Reviews for Canon CanoScan LiDE 60 Flatbed Scanner - 1200 dpi Optical

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Product Reviews (20)

Small, portable scanner great for PDFs and photos

Strengths: Highly portable, USB-powered, Intel Mac drivers available, very good OCR software, easy direct scanning to JPG, TIFF, and multi-page PDF, multi-shot scanning, quality scans

Weakness: Can be a little noisy when scanning in a quiet environment, depth-of-field shallower than other scanners

This review is written from the perspective of an Intel-based Mac owner who purchased the scanner mainly for occassional document scanning (academic papers, receipts and forms, family/personal photos at multiple locations (libraries, home).

The scanner itself is relatively small and light-- just about a centimeter (half-inch) longer, wider, and taller than a 15.4" MacBook Pro laptop but about half the weight. It fit comfortably in the padded laptop compartment of my (smallish) backpack and with a bit of squeezing I could fit both the laptop and the scanner in the backpack. WIth a larger backpack or bag, both items should easily fit in. No AC adapter is necessary for this USB-powered device, adding to portability. This is great for students or businesspeople who do library research or travel, or for people who simply want to keep the scanner out of the way when not in use. I don't know of any other brand of scanner this compact.

I was pleased to discover (before purchase) that Canon already had Intel-native Mac drivers for this scanner available for download, just a month after the first Intel Macs were released. Upon purchasing the scanner, I installed these (from the Canon web site, not the CD) without any problems. The application software itself (which includes Arcsoft photo manipulation software, OmniPage SE OCR software, and the CanoScan Toolbox for one-button access to Mail, Print, Copy, and Scan features is not Intel-native (as of May 2007) but runs just fine anyhow. Parts of the interface date back to the OS 9 days and look quite out of place. There is room for improvement but nonetheless it works fairly well.

Using the four buttons on the scanner, the process of getting photos and documents into the computer is fairly quick and easy. One touch will quickly set up the process of scanning something for mailing, printing, saving as a bitmap, or saving as a PDF file.

Photo scanning:
When it comes to photo-scanning, my uses are mainly non-professional: family photos, occasional book and other images for handicrafts, that sort of thing. That said, I do expect reasonably good quality with no glaring deficiencies. I did not purchase earlier version of compact Canon scanners (like the N650U) due to their substandard image quality. The compact LIDE technology unique to these flatbeds has improved considerably since those days, however, and I'm pleased to report that my expectations were exceeded. The scan quality should please everyone except more demanding prosumers and professionals who should stick with the larger, more traditional, slightly more expensive scanners which still offer superior imaging. Note also that the Lide series scanners are much more sensitive about depth-of-field, meaning that it requires pages to lie flat on the scanner for sharp, blur-free images whereas scanners with more traditional/bulky sensors are less finicky about this.

Document scanning:
The included software does a very good job of saving multi-page PDF documents. The process is smooth and simple; at the end of each page you are given a choice of whether to scan another page into the same PDF document or stop and save the accumulated pages into one PDF. Files sizes are reasonably small (considering each page is a full page graphic) and the quality is just great.

OCR scanning:
(Optical Character Recognition (OCR) refers to the ability to scan a page and save it as text editable in Microsoft Word or another word processor.)
The included OS X-native ScanSoft OmniPage SE software is surprisingly powerful and works very well, despite it not having been updated for a number of years. I've done a few scans from laser-printed academic papers and the recognition was nearly flawless. It is even capable of recognizing different sections of a complex page and breaking down/reassembling them into a graphic-and-editable text that approximates the actual page. The only disappointment is that it is not possible to use the OCR software on multi-page PDF files-- you must choose to OCR at the time of scanning, or else later save your document as a series of image files for input into the OCR program. (This is a limitation that the standard OmniPage OCR software does not have.) Other than that quibble, however, OmniPage SE is very valuable software-- a great bargain considering it comes with a fairly inexpensive scanner. (Heavy-duty OCR users would probably buy a sheet-feeder-equipped scanner rather than this one anyhow.)

Bottom Line:
For those that scan intensively (many pages a day) or for print use or for film-scanning or items that can't lie completely flat on the scanner, there are other scanners more suited to your needs. But if you want a compact/portable scanner that is reasonably fast and high-quality for personal use and comes with multi-purpose software, this is an excellent choice.

I've attached a sample image scanned with the Canon Lide 60 for your inspection.

By sky7i - May 22, 2006

Easy to use and set up, no power cord, good value for money.

