The Best Portable Scanners
Portable scanners are rapidly replacing traditional stationary scanners. These days, people are looking for more versatility and convenience. And a portable scanner fits the bill.
There’s nothing wrong with the regular scanners. You can still keep them around and get office works done. But it’s way old fashion and honestly, slow.
With a portable scanner, you can scan your important documents, profiles, ID cards, bank statements, receipts, pictures, and pretty much whatever you wish to. More importantly, you can do that from virtually anywhere.
All you need is a quality scanner from our featured list and the documents. Surprised that we didn’t mention a PC? Well, a lot of the scanners can scan without a PC. How cool is that?
A lot of the scanners can scan up to 900 dpi. A fairly good quality if you ask. Some of them can scan both sides of a page a once. Also, some of them come with a feeder tray for continuous scanning. And some advanced ones can autocorrect scanning anomalies as well.
Most of the scanners have internal storage facilities. They may run on batteries as well as USB cables connected with a PC.
A lot of options right? Don’t worry, we’ve filtered out the best 10 portable scanners, just for you.
‘Work from Home’ best choice. The Brother DS-640 scanner is easily portable, highly compact, and fast.
With its ergonomic compact design and simple practical applications, the DS-640 portable scanner is perfect for operating on-the-go. Perfect for small offices and work from home professionals. It scans both color and B&W documents at 16ppm.
The DS-640 measures around 11. 8 inches in length and weighs close to 1. 5 pounds. Moreover, it handles a variety of documents, measuring up to 72 inches long & up to 72 lbs. bond weight paper. Be it a business trip or holiday, keep it around to easily get the jobs done.
Easily scan your business cards and ID cards like regular documents within minutes. To power, connect the DS-640 scanner via the included micro USB 3. 0 cord to a PC or laptop. Enable on-the-go scanning from anywhere virtually.
Additionally, the included driver software lets you scan multiple destinations including Files, Emails, Images, OCR, and cloud services. The DS-640 also optimizes images and text for storage and backup. You can turn your hard-copy documents into editable MS Word files with the included doc management and OCR software.
The scanner supports Linux and macOS, as well as Windows.
As for our budget pick, we’ve selected this slick, hand scanner. Don’t shrug it off cause it’s small, it works just as fine.
One great thing about this scanner is it doesn’t require any software installation. All you need are 2 AA batteries and a micro SD memory card to directly use it. Press and hold the “Scan” button for 2 seconds to switch on the device, & press “Scan” again when the green light is on. The scanner automatically moves to scan your file until the green light switches off. The displayed number increases by 1 to confirm that the scan is done.
The portable scanner can quickly scan images. You can store JPEG/PDF files in mere seconds. Simple plug and play without any software requirement. Also, the scanner is compatible with Windows 10/8/7/XP/Vista as well as Mac OS 10.4 and later versions.
Moreover, it has 3 resolution modes (300dpi, 600dpi, 900dpi) for your convenience. Choose your favorite resolution. Also, save it the clearest way as you desire. Perfect for high-quality pictures & documents. JPEG &PDF formats are all available as well.
Also supports up to 32 GB external micro SD card.
Our premium pick is also a ‘Brother’ scanner like our best selection. But it has a higher capacity & greater quality control.
The Brother wireless ADS-1700W desktop scanner offers document digitization through advanced wireless networking. It features an easy-to-use 2.8″ color touchscreen in a space-saving, transportable style.
It can scan stacks of multi-sided, color materials as well as black and white, up to 25ppm in every single pass with its motor vehicle document feeder. The scanner can take care of 20 pages at a time.
The ADS-1700W supports scanning to multiple destinations as well as files, images, OCR, emails, network, FTP, cloud services, mobile devices, and USB non-volatile storage drives.
Scan documents, receipts, and photos through the twenty-page ADF. You can also scan plastic cards as well as business cards through the dedicated card slot facing at the front.
Moreover, it offers an auto-scan feature that auto starts scanning when you drop paper into the feeder. Initiates auto scanning to a preset profile.
The scanner is also compatible with Mac, Windows, and Linux. Supports different scan drivers such as TWAIN and WIA for a wide range of functionalities.
Epson is a popular name in the world of home and office accessories. Like their regular printers and scanners, this portable scanner is also top-notch.
It’s a fast and light, portable single sheet document scanner in its class. The WorkForce ES-50 from Epson features fast scanning speed, scanning a single page within 5.5 seconds. This portable scanner may be small but it can accommodate extra-long pages, business cards, ID cards, and more.
With the Epson ScanSmart software, you can easily scan, review, and save necessary documents in different formats. What’s even cooler is that the automatic Feeding Mode combines multiple scanned pages into one file.
