Fujitsu ScanSnap S1500 Document Scanner Review

s1500

Fujitsu just sent me the brand-new ScanSnap S1500, a major revision its popular line of document scanners. I bought my old Fujitsu ScanSnap S510 in early 2006, when I made the switch to a paperless law office. Since then, I have been recommending it to everyone.

The new S1500 is better-looking, faster, comes with updated software, and sticks to the ScanSnap formula: efficient and easy to use. For solo practitioners or small offices, a ScanSnap (or a few of them) is still the best option.

Here is what I think of the Fujitsu ScanSnap S1500 after spending an afternoon playing with it.

The S1500 has been replaced by the iX500, which is faster and better in every way, but also includes wi-fi scanning to your portable devices. Read our ScanSnap iX500 review.

S1500 Form Factor

The S1500 (and S1500M for Mac) is a major update to the form factor. As you can see from the picture, this iteration of the ScanSnap is sleeker and more modern-looking. I like the new look.

As I note in the video, below, the S1500 does seem slightly taller, but the new “catch tray” is my only complaint (well, besides the fact that Fujitsu does not support Linux). It seems decidedly flimsier than the tray on my old scanner. I think it will probably hold up pretty well, but as you can see in the video, it does have quite a lot of give to it.

Fujitsu ScanSnap Bundled Software

Like all Fujitsu ScanSnap scanners, the new model comes bundled with Adobe Acrobat Standard 9 (PC) and Adobe Acrobat Professional 8 (Mac). For a paperless office, Acrobat is not strictly necessary, but it is very useful. Plus, Acrobat Standard is a $300 piece of software, while Acrobat Professional for Mac is normally $500, making the $459 (ScanSnap on Amazon) a pretty good deal.

The ScanSnap Manager is a useful scanning utility. I have it set to automatically detect color and double-sided pages, recognize text on the first page (for speed), and simply ask me where to save the file. It makes scanning quick and easy.

For, for scanning a stack of photos I had lying around, I just set the ScanSnap Manager to automatically name and save each photo to my pictures directory. I plowed through a few shoeboxes in about a half hour.

The scanner also comes with a few other bits of software, including a PDF organizer and a business card utility. I don’t use any of those, though, so I cannot comment on them.

S1500 Scanning

What really matters, of course, is how well the thing scans.

The S1500 is significantly faster than my old ScanSnap. As you can see in the video that follows, scanning five pages took 20 seconds on the old scanner, or about 15 ppm. The new scanner did the same pages with the same settings in only 15 seconds, making it about 20 ppm, a significant improvement.

Fujitsu ScanSnap scanners are meant to simplify scanning. They scan both sides of the page at the same time, and automatically detect double-sided pages and different sizes of paper, and the bundled software can automatically recognize the text in the documents.

All it takes to scan a stack of paper is a press of the big, blue button. This is especially useful for big stacks of discovery production. I just hit the button and let the scanner do the work.

In several years with my S510, the scanner would occasionally pick up two sheets at a time, so it pays to keep an eye on the scanner. It looks like the pick assembly is similar on the S1500, so I will keep an eye on it, just in case.

Fujitsu ScanSnap S1500 in action

Here is a short video showing the relative speed of the S510 and the new S1500, along with a side-by-side look at the two scanners:

Conclusion

Like I said in the video clip, the Fujitsu ScanSnap S1500 is a great upgrade. It feels like the same scanner as my old S510, just better. And since I had no complaints, and lots of good things to say about my old scanner, that is a very good thing.

Update: Since the comments have gotten so long, I summed up your ScanSnap questions in a FAQ. Please read it first if you have any questions.

Summary

Fujitsu ScanSnap S1500
Reviewed by Sam Glover on .

Summary: The Fujitsu ScanSnap S1500 is simple to set up and use, and makes scanning documents as simple as pushing a button.

The new ScanSnap S1500 is better-looking, faster, comes with updated software, and sticks to the ScanSnap formula: efficient and easy to use. For solo practitioners or small offices, a ScanSnap (or a few of them) is still the best option.

Rating: 5 (out of 5)

Fujitsu ScanSnap S1500 | Amazon
Fujitsu ScanSnap S1500M (for Mac) | Amazon

Legal Technology

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  • Gary Chodorow

    Dear Sam:

    I’m a regular reader of your blog. Thanks for your review of the ScanSnap S1500. I’m an immigration lawyer, and I need to scan a lot of passports. Can the S1500 do that without mangling them?

  • http://lawyerist.com Sam Glover

    Thanks for reading!

    I don’t think a passport would fit through the auto feeder. I can do drivers’ licenses without much trouble, but it is not designed for anything much thicker than that.

    I will give it a try today, though, and post the result.

  • Josh

    Sam–

    Thanks for the information. It’s not clear from the post if you purchased the scanner or whether Fujitsu provided it to you for free. It makes a difference to me (and maybe others) if you clarify that.

    Thanks!

  • http://lawyerist.com Sam Glover

    Sorry, I meant to give that away with the first sentence. Fujitsu sent me the scanner to review. I was thrilled to get it, since I have owned a ScanSnap (that I purchased) for the last three years, and I frequently recommend them to anyone who will listen.

    We are hoping the makers of the NeatDesk scanner will send us a test unit, as well, so we can compare the two. It seems to be the main competitor, but I have never had a chance to use it.

  • JohnAllison

    Optical recognition software. Does it come with any?

    By scanning a document I am giving up my ability to use my tactile memory to find information. I would need the ability to search the text to go paperless.

    Second note. I purchased a Brother MFC-7840W for $239. It lets me scan multiple documents at once, print, fax from a USB, ethernet or 802.11 connection. The scanner has an autofeed and a flatbed option if one needs to scan a passport or a a stack of papers. It did not come with OCR software (Mac).

  • http://lawyerist.com Sam Glover

    The PC version comes with ABBY FineReader. I do not use it, as the ScanSnap Manager uses Acrobat’s built-in OCR.

    If you do go paperless, that does not mean you have to give up all paper. Print it out, if you want to or need to.

    The problem with most multifunctions is that they will not scan duplex. I think the Brother may, though. If it works for you, go with it.

    Also, a Fujitsu consultant assures me that the ScanSnap can handle a passport. I haven’t tried it yet, though, since my passport is buried somewhere at home.

    • Tim

      The S1500 can definitely not handle a passport. I tried different ways, the problem is that it can’t pull through 2 pages at a time and also it’s too thick.

      • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

        Speaking as someone who has actually scanned a couple of passports with an S1500, you are wrong.

        • Tim

          Well maybe you have scanned different passports. My passport has 48 pages, which is 24 papers when it’s open. That can not go through the S1500 feed.

          • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

            I have a standard-issue US passport. I can’t recall exactly how I scanned it, but I have scans of my own and my wife’s. I’d try different orientations, or try using the carrier sheet and pulling it through to help the scanner out.

  • http://ethicsmaven.com/ Eric Cooperstein

    My ScanSnap for Mac came with ABBY. It seems to work about the same as the Acrobat OCR; I tend not to use the ABBY because then I have to wait for it to finish OCR before I scan the next document, and typically I scan a series of docs one after another. If I OCR a large document using Acrobat, I can do other things while it’s doing its thing.

    Plus, even though I love 2 sided scanning, occasionally ScanSnap will pick up a page as two-sided that really isn’t, such as if ink from the front side bled to the back. So, I have to open the doc in Acrobat to get rid of any extra pages anyway.

