Recently I had to scan a large batch of images – bah humbug.
I was using one of the HP Scanner Printer all in ones that have become pretty popular in recent times, and previously relied on the HP software that comes with it – HP Scan Pro. If you’ve used it you’ll know why I was less than enthusiastic to get started on the job.
Having read somewhere (TUAW or similar) that Image Capture had been updated in Snow Leopard, I thought that I would give it a go.
If you’re not familiar with it don’t worry I don’t think most people even know they have it, but as long as I have been using Mac OSX I am pretty sure its been part of the standard inclusions. I think I had opened it a couple of times but always left unimpressed.
What a pleasant surprise it was. Ok so maybe simple stuff but without messing with the configuration, right out of the box, I could load four photos on the scanner, it would detect each one and save each one to a separate file.
I did play with the file format a bit, ending up with Tiff over JPG that kind of thing but within minutes and 3 or 4 test scans I was away.
Now this is the really cool bit.
The HP all in one that I was using (C4385) comes with wifi capabilities. For two years or so I have been using it and for printing wireless was never a problem. Once it was setup it just worked.
Scanning however was another story. I had tried numerous times to get it to work but never would it give up its secrets on just how to make it happen. So working away scanning my batch of photos, I noticed that in the left of the Image Capture main window, were listed two scanners. One under devices and one under shared.
The focus of the afternoon was to get the photos done – I was not in the mood to mess around for hours again, but curiosity prevailed. I pulled out the USB cable and while the top one in devices disappeared, the bottom one was still there.
Sure enough I tried scanning again the last photo that I had to do and it worked!
I don’t have access to a Mac running 10.5 at the moment so I can’t say for sure that the older versions of Image Capture would not also be as helpful but certainly in Snow Leopard it works – very well.
While Image Capture does other things, quick imports of images from a camera etc.. scanning is really the first time I have really used it and found it to be very good.
Now I am off to see what else is lurking in my Applications folder that I have totally ignored!