Droid Scan vs. CamScanner vs. Document Scanner

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  1. UncleMike

    UncleMike Well-Known Member

    The ability to scan documents using my phone, with perspective correction and/or cropping, has seemed like a cool idea to me, but I never had a real use for it until recently. I discovered that Droid Scan Lite is now free, and there's a brief period during which you can buy the upgrade (to Droid Scan Pro) for $2.99, so I started looking at the various apps that can do this, including the ones in the title above.

    Thinking I would opt for Droid Scan, I purchased the upgrade, but am now faced with keeping or refunding my purchase, and am having a hard time deciding between these apps.

    Can anyone out there with experience with one or more of these apps enlighten me with why you chose the app you did?

  2. Harry2

    Harry2 Well-Known Member

    If you only need a simple ORC app, you should try 'Copy Paste It'.
    The app converts a screenshot into a text.

    And for copy and paste function the app is great, too :)

    Copy Paste It - Android

  3. UncleMike

    UncleMike Well-Known Member

    I don't currently have a need for OCR, but I can't say that I never will. Mainly what I'm looking for is equivalent of a flatbed scanner, where I can make an image of something, and later print it or add it to an existing PDF (using Acrobat on my PC).

    The big feature for me is perspective correction and cropping, so I can end up with a rectangular image of just the document. My primary use at this time is to scan letter size documents and email them, when a fax is not available, or to scan checks before depositing them.

    As far as perspective correction and cropping goes, CamScanner's UI is okay, Droid Scan's is excellent, and Document Scanner's is horribly crude.

    My main complaint with Droid Scan is that even with the scan resolution set st "Ultra", a scan of a letter size document results in a PDF with a thin (3/8"?) border around the document image on a letter size page, meaning that a printed copy would not be the same size as the original. A secondary complaint is that their integration with Google Docs requires me to provide my name and password to the app - very sloppy, considering that there are ways for an app to access an account by being granted access, instead of me having to disclose my account credentials to a third party.

    My main complaint with Document Scanner is the almost useless perspective correction / cropping interface - it's horribly inaccurate and you can't see what you're moving because your finger is on top of it. Both of the others have a zoomed in view that is separate from the area under your finger, so you can see what you're doing, and both are a lot less sensitive (easier to be accurate).

    For CamScanner, I can't put my finger on it, but there's something about it I don't like.
  4. Harry2

    Harry2 Well-Known Member

    Ok, I understand :)

    I thought maybe you would like a work-around for this disadvantages of this pdf "pictures" docments.

  5. braj

    braj Well-Known Member

    I like CamScanner a lot. Works very well for me.
  6. UncleMike

    UncleMike Well-Known Member

    Something I'm noticing while comparing CamScanner with Document Scanner is that Document Scanner produces MUCH BIGGER files than CamScanner does for the same document and lighting conditions.

    I'm going to do some comparisons with sample documents and see what results I get. Unfortunately (for this purpose) I uninstalled/refunded the Droid Scan upgrade last night during my 24-hour window. The free version can still generate JPG files though, so I can get some basis for comparison even without converting to PDF.
  7. Tre Lawrence

    Tre Lawrence Well-Known Member

    Camscanner, at first glance, seemed (to me) to be a novelty item... till a few minutes ago. My M-I-L had an OLD newspaper clipping that contained a valued recipe.

    Used Camscanner to move this quickly, and emailed it to the wife's Hero. Quick, smooth, effective.
  8. chrlswltrs

    chrlswltrs Well-Known Member

    I am going to keep an eye on this thread because it is nice to have an app like this when you need it. I just want to know which is the best before I buy one
  9. UncleMike

    UncleMike Well-Known Member

    My recent uses have been capturing an image of a check before depositing it (twice). I normally scan them at home, but got the checks and wanted to deposit them without stopping at home first. In this case, having them in PDF format was great because that's the way they're stored when I scan them at home.

    Today my son had to return to school to get something he forgot, and wanted to be able to be able to work on something at home that he would otherwise have work on only at school. I quickly snapped a picture of it with CamScanner, and easily printed it when we got home. In this case it was much easier to print from a PDF, and the automatic edge detection made it so I didn't have all the background stuff in the printed copy at home.