    One hidden benefit of Acrobat OCR (maybe others) that few people seem to mention: it will straighten pages that have been fed slightly crooked through the scanner. Helps when forwarding documents to others that you want to look professional.

  • sarah

    does the new one handle wider pages than that s510? i have trouble scanning some magazine pages on my s510 that are a bit too wide

  • http://lawyerist.com Sam Glover

    No, it has the same size document feeder. It goes to about 9″ wide, I think, just like the old one.

  • sarah

    I just got my s510m and can return it to amazon to get the new one, but I’m trying to figure out if it really is that much better than the s510m, enough to warrant an extra $81. Besides speed and looks, what is different? Does it autocorrect for crooked papers better? Does it better handle a stack of multiple sizes of pages? What’s different?

  • http://lawyerist.com Sam Glover

    The only differences I notice are speed, looks, and the newer version of Adobe Acrobat.

    I think the faster scanning is worth something extra, as is the newer software. On balance, I would probably get the S1500, but I think you will be good either way.

  • William Blue

    Does it work with Ubuntu? If so, do all the features work (i.e., duplex scanning). If not do you have a recommended duplex scanner for Ubuntu users?

  • http://lawyerist.com Sam Glover

    Yes, it works fine with Ubuntu (read this caveat). I don’t like any of the Linux scanning utilities, though, so I use the ScanSnap Manager in Windows running in VirtualBox.

  • Eric Thungstrom

    Sam, would you mind providing some comment on using the ScanSnap scanner when running Ubuntu. I’m trying to move away from Windows and at the same time I want to buy the S1500. How do you handle this ?

    Thanks in advance for your comments

  • http://lawyerist.com Sam Glover

    I think I answered that in the comment right above you. The best Ubuntu scanning utility, in my opinion, is Gscan2PDF. It’s decent, but still nowhere near the push-button convenience of the ScanSnap Manager.

    For me, scanning is Ubuntu’s main weak spot for business. It is compatible with just about everything out there; but there are no good, simple utilities to manage the hardware. I end up running Windows in VirtualBox for the ScanSnap Manager and Acrobat.

  • Eric Thungstrom

    Thanks much for the quick answer. Sorry I missed the Q&A above. I started reading from the top down and didn’t get all the way to the bottom. Just jumped to the comment box assuming I had a unique question.

    Thanks again

  • http://lawandborder.com/ Gary Chodorow

    Sam–Thanks for following up on the passport issue.

  • john f. thompson

    any suggestions on mac software to go with the scanner that will archive the digital documents for easy retrieval.

  • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

    Computers are built to organize documents, and they have been built that way since the beginning of computers. Software for this purpose is just redundant, and does not really enhance the built-in options.

    Indexed search was once a good reason to use add-on document management software. But if you have a Mac, Spotlight works better than any of those.

    The ability to tag and categorize documents in other ways is about the only thing left. That can be useful for certain document-intensive cases, but it probably does not make sense to do it for every case. For that, you might want to try DEVONthink. Merlin Mann likes it, anyway.

  • http://ethicsmaven.com/ Eric Cooperstein

    The software that comes with the ScanSnap, in addition to having a pretty friendly file-naming interface, also allows the user to customize the default name assigned to each scan (the default is a series of numbers that reflect the date and time of the scan). In the ScanSnap menu, go to “Settings,” “Save” then “File Name Format.”

    Also, when scanning multiple documents for the same client or matter, if you are using a unique file name that has to be typed in for each scan, the “history” button will show you the last 10 documents you named. You can choose a similar name and then only edit part of it, instead of repeatedly typing the whole thing.

  • Raman Gupta

    Yes, it works fine with Ubuntu.

    Were you using the SANE fujitsu backend?

  • Robert Paul

    Sam, could you provide some comment on scanning photos; I do a lot of paper scanning and photographs, so for me the photo quality does count too.

    Thanks in advance

  • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

    @Raman: I think so. I just plug it in and it works. Edit: XSane does not recognize it, but it works just fine in Windows XP running in VirtualBox. Also, I just sent you the output of those commands.

    @Robert: It scans photos just fine, but it is not a photo-quality scanner. If you just want to archive and share your prints, it should be fine, but the ScanSnap is a document scanner. If you want super high quality scans, get something built for that.

  • Raman Gupta

    Sam, thanks a lot for the info. Right now the s1500 is not listed in the SANE hardware database. Since you are one of the first to actually own this scanner, could you run the following commands in a terminal and send the output to the sane-devel mailing list (or send the output to me and I’ll forward it to sane-devel for you):

    cat /proc/bus/usb/devices
    sane-find-scanner -v -v

    Thanks for a great review.

  • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

    @Raman: I’ll put it on my to-do list for Monday (I am using the S1500 only at the office), and either send it to you or the SANE dev mailing list. Thanks for reminding me to do my duty by the open source community!

  • anson

    How does one update with acrobat pro which adds bata stamp capabilities–???

  • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

    @anson: I am not sure I understand your question.

    If you want to update to Acrobat Pro, you need to buy it and install it.

    If you want to know how to use Bates stamping, you can find it under Advanced > Document Processing > Number Pages in Acrobat 9 Standard, or in Acrobat Pro from version 7 and newer.

  • Tom

    Sam, On the Fujitsu site it says one can highlight text to include keywords in a document. How does that work, exactly and is it useful as a way to name documents for filing purposes? Tom

  • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

    Not sure exactly what you are referring to. But if you recognize the text in the document, you can highlight it, copy it, or do whatever you want with it.

  • Max

    It seems like one of the biggest updates in this model is speed; but not as it was mentioned in your review. At a glance 18ppm vs. 20ppm doesn’t seem like much, but when you look a the specs sheets you see a widening performance gap as the resolution increases:

    S510M vs S1500M
    Color 150dpi, B&W 300dpi: 18ppm vs. 20ppm
    Color 200dpi, B&W 400dpi: 12ppm vs. 20ppm
    Color 300dpi, B&W 600dpi: 6ppm vs. 20ppm
    Color 600dpi, B&W 1200dpi (interp): .6ppm vs. 5ppm

  • Greg

    Sam:

    This new model is supposed to have a double page detection features which stops the process if it grabs two pages so as not to have to babysit . . . any comparison you’ve observed against the
    s500 on this issue?

  • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

    I missed that feature in the spec sheet. However, the paper picking is very good — as it was before — so I have not noticed any double-feeding.

    With my S500, there was definitely occasional double-feeding, especially as the scanner and pick assembly aged. Next time I am in the office, I will try to force feed a couple of pages through, and see how it goes.

  • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

    Reporting back.

    The S1500 paper pick is really really good. I could not get the thing to take two sheets of paper without taping them together.

    That said, when I did finally get it to take two sheets by taping them together, it did not seem to notice that there were two sheets of paper. Maybe this is because it was not a genuine misfeed, I don’t know.

    I think I will probably have to wait until I get a natural misfeed to know for sure.

  • Adam

    I am very depressed! I just bought my ScanSnap S510 Bundle in mid-February…this new model was not even listed on the Fujitsu website at that time.

  • Tony

    Which version windows do you run in the virtualbox? Is the windows software much better than the mac one?

  • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

    @Tony: Which version of what? I run Windows XP in Virtualbox, so I use the S1500 for Windows, not the S1500M, which is for Mac.

  • Steve

    Hi Sam

    I am wondering if the Acrobat 9 software that comes with this is like the previous versions of 7 and 8 with respect to just being able to install it and use it or do you have to go to Adobe to have it activated first before using?