Strengths: Good scanning resolution, average scan-time, super-easy setup, extremely light & thin.

Weakness: High-pitched noise while scanning is quite annoying.

I was a little skeptical when I first bought this scanner, but the scan quality is very good and the software (arcsoft photo studio) that comes with it is very good & easy to use. Setting it up was a breeze, a fully automated software installation that completed in less than 10 minutes. Plugged it in and I was ready to start scanning. A very neat feature is that it can scan multiple photos/small bits all at once without the need to crop them later.There is no power cord/adaptor since it gets its power from the USB 2.0 connection.

The only bad part of this scanner so far is the high-pitched noise while it scans.

By Warren in Socal - Dec 28, 2005

Wonderful scanner using Linux!

Strengths: No stupid big square powerbox. Just uses USB port! Small, and with the sideways stand takes up even LESS room.

Weakness: Does make an irritating sound.

I'm using Ubuntu Linux. I read the above reviews and saw the mention of the program SANE. I checked with the Synaptic Package Manager, clicked 'sane' and installed it. (This is free and automatic in Linux, which will confuse Windows users...)

Then I plugged it in, started GIMP, went to the image aquire area, and the thing sprang to life! It scanned what I had while making its annoying noise and up popped the image for me to use.

An absolutely wonderful experience that was quicker than typing this.

By brucewestfall - Jul 26, 2006

Great scanner at a great price!

Strengths: Price, very light and compact, very fast scans, great scan quality, no power brick, excellent scan driver, very good user manual.

Weakness: High pitched screeching noise as light bar moves across platen, no transparency adapter, some may find 1200 dpi inadequate.

I didn't really need a new scanner and had no intention of buying one. I already own a 5 year old scanner, which while not great, does an adequate albeit very slow job. I was so intrigued with the LiDE 60 that I just had to have one. My primary use for a scanner is to scan documents and save as PDF files. This scanner fit the bill perfectly for this purpose, as it has a scan to PDF button on the front panel. All the front panel buttons are fully customizable.

The LiDE 60 has no annoying AC power adapter brick as it gets its power from its high speed USB 2.0 connection. It is compact enough that you could slip it into a notebook bag for traveling if necessary. One reason this thing is so small is that it does not use the traditional fluorescent bulb to perform scans, it uses a small LED light bar.

I am very pleased with the scan speed. For 200 dpi B/W docs, the speed is not much different from my old scanner. Where the speed of this scanner really shines is for color dpi settings of 600 and above. I don't have exact numbers, but I can scan a 1200 dpi photo in less than a minute. My old scanner would take several minutes to perform the same feat.

An important consideration for any scanner is its scan driver (the software that instructs your computer how to scan something). You could have an excellent scanner with a crappy scan driver and your results will be disappointing. Fortunately, the LiDE 60 has an excellent driver with modes for beginners and experts. For example, I had some 20+ year old photos that were somewhat faded and by setting the fade correction in the driver software, I was able to create a scan which looked better and with more accurate color than the original photo. Also, a really nice feature is that you can scan multiple photos in one pass and the driver will automatically crop and save each photo as a separate file. This is a great time saver if you have lots of photos you want to scan.

A nice touch is the included stand so that you can mount it upright on a desk. However, in order to scan this way, the document must be perfectly flat else it will fall off the platen before you can close the lid.

This scanner does not have a transparency adapter, so if you want to scan 35mm photo negatives or slides you will need to look for a different scanner.

One reason why some people may be turned off by this scanner is that it's "only" 1200 dpi, whereas some other scanners on the market in this relative price range are 2400 dpi or higher. Unless you plan to scan 4x6 photos and make lots of 11x17 blowups, 1200 dpi is more than enough if all you plan to do is scan photos to save them on your computer. I don't even use the 1200 dpi setting, I use 600 dpi for scanning photos. I've done side by side comparisons of a photo scanned at 600 and 1200 and you can barely notice a difference even at high magnification. Plus the jpeg file size of a 1200 dpi scan is about 3 times larger than that of a 600 dpi scan.

The only annoyance I have with this scanner is the high pitched noise it makes as the light bar moves across the platen, particularly at the 300 dpi or less setting. It is much quieter using resolutions higher than 300 dpi because the light bar moves more slowly. This is only a minor thing for me and you get used to it after a few scans.

Overall, I found that I really like this scanner and I highly recommend it. You really get a lot for the price that you pay.

By pcDude101 - Mar 11, 2006

Excellent bang for your buck!

