5 Best Scanners for Drawings in 2019

If you’re looking for information on the best scanners for drawings then you are in the right place.

While digital art is gaining popularity in a world where paperless media is taking over, sometimes all an artist needs is a physical canvas and their tools.

When a great drawing is created, it is only natural to want to preserve its essence and even share it with others. This is where scanners come in. A camera may fail to do enough justice to a drawing, but a good scanner can easily digitize the artwork and maintain its originality.

Comparison Table of Top Scanners for Drawings

Canon LiDE 4004800NoNo8 secs (letter)
4 secs (snap-shot)
USB Check Price
Plustek 11801200NoNo9 secs (grayscale)
15 secs (color)
USB Check Price
CZUR ET16 Plus250NoNo40 ppm USB Check Price
Vupoint ST4701200YesNo11-15 secs USB, SD Card Check Price
Epson V850 Pro6400NoNo10.8 msec/lineUSB Check Price

Why Flatbeds are Better for Drawing vs ADF scanners

When it comes to scanning multiple documents, ADF scanners certainly take the cake as they can automatically take in the documents and scan them. However, flatbeds are much better than ADFs in certain situations.

Flatbed scanners have much fewer moving parts. How they work is that a drawing can be placed on the scanner bed. When you start scanning, the document isn’t moved.

On an ADF scanner, the document is fed by the machine and it is driven through the scanner by the device itself. By moving the drawing through the scanner, chances of causing damage to the drawing, the printer or both are increased.

Instead, a light that shines under the document and scans it. The fact that the document itself does not move is great for drawings as it reduces the chances of damaging it during the scanning process.

Another huge plus point for flatbed scanners is that they have a much higher DPI and also a much dynamic range. Both of these features are paramount when it comes to squeezing out the most amount of details from the scans.

It is almost absolutely critical for professionals to look for a scanner with a higher Dmax and high end optics so that every bit of hue and shade is captures.

A flatbed scanner is capable of scanning media that isn’t standard. For example, you can scan a drawing on a canvas using a flatbed scanner whereas an ADF scanner may find it difficult due to the size and weight of the media. Also, a flatbed scanner is better than an ADF since it can scan a document without bending it.

List of Best Scanners for Drawings in 2019

  1. Canon CanonScan LiDE 400 – A Budget Flatbed Scanner with a Decent 4800 dpi Resolution
  2. Plustek 1180 – A Wide Format Scanner for Blueprints and Large Designs
  3. CZUR ET16 Plus – An Overhead Scanner Capable of Scanning Large Books and Drawings
  4. Vupoint ST470 – A Versatile Wand Scanner that Scans Any Surface or Drawing
  5. Epson Perfection V850 Pro – A Professional Studio Photo Scanner with High-End Optics

Short Reviews of the Selected Scanners

1. Canon CanoScan LiDE 400A Budget Flatbed Scanner with a Decent 4800 dpi Resolution

Best Scanners for Drawings

Dimensions and Weight

  • 7 x 14.5 x 9.9 Inches (HxWxD)
  • 6 Pounds


One notable point about this device is that despite being a budget device, it produces vibrant photo scans, making it one of the best scanners for drawings.

This can be attributed to the 4800-dpi (Dots per inch) resolution that the device has. The dpi is a measure used to express the scanner’s resolution. The less expensive CanoScan LiDE 300 only has 2400 dpi.

When you need to scan documents in bulk, going for a scanner with an ADF (Automatic Document Feeder) is always a good idea. This device lacks that and it is therefore not suited for bulk scanning.

However, that should not be too big of an issue since when scanning drawings quality matters and not speed. The flatbed surely deliver quality.

For a letter-sized page, the device can take 8 seconds while a snapshot-sided document can be scanned in 4 seconds. This shows that it is not a speedy device either. However, it is faster compared to the cheaper LiDe 300 which can do a letter-size page in 10 seconds.

You can connect to the device through USB 2.0 type C. This serves as both the power and connection line. Other networking and mobile connectivity features are unfortunately unsupported.

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Read more: Best Scanners for Archiving Photos

2. Plustek 1180 A Wide Format Scanner for Blueprints and Large Designs

Dimensions and Weight

  • 2 x 16 x 2.7 Inches
  • 52 Pounds


The best scanners for drawings need to be able to take a wide range of sizes. This is where the Plustek 1180 comes in. Being a wide format scanner, this device can scan fairly large photos easily. To put this into perspective, the device can scan A3 documents.

This makes the device come in handy especially when scanning large drawings as well as other media like banners, schematics. The printer can easily scan large-size documents in one go.

The printer has a high maximum optical resolution of 1200 dpi. While this is much lower than that of the Canon CanoScan LiDE 400, however, it is quite ample for large A3 sized document.

It has a rated speed of 9 seconds for A3 size grayscale documents and 15 seconds for color documents, all this while scanning at 300 dpi. This makes the device moderately fast.