    So far, my impressions are that Droid Scan has the best cropping and perspective correction UI and most flexible settings for image capture, but the rest of the app seems unfinished or crude; Document Scanner seems to have the most "finished" looking/working app, but their cropping and perspective correction UI is horrible; and CamScanner seems like a good compromise between the two.

    If I had to choose one now I would choose CamScanner. But as long as the free Version of CamScanner meets my needs, I won't be buying anything yet.
    SupraEA likes this.
  10. fonseca898

    fonseca898 Well-Known Member

    An app like this may seem like a novelty. It did to me up until last month. I had tried at least three "scan to pdf" type apps and dismissed them all immediately due to poor functionality and results. The pdfs created weren't clear enough to be printed and look normal. This included Droid Scan.

    Then I tried Document Scanner. It worked great, and in less than a minute I had a readable, printable two page pdf file ready to share. First problem was huge file size.

    I found that converting to black and white reduced the file size to something closer to normal, producing 200-300kb pdfs containing two [originally] 8mp photos of A4 paper documents. There is also the option to use the stock camera app, and it will import the pic. This seems to take a lot longer than the other options, and the resulting pictures are not as clear as they were when untouched or converted to grayscale.

    I couldn't stand the crop tool, however, which is a 100% deal-breaker. It's so small that selecting the desired location is a frustrating waste of time. So now I've been using CamScanner.

    I had two work orders today, and had to either fax them in or scan and email them in (as pdfs to be printed) by the end of the day. I normally drive somewhere to fax them in, which is a waste of time IMO, and while I have a scanner at home, I don't want to do paperwork at home. Ever. Today I emailed each one in using CamScanner while still on-site. Saved me an extra trip, clients thought it was awesome when you explain the process as you're doing it. That's worth its weight in gold. Fortunately, since this app weighs nothing, I'm only out a few bucks. I'm buying this one. This ability to generate a multi-page pdf from phone pics is amazing with the proper software. I estimate it's saving me 8-10 hours a month, if not more. Phones sure have come a long way in just a year.

    I think apps with this functionality will be far more effective another year from now, and likely more streamlined. But CamScanner is already at the point where it can replace a fax or scanner for A4-sized B&W docs and not be noticed.
  11. UncleMike

    UncleMike Well-Known Member

    I agree that Document Scanners cropping tool is a deal breaker. Using it is an exercise in futility. And of the three I tried, Document Scanner is the only app that makes no attempt to locate the page edges for you. Strangely enough, their cropping tool is an additional cost add-on.

    Something I found frustrating about CamScanner is that the resulting photo is often zoomed in just a little bit from what it looked like on the screen when I pressed the button, often causing at least one corner of the document to be beyond the limits of the picture. The last update seems to have fixed this issue. What I would like to see now from them is more control over the image at scan time - like contrast, grayscale, etc - similar to what Droid Scan offers. And finally, I would want the image of the page to fill the PDF page. They say that the "intsig.com" at the bottom of each page can be removed in the paid version, but the page numbers still remain, and that they are looking at offering removal of the page numbers as well.

    With a little more improvement, I may end up buying CamScanner even if the free version still meets my needs.
    fonseca898 likes this.
  12. bgoody

    bgoody Well-Known Member

    I too use Camscanner but it has one BIG problem: it saves it's PDF's each in its own directory. That means a lot of different files in the Gallery, each with their own place. They should just save all the PDF's to the same directory and even better let us decide which one. Otherwise dynamite app.
  13. UncleMike

    UncleMike Well-Known Member

    My gallery app doesn't show ANY PDFs, no matter where they are. And it doesn't show any of the images used by CamScanner, which are all in a single directory, below the single directory where all the PDFs are stored.

    I did have a problem with Droid Scan leaving pictures behind that appeared in the gallery though.
  14. bgoody

    bgoody Well-Known Member

    Whoops, sorry, those files are "document-scanner" (don't know which other scan app made them) files and each one turns up as a separate image in the Gallery.
  15. DTTX

    DTTX New Member

    As of today, the first time I am trying, I am seeing several links in various places to download it. However, none of them seem to work. Any thoughts?
  16. UncleMike

    UncleMike Well-Known Member

    I installed it from the Market. Are you using links to some other place?
  17. DaedalusxX

    DaedalusxX Well-Known Member

    I use CamScanner a lot when I am at school. It helps me a tremendous amount when I need to scan documents to send to my professors, to the registrar's office of my college, etc etc... I love the enhancing feature which makes the text pop and easy to read.