Strengths: USB 2.0 interface is fast (300 dpi b/w scans are very fast), quality is excellent, and scanner works well with Linux

Weakness: No automatic document feeder (but at this price, one does not expect such)

I am using this scanner right now, as I am writing this review. It scanned one b/w page at 300dpi in the time it took for me to type in the first sentence, and I type fairly quickly! I have been using it to digitize my bank statements, etc., which come in the mail. The quality has been excellent, and it is serving my archiving needs very well. The scanner is also very compact, which is nice.

I haven't used it to scan photos yet, because my primary purpose was to scan documents, but I can say that it is a great document scanner; the only thing that could make it better would be an automatic document feeder, but then it wouldn't have been so inexpensive.

However, the real clincher for me was that this scanner was supported under Linux. I am using the genesys backend with Sane 1.0.17, and it works like a charm.

I've used a few scanners before (an earlier Canon from 2003, and a couple of HP's from 2004), but this is definitely the best I have ever used.

By hertztough - May 28, 2006

I love it

Strengths: fast speed, extremely thin and light yet still low price, USB powered.

Weakness: none

This is my 4th scanner, and I absolutely love it. As a student, I move frequently, so I need a scanner which is fast, thin and light, but still at a reasonable price. This scanner really satisfies all my requirement. It even comes with a stand, which allows me to store it vertically when I am not using it. No external power supply is another big advantage. My desk is already full of power adaptors, cell phone, laptop, usb hub, external hd, cable modem, wireless router, speakers... I am so glad that this scanner is not adding another piece on my desk. For those considering an all-in-one, I would suggest buying a scanner and a printer separately. All-in-ones usually use pretty expensive ink cartridges, and buying a scanner and a printer separately will save you a lot in the end and yet still give you the same convenience. Finally, I am very pleased with this purchase and I would definitely recommend it.

By jnfengke - Apr 22, 2006

Check the Specs

Strengths: Small, Fast using even the USB 1.0 port, easy installation, works well with most other programs (Paper Port, etc.)Very small footprint.

Weakness: No hard copy manual, No warnings concerning add-on USB 2.0 adapters,

This replaced a Microtek scnner and I have been very pleased with it. However, there are two areas of disappointment. I use a Sony laptop PCG-FXA49 that has only two USB 1.0 ports and in the past I added a 2.0 PCMCIA Cardbus. I tried to install the new scanner and the connection was not recognized. I then connected through one of the USB 1.0 ports and the scanner worked fine. I was later told by Canon that they don't condone the use of add-ons!
There is no hard copy manual. The good news is that the scanner is very simple to operate so there is probably little if any need for an elaborate manual.

To use the email shortcut button, there is a short list of email programs that will work.
Outlook Express
• Microsoft Outlook
• Netscape Messenger
Unfortunately, I use Earthlink's Email program and there is no way I can make it work seamlessly so that capability is lost to me.
All in all, I believe that I got the best scanner that I could buy at the price ($69.99, no tax, no shipping) from an Internet vendor.

By farmhouse - Apr 17, 2006

Need a scanner, but want it to be *flexible*

Strengths: Thin, quite inexpensive and a real space-saver. No power plug...usb powered

Weakness: Software is a lil lacking...suggest a higher end image editing name. (I use Adobe Photoshop)

Needed to handle image work for classes. Did some research and.. *kisses* One 2.0cable pulls power and transfer info. I love this lil beauty, as it comes in a small package and is very portable. I use it with an Apple laptop to do some amazing work.

I scan mostly images from magazines, touch up old family photos and am working on some DVD creation. I will be keeping this beauty as I also like Canon's ideas as any photographer will appreciate the power.

Big things come in little packages!!!

By RDTigger - Jan 1, 2006

Sleek Look, Bad Usability, Confusing Interface

Strengths: Small footprint, sleek design, decent capability for its price

Weakness: Horrible interface, confusing installation procedure, less-than-mediocre software, and generally annoying to integrate into an office workflow

I saw this on the shelf in a Staples and figured, hey, cheap scanner, seems like it's got decent features, so I might as well try it out. And I did. And, while I still appreciate the scanner's capability for the relatively cheap price I paid for it, I have my share of criticisms.

First, the installation procedure is very picky, at least on a Mac. Running Mac OS X, you have to be very careful about how you install the drivers for this scanner. Make sure you follow the step-by-step QuickStart guide exactly, or you'll end up with a scanner whose buttons don't work. Installation procedures are typically so easy on Macs that this came as a very unwelcome surprise.