  • Aoha

    What are the file sizes of a “typical” document after the S1500 saves the file? Typical could be full b/w document several paragraphs with header (no graphics) and footer.

    My old Canoscan N650U takes forever to scan – so I’m in the market for a new scanner. I page takes about 2 minutes (from scan to file naming).

    If I let the Canoscan toolbox “copy” the document, it saves it as a 400KB PDF. If I let the OCR program scan it, I print the image as PDF at 73KB.

  • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

    @Steve: I don’t think I had to activate it with Adobe.

    @Aoha: I am not sure I can give a typical size. It depends on how long the document is, whether it is in color or not, and the quality settings you use. A one-page color scan on medium quality is a 211.2 KB PDF. A four-page mixed scan (only 1 page color) on medium quality is a 438.6 KB PDF. Hope that helps.

  • JGibbons

    Knowing this model doesn’t support Twain, when it scans and saves photos, does it save it as PDF or JPEG?

    Thank you for this blog! So much useful information compared to others.

  • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

    You can save as PDF or JPEG.

    You are welcome!

  • Ari

    Thanks for the review Sam. I’ve been looking EVERYWHERE and you are the first one to properly review this scanner and compare it to the old one. What seriously threw me for a loop is that Newegg is charging $460 for the s510m and only $420 for the s1500m. I was thinking that people thought this new model wasn’t much of an upgrade, but per your review I feel safe going with the newer and cheaper model. Thanks!

  • John Menoche

    Sam, thanks for the information. I’m an engineer and use my S510 mainly on work PC. At home I connect it to my Macs and run the ScanSnap Manager in VMWare. It is a bit inconvenient vs. using native Mac software, but it does the job without having to own two scanners. Therein lies my gripe. I wish Fujitsu would release this as a Mac/Linux/Windows product, with the ability to load and activate whichever version(s) you use.

    That said, I can’t say enough about these to people. It is more than just a another scanner once you really understand what it really does and how it can impact your work flow.

    Thanks for the S1500 review. I didn’t see the S1500M listed when I looked at the Fujitsu site, but was able to Google it. I’m about to sell the S510 and buy a new S1500M, so your review was great.

    Take care,
    John

  • Raman Gupta

    FYI, I received mine today :). I set it up in Linux via sane (I’ve scripted scanadf to create a PDF file from the ADF), and it works great with sane 1.0.19 as long as /etc/sane.d/fujitsu.conf contains the usb manufacturer and product id, e.g.:

    #scansnap S1500
    usb 0x04c5 0x11a2

    Cheers,
    Raman

  • Richard Burt

    What does a TWAIN-compliant driver do for a user that the Fujitsu driver does not?

    I have the Canon DR-2580C scanner, and I’m very happy with it (it’s a bit faster than the Fujitsu, I believe), but I’m looking for a second scanner that is cheaper. All my scanning with the second scanner would be exclusively to .pdf files with automatic OCR of the text. Would I notice any difference because the Fujitsu is not TWAIN-compliant?

    Could I use the Fujitsu with Adobe Acrobat 8 pro? I assume so, but it doesn’t hurt to ask.

  • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

    TWAIN is just one way that scanners communicate with software. SANE is another.

    The main difference you might notice is the lack of ability to scan from different programs like Photoshop. If you do not do that sort of thing, you will never notice.

  • Derek Chang

    The biggest difference between the ScanSnap S510 from the ScanSnap S1500 IS the speed (18ppm vs 20ppm). But it’s not as simple as that. At 300 dpi which is standard for OCR scanning, the speed remains constant at 20ppm, relative to the S510 where you would notice a signifigant drop to approx 6ppm.

    The S1500 also has a new highlighter cropping feature and highlighter keyword search. For example, you have a long document and you just need one paragraph, all you’d need to do is take a highlighter and draw a box around that paragraph. In turn, the scanner will know how to automatically crop to the highlighter box you’ve created. This is ideal for confidential documents.

    One other new feature is the ultrasonic multi-feed detectionthat can scan and detect multi-feeds for different types of paper of different thickness and sizes.

  • Ajith

    Does anybody have any comments about the Rack2Filer software bundle? Is it worth the extra $30-40 to get that one? I’m ready to buy this scanner and hesitating on this last part.

  • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

    I have not used it, but I don’t see the point. Your computer is built from the chip up to organize information. Why would you need another application to do that?

  • Melanie Langenhan

    @Sam, you wrote: “… the new “catch tray” is my only complaint (…). It seems decidedly flimsier than the tray on my old scanner.” I got my ScanSnap S1500 today and found out that I don’t need to open the catch tray at all to scan my documents.

    By the by, this scanner is absolutely cool, thank you for publishing the test and the recommendation. It’s really fast and easy to use. One of the best gadgets I ever bought.

  • Jacob

    @Ajith,
    I bought the scanner with Rack2Filer since it was just $20 more. While I like the concept, I think it is poorly implemented. Also, since I have a smallish laptop with smallish screen, the resolution on the Rack2Filer’s open folder is too low to read the text on the screen. I can see it making a lot more sense if it is implemented on a larger screen laptop or at least 21″ monitor.

    @Sam, what file structure do you use? Can you share with us your directory tree so we can get a sense of what works?

  • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

    Sure. I organize my digital files much as you would organize a paper file:

    Client Files
    /000000 Client Name
    -/Billing & Expenses
    -/Correspondence
    -/Discovery
    -/Docs from Client (not produced)
    -/Drafts
    -/Notes & Research
    -/Orders
    -/Pleadings
    -/Retainer

    Also, when naming documents, I always name them with the date of the document first, starting with the year: yyyy.mm.dd name.pdf. This way, they always sort correctly by date.

  • nick

    How do you get around the linux compatibility issues? Do you just use windows?
    Thanks and love the site.

  • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

    @nick: There are no compatibility problems with Linux. The S1500 is fully compatible with Linux through the SANE project, and gscan2pdf is probably the best Linux scanner utility to go with the S1500.

    That said, I do prefer the ScanSnap Manager software, and since I use Acrobat a lot, I run a copy of WinXP in VirtualBox.

  • Jethro

    Hi Sam…I too have the S1500 scanner and love it. Only problem I’ve come across so far is when scanning documents that contain straight lines or boxes. Most times there will be a slight wave in the line. Seems to happen if the paper being scanned was folder or creased. Appears also on paperwork that wasn’t folded. Not a big deal but thought I’d see if you were experiencing the same thing. If so, did your S500 do the same thing? Thanks!

  • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

    @Jethro: Yeah, I have experienced the same thing with both scanners. What bugs me more is that it will not skip pages with lines, even if they have no writing on them. That technology apparently does not exist, yet.

  • http://techpronetworks.com David Stark

    Excellent review on ScanSnap Scanner. What file sizes are you experiencing. I’m trying to determine what storage needs my users will have. I anticipate using PDF a majority of the time.

    Thanks for your feedback.

  • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

    @David: Thanks! Regarding file sizes, see this comment.

  • Werner

    Hi Sam. I found your website searching for ideas regarding the ScanSnap S1500 that I just purchased. Excellent information. Your articles and insights on all subjects are very useful.

    To the point. I read your ‘paperless office’ pdf and have a few questions. I haven’t started wholesale scanning yet and want to start things off right.

    1) Do you use the ScanSnap Manager to set up Cabinets and Folders for client files? If so, is the folder encrypted or password protected (not sure if the the software allows for this) or do you have to do this with a another program?

