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Kodak ScanStation 500 review

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Kodak ScanStation 500
  • Kodak ScanStation 500
  • Kodak ScanStation 500
  • Kodak ScanStation 500
  • Kodak ScanStation 500
  • Scan Station 500 Sheetfed Scanner (24 bit Color - 8 bit Grayscale - Network)

Summary

Our Score:

8

If your idea of a scanner is an A4 flatbed for transferring old photo prints, the ScanStation 500 will come as something of a surprise. It's intended for business rather than home use and isn't even designed to be connected to a PC. Instead, you connect one scanner to your network and just about anybody can use it, for a variety of different tasks.

As the name implies, the ScanStation sits at a convenient place in your office and provides scanning facilities for anybody who needs them. The device connects via a standard Ethernet socket at the back and uses an Intel Atom processor with 1GB memory; a respectable hardware spec for a netbook.

Perhaps the ScanStation's most noticeable feature is its full-colour touch screen. This has a full 200mm diagonal and is used for nearly all controls on the scanner. The screen is adequately sensitive and the buttons and selections are big enough to make it hard to mis-key.

The scanner is angled down from back to front, so papers to be scanned sit easily in the feed tray at the rear. Before you can scan, though, you have to pull out two extensions, fold down the front cover and flip open a three-stage output tray, which is a bit flimsy - don't let it overhang the front of a desk.

There are four USB sockets, all at the back of the machine. Since so much of the Scan Station 500's operation is based on USB drives - see later - it would be a really good idea to have them set into the sloping front face of the machine. In fact, there is a fifth socket, set into the top of the touch screen surround, but this is still fairly well hidden.

We find it hard to believe the four rear USBs will be used much at all, as with the feed trays extended, they are all hidden and you have to get at the back of the machine to align and plug in any device. There's a modem socket at the back, too, as the scanner can be used to send faxes directly, as well as sending to a specified network printer or a folder on a designated PC.

Joe Mineo

May 28, 2009, 6:50 pm

I'd like to thank you for an excellent review. I am the principal software architect of the scan station product line and I thought I'd clarify one point. The Scan Station does in fact provide OCR capability by selecting PDF-Text Searchable as the output file type. This will automatically push each image through an OCR engine and produce a PDF file that can be searched. Thanks again.

Casey

August 27, 2010, 11:30 pm

Joe,


The scan station 500 was the most frustrating scanner I have ever configured. It has no GUI, and needs software installed to manage. The install guide is horrendous (sp). You would think if you need a config file copied from a USB drive to setup the device it would be the 1st item on the install guide. Overall, for the money, this product sucks. Although now after more than half a day and a call to Kodak support the setup is somewhat understandable. Since you are the principal software architech let me give you a tip. On your next model, ditch the usb crap, and go back to an old fashioned web interface. This was so frustrating. And again, overall it sucks.

EKDocimaging

December 10, 2010, 6:49 am

Hi Casey, Sorry you didn't enjoy your experience with our product. We do have a remote management application that ships with the product and eliminates the need to use a USB drive. We left the USB feature in there for backwards compatibility. Customers that have used this application tell us it simplifies the administration experience a great deal. We'll see what we can do about the improving the user manual to make this more clear. Thanks for trying the product and thanks for your feedback.

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