The HP Scanjet 3570c is one of a new breed of low cost scanners that incorporate film, slide and print scanning into one unit. There is usually a sacrifice made in film and slide scanning quality, but for many people these devices can be sufficient.
- 1200 dpi optical resolution
- 48-bit depth
- Built-in adapter for 35mm slides and negatives.
- USB connection
- Four buttons for quick scanning tasks
- Maximum document size - 216x297mm
- Dimensions - 500x300x85mm
- Costs around 120
HP provide some basic tools in the box to get you started:
- HP Photo & Imaging software
- Hemera Jigsaw Puzzler and Hemera CD Designs creator
- Readiris Pro 7.5 OCR software
The Jigsaw Puzzler is very simple to use, and can be quite fun if Jigsaws are your thing. The CD Designs creator is also straightforward to use, though as we didn't have any cd labels to use we couldn't completely test it.
The Optical character recognition (OCR) Software can't compete to some of the more sophisticated OCR packages available. It needed prompting for a lot of easy to decipher letters, but once it had learnt those it did its job reasonably well and is a useful addition to the scanner package.
We don't usually comment too much on the style of a scanner, but HP have really created a very nice looking scanner. The lid has a subtle effect that changes depending which way you look at it. Build quality is also very high for what is really a low-end price point scanner.
The 3570c has a lid that raises for thicker objects you want to scan. It lifts all the way up, and then is removable from the scanner base. The lid is connected to the scanner base by a small cable, this sends power to the transparency adapter, used for scanning slides and negatives.
The slides and negatives you scan are placed in the lid holder shown below. If you want to put a slide in, you must first pull out the negative strip holder.
This system is easy to use, though it would have been nice to be able to put more than a couple of frames in each time.
The scanning utility provided is quite basic, and has been made easy to use through a simple interface. For the audience this scanner is aimed at, the utility works very well, although I did manage to crash it twice (by clicking on things inside the program while it was warming the scanner up). Still, this was my own fault and it wasn't a major system crash, just a case of restarting the HP program.
Click here for an animated image of the "Resize, Lighten / Darken, Sharpen, Color Adjustment, Resolution" Options.
There is an option in the controls for enhanced colour. This actually worked quite well, with a reasonably subtle increase in colour saturation, though personally I prefer original colours. Click for default colour and enhanced colour. By default, the Sharpen setting is set to "Medium" and the Colour Adjustment set to "Enhanced Colour".
There all the usual tools for magnifying your previewed image, rotating it, inverting the colours, descreening it or mirroring it.
Although the HP web-site currently says the 3570c has a USB 2.0 connection, this is in fact not the case. The scanners included documentation makes no mention of USB 2.0 and in our speed testing we found no difference between our standard USB 1.1 and USB 2.0 connections.
Still, even with only a USB 1.1 connection, the performance was good all the way up to the second highest resolution of 1200dpi, where things slowed down considerably.
|Scan type / resolution
For a scanner costing around 120, image quality is about average. Colour accuracy is good, as is the resolution capability. The problem we found with this scanner, was the noise and other problems present in dark areas of photos. This is illustrated by the sample scans below. In photos which have few dark areas there were few issues.
The scanners film scanning capabilities were quite good for a scanner in this price range. Although not using any sophisticated dust and scratch removal technologies the images appeared reasonably sharp and colourful. Because a higher end film-scanner would produce far sharper images, the dust and scratches present on 3570c scans are not as easy to spot.
Sample print scans
On the whole, the 3570c has done reasonably well here. There is a good level of detail present in a high resolution scan. Colour accuracy is also good.
The crop of the above image, shown to the left, shows there is little image noise on the bride. Looking at the background on the original photo, it's clear the scanner has had some difficulties producing accurate results in that area.
In the crop of the image above, the scanners problem resolving dark details is evident again. If you look closely at the painters knee, it is easy to see the tones breaking up. On other more advanced scanners this would be a lot smoother.
Otherwise, the scanner showed again that it's capable of good levels of detail and colour accuracy.
If you're content sacrificing a small degree of image quality for the other benefits mentioned, then this could be a good scanner for you. If you're just using this scanner to load images for the web, or print images at common sizes, then the image quality concerns raised here will probably not even be an issue for you.