Fujitsu SV600

A book scanner

On going adventures - as of January 1, 2015

Why can't he/I make the software do what it says it will do??

Table of Contents

Summary
- Hardware seems very good
- Software is unbelievably frustrating, a killer. I gave up.
- - among other things, seemingly hundreds of little, unconnected, hard to find, menus.

Background Books & Tech Manuals, I scan lots of them
I can't imagine anyone buying a $600 Fujitsu SV600 and dedicating 8 square feet of desk space just to occasionally scan some business cards and kid's scrawlings. For these I suggest a $60 USB powered scanner you can disconnect and hide in a drawer. If you can't line up some business cards straight, ah - what to say ??

Fujitsu ads and videos feature these occasional, light duty, uses.
I suggest for the SV600 investment in cash and space, a user wants to do serious scanning, such as books and magazines.

Of course, if you have an SV600 installation, you want it to handle "small stuff ;-))" conveniently also. No need to drag out some $60 scanner -

Over the years I have scanned and posted lots of technical manuals, and maybe 5 books, using primarily a flat bed scanner. These have the problems of:
     - not scanning well into the "gutter"
     - labor intensive
     - stressing the bindings
(If they can be unbound, then rebound I have used a sheet feed scanner. :-))

Wishing to scan more, faster, more conveniently and with higher quality, I have been very interested in

  • Expensive ( > $1,000 book scanners) - but this is just a hobby -
  • Construction intensive Do-it-Yourself scanners are scary when it comes to dual camera triggering, rather fussy processing, and not very portable.
  • The Fujitsu SV600, about $700 at the time, cool but did I want to get in that far???
  • A commercial flat bed scanner especially for books with "gutters" between pages.
    Plustek OpticBook 3800 Book Scanner - about $210 from Amazon
    the post 2012 reviews are somewhat more friendly, but book flipping is tedious. maybe do left sides then right sides into separate files, flip one file, and merge ???

A friend purchased a Fujitsu SV600
Then a friend
  • Rescued about 500 pounds of books from a disbanded commercial research library
  • Purchased a Fujitsu SV600 to scan the books for others to study.
  • After some months got frustrated with the software, and let me borrow the Fujitsu SV600.
I found the same frustration with the software, and called Fujitsu tech support.

Fujitsu SV600 hardware, cool ;-))

image from Fujitsu
Fujitsu SV600 hardware is a really neat concept, and seems compact, well made, and working well. The top part contains the scanning motor, lamp, camera, ?and infra-red hand sensor?

The non-flat page, scanned at an angle, is somewhat distorted as scanned, let the software flatten and undistort the image :-)) And if you wish, remove finger tips flattening the page.

His/my vexation with Fujitsu SV600 software.
Why can't he/I make the software do what it says it will do??
OK, here we go.

My friend was (deliberately) not specific about what was deficient with the software - Maybe to let me rediscover it if applicable.

So I did the usual installation of hardware and software, and downloaded the latest software from the Fujitsu web site, just fine. The user's manual is a combo manual describing multiple scanners, with exceptions for this and that one - I found it excessively confusing, so charged on to see what would happen uninstructed.


image from Fujitsu
Soon I had scanned say ten pages, stopped,
and was presented with
Look, that smart software knows what to do :-))
so I saved the images into the default date-time named .pdf file
And the SnapScan window "exit"ed, went away.
    That's right, poof, disappeared, didn't even ask if I wanted to do more -

OK, lets scan a larger sample of about 20 double pages :-))
    Must restart SnapScan Manager again.
and was presented with an image of the first page, with apparent red lines to outline the double page of the first scan.
(Note that the second scan has already been flattened. ?? - why ??)
The mouse moved the corners just fine, and intelligent seeming software wrapped the red lines to match the top and bottom curved page images !!!
OK, I can outline this, and did
Lets correct "ALL"
But, it only corrects one !! ???
    Level 2 tech support says "ALL" means one -

The third, and most of the rest are uncorrected :-((

Mostly, the operator (me) must correct each image - NO FUN AT ALL

It Vexes me that this really great software does not work most of the time
Is there some magic spell that I forget to use ??
Am I missing something?? what ??

Fujitsu support seems great, but I'm still vexed :-((
Well friends - Fujitsu support - (800) 626-4686 :
  • Level 1 answers the phone quickly, a couple of minutes max, :-))
  • And stays with the the problem. We used "TeamViewer" so that he could see what I was seeing, and control the mouse. We struggled, scanning and correcting for over an hour. He was concerned that the "gutter" (he had another term) moved sideways too much due to varying thumb pressure.
    This problem is assigned "Case:1471234"
  • That night I built a little "carriage" to support the sides of the book (about 30 degrees) so that I didn't have to touch the book during scanning - no improvement -
  • - and the next day - another hour of experiment and struggle. He collected some system data and files.
  • Then Level 2 called - and we tried more tricks She e-mailed
    (ScanButton Settings -> 
    "Scanning" tab -> 
    Color mode = color -> 
    click "Option" button ->
    "Image Quality" tab ->
     "Thicken color images" checkbox)
    That turned out to be too cryptic for me - so we worked through it.
    I don't like the Fujitsu SnapScan menu structure - I started to make a map, and gave up-
  • Level 2 and myself have talked several times and exchanged several e-mails.
    Finally she suggested that I gather the info so she could forward it to Japan Engineering.
    I hope this document provides a good start
    I suggest
    - - the user be given an option of "goodness of fit" for multiple pages
    - - a user manual be made specific to an SV600 family scanner
    ed@ed-thelen.org or 510-742-1146
  • Sept 25, 2014, Fujitsu Customer_Advocate US, called - the discussion was about customer satisfaction and business, not technical issues. This page is about techie issues.