    2) Pertains to 1) but if not ScanSnap Manager, which program do you use for encryption and how do you implement it? (ie, folder or whole drive)

    Essentially, I’m a newbie at this scanning stuff and I want to execute it in an organized, secure, usable and scalable fashion. Any guidance you can give me is much appreciated!

  • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

    @Werner: Look to the comments above for how I organize my client folders. Nothing fancy, just using my computer’s built-in capabilities.

    For encryption, I prefer to encrypt everything rather than just a few files. To that end, FileVault is great on Mac. Linux has a variety of options for encrypting everything from the entire hard drive to a single folder. Windows BitLocker encrypts the entire drive, or you can encrypt directories one at a time.

    Another option is TrueCrypt, and if you search for it on here, you will find a somewhat outdated, but still relevant tutorial for using it.

  • Jay

    Very useful review. I love the fact that you get down to it and offer a comparison.

    I have three questions:

    1. Can I use the S1500 on a Mac or the S1500M on a PC? Obviously the driver/user software will be different but is the firmware compatible? If yes, then this might be another advantage of getting the new model. Someone at Fujitsu told me cross-platform operation was impossible with the S510/S510M. But they had no idea yet about the S1510. This was three months ago and I decided to wait.

    2. Can it do transparencies like slides and negative film?

    3.Does the absence of TWAIN support bother you?

  • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

    1. Apparently not, I would go with what you hear from Fujitsu.

    2. Since this is a document scanner, I would not expect high-quality reproductions of something small like a negative or slide. You could do it, although you would probably need to attach the slides to a piece of paper.

    3. Nope. I don’t think I have ever used TWAIN for anything, anyway.

  • Bill Barsh

    My scanner will be delivered in a few days. I expect to replace the computers I’ll hook it up to within about 3 months. I don’t know how many computers the Adobe software that comes with the scanner can be installed in, but it can’t be many. Can I download the scanner and adobe software to a flashdrive or something similar that I can reuse with different machines?

  • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

    My understanding is that the Adobe software is for one computer and one user. I doubt the same applies to the Fujitsu software, which you can download freely from its website.

    But you will have to review the end-user license agreement (EULA) and decide for yourself whether you are allowed to hack the software to run from a USB drive.

  • Merc Johnson

    My “only” problem I have with the S1500 is getting it to work with Vista Ultimate. I have no problem with a Windows XP system, just Vista. It seems like there is a driver problem or something such that I can’t get either the new S1500 or an older ScanSnap to work with Vista. Fujitsu Tech Support made a couple of suggestions which didn’t work. Since I have relatively easy access to an XP system I’ve learned to live with the situation.

    Regards, Merc

  • Phil

    I have an s500 which I love. I use it with XP and Rack2 Filer. It is a nice implementation of a filing cabinet for the scanner. Has anyone used Rack2Filer?

  • Julie Kiernan

    Actually Adobe allows you to install their software on 2 machines, but only use on one. i.e. home/work or desktop/laptop. I wish all developers were as reasonable. You can always uninstall or deactivate on one machine and then reinstall on a new machine, so you don’t need a flash drive.

    Julie K

  • Hollee

    Morning Sam, When scanning doc.’s on a single page setting how can I combine 4 pages i.e. visa statement, prior to moving to the credit card folder? Must be an easier way than changing setting to multi. pages than switch back to single setting?
    And this site is very informative, THANKS.

    Hollee G.

  • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

    @Hollee: I am not sure what you are asking. If you just want to scan multiple pages to a single file, the ScanSnap should do that automatically.

  • Shabash Morton

    Nice review, and something I will look at for my office. Any recommend scanners that don’t require a computer connection? Have a few offsite (my home) files I’d like to add to the company’s file server. Scenario… Take the “portable” scanner home, scan in the documents, bring the scanner back to the office, plug it into our network and offload the scanned documents.

  • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

    @Shabash: I do not know of any. You would probably be better off getting a portable scanner (like the ScanSnap S300), and connecting it to your home computer. You could transport the files on a flash drive (preferably an encrypted one), and achieve the same thing, just not quite as smoothly.

    If you do find one, though, let us know! We would love to get our hands on one and give it a try.

  • http://lawyerist.com/author/aaronstreet/ Aaron Street

    Shabash,

    The full-size s1500 unit is the size of a small toaster and only a few pounds. If you have a laptop at work, you could easily bring the scanner and laptop home with you on occasion.

  • Tina

    I am interested in buying either the ScanSnap S1500 or the S1500 Deluxe bundle but am not sure what the difference is. It looks like the same machine but possibly additional software. Is the “Rackfiler System” only available with the Deluxe package and is it worth paying for. The difference between the 2 is about $40.

    By the way, great review and site. I found it while researching scanners.

  • michael

    I just got my s 1500 Bundle with Rack Filer 2 … seems easy enough..
    As a private school we get a lot of tuition payments,, that we want to “attach” to a parent’s file… can we search based on the printed name on the check (payer)? can we combine separate checks into one page of the binder?.. or is each check another page?

  • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

    @michael: You can search on any text if you OCR the documents. Whether you have two checks on one page will depend on whether you scan them on the same page.

  • Al Patrick

    What has been your reaction to scanning photos with this machine? I have boxes of photos and documents that I really need to scan for genelogy purposes. Do the scanned photos turn out as sharp as the film originals?

  • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

    Al, while the S1500 will certainly scan photos, it is not a photo-quality scanner; it is a document scanner. If you want to scan photos at high quality, get a high-quality photo scanner.

  • Pat P

    Sam- Love the site and comments- keep up the great work!
    I owned the ScanSnap S500 and want to buy an S1500 too. I have heard great things about the software that comes with the new version. Do you know if I can use the S1500 software with the S500?

  • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

    Thanks!

    You know, I have thought about that, but I haven’t tried it, yet. The S1500 is at work, and my laptop has the S500 software. If I can remember to haul my S500 to work, I will let you know, but you could probably get a faster answer by calling Fujitsu.

  • Rachel

    i have a scansnap 1500.. is there any way i can set it to where it wont scan th backside of papers?

  • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

    Rachel, you can set that and many other options in the settings.

    If you never want to scan both sides, right-click on the icon in your system tray and select “Scan Button Settings.” Click the “Detail” button to expose all the options, and go to the “Scanning” tab. Under “Scanning Side,” select “Simplex Scan.”

    If you want to scan only one side sometimes, but not always, right-click on the icon in your system tray and select “Simplex scan.”

  • Giuseppe

    I’m thinking of this scanner for home use, to reduce the ever larger stack of monthly statements, bills, etc.

    I was looking at the package with Rack2File and wondering if you had an opinon for this use:

    I’d like to put in a collection of statements, e.g. non-related, and let them scan. I’d then want to on-screen “file” each page, or collection of pages, into folders based on the content, e.g. Visa bill, water bill, etc. The goal is to not have to grab the 3 page visa bill, scan, file, then grab the water bill, scan, file, etc.

    Can I put in a “mixed bag” and then easily separate/file the individual scanned “pages”?

    Thanks

  • Pat P

    Sam-

    Quick follow-up to the question I had… I bought the S1500 & was able to use the S1500 software on my old S500 & 300 models.
    Still playing around with it to see if this adds any functionality, etc.
    Thanks for the great site!

