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Buying a Refurbished Book Scanner

How Much Are You Really Saving?

There are pros and cons of buying refurbished items. In general, those pros may outweigh the cons. Although your organization might be on a tight budget with limited resources, it is crucial to avoid letting the low cost override quality. With any major purchase, longevity is key to providing efficient productivity. You do NOT want a product that lacks reliability. And in certain circumstances, you’ll get to save a little money, and sacrifice a few things that you may have to live without.

You’ll need to determine what matters the most for the success of your business.


In terms of cost –it’s a little subjective, similar to buying a used car as “buyer beware.” Here are a few factors you should consider:

Consider the original cost of the new scanner. Expensive does not always equate to better quality.

Consider the age of the scanner. A 12–year- old scanner may still work well, but keep in mind that it was built on prior technology that is now outdated. Can it be serviced and maintained? Are parts available?

How many (miles) scans are on the scanner? A lightly used scanner will generally be in good condition; however, some parts like rubber rollers tend to age and deteriorate.

What is its overall condition? Remember, just because it is esthetically appealing, it does not suggest that there’s no underlying malfunctions that may require immediate service.

What computer interface does it use? Older machines used interface cards in the PC. I had a scanner with PCI card interface and the motherboard had failed. I only found 1 new motherboard that could support it. In a year I doubt that I could buy one.

USB interface has moved on. 10 years ago USB 2 was new now we are looking at USB 3.2. I have another machine that will only work on USB 2.0 and its software will only run on Windows 7 which will not be supported by Microsoft for much longer.


Of course, buying a used scanner means saving a tremendous amount of money, but ultimately, those savings will disappear if the scanner does not meet your job requirements, and you’re forced to spend additional funds to service the equipment.

Understanding the scanner’s history is very important. It’s the same as knowing you vehicle’s CarFax history. How many owners? Has the scanner received regular maintenance? Authorized resellers and creditable brokers base their reputation on providing quality products.

Try a Trade-In Program. If you’ve owned one of Image Retrieval’s book scanners, such as the CopiBook, a trade-in program is a great option for possibly bigger savings. As an i2s US Reseller, i2s supports us with the trade-in program. With this program, you often save a significant amount toward your new scanner purchase. **In reference to the trade-in program, this structure is commonly implemented by Image Retrieval to acquire its used scanners.

Consider Leasing

It’s imperative not to confuse renting with leasing. Renting involves a temporary contract of loaned equipment. Additional costs may include shipping, training and installation. Leasing, on the other hand, is when a bank finances the purchase of either a $1 buyout at the end of the lease term, or fair market value buyout at the end of a defined period. Image Retrieval employs brokers to arrange the lease and have no financial interest in the transaction.

For example: If Image Retrieval sells a refurbished book scanner with a 3 month-warranty for $7,000, the shipping will be $450, with installation and training at $2250. Your cost will be nearly $10,000, perhaps slightly more if the scanner is newer.

Now, compare this with a new scanner that costs $30,000 that’s twice as fast as the refurbished one and comes with a full, one-year warranty/Technical Service Agreement (TSA), along with an average 7-year life span before major servicing is required. If you plan to finance, paying $10,000 down with a 36-month term, your payment could be about $650 per month, depending on the APR.

Are Refurbished Scanners in ‘Like-New’ Condition?

Most refurbished scanners are in “like-new” condition. An authorized reseller knows the wear and failure points of equipment. They will have a good supply of belts, mats, rubber rollers and switches to bring the machine up to an acceptable level of quality. They can choose to refurbish a machine because it has potential, or discard it because it’s simply too old.

Are Technical Support, Training, and Warranties Provided?

This may the most important part when considering buying a used book scanner or any other piece of equipment. If the seller provides a warranty of at least 3 months, then this is an indication of quality. If the seller has the ability to install the equipment and train the users, this is a good sign that the seller is knowledgeable of the equipment. Also, if the seller can provide technical support (even if it’s for a fee), then there’s a high chance of the equipment performing up to your expectations.

What Types of Book Scanners Are Available?

Currently, Image Retrieval has acquired many legacy i2s CopiBook and DigiBook overhead book scanners that have been traded-in for the latest CopiBook OS and QUARTZ A1 HD. The company recycles the older ones; though, the newer units still have some life in them, but the difference is that they may not be as fast or as technically advanced as today’s versions. Nonetheless, they are still viable machines. Image Retrieval’s inventory is always changing, but only book scanners that can be refurbished and supported will be considered for resale.

If you’re Still Unsure about Refurbished Scanners, Consider This:

When considering a used unit, think about your future needs. Is this scanner for a short-term project or do you expect/want to use it for the next few years? Expiration dates are not necessarily predicted for book scanners – According to Murphy’s Law, “Whatever can go wrong, will go wrong,” and in some cases, at the worst possible time.

Another aspect to consider before purchasing a book scanner is to analyze the actual cost and compare to buying new versus leasing.

Determine your budget. If your company has a limited budget, your options might be limited as well. Consider choosing the ideal solution that will offer at least a limited warranty and other important features beneficial to your organization.

Contact Image Retrieval’s sales team to discover options available to you to meet the needs of your projects.

“It’s unwise to pay too much, but it’s worse to pay too little. When you pay too much, you lose a little money — that is all…” John Ruskin, British Author, Prominent Social Thinker, Critic & Philanthropist.

The bottom line is to know exactly what you are getting. Of course, our company, Image Retrieval provides quality products, new and used, and we take pride in giving the best possible service to our customers. We’ll be happy to discuss which options are right for you.

To learn more about our company, products, and services. please visit our website.

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