoft Word for the final result of the OCR scan. You'll want to change your preferences, though; at the default 300 dpi, the OCR results were pretty weak, while at 400 dpi they seemed noticeably better (you can scan at up to 600 dpi).

The scanner is very fast (less than 10 seconds from start to finished product for 300 dpi scans) and the results are excellent. I scanned a darkly colorful image from a magazine at 600 dpi and the result was actually better than the original; that may be because the scanner uses a white LED that brings out the true colors from the print.

Since it's made by Canon, you can bet that it does a great job not only with prints but with 35mm film as well as medium format films. The scanner comes with a film-guide mount to help scan negatives easily.

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