  • Teresa

    Do you know if the scanner will alloy you to drag or scan new sheets into an existing file? I have tried draging it and that doesnt seem to work.
    Thanks

  • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

    The scanner will not, but Acrobat should let you do that. Or, just go to Document > Insert Pages in Acrobat.

  • Leigh

    I adore the ScanSnap 1500M. I have made my husband’s law office paperless, and am now on my way to convincing my father to change his office as well. It is a liberating feeling to bid rid of all this paper!

    On another note, the only thing I’ve tried to scan that would not work for me is a passport. I tried it every way possible, and it seems to be too thick. Just FYI. Not a big deal in the scheme of things.

  • Kevin Stewart

    Just got my 1500M and it looks like I should have got the 1500. Is there a way to download the rest of the Vista software and use it on the 1500m. I have both operations systems. Everything seemd to work on both system. I prefer the Vista side though because the office software seemd to be better than the Mac office software for what I am doing. Therefore, I am wondering if I have to return the 1500M for a 1500 or can I just download or purchase the rest of the wnidows software and use the 1500M like a 1500. Thanks Sam for your information here.

  • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

    Kevin, I think you will have to direct your questions to Fujitsu. I have no idea if there is a hardware difference, or not.

  • Kevin Stewart

    Thanks Sam. I been looking for the right tech number. I have tried a few with no return calls yet. The 1500m works on both the PC and Mac side of my Imac with bootcamp. It is just that the 1500m (PC version) does not allow scanning directly to word, excell Etc. I purchased word for Mac but it is not the exact program so when I scan into word or excell for the Mac side it is not the same as the pc. I will either have to return the 1500m for a 1500 or find out from tech support if I can just add the correct pc software bundle or not. I do really didg this product though. Do you have the correct tech support number to call?

  • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

    I don’t, but I will see if I can find out.

    Edit: 800-626-4686, opt 2.

  • Kevin Stewart

    Just spoke with tech support. They were knowledgeable. Here is the difference between the 1500 and 1500M. It is the software only. If you purchase Rack 2 software and adobe fine reader, they say it will work the same. As a PC guy that is trying to move only to Mac’s, this will allow me to learn the Mac while keeping the PC side going and make the change in my on timing. Thanks for the support # and creating this Forum!

  • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

    Glad we could help!

  • Kevin Stewart

    here is a website wher you can download the different versions of software that comes with the 1500 and 1500m for all you imac and bootcamp users.

    FineREader for ScanSnap 3.0 Windows: http://www.abbyydownloads.com/FR_for_ScanSnap_30/

    FineReader for ScanSnap Mac:
    http://www.abbyydownloads.com/Scansnap_MAC/

  • Stacy Hailey

    Can you also scan business cards with the scansnap? Thanks,Stacy

  • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

    Definitely. It actually comes with a tool to manage business cards, but I prefer to keep my contact information in Google Contacts, so I do not use it.

  • http://www.louquelaw.com Robert Louque

    I have been scanning with my 1500S for several months now. Before I s using it just to scan documents for electronic filing with the Bankruptcy Courts, but I went to a Paperless Office seminar on December 30, 2009 and now everything that comes in or out of my office is scanned and I am trying hard to get rid of paper files.

    The only issue I am having is I have been having the same fax number for 3 or 4 years and I am very reluctant to change. I have incoming faxed forwarded to an online service that emails me the fax in pdf format, but I still send faxes manually and then scan the confirmation page and document faxed together for my digital file.

    I do not see how I can skip that step when I am faxing 50-60 pages (each) at a time to 2 or 3 different attorneys. Those per page charges would eat me alive.

  • Marcia

    Hi: I just have a messy office. I was going to buy two or three literature sorters. I have magazines I like to save, bills, kids school stuff, records, recipes, collections of business cards. I need help to find things every time I store them on the computer. Am I going to be able to use this?

    • http://lawyerist.com/author/aaronstreet/ Aaron Street

      Marcia,

      It sounds like your ability to use a ScanSnap is less dependent on its technology, than on your ability to stay organized and develop a paperless workflow.

  • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

    @Marcia: Do you mean you want to scan that stuff instead of using a magazine rack? You certainly can.

  • Paul Hewitt

    Great site!

    How does the ScanSnap 1500 handle small paper receipts – like those for parking, retail stores, etc…?

    Do you scan them individually or paste them onto a page and feed it in?

    Also, is it compatible with the Windows 7 64-bit OS? Only reason I ask is that my HP AIO printer does NOT work properly with Vista 64 or Windows 7 64-bit!

    Thanks for your help.

    Paul Hewitt, CA

  • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

    It works fine with receipts. I just scan all my receipts for the month at once. You might have to move the teeny receipts around a bit to find the “sweet spot,” but it will scan them just fine. It works fine with 64-bit Windows. I am running the S1500 on 64-bit Windows 7 at work, and the S500 on 64-bit Windows 7 at home.

  • Paul Hewitt

    Thank you for your help!

    Paul

  • http://www.louquelaw.com Robert Louque

    Sam: Do you have a template folder with subfolders for your digital files or do you have to manually make all subfolders within a folder as you create them?

  • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

    I have a template in my /Forms directory, and just copy it into new client files.

  • Nathan

    Sam,
    Thanks for the review. I was about to go with the Neat Desk but after your review I think I am going with the S1500. It is $389 at Costco by the way.

  • Paul Hewitt

    Sam, I finally purchased the ScanSnap S1500, and I have to agree with you. It is an amazing little machine. It handles small receipts even better than I thought it would – even faded ones are very legible.

    I’m very impressed with its speed, too. The lack of TWAIN support is not a big deal for me. Acrobat 9 is a really nice bonus. Thank you for your informative posts!

  • Kevin

    Greetings,
    I have a task in front of me which involves converting an Attorneys office over to digital. The S1500 scanner looks like the ideal choice. I may use a Mac to do this, my client uses a PC, I intend to hand them 2 mirrored external drives. Couple of questions:

    1. Can it scan directly to an external drive and what’s the best way to search?
    (I presume manually searching an external drive with a good naming convention is not a huge deal here)

    2. Is the naming convention something pretty easy to work with, especially for later searches?

    3. Since the idea is to also make some much needed room, I am guessing that we will shred the documents, so I presume I will have to OCR pretty much everything, any advice for that?

    Thanks

    Kevin

  • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

    The scanner will scan to any directory you choose. You can select from a few different naming conventions. I advice naming the document something intelligible, though; I never use the numerical naming.

    The ScanSnap comes with OCR software. It slows things down, but works great.

  • Karen Miller

    Do you know if there have been any problems with the update for Windows 7? And secondly, I’ve read several reviews that said this destroys more photo’s than it scans — any problems here?

  • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

    I’ve not had any problems on either count. If you just want to do basic photo scanning in bulk, it works great. I’ve scanned a few hundred photos without losing one.

  • http://www.sunsetblvdanimalclinic.com/ paul young

    Sam,
    If I am going to scan in invoices and statements from vendors that have been paid and clients records that have been faxed in, will the program automatically recognize these names of said records or do I have to input them in the computer first in the ScanSnap program. I will be referring back to these records from time, but I just want to get rid some of the mounds of paper that I have.
    Paul

  • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

    If you want to scan receipts and have them automatically passed to Quickbooks, the answer is no, it won’t do that. The Neatdesk scanner claims to be able to do export to Quickbooks, though; you might want to check that out.

  • http://s1500-scanner.com James

    I really like the scansnap. It has totally changed my office. I especially like the intergration you can do with evernote. With the combo of Evernote and the S1500 you could have a very good system for going paperless. I could also see it working very well as a courtroom note taker/note retrieval system.

