Is there a scanner that can scan sketchbook pages without ripping them out?
February 9, 2005 8:25 AM   Subscribe

Searching for a specific type of book scanner....maybe it only exists in my imagination, but I would like to scan sketchbook pages without ripping them out...{mi}

Basically I'm looking for something smaller than a big "flatbed scanner" ...but the "portable" scanners where you feed a sheet in will not work either. What I'm imagining is something you can place on top of a sketchbook page...almost like a mini version of the lid of a copy machine. 5x7 or 8x10 would be ideal. I've searched everywhere for "book scanners" and "portable scanners" and not found anything. Any help would be appreciated! Maybe I just don't know what they might be called. Thank you :)
posted by eileen to Shopping (8 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I'm prettty sure this exists only in your imagination. Maybe someone else will come along and prove me wrong, though!

However, Canon does make flatbed scanners that are roughly the same size as a laptop computer (and actually weigh less); you could conceivably carry one of those around fairly discreetly. You can also try searching on "handheld scanner"--the ones you drag down a page. They're kind of outdated but readily available on eBay, and if you have a steady hand with a pencil you might also have enough coordination to use one well.

Also, Khoi Vinh recommends making your own sketchbooks with a looseleaf-style system, which wouldn't solve your current problem but would make future scanning much easier.
posted by bcwinters at 9:29 AM on February 9, 2005

I suggest a digital camera. Since I got mine, I don't even use my scanner anymore. With a little setup, they work great for capturing sketches and the like.
posted by kindall at 10:42 AM on February 9, 2005

In an earlier AskMe thread, I mentioned the Hp CapShare 920 handheld copier. It might be close to what you're looking for.
posted by Smart Dalek at 10:44 AM on February 9, 2005

A friend of mine has been scanning artwork with this HP see-through scanner. The screen is 8"x11.7". I've seen it at Best Buy, so it shouldn't be too hard to find, and it's cheap.
posted by me3dia at 11:36 AM on February 9, 2005

They used to make scanners to do exactly what you want. Weirdly, they don't seem to do it any more. But, you can find some of the old ones on ebay...if you have a computer with the right bus/ports stilll.
posted by felix at 2:42 PM on February 9, 2005

There's this scanner, which allows itself to be tucked close to the spine of an open book. $300 is a bit steep, if you ask me.

And there is a modern version of those old handheld scanners.

The device you really want is still in the prototype phase.
posted by O9scar at 3:23 PM on February 9, 2005

I would think maybe a scanner designed for the blind? (like the kind that's used to scan books in and put them through OCR software). I'm not sure whether or not these can be used for pictures, but it's worth checking out, especially if you or someone you know has the skills to tweak with the software.
posted by duck at 9:39 PM on February 9, 2005

Response by poster: Excellent suggestions. It's good to confirm that the exact thing I want does not in fact exist, so I don't drive myself bonkers searching for it ;)...I'll be looking at all these options now. Thanks!
posted by eileen at 7:06 AM on February 10, 2005

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