Fujitsu ScanSnap S1100 review
This lightweight, compact mobile scanner seems a little fragile, but it's bundled with class-leading software that makes it a joy to use
Review Date: 15 Jun 2011
Price when reviewed: £158
Reviewed By: Simon Handby
A typical scanner or multifunction peripheral isn't much use for anyone who needs to scan documents while out and about. Fortunately, Fujitsu is one of a few manufacturers producing highly portable compact devices for just such a need. The S1100 is the smaller of two portable devices in the ScanSnap range; the other is the S1300, which has more sophisticated paper management and costs about £60 more.
The ScanSnap S1100 is about the same size and weight as a small roll of cling film, so it's easy to find room for it in a briefcase or overnight bag. A drop-down flap covers the front slot and doubles as a power switch, while a second flap at the back sends the paper either on a straight-through path, or flips it over ready for scanning the reverse side if needed. Although the scanner feels precisely made, it's not especially sturdy and isn't supplied with a case. Fujitsu's own will set you back an eye-watering £50.
There's little in the S1100's specifications to set it apart from competing devices such as the HP ScanJet 1000 Professional, or the Plustek MobileOffice S420. All three scan at a maximum resolution of 600 dots per inch (dpi) and take the power they need from their USB data connection so there's no need to carry a separate power supply, but only the HP can scan both sides of a sheet in the same pass (duplex). Where the ScanSnap does stand out, however, is in its bundled software, which supports neither the TWAIN or ISIS standards.
This might sound like a bad thing – and it does mean that you can't scan documents directly into photo-editing applications as you would with other scanners – but the S1100 is designed for capturing everyday office documents, and Fujitsu's proprietary software helps make this incredibly easy. To capture an original you simply line up the first sheet, press the start/stop button and keep feeding sheets before pressing the button again to stop. This brings up the Quick Menu, in which you select what you want to do with the captured documents.
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