Image: Paper OMR Sheets are scanned with a regular ADF scanner and automatically processed and captured by OMR software on a laptop computer.
Looking for a more cost effective solution to gathering OMR sheet data? You can use a reasonable quality, regular ADF scanner for fast OMR sheet scanning.
This process is just as fast as any expensive, high end scanner or OMR Reading machine.
OMR Software quickly reads scanned plain, paper OMR sheet images** and captures barcodes and hand filled checkboxes.
Best of all, you get to create and print your own design OMR sheets
The scanner you choose for scanning your OMR Software sheets, will depend on the number of OMR pages you will be scanning each day.
An ADF scanner with TWAIN support together with OMR software creates one click automatic scanning and reading of hundreds of OMR pages per day.
Image: Scanned OMR sheet with captured responses exported to one page
The number of pages that will be scanned daily.
Choose a scanner rated to handle the number of sheets that will be placed into the feeding tray at one time to reduce the risk of double paper feeding.
Purchase a Scanner that will be dedicated for scanning OMR sheets, so that once the scanner’s settings are correct for OMR scanning, they won’t have to be changed again.
OMR Reader Scanner
OMR Reader Scanners are dedicated for using only to scan OMR sheet forms, they can’t be used for everyday scanning.
Image: Specially printed OMR Answer Sheets being scanned into an OMR reader machine
OMR Reader / Scanners have a different detection process from OMR Software. Special reflective paper is used to print the OMR sheets on, to aid in the detection of marked checkboxes.
OMR readers omit reflective beams of light on the reflective sheet being fed through and sensors and detect the non reflective dark marks made with a dark pen or pencil in the checkboxes.
These specially printed, compatible omr sheets, must be continuously bought which is an on going expense, however the readers can handle very large scale projects, making the expense worthwhile for large organizations who consistanly collect vast quantities of data from OMR sheets.
OMR Reader machines vs OMR Software
OMR Software Scanning
Image: An OMR sheet Scan - Detected checkbox values (eg: A,B,C,D)are captured and exported to a spreadsheet or other external management software.
Image: Captured checkbox values are exported via csv to a spreadsheet.
- Test one of your printed OMR forms with your scanner, before printing and distributing a whole test or survey.
OMR Software requires clear scanned images of the OMR sheets, to detect barcodes and the marked checkbox responses.
Most low to medium range scanners will produce quality images of OMR sheets that will be accurately read with the OMR Software.
Scan in Colour: Preferably scan OMR sheets in colour because it produces a sharper image than black and white.
Saving Images: Save scanned OMR sheets as .png; .tif; .gif or .pdf files on your computer. Don’t save as JPEG as these are generally for photo files.
Scanner Settings: It is recommended the scanner be set to scan at 400 dpi. A scanner that is dedicated for OMR sheet scanning is recommended, so the settings will always be the same.
Make sure the paper feed guides are aligned with the paper**.
Don’t fold OMR sheets or a dark line on the scanned image will appear on the foldline. If pages must be folded for posting, design the OMR sheets with dotted foldlines which are located clear from any checkboxes.
Caring for Your OMR Scanner
Clean the scan head regularly to avoid dark streaks on scanned omr sheet images.
The traction wheels will need replacing in most document scanners every 10,000 pages or so.
Photocopiers have good paper feeding capabilities but are the cause of frequent problems as the scan head collects toner dust and other debris, causing white speckles on the dark areas of the OMR sheet images.
Multi-Function centres are often problematic because they may double feed pages or OMR sheet scanned images can be warped.
Important Tips for OMR Scanning
Image enhancing filters, such as a sharpening filter are not recommended.
If your scanner isn’t producing quality images of the OMR sheets it would be wise to replace your scanner.
Flatbed Scanners with worn away foam can cause black spots and blurry patches on the OMR sheet images.
Fax Machines are not recommended to scanning OMR sheets because they take low resolution images.
OMR can capture values from filled in checkboxes which were marked as responses to questions or statements on paper forms, such as lotto forms, racing forms, multiple choice surveys, checklists, ballot forms and multiple choice exams, tests, quizzes and assessments.
The checkboxes on the sheets are filled in by the respondents and then fed through an OMR reader or in the case of OMR software, the sheets are scanned with a regular desktop scanner such as a document scanner or image scanner.
OMR Software reads scanned images of OMR sheets that were printed on plain white paper, and is suitable for using when you only have a few forms per day or hundreds of forms per day.
OMR software requires an ordinary document scannerpreferably with automatic paper feeding for fast scanning.
The OMR software detects which responses bubbles contain a mark, by comparing the number of black pixels against the number of white pixels inside the checkboxes.
Any checkboxes that have a black pixel count over a certain threshold percentage are deemed by the software as containing a mark.
OMR Software is practically 100% accurate and can process the scanned OMR sheets at a rate of around 30 pages per minute.
Image: Omr software sheets can be custom designed as answer sheets or questionnaires, printed on plain paper and scanned with an ordinary scanner.