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New SCSI on scanners can be fun
I have three SCSI scanners now (Microtek flatbed, Nikon film scanner, Fuji duplex sheetfed which I haven't used yet). I've found that using the standard Adaptec SCSI interface works best; others can be flaky.

I've had good experience with add on PCI USB boards. They're pretty cheap (e.g. 5 ports for <$20), the cables are much easier to deal with the SCSI (more flexible, cheaper, and far fewer versions), and there are no termination headaches.

Consider looking at eBay and elsewhere for refurbished scanners (that's where I got my Fuji). Also, I've seen new duplex sheet feeder scanners at Fry's for much less (IIRC Xerox for <$400).

I haven't yet done what you looking at doing, so I can't help more there. A typical scanner will come with OCR software; Nuance/Scansoft also sells a lot of OCR (newer version of the Caere products) and PDF software.

New Thanks, Tony. I see Fujitsu has an eBay store... :-)
New Got a refurbished Fujitsu fi-5120c on eBay.
I ended up getting a refurbished Fujitsu fi-5120c on eBay. I set it up this evening. It works fine through a USB 2.0 hub and seems to be bundled with everything one could need (when using the USB interface). The scanner itself looks new, and the Windows Control Panel indicates it has only been used for 210 pages.

It does come with rather old versions of the bundled software (Acrobat Standard 6.0, Kofax VRS 4.10, ScandAll21 4.3), but I was able to convert 6 pages of 4 column lists of names duplex printed, ~ 10 point Helvetica on thin newsprint-like paper (pages torn from a magazine), scanned duplex at 300 dpi, to an OCRed PDF very easily (with no manual intervention and no errors in the OCR). I'll probably use higher dot pitches for things that I might want to print again. I don't know if the benefits of upgrading to later versions of the software are worth it for my needs/wants just yet.

I also got a 2 meter Adaptec HD50M to HD50M cable and a Tekram DC-390U2WE PCI SCSI card to go with it, but so far it doesn't look like I'll need them. There might be a speed advantage to using SCSI, but I don't want to mess with it right now.

     Sheet-feed scanner? OCR to searchable PDF? - (Another Scott) - (3)
         SCSI on scanners can be fun - (tonytib) - (2)
             Thanks, Tony. I see Fujitsu has an eBay store... :-) -NT - (Another Scott) - (1)
                 Got a refurbished Fujitsu fi-5120c on eBay. - (Another Scott)

OK, I know most of those words...
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