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- Low price.
- High daily duty cycle for price.
- Excellent OCR accuracy.
- Includes PDF creation and editing and document management software.
- Large ADF for price.
- Much slower than Xerox’s ratings.
- Lag time between scanning and saving to searchable PDF is significant.
For well under the cost of several similarly rated document scanners, the Xerox DocuMate 6440 scans more than fast enough for the price and it’s highly accurate.
Affordable but Packed With Features
A two-tone scanner, the 6440 has a dark-blue face and off-white input and output trays and chassis. It comes completely assembled; instead of with the attachable automatic document feeder (ADF) that we see on many models, its trays fold out and extend from its chassis. It measures 7.5 by 12.5 by 6.6 inches (HWD) with its trays closed and weighs 9.2 pounds, which is close in size and a couple of pounds heavier than the higher-priced Canon imageFormula DR-M160II. The HP ScanJet Pro 3000 s3 Sheet-Feed Scanner and the Canon imageFormula DR-C225, both Editors’ Choice models, are close in size and a few pounds lighter.
As is also the case with the the Canon DR-M160II and the HP ScanJet Enterprise Flow 5000 s4 Sheet-Feed Scanner$699.99 at Amazon, the 6440 comes with an 80-sheet ADF. The ScanJet 3000’s ADF holds just 50 sheets, and the Canon DR-M225’s ADF is smaller still at 30 sheets. At 6,000 pages, the DocuMate 6440’s daily duty cycle falls on the higher end of the scanners mentioned here. While the DocuMate 6440 doesn’t cost as much, nor is it as fast, its specs are more in line with its costlier, higher-rated competitors.
Also like the higher-priced ScanJet 5000 and DR-M160II$874.19 at Amazon, the 6440$428.23 at Amazon lets you define workflow destinations (profiles containing resolution, destination, file type, and so on) that you can then select from the device’s control panel, essentially choosing a profile and initiating a predefined scan with the touch of just two buttons. The DocuMate 6440’s control panel consists of a digital readout-like display, Up and Down buttons for scrolling through profiles, and Simplex (one-sided) and Duplex (two-sided) buttons for executing scans.
The 6440 comes with several predefined profiles, such as Scan to Searchable PDF, Scan to Email, and scan to one of several applications, including Acrobat Reader, Nuance PaperPort, and Microsoft Word, Excel, and SharePoint. You can also add your own programs and edit existing or create your own profiles. Supported file formats are image and searchable PDF, BMP, DOC/DOCX, JPEG, PNG, RTF, TIFF, TXT, and XLS/XLSX.
Easy Setup, Robust Software
It’s a straightforward process to get the 6440 out of its box and set up. Its only connection option is USB 2.0, but in its marketing material and documentation, Xerox claims that it’s “USB 3.0 compatible,” but all that really means is that it’s backward compatible via a USB 3.0 port, as all USB 2.0 devices are. In other words, you can connect it with a USB 2.0 cable to a USB 3.0 port, but you can’t connect it with a USB 3.0 cable, which would in turn allow it to support the faster USB technology.
During our setup, the installation disk found the scanner right away and installed an impressive software bundle, which includes Visioneer Acuity, Visioneer OneTouch, Nuance PaperPort, Nuance OmniPage Ultimate, and Nuance Power PDF. Visioneer Acuity is a program similar to Kofax VRS, in that it analyzes and enhances poor scans to increase image quality, thereby improving optical character recognition (OCR) for converting scanned text to editable text. The DocuMate 6440 is also Kofax VRS compatible (though the Kofax program is not included).
Visioneer OneTouch is a scanning interface. Its user interface consists of several buttons that you click or touch once to initiate a scan based on a specific profile. It also has a backend for creating and editing workflow profiles, and it’s the program that the scanner uses to interact with your PC to display profile numbers on the machine’s control panel, for, essentially, one-touch scanning from the scanner itself.
Nuance PaperPort is a popular document management program, and Nuance OmniPage Ultimate is an industry-standard OCR program. And, finally, Nuance Power PDF is a PDF creation and editing program along the same lines as Adobe Acrobat Pro DC. The only thing missing is a dedicated business card scanning and archiving program, such as Presto! BizCard or IRIS Cardiris, but then, given the low price of this scanner, paying a little extra for that software doesn’t seem unreasonable.
Fast, but Not As Fast As Rated
Xerox rates the 6440 at 60ppm and 120ipm. In not one of our tests, even when just scanning, without the subsequent lag time (the time between the last page hitting the output tray and the scan being saved to a useable file format), did the DocuMate come within striking distance of Xerox’s ratings.
It churned through our 12-page Microsoft Word monochrome text document at 50ppm and 85ipm, which, without any additional processing to convert and save a file, is significantly lower than its ratings. (I tested using Visioneer OneTouch at both the default 300dpi and the recommended 200dpi over USB 2.0 from our standard Core i5 testbed PC running Windows Professional 10. Both resolutions delivered nearly identical speeds, but the 200dpi setting wasn’t nearly as accurate.)
When scanning and saving the same document to image PDF, the 6440 managed 40ppm and 77.9ipm, which was significantly slower than the Canon DR-M160II, about the same as the costlier ScanJet 5000, and significantly faster than the much lower-rated and similarly priced ScanJet 3000 and Canon DR-C225$335.88 at Amazon.
The 6440’s score of 1 minute, 3 seconds for scanning and saving our two-sided, 25-sheet (50 pages) text document to searchable PDF falls behind all of the scanners discussed here, except the DR-C225, which was just a few seconds behind.
When scanning at Visioneer OneTouch’s default 300dpi resolution, the DocuMate 6440 managed some of the best results we’ve seen from a sheet-feed document scanner. It maintained accuracy when scanning our Arial test page without mistakes down to 5 points, and our Times New Roman page down to 6 points. Of the other scanners discussed here, only the Canon DRM160II’s 5 points for each font was better, although some of the others, such as the Canon DR-M225 and the HP ScanJet 5000, were only a point higher on either one or both serif and sans-serif test pages, and the ScanJet 3000 managed a respectable 6 points on our Arial test page and 8 points on our Times New Roman page.
The DocuMate 6440 also converted our decorative font and other not-so-common font pages with higher accuracy than many of its competitors. While the DocuMate 6440 may not be a screamer (compared with its ratings), its OCR accuracy is above average.
Speedy for the Price
The 6440 has a significantly larger ADF and much higher daily duty cycle than its similarly priced competitors. It also has much higher rated speeds, though, in our tests it didn’t perform nearly as close to its ratings as its similarly rated competitors. Usually, we would find this sufficient for significantly downgrading our quality rating, but, given its low price, we’re a little more tolerant.
If you truly need speeds close to 60ppm and 120ipm, you’ll have to spend about twice as much for something like Canon’s imageFormula DR-M160II, or you can get even higher speeds with HP’s ScanJet Enterprise Flow 7000 s3. As for similarly priced document scanners, the Xerox DocuMate 6440 offers higher capacity and outperforms the ones we’ve tested, making it our new Editors’ Choice for moderate-to high-volume scanning in a small office or workgroup.