That wierd SV600 ScanSnap Manager User Interface :-(( - misspelling intentional
Ah yes, Graphical User Interface ?weaknesses?
  1. I do not get an Icon on the "Desk Top"
    There is an icon near the lower right corner called "Show Hidden Icons"
    with things like "Safely Remove Hardware
  2. In there is an icon with a white "S" on a blue field with a red bar through it
    with pop-up text "[SnapScan Manager] Right Click Menu"
  3. Right clicking on the icon (Left clicking is usual for both Windows and Apple) yields several unhelpful sounding options:
  4. Hmmm, what to do? How to start??
    Lets start with "To establish connection"
    That brings up "Troubleshooting", I didn't know I had a trouble :-|

    On the left is "Removing a Document Jam"
        ?How can my SV600 have a document jam?? I move all the paper !!
    OH - On the right you see a list of different Fujitsu scanners, some that move paper can apparently jam -
    Are we dealing with a document that discusses all Fujitsu product lines ??? GADS !!!
    Clicking on the X in the upper right corner - exits - completely - have to find the icon again
  5. OH - the SV600 was turned off, let's turn it on -
    Back to the original icon - It's different - does not have the red bar in it -
    Lets click it

I quit for now Sept 25, 2014

Suggestions for ScanSnap Manager as of Sept 25, 2014
I have just placed an order for - "Programming Windows®, Fifth Edition (Developer Reference)" Hardcover – December 2, 1998 by Charles Petzold - (I have no wish to learn the Windows 8 API)
This way I can:
     - make API suggestions to Fujitsu (who am I kidding ;-))
     - or have a basis for a private effort if I wish -

  1. Place the ScanSnap Manager icon in the usual place on the desk top, along with the "ScanSnap Organizer" and "CardMinder" icons which the installer has placed there. (Why put the ScanSnap Manager icon in some obscure place ???)
  2. The obscurely placed ScanSnap Manager icon changes with the on-line vs off-line status of the SV600. This may be cute, but most computer users are not used to this "feature". Why not show the SV600 status in the ScanSnap Manager window where users expect it ??
  3. Start with a usual Apple or Microsoft window
    1. with the usual view control - minimize, toggle of size (full screen, small), terminate.
    2. on the top line also have an "Help" selection so you can at least see:
      - help topics (for SV600 or related machines only - no paper jam discussion ;-)
      - the software revision level
more to come -

Instructions for using SV600 with glass flattening as of Sept 25, 2014
The page flattening software seems excessively inconvienent
- so lets try flattening with a glass plate

The SV600 has several advantages for scanning
    - very nice depth of field (focus is still good an inch or so off optimum )
    - illumination is good
    - don't have to flip the document about as with a flat bed scanner
    
so lets try to use the SV600 with
    - a glass plate to use help flatten the book
    - use Adobe Acrobat in post processing to crop the resulting .pdf file

When using 2 hands to hold the glass, you need some means of starting a scan     The auto-scan function can get fooled when flipping glass      - starting a scan too soon!
A USB foot pedal costs about $100.
A homemade foot switch operated glass control sounds better (discussion below) (manually adjusted hinge height?)

Glass plate flattening can also be used with a single camera book scanning system, but the SV600 already has a lighting system. Both the SV600 and camera need a method of catching an image as both hands are holding the glass.

About using a foot switch with ScanSnap
from FAQ
http://www.fujitsu.com/global/support/computing/peripheral/scanners/ssfaq/sv600.html
ScanSnap SV600 When setting up your scanner -QA5-

Q11. 	Can I use a commercially available foot switch to start/stop scanning?
A11. 	Yes, you can use a foot switch to start/stop scanning with SV600 using the 
		available shortcut keys (keyboard shortcut) shown below.
	Shortcut Keys 	Description 	Equivalent Action in ScanSnap
	Shift + Ctrl + Alt + F1 	Start Scanning 	Press the [Scan] button
	Shift + Ctrl + Alt + F2 	Stop Scanning 	Press the [Stop] button
	Shift + Ctrl + Alt + F3 	Start Scanning a book/magazine 	Hold down the 
					[Scan] button for 2 seconds or longer (to 
					enable page turning detection)
	- To use a foot switch, you need to update the ScanSnap Manager (for Windows®) 
		to the latest version (V6.2L13 or later).
	- To use this function, you need to have a foot switch that allows you to change 
		the registered shortcut keys.
	- Refer to the foot switch manual for the settings or operations.

