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VuPoint Solutions Magic Wand Review

Poor scan quality in a difficult to use package, you'd be much better off with a phone app
VuPoint Solutions Magic Wand
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Price:   $70 List
Pros:  Has a cool name
Cons:  Poor scan quality, very difficult to use, no character recognition
Manufacturer:   VuPoint Solutions
By Max Mutter and Steven Tata  ⋅  Oct 31, 2017
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22
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#9 of 9
  • Scanning Performance - 35% 3
  • Speed - 30% 1
  • Software - 20% 2
  • User Friendliness - 15% 3

Our Verdict

While this model is temptingly cheap and portable, we found the VuPoint Solutions Magic Wand to be so difficult to use that we would not recommend buying it. Unless you have the steady hand and patience of an aged and wise kung fu master, chances are your scans are going to come out looking wavy and weird. It is nice that this scanner can handle pages from books, something most document scanners can't do, but its downsides far outweigh that small advantage. You would be much better off getting the incredibly cheap Scanner Pro App than using the Magic Wand.

Compare to Similar Products

 
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22
86
75
70
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Pros Has a cool nameFast, high-quality scans, easy operation, touch screen interfaceHigh quality scans, easy operation, good text recognitionGreat scan quality, small and portable, simple operation, good OCRHigh quality scans, easy to use software
Cons Poor scan quality, very difficult to use, no character recognitionExpensive, Character recognition not perfectSlower than other high end modelsSlowRelatively slow, 10-page document feeder feels limiting
Bottom Line Offers no advantages over a phone appThe best option for high volume scanning jobs that demand high qualityA solid, high end model that doesn’t cost quite as much as most other high end optionsApart from speed it excels in every aspect at a relatively low priceCan handle a lot of short documents quite well, but the lack of a paper tray and large document feeder makes it less suited for long documents
Rating Categories VuPoint Solutions... Fujitsu ScanSnap... Epson WorkForce... Brother DS-640 Fujitsu ScanSnap...
Scanning Performance (35%)
3
9
8
9
8
Speed (30%)
1
9
7
4
5
Software (20%)
2
7
7
8
7
User Friendliness (15%)
3
9
8
7
6
Specs VuPoint Solutions... Fujitsu ScanSnap... Epson WorkForce... Brother DS-640 Fujitsu ScanSnap...
Paper Sizes Max: A4 Minimum 50.8 x 50.8 mm (2 x 2 in.) Maximum 216 x 360 mm (8.5 x 14.17 in.) Max: 8.5" x 240"
Min: 2" x 2"
Max: 8.5" x 32" A4, A5, A6, B5, B6, Business card, Post card, Letter, Legal and Custom size
Weight (pounds) 1 7.5 8.1 1.03 3.1
Resolution (dpi) 600 x 600 600 x 600 600 x 600 600 x 600 600 x 600
Simplex/Duplex Simplex Duplex Duplex Simplex Duplex
Scanning Modes Color, Grayscale, Black and White, Automatic Detection Color, Grayscale, Black and White, Automatic Detection Color, Grayscale, Black and White 24-bit color, 8-bit (256 levels) gray scale, 1 bit monochrome Color, Grayscale, Black and White, Automatic Detection
Automatic Document Feeder No 50-page 50-page No 10-page
PC Compatible Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Mac Compatible 3rd party drivers Yes Yes Yes Yes
Pages Per Minute 0 26 14 4 13

Our Analysis and Test Results

The Magic Wand does not deliver on the ease and whimsy inherent in its name. Instead of a charmingly simple and effortless experience it delivers one of rage and expletive laden rants, therefore we would not recommend it.

Credit: Jenna Ammerman

Performance Comparison


The Magic Wand earned an all time low overall score in our testing, as you can see in the table above. In the following section we detail the experiences that led to that low score, and why you'd be better off with a $4 phone app.

Scan Quality


The Magic Wand earned the worst score of 3 out of 10 in our scan quality testing. This is a product of the Magic Wand's scanning technique, which requires the user to slide the scanner over the document. If you've steady hands like the Sundance Kid, that can result in a fairly good scan. If you move the scanner with anything less than machine-like precision, however, the scan comes out with distorted waves in it, often making entire line of text illegible. Compare this with using the Scanner Pro App and your phone's camera to snap a shot of a page and ending up with a near perfect PDF, and you'll wonder why anyone would ever use the Magic Wand.

Most scans we took with the Magic Wand ended up looking wavy and...
Most scans we took with the Magic Wand ended up looking wavy and distorted.

Speed


We gave the Magic Wand a score of 1 out of 10 in our speed testing. We were never able to get an actual speed reading from the scanner because we were never able to get to the end of our 10-page speed test document without at least a few of the pages looking totally unreadable. With the Scanner Pro App we were able to consistently scan 3 double-sided pages a minute, and the scans looked great.

You must have an incredibly steady hand to scan anything with the...
You must have an incredibly steady hand to scan anything with the Magic Wand.
Credit: Jenna Ammerman

Software


The Magic Wand earned only a 3 out of 10 in our software testing. First of all, the software does not have any kind of optical character recognition, so you cannot create PDFs that have searchable text. Secondly, you'll have to use third party drivers if you want to use the Magic Wand with a Mac, and thirdly it is very difficult to figure out where your PDF files are being saved. The Scanner Pro App is order of magnitudes better, with very accurate character recognition and easy file management.

User Friendliness


As we mentioned above, actually getting a quality scan from the Magic Wand is an exercise in patience, fine motor control and anger management. Accordingly, it earned a low score of user friendliness score of 3 out of 10. By comparison, the Scanner Pro App was as easy as snapping a few photos and maybe cropping them if the automatic cropping didn't work.

Value


The Magic Wand lists for $70. Seeing as we found it almost unusable, we would consider this a very poor value.

Conclusion


The Magic Wand provides a very poor user experience and it is very difficult to capture high quality scans with it.

Max Mutter and Steven Tata