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Fujitsu fi-7300NX review: Stellar standalone scanning

There are a fair few scanners out there with built-in wireless networking, but the fi-7300NX is one of the few to support 802.11ac Wi-Fi. That lets it deliver scans over the network at the fastest possible speeds – a smart feature for a scanner that’s capable of 60ppm. And for wired connections there’s Gigabit Ethernet and high-speed USB 3, too.

The fi-7300NX’s other standout feature is its software support: Fujitsu’s extensive app bundle lets you choose between host-based, network or hostless operation.

For host-based scanning, you simply connect the scanner via USB to a PC and install Fujitsu’s PaperStream Capture software. This provides scan workflow management and batch processing functions, and comes partnered with the basic ScanSnap Manager, ScanSnap for fi, ScandAll Pro and ABBYY FineReader OCR software. For network scanning, Fujitsu’s PaperStream IP software integrates with the PaperStream Capture image-processing app to enable remote scan operations. Or, your third option is to install the standalone PaperStream NX Manager app on a server somewhere on your network and use this to remotely manage the scanner, and set up batch scanning and authentication services.

Whichever method you choose, you’ll be pleased with the fi-7300NX’s performance. Using PaperStream Capture over the network, we were able to scan in 30 double-sided bank statements at a solid 60ppm in both colour and greyscale, and at both 200dpi and 300dpi.

Even at 600dpi, the scanner still managed 12ppm – although, as usual, you’ll probably never need this mode, as output quality at 200dpi is easily good enough for document archival systems. We had no problems using OCR to produce accurate, searchable PDFs at this quality setting – and when we tested the scanner with a mixture of till receipts and waybills, the paper-protection feature detected when two items overlapped and stopped the sheet feeder before an error or any damage could occur.

For convenient, consistent scanning, PaperStream Capture lets you set up profiles that combine scan settings, destinations and page indexing preferences. You can also choose between the local or network driver, select output scan settings and define destinations such as local folders, network locations, email and FTP or SharePoint servers – although cloud locations aren’t supported.

There’s also a helpful set of document-separation options, which make it easy to scan lots of individual items in one go. The scanner can recognise blank pages, or split documents according to page counts, predefined OCR zones or barcodes. Add the paid-for Pro upgrade and you can automatically extract data from documents while they’re being scanned.

Once your scan jobs have been configured, they can be set to appear on the scanner’s 4.3in touchscreen for easy walk-up operation. If you need to restrict access, security options include Active Directory integration and custom group codes, which you can enter to gain access to specified scanning tasks.

The final feather in the Fujitsu fi-7300NX’s hat is a powerful web console. From here you can create scan jobs, add them to groups and set them to appear on the scanner’s touchscreen. You can even use Fujitsu’s SDKs to create custom web apps, add NFC or external authentication and integrate scan functions with existing document management systems.

It really is an impressively comprehensive package; factor in those unbeatable connectivity options and great performance, and the Fujitsu fi-7300NX is a superb choice for businesses seeking a scanner that’s fast and flexible.

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