- more to come

December 2014 Update :-((
December 23th a yellow box appeared in the lower right of my monitor saying something about "SV600 Update". As I moved my mouse toward it, the box disappeared.

OK, lets check for an update, so I went groping about in Fujitsu.com for scanner and support. Lot of sales stuff, no support tab or indication of support to be found.

OK, lets call the US Fujitsu support (about 15 miles away). As usual the telephone automation was short and I was talking to support in less than half a minute. Unfortunately that is the last good news :-((

I am assigned "Service Request 1557408" as the previous service request was closed - referred to Japan -

OK, to check for updates, RIGHT click on the tiny little icon .
That icon is a metaphor for how far "out of this world" Fujitsu interface is :

  1. It is in a non-standard location for applications - not on the usual "desk top".
  2. A red circle with a red line through it is a universal sign for "Forbidden",
    - as a highway sign, with a right turn arrow, "Forbidden to turn right"
    - also used for international "No Parking" indication
    - thinking logically, a person should not click on that symbol
  3. the blue field with a white "S" is supposed to indicate FujitsuSV600 ???? - Sure -
  4. If you ignore the standard "Forbidden" indication ( 2 above ) and left click on it,
    you are given "
Here I have Left clicked on the "Forbidden" icon

What ever that means ??? - There is no indication anywere that the "Quick Menu" is active -
The PC was rebooted an hour ago for a different update -

So, I connected the SV600 and turned it on,
OH LOOK, the Red Circle and Red Bar - "Forbidden" - have disappeared
- leaving the white "S" in blue circle
Here is a picture of Right clicking on the icon
  • No update option,
  • The update option is under the "Help" option
    as "Online update..."
Evidently in the Fujitsu world the universal "Forbidden" means "not connected". - go figure -


OH - the not good news -
After the several hundred megabyte update of everything, the original problem remains -

July 2015 Update :-(((
I guess I don't know when to quit :-((
Well - the flaky-fluky Fujitsu software can't handle books whose pages are not flat. But now I have been lent
- some flat laying 8.5 x 11 inch computer manuals and brochures,
- plus a 1.5 inch thick 3 hole punched A-3 sized Nike schematic.
- - A-3 size is 17 x 11 inches

The material lies very flat or almost flat, no need for the Fujitsu to attempt to flatten a curved page book.

So I borrow the Fujitsu SV600 again, reload the CDROM software and get the latest updates from the Fujitsu web site. Start on the computer stuff. I like to retain color and gray scale (for covers and pictures) as well as black&white.
Woops - can't change mode in a scan session ?? !! ??

So another call to Fujitsu support 15 miles away, and as usual get tech support quickly :-))
That was the good news - bad news follows
Indeed you really can't change color/gray-scale/b&w in one file.
Using a screen sharing scheme, the tech fixes me up with three mode selections (removing automatic rotate which is whakky !! ).

  1. Click on the desired mode, and start scanning.
  2. When I want to change modes, I end the current scan session,
  3. Do the single page from double page thing, and save the file.
    and if not at the end of the manual, go to 1) above

At the end of a manual I have a number of files. I start up Adobe Acrobat to combine the files into one .pdf.

So I did about 13 manuals and pamphlets - a bit of a pain, but do-able :-|

Front Cover

Back Cover
OH - The FORTRAN manual with the mostly black cover ;-))
The SV600 uses a black background to determine the edge of the document, chopping off the background. This usually works just fine - but not with say a mostly black document cover. It trimed off all but the brown and white sectioon. So I scanned the covers with a different (flat bed) scanner, put it all together, and got a nice result.



Then the really bad news - the A-3 size, 1.5 inch thick Nike Hercules system computer schematic.
First thing, the SV600 software trimmed off most of the cover of this manual.
The actual cover of the Technical Manual, became (below) A tiny fraction of the real thing - the SV600 trimed off maybe 95% of the cover.
OK - I can use a flat bed scanner "to do the right thing" as with the mostly black FORTRAN manual cover above :-|

Then I divided the 1.5 inch thick manual into six parts so that if something bad happened, all would not be lost.
Two and a half hours later I'm done - just combine them with Adobe Acrobat.
Here is a screen shot I took to try to stay organized about file names.
But when I went to load them into Adobe Acrobat, they had disappeared
Utterly disappeared !! Not even in the "Recycle Bin" for recovery.
Two and a half hours of shuffling and flipping A-3 size paper, lost - forever - somewhere ???
Tried scanning three pages - OK - There is the file -
So I tried a 50 page section - and that file disappeared !! ?? !!
I give up - the thick Nike computer schematic (TM9-1430-251-12/3) will remain on paper only -
Or should I try to explain that to Fujitsu tech support ?? - They are polite, but may wonder about me -

In any case, Fujitsu SV600 software isn't ready for prime time, or me -