Whilst not the most exciting product, this is perhaps for me has actually been the best technology product I have ever bought!

Yes, I rate this above all the smartphones, tv's, Sonos speakers, laptops etc I have ever owned.

It is not the most exciting but for what it does, it is just fantastic. It just works and for the money I have no reason to grumble.

What is it? The Fujitsu Image Scanner ScanSnap iX500.

Now a slight disclaimer here is that I am not nor have not used this to it's fullest. There are countless features that it has so I am no product guru, but I purchased this to achieve a couple of specific goals and wow it does just that.

My aim was to take all the paper in my life and electronically store it.

I am a premium subscriber to Evernote and have been for a few years. For me I am happy with what I get for the money. I have various notebooks within it for work and personal items.

I wanted to get all that boring paperwork into Evernote. Be that from household bills through to other important documentation. This scanner does it incredibly well.

In short the iX500 can scan single or double-sided documents super quick. It takes about 2 seconds per sheet of A4 paper and from this you can do a whole variety of things with that scanned content.

You can save scans as .pdf's or JPG's, set it to complete OCR, change the file size and quality, set it to ignore blank pages, enhance elements and lots more.

As you can imagine I have it set to scan and import directly into Evernote.

It connects either via USB or via WiFi and can scan and import documents into Evernote within a matter of seconds. Those documents are then searchable thanks to OCR, so that when I am next looking for my latest utility bill all I need search for are any details that could be on that document, if I do not want to navigate through the notebooks within Evernote.

With a simple flick of a button in the ScanSnap software, you can have it save files to your computers document folder if you wish, or to your smartphone.

I recently decided to digitize some childhood photos from back in the day when you printed pictures. OK a scan of a print is not ideal but it served the purpose. Within just a couple of hours I had over 1000 photos scanned into my PC. Imagine doing that on flatbed scanner with no automatic document feeder. I must add how impressed I was with the quality given it was a scan of a printed image, many of which had a gloss finish.

There is an automatic feeder mechanism so you can have multiple documents in the tray and scanned at once of you can complete one by one, depending on your preferences.

If it jams, one button gives access to the jammed paper and easily remove it.

I have been using for about a year now and have had no issues with it.

It is far from exciting, but what makes this so great is that it was simple to setup and configure and has made boring tasks easier.

Helped for me by the OCR and search in Evernote particularly your potential use case may well be different, but many advantages can come from it.

Work in an office? Want a digital copy of all those paper invoices or worksheets you complete. Consider it done.

You are looking at around £350 so it is not cheap and appeals more to business users, but this likely has a usable life of 10 years which I consider good value.

There are some videos online showing it in action with more hands on detail etc.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UUVHfL82iEE

For anyone wanting to do away with paper or if nothing else have a digital copy this is worthy of consideration.

http://www.fujitsu.com/uk/products/computing/peripheral/scanners/scansnap/ix500/

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