Scanning photos isn't the most exciting photographic pastime, so anything that can make the job easier and quicker is undoubtedly welcome...
Scanning photos isn’t the most exciting photographic pastime, so anything that can make the job easier and quicker is undoubtedly welcome. And that’s exactly what the Pandigital Photolink One Touch Scanner is about, with images scanned in seconds and sent straight to a memory card.
The scanner itself is just a fraction wider than a 6×4 print, and is powered by the supplied mains charger. Also included is a plastic sheath in which to place images prior to scanning, a cleaning sponge to keep the inside of the unit clean, and a 512MB SD card which contains an PDF of the instructional booklet.
Operation is straightforward; you simply pop a memory card into the slot around the back, turn the unit on and feed your image through. In a matter of seconds the image is written to the card, though, should you prefer to, you can also hook the scanner straight up to your computer for direct scanning.
Of course, if something sounds too good to be true it probably is, and a number of the scanner’s shortcomings show this to be the case. Certain images showed thin lines in their scans, which weren’t present in either the original image nor the plastic sheath, while the sheath also had to be kept scrupulously clean or else the scanner would pick up any bits of dust. Against the manufacturer’s recommendations I scanned in the images again without the sheath, which seemed to solve these issues.
The images are scanned at a setting of 1800 x 1200ppi, which is sufficient for a 6x4in print at 300dpi, though there’s no software provided to define any scanning settings, such as resolution or colour. In the case of the latter this is a shame as colour rendition can be a little hit and miss, with many images sporting warm magenta casts, killing subtle highlights.
Ultimately, the only advantage of the scanner is its portability and speed, as for around the same price you can find a decent flatbed model from Epson or Canon – one which will also scan negatives – to a much higher quality. Unless you only intend to print small prints or use your images for the web, it’s therefore perhaps best to look elsewhere.