Thursday, February 09, 2006

Kirtas introduced a manual book scanner

I hadn't noticed this previously, but Kirtas has introduced a manual book scanner that can be converted to be an automatic book scanner. The BookScan 800 can reportedly digitize 800 pages per hour, when operated manually. The press release, however, doesn't state if that is when the machine is operated manually or automatically. Only the page turning is done manually. The machine does still have some automatic features, like how it fluffs the pages and clamps the books.

If the APT 1200 machines sells for an estimated $120,000 and the new APT 2400 sells for $250,000 (according to someone who went to the ALA mid-winter conference), then how inexpensive is the BookScan 800?

The BookScan 800 has a list price of $89,000. Is comparable in price and technology to the Scribe machine developed by Brewster Kahle? (Or maybe the question should be is it lower in price yet with better technology?) [Actually the rumor is that the Scribe is lower in price and lower in quality, but that is just the rumor. I'd like to hear from someone who has a Scribe machine OR hear from Brewster Kahle -- or a rep -- about the machine.]

This is all very interesting...

Originally posted on Feb. 7. Updated Feb. 9 with additional information in blue. Post on the APT 2400 is here.

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Anonymous said...

I spoke with a sales rep yesterday regarding this scanner. It is manual. The devise still has the clamps but does not have the overhead vacuum that grabs the pages. The operator has to click the photo button once the page is turned.

Jill Hurst-Wahl said...

According to the press release, it is upgradable. The press release says:

"The BookScan 800 is the only manual book scanner on the market that is upgradeable from manual to automatic."

But from what you're saying, I guess the assumption is that the 800 pages per hour is for the manual operations. Hopefully more information on this machine will be made available.

Anonymous said...

There is a fair bit of competition for the market in which the 800 sits, pricewise. For example, the CopiBook from i2s (a partner of 4DigitalBooks, the Swiss manufacturer).

It can do individual pages up to A3 in size (total scanning area being A2), and the price is less than US$50,000 for the top of the line color model. I understand they have sold quite a few of these to libraries in Europe, where the price is Euro 28,500. The benefit being that it is very simple for even a casual user to operate, all settings are done automatically. Also, it doesn't use any additional light source, it makes do with ambient light in the room. Which should make librarians happy as the book will not be exposed to any excess UV light.

Anonymous said...

If you want manual scanning at around 700 pages an hour, at a price range of around $8,000 to $10,000, take a look at the Atiz BookDrive DIY.

I have used both the Kirtas scanner, and this Atiz scanner, and for the price the Atiz scanner is impressive.