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  1. #1
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    Scanners - probably a dumb question

    I have an Agfa "Touch" scanner connected to my home PC. Quality is adequate for my purposes but the process of scanning directly to print is S L O W! Not only does it take two swipes (once to calibrate and once to scan) but the rendering to the printer takes a considerable amount of time (much more than sending a word or excel doc to the printer). The software being used is the standard Afga software for my PC.

    My dumb question: Is this a hardware issue, or software? Can I get improved speed by getting a new scanner, and if so do you have any recommendations. If the main issue is software, what do you suggest I investigate?

    It is taking about 6-8 minutes to go from button push to print, and I can't queue jobs its one at a time.

    Many thanks in advance

  2. #2
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    Re: Scanners - probably a dumb question

    Could be that the RAM on the computer is not big enough, or the printer could use more RAM.

    I usually scan text, not images, but images can take a loooong time.

    You might try scanning to the computer, instead of the printer. If faster, then the printer RAM might be the bottle neck.

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    Re: Scanners - probably a dumb question

    To add to what Howard said, part of the issue could be the default quailty the scanner uses when pressing the touch button. It probably assumes that you want 32-bit color depth at a moderate resolution (at least 300 dpi). The resulting image file could easily be over 50MB.

    If you're only interested in scanning/printing text-based documents you might consider lowering the default settings (if that's possible with your software/hardware). However, if you really do need full-color, full-quality images then the speed and capacity of your hardware can be limiting (RAM, CPU, Hard Drive, etc...)

    HTH

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    Re: Scanners - probably a dumb question

    Thanks Howard and Mark,

    Will check when I get home tonight. I have 1GB of Memory on my PC and rarely do I run any other applications when I am scanning so I doubt if this is the problem. I usually through-put to an old laser printer that I bought second hand about 4 years ago. It was practically new at the time and state of the art with 4mb of memory, upgradeable to 8mb! (I checked recently to see if I could still get the upgrade - I could, but for $250!). I also have a Epson ink-jet printer which isn't any faster.

    The scanner is USB into the PC, while the laser is connected to the PC via an ethernet-hub, and the Epson via USB. I guess the USB-1 connections could be part of the problem.

    Many thanks again - will let you know after doing some tests.

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    Re: Scanners - probably a dumb question

    I would say that this is a hardware (scanner) issue. Also you stated you get this in the "Copy" mode which I take to mean scan and send to printer. All of the scanners that I have seen are VERY slow in the mode, even my Epson 1640 to a HP 2100 is slow. I did see a slight improvement when I installed the Epson sofware for windows XP.

    Now running HP Pavilion a6528p, with Win7 64 Bit OS.

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    Re: Scanners - probably a dumb question

    Hi Dave,

    Can confirm that this problem is the greatest in 'photocopy' mode. Last night I fiddled with the options, reduced the resolution to the minimum etc. In copy mode there wasn't much improvement. But when I sent the scan to an 'acrobat-reader' program it opened immediatly on screen and printed 'fairly' quickly. Total time about 2 minutes vs 6-8 I was getting. And the bonus is that I can queue any number of scans (subject to my 1gb memory) to the reader program and print sequentially from there. Not exactly how mother Xerox planned but it works.

    Does anyone out there have any good stories to report on using scanners in 'photocopy' or scan to printer mode?

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    Re: Scanners - probably a dumb question

    Are you $ure that "mother Xerox " did not plan thi$ way. If it i$ $low enough one will buy a "Xerox copier" in$tead of u$ing one$ PC.


    How old is the scanner and software?

    Now running HP Pavilion a6528p, with Win7 64 Bit OS.

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    Re: Scanners - probably a dumb question

    The scanner isn't really that old - early 2000 as I recall but it was cheap. The software is even less as I had to install a new version compatible with my new Unix-based OS less than a year ago.

    It generally works quite well, all things considered, except my wife doesn't understand why it isn't just like the photocopy machine she has in the office (which does colour and e v e r y t h i n g !) <img src=/S/sigh.gif border=0 alt=sigh width=15 height=15>

  9. #9
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    Re: Scanners - probably a dumb question

    I was wondering if the fact that you said you have the laser printer connected through a hub rather than an LPT port might be impacting your throughput? I don't think my hardware's any better than yours and I just tried my setup. On a sleeping machine, I got printer output starting within 60 seconds of button push. By sleeping I mean that the PC and scanner have been sitting there idle for quite some time.

    I have a Umax Astra 2200 connected USB to the PC and an HP970Cxi via LPT port on the same computer.

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    Re: Scanners - probably a dumb question

    Thanks for the suggestion Al but I'm not so sure. My PC, my wife's laptop and the laser printer are networked on an ethernet network. The scanner is connected via USB to my PC, as is the Epson printer - both on the same USB hub. (To make it even more complicated my wife's laptop is connected to the Epson via a serial connection - don't <img src=/S/laugh.gif border=0 alt=laugh width=15 height=15> it works quite well.)

    Because I get much better performance when I go via the acrobat viewer I'm inclined to think the problem is with the software trying to convert the scan into 'printer-talk'. I guess when Agfa built the software they didn't know my wife would want to photocopy and file every bit of paper that enters our household. (I've tried to get her to understand that we can save the image rather than print it - but she doesn't trust me on that. She may be right considering that some of the storage media of even 10 years ago are considered obsolete).

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