  • http://www.svslawoffice.com Shawn Vogt Sween

    I just bought this scanner last week (due to this blog) and am loving its ease of use. I haven’t been able to get Acrobat to install though. After doing the entire install, it gives me a generic error with no code and won’t open. Reader doesn’t work anymore, even if I uninstall Acrobat and try to reinstall reader. Lots of google searching leads me to believe this is a common problem with no particular fix. Has anyone else run into this when they got this scanner? It’s frustrating, because the package is pretty expensive and I’d like to actually be able to use acrobat.

  • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

    Shawn, are you using Windows or OS X?

  • http://www.blawg.co.za Shaun Benater

    Sam, since you reviewed the Fujitsu ScanSnap S1500 back in March 2009, has a newer model been released?
    Thanks for your great articles!

  • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

    This is still the newest model. I haven’t heard whether they are thinking about updating it, yet. They went with the S500/S510 for a couple of years, so I wouldn’t expect a new version any time soon.

  • John Lindsay

    I have just left Apple products for Ubuntu. Everything works great except for my Scansnaps 500m and 1500.
    Do you think I could run the Windows drivers under Wine?
    Is it actually possible to get the same quality scansnap on linux?
    Thanks for your help

    • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

      The SANE backend supports the ScanSnaps. I never had trouble using it with the built-in Xsane utility, but Scan2PDF is a lot more simple. If you run a virtual instance of Windows, you can enable USB support and use the ScanSnap manager that way. Not a lightweight solution, but effective.

  • Jay

    Hi Sam,

    Reading about the Scansnap makes me excited about going paperless. However, the scans of documents I get with my current flatbed scanner at 600dpi are not satisfactory from a preservation POV. If I compare a printout of a scan and the original document, I say a photocopy looks much better. This is one thing about converting to digital that I’m troubled by.

    I noticed the S1500 scans at 600dpi; I’ve also read comments that as a document scanner, it helps by not picking up the “shades of color” on a white background for example.

    Do you face such problems with the S1500? Would be awesome if you could add a sample PDF document to the site. :)

    Jay

  • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

    I’ve not noticed any quality problems at 300dpi, which is what the courts recommend. If you are noticing problems at 600dpi, it could be anything from your scanner’s quality or settings to compression level to the way your monitor displays images.

  • Sarah Dawn

    Hi, Does the Fujitsu ScanSnap S1500 Document Scanner do a really good job scanning business cards and extracting information from them and putting the info correctly on a spreadsheet? If the cards have hand-written notes on them, what does it do with that information? Can it properly extract the info and put it correctly on a spreadsheet? Thank you!

    • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

      The ScanSnap, coupled with the included business card software, does a pretty good job of getting contact info off of business cards. Handwriting is touch-and-go, though.

      I’m not sure how easy it is to get the information into a spreadsheet from there. The business card software may do csv exports, but I haven’t tried (I don’t use the software, myself).

  • Ci Hawkins

    I am new to paperless. What software will I use to mange the information I have imported? Does it come with print recognition like the TryNeat? Will I have to spend a lot of time naming and filing this information or will it do it for me? we have a small copy shop with great amounts of paper to file but I don’t want to have to spend a lot of time filing after I have scanned. I can do that with a filing cabinet. Maybe I do not truely get the concept of going paperless. Could you help me please? Thank you – Ci

  • td

    Since you seem to have contacts within Fujitsu, can you inquire about their inclusion of Acrobat X? On September 17th, I was on their website & they had a press release dated September 16th that mentioned the software bundle was being updated to include Acrobat X. I bookmarked it, since I figured I’d wait until the channel has the newer bundle before ordering. But by the next day when I went to show my wife, that press release had disappeared from the website. Poof! It was gone. I’m guessing someone pulled the trigger too fast on posting it, but it was there for a day.

    Any idea of their plans for this model? Now I’m wondering if they have an entirely new version coming out before the holidays…

    • td

      Just wanted to follow up on this. Despite their removing the press release from their website within a day & the website still listing Acrobat 9 as coming with it, I can confirm that it’s now coming with Acrobat X Standard. The only place I see X mentioned on their website is on the promo video, while everywhere else mentions version 9.

      I ordered one from Amazon on Sunday, and it just arrived with X.

  • Daylan

    I was wondering if purchasing an all in one (printer, copier, fax, scanner) laser printer would be a good idea?

  • Venu

    Thanks for the wonderful info on the scansnap.

    I bought the S1500 2 years ago, installed software on an XP machine and I have been very happy with it. I now have a Win 7 64bit computer and decided to move the scanner to this Win7 machine. The problem starts here. When I start the setup program that came with the S1500 DVD, I get a blue screen. Basically, I am unable to install this on a Win7 64bit machine.

    Any one seen this issue? I found “Win 7 64bit” service packs on fujitsu site, but looks like they need the original Scansnap manager software and drivers installed first.

    Thanks for any thoughts on this.

    Regards,

    • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

      Huh, that’s weird. I’m running the software on Windows 7 64 bit with no problems. If there are no updates, see if Fujitsu can help.

  • Brad

    I didn’t see anyone mention the Scansnap S1300. We recently bought one and have been very pleased. I would rate it 5 Stars. A couple of pluses; You can use it on a Mac and PC and it is really easy to travel with. Also the price is less than the S1500.

    • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover
    • http://www.maennerlawoffice.com/ Brad

      Great Reviews Sam! As time goes on, I feel the smaller scansnap machines will become much more popular than the larger desktop models. So many people and companies have switched to electronic storage that it is rare to see large boxes of paper documents these days.

      • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

        That may be true. I have found that I get less and less paper as more firms go paperless, or just realize they are welcome to email documents to me instead of sending a stack of paper. I could probably get by with a smaller scanner at the office, although I prefer having the speed of my S1500 when I need it.

  • AshtaraSilunar

    I read in a review on Amazon that the S1500 had to create a pdf for every document when scanning mixed sizes, but I’ve seen no other mention of that. If so, it would be a dealbreaker. Is it true, or did the user just have their settings wrong?

    • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

      Yeah, that user just had his/her settings wrong. That’s not even the default behavior.

      • AshtaraSilunar

        Fantastic, thanks. That was my suspicion, but I wanted to confirm. Thanks for the great review!

  • Charlie

    Will I be able to scan receipts and export them somehow into Quicken?

    • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

      No. If you want to do that, get the NeatWorks software, or just get the Neat scanner. Although it’s not very good.

      You might also consider whether you can get those receipts in another format that you can import directly into Quickbooks. For example, most merchant accounts will make the transaction data available directly in a Quickbooks-compatible format. The same goes for most banks, which make transactions available in Quickbooks formats.

  • DM Vega

    I’m closer to purchasing the S1500 but have one question:
    I own properties in PA and the utility companies are the same for each property (water, electric, trash removal, etc.). I have created an income and expense excel spreadsheets for each property and input the monthly payments per company for each property. Can I get the monthly payments from the scanned document transferred to the spreadsheet?

    P.S. Your comments were so helpful in making a decision against the NeatDesk. Thanks,

    • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

      No. See the comment directly above yours.

  • Robert

    Thanks for the great info, Sam.
    I’m seriously considering buying the S1500 for Mac. Here’s my question: I have a dual boot setup using Lion on one volume of my HD and Snow Leopard on the other. If I upgrade the S1500 software to the latest Lion version, will the scanner still work with my Snow Leopard volume?

    • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

      No idea.

      But I’m curious why you would want to run two different versions of OS X. Are you just upgrading slowly, keeping the old version around in case something breaks?

  • Robert

    My work requires programs that will not run on lion, e.g. MS Word X and Quicken. Yet, I want to be up to date with lion.

  • http://ethicsmaven.com/ Eric Cooperstein

    I have not upgraded to Lion, but I cannot recall any concerns on the Macs in Law Offices listserv with Scansnap functionality after people upgraded to Lion. There was a problem with compatibility when Snow Leopard first came out, but that was fixed with a Scansnap software upgrade quite some time ago.

  • Patricia

    Do you know when a new model of the Fujitsu ScanSnap will be coming out. I want to buy one but I don’t want a new model to come out right after I buy one.

    • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

      I’m not aware of an impending new model. Although I’m sure that by saying that, I’ve just guaranteed a new one will come out in a week or two. (Probably not, though. Document scanners aren’t updated very often, and there isn’t much reason for them to be.)

  • http://www.cdmlawyer.com Cary McReynolds

    After reading about the S1500 several times, I decided to spend the money and get one. It is so much better (and faster) at scanning than my Cannon Scanner/Fax/Laser printer. I did have one issue. The S1500 was advertised as coming with Acrobat X and showed up with 9. I called Fujitsu and they have been incredible. They took my information and called me back the same day to say they would replace the machine. Then, I received a call a couple days later letting me know they were waiting on a new batch to make sure I received the latest scanner. Amazing customer service.

    • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

      That’s great to hear!

  • E Carolyn Tucker

    I got lost in the comments. Please clarify one item: does the ScanSnap file documents or will I have to do that as a separate task? I’m assuming Neat does label and file documents into categories?

    • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

      I’m not aware of any scanner that will automatically file your documents for you (well, not unless you consider filing to mean dumping them all into one big folder). Whether you get the ScanSnap or the Neatdesk, you will have to do your own filing. It’s just a question of where. You can use the Neatdesk software, the ScanSnap software, or your own file system.

  • Derek DeRaps

    I know this is a really old post, but I was wondering if you ever got a chance to try putting your passport through the scanner. I just talked with a Fujitsu rep who said absolutely no way would that work. Thoughts?

    • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

      I think I did. Or else I just took a photo of it with my phone, which would be way easier.

  • http://www.garvinlegal.com Leland Garvin

    Have been following the Lawyerist blog for a while but last night I received some real help from the posts and I am not trying Clio for the free 30 days and I have ordered one of these scanners.. Very excited about going paperless!

  • http://www.hartmannlaw.net Patricia Hartmann

    I was introduced to this scanner at a CLE seminar on law office technology. The CLE presenter thought so highly of this device that he brought one with to display to all attendees.
    I eventually bought one. It took a few months before I started to use it enough to realize the capability of this product. Now I recommend this device to others in my office.
    This product allows you to quickly convert any document into a PDF. The OCR software also allows you to convert PDFs into editable document files.
    The scanner is amazingly fast and very portable. The only issue I encountered after several years of using this scanner is that is does need occasional cleaning to keep the image clear. There are cleaning products specifically made for this scanner that can be purchased online.
    The software alone that comes with this scanner is worth the price of the product.

  • Lynn

    Thanks for your review and information about the S1500. I got the same deal as others with the Acrobat Standard X on sale through Costco.

    I’m particularly interested in your take on this because you’re an attorney. I somehow wound up becoming not only the family genealogist/historian but the keeper of family records as well, which includes a boat load of legal paperwork from various estates, cases and other things which are still active and could need to be used in future situations. Some of it is difficult to read from the bad copy services they send out to gather evidence and I have no idea which of the softwares that they include would do the most good to keep the information on the pages ‘searchable/compileable’ for evidence later.

    I may need to do topical or thematical (or phrased/word) searches of the documents and the organization of all of this is really overwhelming me. Some places say that the Acrobat is better at this and others say to use the Rack 2… I don’t know where to begin. Once we scan a set of documents to one system can we copy/paste them to a new binder or to the Acrobat section without a lot of drama or do they all need to be re-scanned into the other system? Or – do I just bite the bullet and scan it all 2 or 3 times, one for each type of software it came with?

    Also, I wont have time to go to law school between the time this will be needed and now so, can you make any suggestions of HOW to organize all of this or a book to get that tells how to organize legal information? (As in case of medical for example, lab work, doctors notes, surgeries, procedures, medications or topical by ‘type’ of doctor or ‘diagnostic proof/notes’ of medical issue etc ,it’s mind boggling.)

    Also as in the case of things above like medication, how do you scan the labels information into this scanner? Can you take a picture with your phone and insert the file into the picture binders through transfer?

    Believe me I’ve looked on Amazon and everywhere else I could to find books that describe how to organize this kind of info and found nothing. The comedy of errors in the software package included on the scanner is that there’s several options and not enough info that explains how they’re different in functionality ‘in-use’, once the items are scanned.

    Thanks again!

    • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

      Just scan everything using OCR, dump all the files in one folder, and use Windows search to find what you need. It’s much easier than you are making it.

      • Lynn

        Thank you for your reply.

        Apparently there are literally thousands of pages for each situation spanning more than 20 years of legal history in some of the cases… OCR… where? Which file type, which bundled software? Or are you saying it doesn’t matter because they all have it in equal accuracy and functionality?

        Thanks again!

        • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

          Just scan to PDF using the plain old ScanSnap Manager. If you want to use additional document software to organize those files, go for it, but as long as they are OCR’d PDFs, you will be able to find what you need by searching.

  • Kyle Robertson

    Every other scan is upside down. Very frustrating! As mentioned earlier it does pick up ink on the other side and scan both sides, but you can change that option to single-side scan. Also, if you put it on the higher quality setting, its scans worse that auto setting. All my pages scan in and are faded. Its quick and easy to use, but I wouldn’t recommend it.

    • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

      If you put the pages in upside-down, they will come out upside-down.

      As for the “fading,” it sounds like you are using grayscale (or color) instead of black-and-white. Set it to auto-detect the color mode or else set it to black-and-white, and you won’t get that effect.

    • pgray

      I have the same problem. If I put in a page with printing on both sides and scan it. The first page is fine, the backside page is upside down. I am scanning in color with default settings. Anyone know how to fix this ?

      • http://ethicsmaven.com/ Eric Cooperstein

        Go to Settings, Scanning tab, Options. Is the box checked for “allow automatic image rotation?” Mine is checked; I rarely ever have a problem with page direction on double-sided scans. If that doesn’t work, see if “automatic detection” is selected for the paper size.

        As an interim fix, if you have Adobe Acrobat, the “rotate pages” feature will let you choose to rotate only the odd or even pages, so you can fix the documents you’ve already scanned in one step.

  • http://www.benater.com Shaun Benater

    Hi, When will you be reviewing the Fujitsu ScanSnap S1300i? I look forward to reading your review. Thanks. Shaun Benater

    • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

      We did review the ScanSnap S1300. The S1300i doesn’t look any different, but I’ve got an email in to my contact at Fujitsu to find out if the i is significant.

  • GeeBird

    +1 for the ScanSnap S1500. It is fast, portable, reliable and folds up into a nice little box. I have mine sitting in the top of a Staples Black Wire Mesh Letter Tray Sorter (product #828567 – about $25). It has a letter slot beneath it, two slots beside it, and it raises the Scansnap up so that you don’t even have to open the lower paper tray. I recommend the Scanner and the Sorter.

    • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

      I wouldn’t really call the S1500 portable. It’s portable if you like to carry around a duffel bag, I guess, but it’s not going to slide into a briefcase like the S1100 or Doxie Go.

  • http://www.bergeronclifford.com Will Lam

    Very cool Sam!

    Where do you save your documents? In a Dropbox account? I’m guessing you have multiple layers of redundancy so nothing is ever lost? Something like having Time Machine paired with Dropbox?

    • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

      I keep everything in Dropbox. My desktop at the office is backed up daily to a local hard drive. All my computers are also backed up to CrashPlan. Here’s my security and backup plan: http://lawyerist.com/storing-client-files-cloud/

  • Bo Brennan

    Just wondering. I also have been using the S510 for a long time now but everytime I the thing picks up 2 pages or turns a page sideways and destorys it I start screaming “Thats it time for a new scanner” but I never see any real great reviews. I like the ease of the snapscan but what I really want to know is now that you’ve had 2 years with the S1500 does the paper feeder work correctly??

    • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

      I still have my S500, and I experienced occasional multi-feeds. All I had to do was replace the picker (I think it was less than $20). But the S1500 has multi-feed detection, so if it does happen (which is extremely rare), you have a chance to fix it right then and there.

  • Dale Smith

    thanks for the reading I am now looking a little more before i buy, can you tell me how the soft-ware works. I,m a small contractor and the paper is all over I need help and not sure what to buy .a backhoe is a lot easer than the office work and the paper that comes each day.

  • Nathan

    We would love to go paperless – we have ‘ROOMS’ of paper. Our issue is almost every 8×11 paper has a 3×5 card stapled to it. I don’t need both scanned separately, just as 1 sheet. But the snapscan 1500 won’t accept the scan with a staple. (That is super annoying)

    So I carefully remove the staple, tape the card to the full sheet of paper, then scan the file. The Snapscan program always complains there is ‘overlap detected’.

    I thought I loved these scanners, but right now I am very frustrated.

    Any help or thoughts? I would appreciate.

    Thank you.

    • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

      You could just turn off the dual-feed detection.

  • Nick

    I am curious if this ScanSnap can put entries into an expense report or into financial programs. Being a traveling sales person I am not only looking to capture the image but be able to have a product that does some of this for me as well.

    Also does it store and recognize templates because I frequent the same places on a regular basis.

    • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

      Nope. It’s a scanner. It creates an image from the page. It can recognize text and convert pages to Word or Xcel documents, but nothing quite so fancy as inserting data into customized expense reports.

  • Bill Borkenstein

    I’m looking for a scanner that will handle a quantity of old family photographs and documents of various sizes for a digital family history that I am trying to assemble. Would the ScanSnap S1500 be suitable for this type of project? Would the scan quality be acceptable for old photographs? Thanks.

    • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

      It’s not a photo scanner, but if you aren’t trying for high-quality reproductions, it’s fine.

  • Jeff C. Keane

    Sam,

    Thank you so much for the succinct reviews of the Fujitsu S1500 AND the Neat scanner, advertised on TV. I almost made the mistake of getting sucked in by the apparent undisclosed truths, cloaked by the “neat” marketing campaign.
    The $449 +- price of the S1500 is actually affordable, the reviewed functions should suffice my home use with my new Dell Inspiron laptop.
    I primarily need to get a scanner to “digitize” my life out of paper storage boxes into perhaps a few dozen USB drives, lightening my future moving burden.
    And, maybe even help a bit with a long overdue inventory via the reduced paper loads built up over the years.
    Thanks again,
    Sincerely, JCK

  • deborah

    I am a teacher… my question is this… Does this scanner automatically send the documents to the appropriate designated file on your computer like the Neatdesk says it does?
    I’m not in a position to spend my money something that does not work as it should –my money , not theirs — I am fascinated about what Neatdesk advertises…but leery as well. and it is expensive…

    Thank you

    • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

      Not sure what you are asking. You can choose the file type and location of every file you scan, if you like.

  • Greg

    If you had to select between the ScanSnap or the Neat scanner for HOME use which one would you suggest? The cost is about the same give or take a few dollars but I m not sure which is the better of the two. I have never used either nor have I used a Document scanner, but Im getting buried in paper work with two kids in college, my work and a part time business on the side.

  • Earl Hall

    I am not imprerssed with the ScanSnap. Every page is crooked. I have tried everything, but I can count on a 3 to 5 degree left tilt. This is just not acceptable.

    • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

      I have not experienced that with any of the ScanSnaps I have owned or reviewed (S500, S1100, S1300, S1500, S1500M, iX500), so I’m guessing you probably have a defective unit.

  • david

    I was wondering how well this will work for scanning invoices and emailing them to customers.
    thanks david

  • Mel

    Have you tried scanning checks with this?

    • http://samglover.net/ Sam Glover

      Um, yes. Scanning checks and receipts is one of the main reasons to own one.

      • Mel

        Do you do remote deposit? I’m trying to find one compatible w remote deposit

  • Wofford

    We’ve been in the Real Estate Appraising business for 30 years. After purging our files we still have 15+ legal-sized file cabinets. Would we be able to use the SnapScan to finally go paperless in our office?

    • http://samglover.net/ Sam Glover

      You have things to scan. It is a scanner. Seems like a good fit. (Although I’d get the new version, the iX500, if I were you.)

  • kwangduk

    Sam, A simple question that most blogs, ads, comments dance around. Can the scanner + software be trained to scan and file to correct folders automatically? e.g. I place a stack of various documents in the scanner and start the scan, and start other tasks. Can either Neatdesk of SnapScan scan and “file” all the documents automatically?

    Many of us are looking to save the time needed to select each destination for each file scanned.

    Thanks

    • http://samglover.net/ Sam Glover

      Nope. I’m not aware of a scanner that does what you want.

    • Bill Carmody

      Software such as Dispatcher Phoenix Legal Edition, NSi autostore, Nuance, and Prism will accomplish what you are looking for. I have more information if you are interested.

  • Amber

    I have RA and so my hands are always in a lot of pain. Can you recommend a scanner/printer and a inexpensive program that I can use at home? Social security doesn’t pay much when you’re disabled in your 30′s.

    • http://samglover.net/ Sam Glover

      I suppose it depends on your budget. There aren’t a lot of “cheap” scanners out there. Some of the smaller scanners, like the Xerox Mobile Scanner are pretty inexpensive, but they would be frustrating to use if you have a lot of documents. I think the Kodak i940 is probably the smallest scanner I would get for scanning more than a handful of documents at a time.

  • Bill Briggs

    can I do more than one document at a time on the ix 500? I want to save my old files, but not as a single document and it would be easier to send a bunch through and then label them after scanning. In dropbox, I just use an old fashioned clients folder and then subfolders for each client.

    thanks

    • http://samglover.net/ Sam Glover

      You can split up documents in Acrobat, but the scanner has no way of knowing where one document ends and another begins, so you have to do that yourself.

      • Bill Briggs

        thank you

  • Denagwiz

    Which is the best scanner for use with stacks of old family photos I want to scan, as far as color and picture quality?

    • http://samglover.net/ Sam Glover

      I’ve used the ScanSnap S1500 and iX500. It does an okay job, but if you want hi-res photo scans, you need a good flatbed scanner and a bit of patience.