    I don't have much experience with the other scanners so I cannot comment on the others :p
  18. DTTX

    DTTX New Member

    That is one of the places I tried it from. I also tried androidzoom.com and other sites like that. When did you download it from the Market?
  19. UncleMike

    UncleMike Well-Known Member

    I successfully downloaded CamScanner (free) from the Market in the past week, after removing it to perform a test.
  20. Lukehluke

    Lukehluke Well-Known Member

    Camscanner is okay at scanning files into PDF's.
  21. fonseca898

    fonseca898 Well-Known Member

    ^ Well, what program is better? I've tried every one and bought two, but still go for camscanner for actual work.
  22. UncleMike

    UncleMike Well-Known Member

    Which is better depends on your own preferences.

    Document Scanner has a more polished looking UI for working with files you've already scanned, but the cropping portion of the scanning UI is virtually useless.

    Droid Scan has the best UI for cropping, but the UI for managing files is crude. Additionally, it uses your camera app on your device for taking the picture, leaving the picture in the gallery app even after the scanning is complete; it makes a mess and doesn't clean up after itself.

    For me, CamScanner provided a nice middle ground - a good UI and a usable cropping UI.
  23. DTTX

    DTTX New Member

    When I go to the "Market" and type in "camscanner" I get the following message. "There are no matches in Android Market for the search: camscanner"
  24. diS

    diS Well-Known Member

    CamScanner is the winner for me.

    I emailed the dev and he's going to make my idea come true in his next update.
    We will then be able to add shortcuts to a pdf made with camscanner.
  25. DougPeterson

    DougPeterson New Member

    I was originally testing Document Scanner against CamScanner. I did 6-8 test scans across both the applications using the same documents in the same light.

    Between those two I had liked the resolution, enhancement and camera options of Document Scanner. The default is high resolution which is where the larger file sizes are coming from. There is not much to configure with CamScanner, which could be a positive or negative depending. A second setting that can help with file size is to use the convert to greyscale option. This allows the high resolution setting to be used while still reducing the file size.

    I found the quality of the scans with Document Scanner to be much better (at highest resolution) than CamScanner, although 6-8 scans is not a large sample. It could be that the application camera for Camera Scan is not as good with anti-shake as the native camera that Document Scanner gives as a choice to use. It could be more accurate to say I was more consistent in quality with Document Scanner. I also found the high enhancement setting of CamScanner to be a bit harsh. I had better results with a low enhancement setting.

    As mentioned in other posts, the cropping tool in CamScanner is quite nice. The cropping tool in Document Scanner is frustrating. I have done better with practice, but still. The size of this one feature difference has been enough to make me consider CamScanner over Document Scanner.

    Based on this thread I then added Droid Scan. More specifically it was the Lite version which meant I did not compare PDF output or multi-page output. I could only compare the JPG output. I am also unsure of whether there is any capability within the application to change or give the file name a name other than the auto-generated one. This can be done by going outside and renaming in a file manager and reimporting into the application which is not particularly convenient.

    I found the Droid Scan UI easier than the other two. The cropping tool was similar to CamScanner although I preferred CamScanner. It seems like the crops were not always where I thought they would be. I am not sure if the zoom bubble is in complete sync with the edge view. It could also have been that the page type setting was different than it should have been. It did not seem to always guess right.

    The configuration options or features were similar between Droid Scan and Document Scanner. One main difference is that Droid Scan enhancement was done through manual controls.

    The quality consistency was better than CamScanner but not as good as Document Scanner. In another way quality was worse than the other two. I found crosshatch (compression?) artifacts that showed up consistently in the Droid Scan images. These were not in the original photos when viewed in the photo gallery. They are in the processed images. I did not find any combination of settings that eliminated them. This may be an issue with how Droid Scan works with my phone but this is enough of an negative for what I want to eliminate it from my consideration.

    It is back to deciding how much the Document Scanner cropping tool irritates me.

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