PDFScanner - Simple document scanning and OCR
By Felix Rotthowe
Open the Mac App Store to buy and download apps.
There are many applications for macOS that allow scanning of images or text. Most of them are however complex, slow or not really suited for scanning documents or letters.
PDFScanner has been created with one simple task in mind: Scanning and archiving documents as quick and easy as possible, and making them findable with Spotlight search.
When performing OCR, PDFScanner adds the recognized text directly to the scanned image as an invisible layer, so the text can be selected and copied just like in other PDF files.
PDFScanner supports the following features:
• Support for all scanners that are supported by the macOS Image Capture application (please check that using the scanner in Image Capture works before purchasing to be sure)
• Optical character recognition to make the document searchable, allow to find it via Spotlight and other search tools or copy the text.
• Supported OCR languages: English, German, French, Spanish, Italian, Dutch, Portuguese, Swedish, Danish, Norwegian and Finnish
• Intuitive and fast user interface to reorder, delete or edit pages
• Fully automatic straightening of crooked pages (deskew)
• Full multithreading support. Scanning, OCR and straightening is done on multiple pages in parallel and you can even reorder or delete pages while PDFScanner is still working
• „Fake Duplex“ mode to simplify scanning of double sided documents without a duplex scanner
• Saving to PDF (optionally compressing the scan inside the PDF to save disk space). PDFScanner can perform super high compression for monochrome scans (usually < 50kb per page including OCR text)
• Customizable file name patterns (include for example date, time and machine name in the filename) - PDFScanner can even guess the document title and date from the OCR text.
• It is also possible to open or import existing PDF documents and perform OCR on them via a menu option (the language can be set in the Preferences).
• Advanced users can use the included Automator action to create custom OCR workflows or folder actions
PDFScanner runs on Yosemite, El Capitan and Sierra and is only available on the Mac App Store.
What's New in Version 1.11.6
Compatibility update for macOS 10.12.2
Terrific for Book Scanning
Though I already owned a PDF editor that costs six times as much as PDFScanner, I was initially attracted to the app because (as far a I can tell) it's the only one on the market that can quickly and efficiently turn the two-page book scans that result when a book is placed face down on a scanner or photocopier into two separate single page scans. While this may seem like a quirky requirement, it makes reading scanned books and articles considerably easier on my iPad and (at least for me) easily justified the reasonable price. I've regularly used it to do new scans with my Canon 900F Mark II and have been consistently impressed by the speed and efficiency of the program. The interface is nicely designed and makes book scanning simple and the deskewing feature does a great job of keeping the scans properly oriented. PDF Scanner makes my Canon behave like a dedicated book scanner at a fraction of the cost.
The more I used it, the clearer it became that there was no reason to use any other PDF app. It outshines my more expensive PDF app when it comes to performing OCR: it does a better job and is much more reliable. It’s also much more stable and easily processes large pdfs (i.e., over 200 pages) that routinely crash other apps. There’s simply no reason to pay more: this is the best.
Finally, the developer has been very responsive and quick to answer questions and offer help.
WOW! Awesome! An Essential for paper cutters everywhere!
I am a long time paper cutter. I’ve been fighting with applications like Acrobat to do the simple job of scanning for too long. PDFScanner is THE utility I would have designed if I knew how.
I use an Epson GT-S50 and was thrilled to find that it works with the Epson driver without having to go through their interface, just one click and it’s scanning.
I especially like that it can do each operation independent of the others: Scan, Deskew, OCR. I have long suspected that the bottleneck was the software not the scanner, this proves it. With PDFScanner my GT-S50 never stops. It has MORE than doubled my throughput. I am no longer waiting for the scanner, it is waiting for me. Even 50 page duplex documents FLY through it.
If you are a interested in getting rid of a mountain of paper, Get PDFScanner. Need a scanner that works great with it, get a GT-S50 and I know you won’t be dissapointed.
Used daily for business and personal use!
I love this app. I spent a long time trying to find the best way to scan in my documents and make them look clean without much work. My old method was to scan the file in, edit it in photoshop to get it the way I want, then have to compress it. But this app I can just scan them in, and with my Epson DS-560 it make double sided papers even more so a breeze. Much appreciated to the developers for making this app!