As online meetings and even classes have become more common over the past couple of years, the need for webcams, document cameras, and even scanners has increased. Plus converting paper documents to digital can be time consuming or take a lot of desk space for a device the size of a printer. Plus, while most of these devices can scan flat documents fairly well, trying to scan pages from a book can be difficult and frustrating where the finished scan has curving text that disappears into the gutter between the two pages. As a result, it often takes several attempts on each page to get a barely acceptable scanned image. Luckily, CZUR has designed a portable scanner that can not only easily scan books quickly with quality output images, but is also an ultra webcam and document camera that takes up a very small footprint on your desk. .
What Is the Fancy Pro?
The Fancy Pro is an overhead book scanner as well as a webcam. It can also be used as a document camera for online meetings and presentations. The scanner connects to a computer via a USB. The included software supports Windows PC, macOS, and LINUX. The Fancy Pro is currently seeking funding on Indiegogo, with a pledge level of $149. The campaign has already exceeded its goal and the webcam/scanners are scheduled to begin shipping in February 2023.
New to Crowdfunding? Check out our crowdfunding primer.
Product Components and Specs
The Fancy Pro comes with the following:
- USB cable
- Finger cots
- Getting started guide
- Instructions manual
Here are the specs for the Fancy Pro:
- Sensor: CMOS
- Pixel: 12M
- Resolution: 4000 x 3000
- DPI: 320
- Scan Format: Flat single page ≤ A3; Books ≤ A4
- Scan Speed: Flat single page ≈ 1.5s / page;
- Books ≈ 1.5s / dual pages
- Image Format: JPG, PDF, TIFF
- Image Color: 24 bits
- Video Streaming Format: MJPG
- Static File Output Format: JPG, PDF, Searchable PDF, Word, Excel, TIFF
- PC-Visual Presenter: 1080P @ 60 Fps;
- PC-Scanning: 4K @15 Fps
- Focus Mode: Auto Focus
- Scan Light Source: Natural light and LED lights
As you can see, the Fancy Pro offers some great features that allow it to be used for a number of different purposes..
How to Use the Fancy Pro
The Fancy Pro is easy to set up to use. Install the CZUR Scanner software either using the included CD or download it from their website. While you are doing this, you can unpack the scanner and components from the box. Connect the scanner to your computer using the included USB cable. That is all that is needed to get the device ready to use. One of the nice features are the controls on the top of the camera. One button activates an LED light with three different levels of brightness. Other buttons let you flip the image 180 degrees, increase or decrease the exposure, and even manually focus the camera. In addition, a switch lets you choose whether the camera continuously auto focuses or if it just autofocuses once when the camera is turned on. Finally, you can use the grip around the edge of the control panel to rotate the camera through 90 degrees.
All of the controls for the Fancy Pro are located right on the top of the camera. Image by Michael Knight.
The CZUR software is intuitive to use. There are two different applications. CZUR Fancy is used for scanning books and documents while CZUR Visualizer lets you use the device as a document camera for presentations. Once your computer automatically sets up the device, you can even use the Fancy Pro as a high definition webcam. When using the CZUR Fancy software for scanning , there are several options including scanning a flat single page, facing pages from a book, as well as combining both sides of a document, or even manually selecting on the screen the portion of the view you actually want to be scanned. When using the device for visual presenting with the CZUR Visualizer app, there are tools for annotating the image such as drawing on or marking selections. You can also capture screenshots from the freeze-frame image as well as record a video of your presentation. Once you have captured images, there are options for editing batches. Finally, you can even export captures as editable Word or Excel files using the OCR feature.
Why You Should Get the Fancy Pro
I often need to scan documents as well as books as a high school teacher as well as for other activities at home. Even though online learning has decreased as we have returned to the classroom after online learning to to the COVID pandemic, I still scan articles or text from books so students can highlight or mark text for assignments. The Fancy Pro makes scanning so much easier. I am very impressed with how the software takes the curves of the pages and straightens them out for the final image. It even divides the left and right sides into two separate flattened images that look like they were taken from single flat sheets. Not only does the text come out clear and distinct, pictures and drawings are also reproduced in the image with clarity and good color. Furthermore, the software automatically straightens documents so you don’t have to spend time making sure the originals are positioned perfectly.
The Fancy Pro used as a document camera in my classroom. As you can see, it takes up very little space. Image by Michael Knight.
In addition to scanning, the Fancy Pro also works great for presentations. The document cameras we have at my school have a very slow framerate and standard resolution. The Fancy Pro’s resolution is much high and the framerate is great for demonstrations such as how to solve a math problem or annotate text. The ability to record your presentations is a useful feature so those who were not present for the live presentation can then view the recording at a later time. Instead of writing on the document being presented, the user can also use the annotation tools built into the software.
What really sets the Fancy Pro apart from other portable scanners is the ability to use it as an HD webcam that captures at 60 frames per second. I recently used it during an online meeting and I received several comments about how clear and smooth my video appeared to others. In fact, some even mentioned that it looked like I had a video camera streaming my image. Plus, the Fancy Pro is small enough to take with you on the go. The base is 2.5 x 3 inches and the stand is only 11.5 inches tall, but can be extended upwards an additional 4 inches. Plus with two hinges, you can adjust the camera to just about any angle you need.
The Fancy Pro’s camera can be adjusted to many different angles allowing you to get that perfect webcam shot. Image courtesy of CZUR.
After having the opportunity to test out the Fancy Pro both at home as well as at work, I can say that I am very impressed with it. The ease of use and quality of the final product have me scanning more than ever. I have used CZUR products in the past and really like how easy their software is to use as well as the quality of their physical devices. If you are in need of a quality portable scanner that can also function as a webcam and document camera, I highly recommend the Fancy Pro.
Check out the Indiegogo campaign for more information and to make a pledge.
Disclosure: GeekDad received a sample of this item for review purposes.
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Source by geekdad.com