Device Types

A feature of FormReturn is the ability to make multiple copies of a published form, which can can be printed on a lazer printer or copied, using a recent model digital photocopier, that produces quality digital images. For scanning forms, high end document scanners, flatbed scanners and multi-function centers are all recommended for using with FormReturn, but scanning with photocopiers can be problematic.


Photocopiers use a light lens to duplicate documents; the original technology is analog, but these days digital copiers are becoming popular. Digital photocopiers enable the user to print color copies by converting the visual data on the original document into computer code. The computer code then programs the printer that creates the final copy.

Another photocopier feature is the ability for it to create a queue within the copiers system, before it actually needs to start copying. So once all the pages have been scanned in, the machine can then be left to run while you get on with other tasks that need your attention.

The resolution of the photocopier determines the quality and sharpness of the copied images. This is measured in dots per inch (DPI). Photocopiers with 500 DPI have 500 x 500 dots per square inch. Many copiers can offer an extremely high resolution, but these are only useful for people such as designers, who need very detailed prints. The recommended resolution of images to be uploaded into FormReturn is 300 to 400 dpi. Forms scanned at a higher resolution will be slow to process in FormReturn.

A photocopiers speed is measured in copies per minute (cpm) so consider this to ensure the photocopier you choose will run at the appropriate speed for your requirements. The number of copies you make each day would determine the size of the photocopier you will need. If your photocopier is in constant use each day, then you should consider a copier with a large capacity tray. These larger trays can hold in excess of 1,000 sheets and are useful to avoid constantly refilling the paper tray.

The photocopier can be linked to your office’s computer network so that you can print directly from your computer without leaving your seat.

Scan to email: Some photocopiers have this feature which allows the scanned form images to be emailed.

One of the best features that most copiers now come with is that they save energy while not in use.

Document Scanners

When choosing a scanner, Make sure it provides drivers for your computer's operating system version, for example Windows XP, or Macintosh OS X.

For scanning large volumes of forms a high speed document scanner with an automatic document feeder (ADF) and good paper handling would be the best type of imaging device to use. They often hold 50 to 500 sheets of paper and can scan at speeds of 10 to 200 pages per minute (ppm).

Some important features to look for when selecting a document scanner for use with FormReturn, are resolution, color, speed and paper-handling. Duplex operation is another feature of some scanners which means it can scan both sides of a double sided document.

If you did upload double sided forms into FormReturn, it would save each side as a single image and process them separately.

Production Scanners

Production Scanners deliver the automation and dependability needed for mission-critical production scanning applications. They will scan at speeds up to 90ppm/180ipm and have intelligent productivity enhancement features. A full suite of advanced image processing features including automatic color detection, content-based rotation and intelligent blank page deletion help to reduce document preparation time which saves both time and effort.

Network Document Scanners

A Network document scanner is a computer device that can be linked to your office’s computer network. Instead of being connected to a single computer, it works by connecting to a network and can be configured to save images to a network file share.

Some Features of Network Document scanners:

  • The scanner can be set to save the images to a file share on your computer.
  • Scanned form images can be emailed.
  • Convenient onscreen display.

Flatbed Scanners

A standard Flatbed Document Scanner has a lid under which a single document is placed face down.

A benefit of flatbed scanners as well as scanning documents, is they can be used for scanning photos, pages from books and images that are too large can be scanned in sections.

For use with FormReturn, some flatbed scanners can come with Automatic document feeders which can scan up to 15ppm, which is more efficient and time saving when you have a number of forms to scan.

If your existing Flatbed scanner doesn't have an automatic document feeder, they can be purchased separately as an attachment.