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On September 29, I asked on this list if anyone had experience with the new
OpticBook book scanner.  I heard from no one who had used it, but several
who were curious, as there is a need for an affordable book scanner.  The
OpticBook costs only $250.  http://www.plustek.com/products/book.htm

We purchased the scanner, used it for a couple days, and sent it back.  The
scanner works fine for books, but it did not work for bound journals.  The
scanner is designed to scan up to 6mm from the spine.  As you know, many
bound journals have printing closer to the spine than 6mm and that printing
was cut off.  We tried scooting the journal over a quarter inch, but then we
got a black stripe.  The tech support person at the company was quickly
accessible and tried to help, but the scanner can't do something it isn't
made to do.

As affordable as the OpticBook is, you may want it at your library just for
scanning books and use something else for scanning bound journals.  If you
decide to use it for scanning books into Ariel, be aware that there are
compatibility issues with the current version of Ariel.  It can be done in a
round-about way (email me for details).  Hopefully the coming new version of
Ariel will work easily with the OpticBook.

For our operation, we only have space and money for one scanner.  We are now
considering making photocopies of bound journals, as we have been, and
adding a document feeder to the flatbed scanner we have.  That would save a
little time at least.


Beth Treaster, MSLIS
Health Sciences Library
Saint Francis Hospital
6161 S Yale
Tulsa, OK  74136

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