With the included Nuance OCR, you can create PDFs and editable MS word and excel files as well. Also, you can save the scanned documents directly to cloud storage for further convenience.
Additionally, the scanner is Windows and Mac compatible. It also includes a TWAIN driver. Simply connect to a computer via a USB port. No additional battery or power source required.
The Doxie portable scanner is a very good accessory product to scan paper, photos, business cards anywhere. Without any computer nonetheless. Simply charge up & turn it on.
First of all, the scanner is engineered for simplicity. It works without any special drivers. Just switch it on and insert your document or paper to make a digital copy within seconds.
Moreover, thanks to its tiny size, it barely occupies the size of a rolled-up magazine. Simply put it in your bag or drawer when you’re done.
The Doxie scanner generates crispy clean copies of your documents. The full-color mode works at up to 600 dpi. It also has de-skew, smart cropping, and auto contrast that make every scan look picture-perfect.
Furthermore, the scanner scans documents and uploads them to the cloud simultaneously. No risk of losing data. Upload to Dropbox, Evernote, One Note, & iCloud in a variety of formats.
Also, you can use the ABBYY OCR technology which can recognize the text in your files to create searchable PDFs. Scan up to 400 files at one charge. And up to 4000 scans internal memory.
The Brother DS-740D duplex mobile has a compact portable design. It’s simple workflow operations make it an ideal scanner for on-the-go work applications.
It can quickly scan single as well as double-sided documents at up to 16ppm speed in a single pass. You can power the DS-740 through a local micro USB 3.0 cable connection from your laptop or PC.
The portability makes this product a perfect assistant for working from home. You can also take it just about anywhere and get your works done. Moreover, it quickly scans the documents and uploads them to cloud storage.
Additionally, the Brother iPrint&Scan free software is compatible with Windows, Mac, and Linux OS. Also supports TWAIN, WIA for PC, ICA for Mac, & SANE drivers. And since you can scan two sides at once, no need to flip and rescan the same document. Saves a lot of time.
Furthermore, it also saves space with its new desk saving design. Minimum desk space required to operate the device. Also, automatic color detection settings enhance scan quality. You can further adjust image rotation, bleed through, background, and color drop.
Now it’s time for one of the most popular brands for office accessories. Introducing Canon imageFORMULA P-215II for on-the-go document scanning.
This scanner ensures an organized work environment for you. You can easily convert necessary papers & documents into digital formats. For example searchable PDFs, JPGs, MS word files, and many more.
You can also scan & directly upload to the cloud drives. Supports Google Drive, Dropbox, OneDrive, Evernote, QuickBooks Online, SharePoint, and more.
Scan anything anywhere. For faster workflow, it simultaneously scans both sides of a document. You can scan colorful pages at up to 15 pages/minute. Assisted by an automatic feeder of 20 sheets capacity.
Although the scanner works fine on Windows and Mac, it doesn’t support Linux. Comes with an included TWAIN driver. Also, the ‘plug and scan’ feature lets you quickly connect and start scanning even if you don’t have a driver installed. So, there’s that.
Furthermore, Canon backs it up with a one year warranty. Speed and safety, all in one.
The Fujitsu ScanSnap is another widely used ‘color duplex’ document scanner. It can make color scans of up to 600 dpi resolutions.
The scanner lets you sort your paperwork in a simple yet organized fashion. It creates searchable PDFs having multiple pages for better convenience. You can also scan and create editable MS Word & Excel files.
With the ScanSnap organizer, you can smartly manage your scanned documents. You can also view & edit the scans, perform searches, create filing cabinets, and more. Extract important information from your business cards, receipts, ID cards, and export them to Salesforce / CSV for saving your time in an organized way.
More importantly, scanning and preserving documents free up your work desk and lets you breathe in a clutter-free environment. The intelligent correction technology quickly runs a quality check on the scans. And eventually removes blank pages, automatically rotates upside-down documents, and enhances image quality.
The scanner furthermore supports Windows and Mac. However, it doesn’t support Linux OS.
The Magic Wand portable scanner is another top tier high-quality product. Convenient and easy to operate. It has a very fast scanning rate with up to 900 dpi scanning quality.
Digitize your documents & photos in the easiest way. The Magic Wand scanner can scan different sized photos and documents, up to 9.8″ wide. Both color or black and white in JPG or PDF formats. It also has 3 resolution settings for different scanning qualities. 300,600, & 900 dpi available.
Thanks to the optimal 900dpi resolution, you can convert your pictures & documents into high-quality digital files. 300 dpi is ideal for scanning business cards and receipts in 3s. And 600 dpi is for scanning books and documents in 4s. While the 900 dpi setting can scan high-quality photos in 5s. Better than a flatbed scanner.