The Plustek is a robust device that can be put to use not only as a personal device but also as a device but can also be shared in a small office.

The device does not have an ADF and nether does it support automatic duplexing.

To connect to your pc, the Plustek comes with a USB 2.0 interface. This lets you scan documents directly to your computer.

All in all, when it comes to scanning large sized pieces, you don’t have plenty of options. This, however, is surely one of the best scanners for drawings that are larger than A4 size.

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Read more: Best Scanners for Home Offices

3. CZUR ET16 PlusAn Overhead Scanner Capable of Scanning Large Books and Drawings

Dimensions and Weight

  • 4 x 8.7 x 14.8 Inches (HxWxD)
  • 3 Pounds


While looking at the best scanners for drawings, we sometimes come across some unconventional devices like this overhead scanner.

The device can easily handle A3 sized documents and more. Scanning large drawings and books is also a breeze on this device.

The CZUR ET16 Plus uses patented technology to eliminate the curves that come about as items such as books are scanned. Unlike traditional scanners, the device makes use of a digital SLR camera which takes a photograph of the item being scanned.

The device has a usable scan area that measures 11.5 x 16.5 Inches and with its camera, it can offer a 250-dpi resolution.

The device has the ability to multiple pages at the same time. All this can be done at a speed of 1.5 seconds. The ability to scan a two-page spread in one go gives the device a 40-ppm scanning speed.

Furthermore, ET16 is relatively affordable. One of the device’s cons is that the advertised scanning speed is not always the speed at which it performs. Additionally, it is easily affected by bright lights, this can make it inoperable in certain environments.

For its price, the fact that it can scan different file formats in a wide range of sizes and save them quickly makes it one of the best scanners for drawings.

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Also Read: Best Overhead Scanners

4. Vupoint ST470A Versatile Wand Scanner that Scans Any Surface or Drawing

Dimensions and Weight

  • 25 x 9.5 x 3.75 Inches
  • 3 Pounds


The Vupoint is can not only serve as a handheld scanner it can also work as a sheetfed scanner when docked.

The Vupoint performs well enough to be one of the best scanners for drawings. Besides its impressive scanning, the device is also portable, meaning you can take it with you anywhere you go.

This two-in-one device has a scanner resolution that can be set to either 300, 600 or 1200 dpi. With this, the scanner can easily take high-quality scans, a feature that the best scanners for drawings need to have.

A wand scanner can most certainly come in handy when you want to scan odd shaped pieces or large rolls of your drawings. With the wand scanners you can scan almost any surface.

The dock mentioned above is an auto-feed dock for the printer. This means that it drives the scanned items through the scanner automatically.

Without the dock, the device can be used to scan any surface or drawing. As a wand scanner, it can scan subjects from 8.5 Inches to 125 inches in size.

Scanning with the dock, a user can get speeds of between 11 and 15 seconds per page which is highly dependent on the selected scanning resolution.

While the Vupoint ST470 does not require a computer to be connected to it to function, it offers support for USB connections. With this device, you can easily scan your documents from anywhere and save them on an SD card which can be used to move the files to a PC later.

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Read more: Best Sheetfed Scanners

5. Epson Perfection V850 Pro A Professional Studio Photo Scanner with High-End Optics

Epson Perfection V850 Pro

Dimensions and Weight

  • 6 x 12.1 x 19.8 Inches (HxWxD)
  • 14 Pounds 10 Ounces


If you are a professional and are searching for the best scanners for drawings, then this might be the device for you. The Epson Perfection V850 Pro is a studio-grade photo scanner with impressive specs.

The device offers some of the most premium optics technology and thus also costs a hefty sum. It offers a dual-lens system. One of the lenses has a 6400-dpi resolution and the other has a resolution of 4800 dpi. The device automatically selects which lens to use depending on the amount of detail required.

In addition to that, there’s a 4.0 Dmax rating. The rating implies that the device has a high total range which will let it capture a wider range of color tones caused by shading.

A Dmax of 4.0 is about the highest that a flatbed scanner can go. Therefore, you can be certain that the scans captured here will leave no stone unturned in terms of quality.

Unlike any other device mentioned here, the V850 Pro also can scan negatives. To facilitate the scanning of negatives, the device comes with transparency units. This may come in handy in case if you are into scanning old photo/video films as well.

The device has a scanning speed of the device depends highly on the resolution taken. To scan a single slide at 2400 dpi takes about 38 seconds.

The device lacks support for wireless and Ethernet connections, but a USB option is provided.

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Final Words

Here we looked at some of the best scanners for drawings. You may have realized that none here are the Sheetfed type scanners.

The reason is simple. When it comes to scanning quality, flatbeds take the lead. They have a higher DPI as well as a higher Dmax.

If you want speed, then we advice you to look into high speeds scanners. However, if you want quality, then recommend sticking with flatbed.

Another important aspect of a higher DPI is that you would be able to create image enlargements. A higher DPI means you can enlarge your scans to much high degree.

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