Saturday , April 13 2024

The Whats and Hows of Flatbed Scanners

In the era of digitalisation, the need for physical documents has slowly decreased. But, that doesn’t mean that those physical documents aren’t needed, so there’s a need for tools that will help us get those documents in the shortest period possible. Thanks to technology we can have different devices available that can print, scan and duplicate documents in a matter of seconds, making everyone’s job in an office much easier and quicker.  So, let’s delve into the world of scanners, tools that come in handy every day whether you’re at work or at home.

How Do Flatbed Scanners Work?

flatbed scanner



Generally speaking, these devices can give you quick and more efficient results in a matter of seconds. This is because precise and user-friendly flatbed scanners typically have a glass window that is the surface where the documents or the photos you’re scanning will be placed. All you do is place the object you mean to scan with the section to be scanned facing down and close the cover. Then you press the button for scan and you’re done. But, let’s see what exactly happens inside the scanner and how it operates.

They have a built-in source of light, usually LED or fluorescent. The light source illuminates the document and this is when the actual encoding of the document happens. It has a lens, mirror filter and a CCD array, that are fixed on the top, called the scan head. An angled mirror reflects the image of the document on another mirror and then it gets reflected on the lens. The process is smooth, though it isn’t very quick since this type focuses more on quality than quantity.

Features of Flatbed Scanners

Flatbed scanners come with a variety of features to meet diverse scanning needs. Some notable features include:

  • Resolution: One of the most important qualities that these options have is the image quality which can range from 50 DPI to 4800 DPI, which can slightly reduce their speed, but the quality will be immaculate.

  • Colour quality – if you’re scanning materials such as artistic printed, magazines or anything where colour is a key part of the image, flatbed models offer true-to-life colour images.

  • Size – many devices can comfortably tackle an entire A3 document in one pass, which is an important feature since sometimes you might be dealing with larger-sized papers.


These tools are invaluable parts of offices and homes that handle fragile and valuable materials. The largest benefit of having one is their ability to work with all sorts of items, oddly shaped and sized, but that’s not their only advantage. During the scanning process, the documents lay flat on the surface and don’t have to move through a series of rollers. This reduces the risk of documents being damaged or getting stuck in the rollers and can also restore old documents without damaging them in any way.

They are also user-friendly, as the straightforward operation of simply placing an item on the glass and pressing a button makes them accessible and efficient for users of all levels of expertise, even people who aren’t tech-savvy. Another great benefit is that with these models you can save the scanned documents as PDF, JPEG files and more, turning physical documents into digital ones. This is a great option if you have documents that are old and you need to preserve them.


flatbed scanner maintenance


To ensure that the flatbed scanner is in optimal condition and performance as well as to make it last longer you need to take care of it. That includes regular cleaning. Clean the flatbed glass using a soft, lint-free cloth any timelines appear in the scan or every time you notice dust on it or fingertips because it might affect the quality of the scan.

If you use your device many times a day and if it starts jamming you need to clean it, as well as if it starts grabbing multiple pages at one time. If the colour on the scanner is starting to fade, you can take the ink cartridge and shake it before you decide that it’s time to put on another one.

When it comes to software updates, stay vigilant to keep your drives current. By staying up-to-date, you will maximise the functionality of the device as well as ensure compatibility with the latest technologies and new features that might come with the updates. In addition to technical maintenance, pay attention to the physical handling of the documents. Applying gentle pressure on the cover is essential to prevent any potential damage to the documents and the device.

They’ve undoubtedly become essential for businesses, offices and individuals who need to capture, duplicate or digitalise documents and even art. Flatbed options offer versatility, and high-quality scanning resolution and they are easy to use, making them quite the popular choice among people. Their adaptability in handling a wide range of materials, whether it be old manuscripts or office documents provides a reliable means for a quicker and easier work environment in which the copyroom isn’t filled with people trying to figure out how to fix the scanner.