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In today’s digital world, we often need to scan documents on the go. Portable document scanners provide an easy way to digitize papers, receipts, business cards, and more whether you’re at home, in the office, or traveling. Portable scanners are compact, lightweight devices that can scan documents and save them directly to your computer or the cloud.


What is a Portable Scanner and what are they used for?

A portable scanner allows you to scan documents and images while on the go. Portable scanners are lightweight, compact devices that are powered by batteries or USB connection. This makes them easy to transport and use anywhere you need to scan something.

Portable scanners allow you to quickly digitize papers, receipts, business cards, photos, and more by converting them into digital formats. This allows for easy sharing, archiving, and organization on your laptop, smartphone, or in the cloud.

Portable scanners are also useful for anyone who needs to scan items occasionally without investing in a large desktop scanner. They can provide scanning functionality in a small, lightweight device that can be carried in a bag or briefcase. With a portable scanner, you have a convenient way to reduce paper clutter and digitize important documents no matter where you are.

What to consider to when buying a Portable Document Scanner?

There are several factors to keep in mind when choosing a portable document scanner:

Dimensions and weight. Look for a compact, lightweight model if you’ll be transporting it often.

Scan quality. More expensive models tend to offer higher resolutions and sharper image quality. Make sure scan quality meets your needs.

Automatic document feeding. Models with ADFs can scan multipage documents unattended.

Connectivity. Most models connect via USB but some offer wireless connectivity for greater flexibility.

Scan speed. Faster scan speeds allow you to digitize documents more quickly.

Software. Ease of use and features of included software are important considerations.

File formats. Make sure the scanner saves files in formats like PDF, JPG, and searchable PDFs.

Battery life. For maximum portability, look for long battery life or power via USB.

Warranty. A warranty provides peace of mind in case of defects.

Top 5 Portable Document Scanners

1. Fujitsu ScanSnap iX1600

The Fujitsu ScanSnap iX1600 is a fast and versatile portable scanner perfect for digitizing documents on the go. With speeds up to 40 pages per minute, this scanner makes quick work of multipage documents with its duplex scanning capability.

Connecting via USB or Wi-Fi, the iX1600 can scan directly to your computer or the cloud for easy sharing and archiving. It is controlled through an intuitive 4.3-inch touchscreen, making scanning seamless. With resolutions over 600 DPI, the iX1600 produces high-quality scans for crisp, clear images.

Compatible with various operating systems, this scanner can handle documents up to A4 size. It has compact dimensions of 292 x 161 x 152 mm and weighs just 3 pounds for ultimate portability. The iX1600 does require occasional cleaning and consumable replacement every 1,000 sheets scanned.

Cost: $174

2. Canon imageFormula R10 Portable Document Scanner

The Canon imageFormula R10 is a compact and lightweight portable scanner perfect for individuals or small businesses. Weighing just 15 ounces, its slim design easily fits into briefcases for scanning on the go.

Despite its small size, the R10 can scan letter-sized documents at up to 10 pages per minute in color, grayscale, or black and white. It captures images at up to 600 dpi using Canon’s contact image sensor technology. An integrated USB cable connects the scanner to your laptop for power and transfers scans to your computer.

This portable scanner can handle everything from business cards and receipts to multipage documents up to 14″ long. It comes bundled with Canon CaptureOnTouch software for simple scanning and document organization. Pages can be saved as PDF, JPG, BMP and other formats.

One standout feature of the R10 is its versatility. It can scan directly to the cloud, improving workflows by enabling quick sharing from anywhere. The scanner is also compatible with mobile devices using the Canon Mobile Scanning app.

Cost: $419.99

3. Brother ADS-1700W Portable Document Scanner

The Brother ADS-1700W is a feature-packed wireless scanner perfect for small offices and workgroups. It offers fast 20 page-per-minute scan speeds in both color and black and white. It comes with a 50-sheet capacity auto document feeder.

This scanner captures documents at up to 600 x 600 dpi for crisp, high-quality scans. It can handle everything from business cards up to legal size documents. Integrated wireless connectivity allows scanning directly to the cloud, email, network folders, and more for streamlined workflows.

At just 11.7 x 3.7 x 3.3 inches, the ADS-1700W has a compact footprint. The intuitive 2.7” touchscreen makes scanning seamless. It handles double-sided scanning and features automated image enhancement tools. Pages can be saved as searchable PDFs, JPGs, and other versatile formats.

Software bundled with the scanner allows you to scan directly to the cloud or mobile devices. With fast speeds, wireless networking, smart software, and solid construction, the Brother ADS-1700W boosts scanning productivity for home and office use.

Cost: $249

4. Epson Workforce ES-400 II Portable Document Scanner

The Epson Workforce ES-400 II desktop scanner boast speeds up to 35 pages per minute.

The ES-400 II features a 50-page automatic document feeder for scanning multi-page documents without intervention. It captures both sides of pages at once using dual-head scanning technology. Image enhancement tools automatically detect and correct skewed pages as they are scanned.

This scanner delivers precision scanning with resolutions up to 600 dpi. It can handle everything from business cards to ledger-sized documents up to 17 inches long. An intuitive control panel makes it easy to start jobs with one touch scanning to email, file folders, and the cloud.

Designed for reliability, the ES-400 II includes a daily duty cycle of 3,000 sheets. It can scan directly to mobile devices using the Epson DocumentScan app for greater flexibility. OCR software allows scanning and saving as searchable PDFs.

Cost: $289.99

5. IRIScan Book 5 Portable Document Scanner

The IRIScan Book 5 is a compact, battery-powered scanner designed for true portability. Using CMOS contact image sensor technology, it can quickly scan documents, books, and more at up to 1200 dpi resolution without the need for a power source.

As a cordless scanner, the Book 5 allows you to scan on the go. It has integrated storage via an SD card slot for saving scans, reducing dependency on a computer connection. Scans are converted into versatile formats like JPEG and PDF with just one click using the onboard software.

Some models include Wi-Fi for wireless transfers of scans to other devices. The Book 5 also comes bundled with OCR software to convert scans into editable Word, Excel, and PDF files through text recognition.

Despite its small size, the Book 5 can handle documents up to A4 size. It provides high quality scans in a lightweight body weighing just 400 grams. With its portability, integrated storage, and OCR functionality, the IRIScan Book 5 makes scanning simple anywhere inspiration strikes.

Cost: $109

Portable scanners provide convenience and efficiency by allowing you to scan documents anywhere. Choosing the right model depends on your specific scanning needs. Look for key features like scan quality, file formats, paper handling, connectivity, and design. Any of the scanners reviewed above would be an excellent choice to digitize paperwork on the go. Just match features to your usage needs and budget. With the right portable scanner, you can eliminate paper clutter and digitize important documents wherever work takes you.

Tobias Matthews

Tobias Matthews


Writer at Fourth Source.