IT and Business Insights for SMB Solution Providers

Epson Introduces Two Color Workgroup Scanners

At a maximum scan speed of 85 pages per minute, one of the new models is the fastest ever in the manufacturer’s commercial scanner line. By Rich Freeman

Epson America Inc. has made two additions to its lineup of color duplex document scanners, including the Long Beach, Calif.-based manufacturer’s fastest commercial workgroup unit to date.

That product, the DS-970, can process up to 85 pages per minute and positions Epson to match offerings from leading competitors, according to Associate Product Manager for scanners Greg Comb. “We didn’t have anything that went up to the 80 page per minute level that we see from Fujitsu and a few others, so this is our entry there to provide something that’s competitively spec-ed and competitively priced,” he says.

The other offering unveiled today, the Epson DS-870, replaces the previously released DS-860. Like that earlier product, it scans up to 65 pages per minute. The new unit features a 7,000-page duty cycle, though, versus the earlier model’s 6,000 pages. The DS-970, meanwhile, is designed to scan up to 9,000 pages daily.

Both new products come with a color LCD control panel. “We tried to make these two new scanners as user friendly as possible,” states David Hawkes, a scanner product manager at Epson. “Ease of use is often not mentioned at the same time when you talk about a scanner that’s higher in productivity,” he continues. “We don’t really think you need to sacrifice one for the other.”

The DS-870 and 970 support a wide range of documents and endpoints as well. “You can scan something as small as a 2” x 2” receipt all the way up to an 11” x 17” document,” Hawkes notes, adding that the two new products are also compatible with Apple Macs in addition to Windows PCs. “Versatility is the name of the game here,” he says.

Other shared features in the new scanners include a 100-sheet automatic document feeder, slow mode for delicate sheets, double-feed detection, and skew correction. Epson’s Document CapturePro OCR application allows users to save searchable PDFs or scans to Evernote, Microsoft SharePoint, and Google Drive. Both products also come with built-in TWAIN and ISIS drivers and a white case designed to differentiate the devices from the company’s consumer scanners.

“If you look at a lot of our retail scanners, they’re all black,” Hawkes observes. “There’s enough differences in what we need to offer to end users in commercial that we want it to be a visible difference as well.”

Despite its additional functionality, the DS-870 is priced at the same $999 MSRP as the DS-860. The DS-970 sells for a recommended $1,499. According to Epson, that compares favorably to similar offerings from Fujitsu, Kodak, and Brother. “We’re trying to be very, very aggressive with our pricing,” he says.

Both new systems come with a three-year limited warranty offering next business day replacement. Buyers can purchase up to two more years of coverage as well. “We wouldn’t do this, honestly, unless we were offering something that was more robust and had an improved design,” Hawkes says.

The DS-970 and DS-870 will be available through authorized resellers starting next month. The DS-780N and DS-770, both of which scan 45 pages per minute and debuted in April 2017, round out Epson’s workgroup commercial scanner family.

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