Moreover, the scanner is 9.5 inches long & weighs only about 0.44lbs. So you can virtually put it anywhere. Also, it works with 2 AA batteries. No extra hassle of wires.
Although, you can still connect it to your PC via USB cables. Supports Windows, Mac, & Linux. Also comes with a 16 GB micro SD card and device driver.
The Doxie Q is an automatic document & picture scanner optimized for true mobility. It lets you scan documents virtually anywhere.
This wireless scanner doesn’t require any computer. Just switch it on and play. Comes with a rechargeable battery, foldable automatic doc feeder, an included micro SD, Wi-Fi integration, and OS apps. It’s also small & compact in size. Take it wherever you wish.
Additionally, the scanner offers simplicity as it works without any special driver software. All you have to do is flip it open, insert the paper, and start scanning. The automatic feeder tray stacks up to 8 full-color documents at a time for up to 600 dpi. You can also use Doxie’s direct doc slot for scanning all your documents and media files.
Moreover, Doxie lets you go paperless. It includes Mac and PC apps to let you sync scanned files via USB or Wi-Fi to your computer. You can organize and generate searchable PDFs of multiple pages with the ABBYY OCR technology. Also, save your files directly to cloud storage for greater accessibility.
Portable Scanner Buyer’s Guide
These days, most of us have said goodbye to their work offices for some time, maybe even permanently. We have not been glued to our desks anymore. Working from home, a cafe, or even a shared working space has become so common. That’s why our office supplies must fulfill our need for convenience and mobility in order to keep up with our workday. A portable scanner is one of the most useful office supplies.
A product we believe can help anyone on the go, not just for work purposes, is a portable scanner. From childhood photos to important receipts, a scanner that is lightweight and functional will help you save everything that matters. With simple push-button operation, you can get good quality resolution on your next scan from the comfort of your favorite spot.
Portable Scanner Types Out There
There are a few options when it comes to portable scanners available that you will want to study before making a purchase. They can vary in features, type of power supply, size of the paper they can scan, or more.
High vs. Okay Resolution
The first thing you need to know is the purpose of your purchase of a portable scanner. The type of portable scanner you need can change drastically based on what you are planning to scan. A scanner’s resolution is measured in DPI aka dots per inch.
If you intend on just scanning text documents that don’t require much detail like something that has photos or designs on it, you can go for a standard 300 DPI one. However, if you are planning on using it for multiple purposes, including photos or flyers, a 600 DPI or higher is a safer bet.
The higher the resolution you will want, the higher the budget you will need to set for the scanner. So, take your time deciding!
USB vs. Battery-Powered
The next thing you need to learn about is the power supply type of your next portable scanner. Some people prefer to charge their devices, others like to use batteries. Well, you have both options to choose from.
USB portable scanners can be connected to any USB cable into a laptop or a regular charger to charge exactly like noise cancelling earbuds. They are highly functional since you don’t have to always have batteries on hand or bother with a trip to the utility store to get your scanner going. Portable scanners usually go better with USB charging since it follows the same “on the go” methodology.
Of course, you can always go for a self-powered one aka battery-powered. Just put in its designated type of batteries and scan away.
Size and Operation
You may think there isn’t much to consider when it comes to the size of your portable scanner but we beg to differ. Just like a photo printer, there is much to consider with regard to operation in relation to size. A handheld one has a pretty compact size in comparison to a regular desktop one and requires minimal handling while it is scanning. An ultra-compact one might be more convenient in size as it can fit in your pocket but might require you to move it around a lot.
Features to Look Out for in a Portable Scanner
There are a few features that tell the best portable scanners apart from others. First of all, there aren’t many scanners that have feeders but it is a highly beneficial feature. Be sure to look for that in your next portable scanner.
Scanning both sides of a document can be super efficient and quick. So do look for that feature to save yourself some time and effort. And if you want even more efficiency, look for ones with a Wi-Fi connection that transfers the scanned files via the Internet. You would not have to find its USB cord or connect it to any cables in order to get the files in your digital space.
Another one to look out for is optical character recognition aka OCR. It is basically the converting of typed, handwritten, or printed text into machine-encoded text. This feature helps you access your files so much easier since you find each text individually. If you can’t find it in your portable scanner, you can find other third-party apps that can help.
Finally, design matters. The look of your portable scanner should match the rest of your office supplies whether they are minimal, glamorous, or otherwise. Consider the fact that you will be using it a lot and playing with it whenever you can so get a design that matches your personality and style so you always enjoy using it.
Fred splits his corporate time between the office and his WFH office. He believes that a few days of working remotely is a great way to boost productivity and employee happiness. Fred started WFH Adviser in order to share insights and products with people who are beginning their WFH journey.