Second, the scanner insists on sending its scanned image to the bundled software included on the CanoScan setup CD-ROM. For Mac users, typically very used to pretty applications which are a pleasure to use, the Windows-centric, overbearing, klunky and badly-designed interface for the CanoScan Toolbox and Canon ArcSoft PhotoStudio applications is bad enough to cause a headache. In order to get a scanned image into your iPhoto Library, for instance, it takes three separate programs and way too open/save dialog boxes before you can actually drag-and-drop your scanned image into your Library. This is my biggest gripe with this scanner because it just makes the whole procedure stick out like a sore thumb (that's been hit with a hammer a few too many times).

Come on Canon, if you're going to make a product work with the Mac, don't force us back into a world of frustrating interfaces. Make it WORK with the Mac, as a Mac app, the way Mac apps are supposed to be.

The hardware's a little noisy and a little slow, but it does scan at a happy 300dpi without breaking a sweat.

So for what I paid, I don't really regret getting this scanner. However, my opinion of Canon's products has actually gone way down because this scanner is just so painful to actually use on a regular basis.

If you're going to be scanning on a Mac with any frequency, I definitely would not recommend Canon's products. If you just need a scanner for that one-off pic you want on your computer, then this is a fine scanner for the price and should serve you well for a while.

By meitar - Jun 3, 2006

Only good as a present for people you hate.

Strengths: Price, looks, no power cable.

Weakness: Scanning quality, Scanning quality and did I mention scanning quality? Also the loudness, mediocre speed.

Ok, let's start with noting that EVERY OTHER REVIEWER ON THIS PAGE IS NOT SMART.
since you got my attention, let's clear few things up:
I won't touch weight (you don't keep it on your lap FFS, since when it ever mattered?!). I won't try to compare it with a printer or scanner from two decades ago.
Now to details.
This is my fourth scanner, so I know what quality and speed is.

Speed: is MEDICORE. Not fast, but not slow either. If speed is an issue for you, you can look better, if not it's ok.

Sound level: It is noisy as hell, in that very irritating high-pitched kind of noise. For the size and preformace of the thing, you could expect it to be ultra quiet. It's not.

Scanning quality:
One word - RUB.BISH. It's a cheap scanner and it really shows. It can't even get purest B/W print without mixing entire rainbow of colors into it. Geometry reproduction is a joke and you really need all that 'cool' digital image improvements to make your scanned photos minimally acceptable. With all digital improvements on, it's still worse than vanilla Microtek scan.

Depth of field is non existal. I have no idea why they bothered with removable lid (ok I know - it's because every other scanner have it), if the scanner can't see anything farther than 1cm.

Side way stand would be a great idea, IF IT ACTUALLY WORKED. Paper sheets will slid inbetween glass and hull, giving you misaligned images 90% of times. Only good for saving space when you're not using it.

Only plus I count is being USB powered - saves you one power socket.

To sum up:
If you're really tight on budget and don't give a thing about quality of your scans, get one of those. Otherwise AVOID AT ALL COST.
and I have no idea how this scanner landed at top5 in the ranking. There are dozens of scanners better than this one.

By Joell33 - Oct 23, 2006

Excellent for the price

Strengths: Works well with Mac OS X 10.4 Tiger, fast scanning, USB cable included, very thin, small and light

Weakness: High-pitched nose during scanning is pretty loud and a bit annoying

I've replaced my old, parallel port Artec AS6e which worked only in Linux (no drivers for Windows XP and no parallel port on Mac). I use LiDE 60 with Apple PowerBook but it's actually hooked up via the built-in hub in my Dell 2005FPW.
Bundled Mac software looks like it was made for OS 9 but produces good results. Also, you need to restart the computer to make the scanner buttons work (almost no Mac software requires a restart after installation, so I was puzzled for a while about this problem).
This scanner doesn't have an AC adapter - a good thing if you have a spare USB port that provides enough power. The price was very good too, especially given all the discounts I was able to get.

By hackdna - May 15, 2006

Weak - very temperamental

Strengths: Size, price

Weakness: light weight scanning and copying. User interface.

My new Dell computer decides to recognize the device about 30 percent of the time. Sometimes re-plugging it in works, sometimes not.

Windows does not recognize driver, but driver's definitely installed. Sent one back to Canon, new one does the same thing.

very Frustrating.

By jerryrigg - May 29, 2008

OCR does it work?

Strengths: Meant to save a scan to Word as an OCR

Weakness: Doesn't seem to produce a pic or jpg that Office 2004 will recognise... turns the scan to code .

