Scanning With MF Toolbox

In my previous article I mentioned getting a new Canon Imageclass multifunction laser printer. Of course, it has a scan function. Canon provides scanning software called MF Toolbox which I think is a upgrade from it’s older Scan Gear software. I love this software!!

 

A Little History

In the old days, I had a Canon scanner and used some of their software to do my scanning. And, I have used Photoshop a few times at my former employer. Recently, however, I have doing all my scanning using Apple’s Preview app. OK, I am not a high end scanner, just business class stuff for sure. The Preview app has been adequate, but as you know it is nothing fancy. There have been times when I wished I had something more robust. Enter the MF Toolbox software from Canon.

MF Toolbox

Compared to using Preview to do my scanning MF Toolbox is a dream. It really is quite sophisticated by comparison, but not like scanning into a super professional app like Photoshop. For me though it is great. It has all kinds of features, I just want to cover a couple of them today.

This is the main window when you first open the app:

There are several ways to scan something in so lets start with “Color Scan”.

Scan

When you click on “Color Scan” you are presented with the scan setup window:

The “Scan” tab will be selected. We will tak about what happens when you select the other tabs in a bit. You just move down through the settings to setup the scan to your liking. There are several “Auto Modes” for 1 sided and 2 sided documents. You can select the size of your scan, whether it will be color, grayscale or black & white and the resolution. Then at the bottom of the window you are shown how large a file will be produced by the scan. I thought the “Set Upper Limit of File Size” was a cool feature. If you do not wish to do anything else to the scan then just click on “Start” and MF Toolbox scans your item into a separate folder located in your Pictures Folder on your HD. However, you may wish to click on the “Save” tab first.

Save

When you click on the “Save” tab you are taken to this window:

Here you can name your image, choose what format to scan into like PNG, JPEG, TIFF, PDF and others and then choose a different location in which to save the scan. Maybe you do not want to scan to the Pictures Folder. Many of my scans are to the Desktop and then I decide if I want to keep the scanned image or not. I like the “Open the Sorage Location After Scanning is Finished” feature. It works perfectly, taking you to the file’s location. If the settings up to this point are sufficient for you then just click the “Start” button and your scan commences. However, if you wish to do some editing in another application like Photoshop, Graphic Converter, etc then you need to click on the “External Program” tab.

External Program

When you click on this tab you are taken to this window:

You just have to click on the drop down and select your external editor. In my case I have selected Acorn. This feature woks quite well. When MF Toolbox completes it’s scan, the Acorn editing app is opened. All very smooth.

Conclusions

There are some other things in this app that I want to mention, but that will be for another article. No, MF Toolbox is not super high end software, but compared to something like Preview it is wonderful. It really is quite sophisticated. As far as I know you can download this software off the Internet for free, but I do not know if it works with other scanner devices. Oh, and one more thing. The scanner in the Canon Imageclass laser is super fast! Way faster than my old Brother scanning system. It works very nicely, once things are setup properly.