Has anyone worked the OCR function successfully? No-one seems to mention it here and I have not yet been able to find any instructions and I have to keep typing this to reach the required 30 words...

By anonymous; - Jun 4, 2007

Excellent, inexpensive, general-duty scanner

Strengths: Small and light. No power supply needed. Fast for single page black and white or gray scale scans.

Weakness: Not a great scanner for printing pages in color. Really slow for multi-page, color PDF documents.

After learning to wait for my Epson or HP scanner to do something, it was a joy to plug this baby in and watch it whirr. It's not a scanner for slides (no slide capabilities) and other higher-quality work, but for a general, every day workhorse, it's a joy to work with. The Canoscan software included is also more intuitive than either the HP or Epson (low-end) scanners I have worked with. The maximum resolution is not great, but I never need the maximum resolution, nor do most people.

The only drawbacks I've seen are that the quality of printing of color pages is weak, and, as someone else mentioned, it's depth of field is not the greatest. Today I had to scan my wife's passport in color and there was blue shading all around the passport. I don't have experience using it with color photos, but I suspect I'd do better with those on my wife's Epson. There are color adjustment controls that are very easy to use if you scan from your photo editing program.

There are some minor tweaks I'd like to see in the software, such as the ability to change a few more of the default settings. Also the default black and white settings are only occasionally adequate for me. Again, they are easy to change, but a bit annoying to have to do so each time.

For the category of scanner it is, I'd give it 5 stars. Since it's not perfect (what is?) I'll give it 4.

By jdandrews - Jan 23, 2007

Excellent Scanner and not too expensive

Strengths: Z-Fold makes scanning thick books an ease. Scan multiple photos in one swipe and software will automatically crop and straighten each one. Excellent quality. Compact and light. USB powered.

Weakness: Not exactly the world's fastest scanner compared to the Epson AcuLaser CX11NF printer at my work.

I bought this scanner just before Christmas because I needed to scan a bunch of family photo albums for a presentation I was preparing for a memorial service. The MultiScan feature which autocrops and straightens the pictures made scanning the photos a breaze and they got done in no time at all.

It definately beats having a hand-held greyscale scanner that I used to have about 15 years ago.

By Elmware - Sep 26, 2006

Easy to install and use

Strengths: Price, storage, ease of use

Weakness: Plastic looks cheap

One of the attractive features of the scanner is its ability to be stored on its side. Be aware that the scanner does not stand perpendicular to the desk/table surface, but leans about 10 degrees to one side. Also, the scanner can only be stored vertically along its length (longer) side, not its width (shorter) side. It's not as noisy as some reviews would lead you to believe (most likely you won't be using it while you're sleeping), about the same volume as a notebook computer fan. For its price, I would recommend it.

By jptang - May 25, 2006

sleek, lightweight, pretty easy to use

Strengths: usb powered, lightweight, nice quality scan

Weakness: it is kind of screechy

I wanted to replace my old old old scanner and liked the reviews I saw on this one. I love that it's USB powered, and because it's small, I can move it wherever I like and use it with either of my computers. I am not overly impressed with the software, but it works. One feature I really like is the "scan to pdf" option. If you don't need to scan negatives, this is a nice choice.

By little chicken - May 8, 2006

Canon LiDE 60

Strengths: SMALL! Powered by USB port!

Weakness: Scanning Software is a little awkward to use compared to many others.

WOW is this thing little! Bought it to replace my HP5400C when the HP power supply died - bummer, the scanner is fine, but the non standard power supply died and rendered it useless. Anyway, purchased this to replace it. It freed up a lot of desk space! I like the ability to take it with me and not have to worry about a power supply, just plug it into my notebook USB port!

By myblubu - Mar 30, 2006

CanoScan LiDE 60

Strengths: Small, no power cord, high quality scans, configurable function buttons.

Weakness: None found yet.

I replaced an old Umax 2100U with this scanner and I'm very happy with it. It works as described, was easy to setup and use and does everything I wanted at an affordable price. I only gave it 4 stars since I haven't had it all that long.

By wjlabate - Mar 16, 2006


Strengths: User Friendly, slim, light weight!

Weakness: Installation took a bit longer than I anticipated, but it wasnt that bad.

For the price you just cant go wrong! Ive been scanning pictures non stop since I got it in the mail! The quality is great, so easy to use and the noise is not a problem(its there but not bothersome at all. I love it!

By librachic17 - Mar 2, 2006