HomeKurzweil 1000 (K1000)Kurzweil 1000: Technical InformationKurzweil Scanner Compatibility and Information

1.1. Kurzweil Scanner Compatibility and Information

Last Updated: July 2016

Applies to Versions: See below

If you are using a Kurzweil 1000 or a Professional version of Kurzweil 3000, you can scan images directly into Kurzweil.   For this, you will need to use a scanner that is compatible with your version of Kurzweil.  To determine if your scanner is compatible, read below.

If you already have a working scanner and want to test its compatibility, the easiest way is to order a free Trial Edition of Kurzweil and install it.


If your scanner is not compatible with Kurzweil, you can always scan in images as .pdf or .tif files using your scanner's bundled software, and then open those images inside Kurzweil 1000 or a Professional version of Kurzweil 3000 for automatic conversion to a Kurzweil file type (.kes).

Kurzweil 3000 for Windows

Kurzweil 3000 for Windows (Professional Color or Black & White) is designed to work with scanners that use a TWAIN driver for your Windows operating system.  For example, if Windows 10 64-bit is your operating system and you want to use a scanner that is compatible with Kurzweil 3000 , then you will need a scanner that uses a TWAIN driver made for Windows 10 64-bit.

The vast majority of scanners use TWAIN drivers, but to ensure compatibility with Kurzweil and your operating system you should always check with the manufacturer first.  To ensure performance, we also recommend the use of standalone scanners and not printer-fax combination devices.

Kurzweil 1000

Kurzweil 1000 has identical compatibility requirements as Kurzweil 3000 for Windows.

Kurzweil 3000 for Macintosh

Kurzweil 3000 for Macintosh (Professional Color or Black & White) is designed to work with scanners that interface with Mac OS X's built-in Image Capture application using Image Capture drivers.  Scanners that only use TWAIN drivers will not work with Kurzweil 3000 for Macintosh.

Scanners with Macintosh Image Capture drivers can be harder to find than those made with only TWAIN drivers.  It is recommended that you verify with the manufacturer first if a prospective scanner uses Image Capture drivers.  To ensure performance, we also recommend the use of standalone scanners and not printer-fax combination devices.

What are the advantages of scanning directly into Kurzweil?

If a user has difficulty using a computer, scanning with a separate program and then opening the image file into Kurzweil for conversion can be quite a difficult process.  For such a user, it is helpful to give him or her the ability to scan pages from the scanner directly into Kurzweil as a .kes file by simply clicking a prominent button on the Kurzweil menu.

From a technical perspective, images scanned directly into Kurzweil may benefit from Kurzweil's scanning capabilities (deskew, auto-alignment, etc.).  Some scanner software may not have Kurzweil's scanning capabilities.

In environments where individual users are not responsible for scanning their own materials, the logistical and administrative advantages of scanning directly into Kurzweil are not as significant.  Scanning as a .pdf file first may provide a handy source file, as a .pdf scan of a book or document could potentially have many uses outside of Kurzweil.

Can the Kurzweil 3000 (LearnStation) perform scans?

No.  The LearnStation version of Kurzweil 3000 cannot perform the following functions of the Professional versions:

What's the different between Kurzweil 3000 Professional (Color) and Professional (Black & White)?

If you scan in, convert, or virtual print a colored image using Kurzweil 3000 Professional (Black & White), it will automatically grayscale the result within Kurzweil.  Kurzweil 3000 Professional (Color) will not do this and retain image color.

There's a scanner I want to purchase but it does not meet compatibility requirements.  Will it work with Kurzweil 3000?

If a scanner does not have a TWAIN series driver for Windows, you will not be able to scan directly into Kurzweil.

If a scanner does not have an Image Capture driver for Mac, you will not be able to scan directly into Kurzweil.

Can your company recommend a specific scanner model for use with Kurzweil 1000 or 3000?

We currently cannot provide scanner model recommendations.  This may change in the future.

If I buy a scanner that meets the compatibility requirements is it guaranteed to work?

Even if a scanner is compatibile that does not 100% guarantee it will work, which is why we recommend testing out scanner compatibility first with a free trial of Kurzweil.

My scanner meets the compatibility requirements, but when scanning into Kurzweil it malfunctions.  What can I do?

  1. Your scanner will not work inside of Kurzweil if it's not properly installed or functioning with your computer's operating system.  Verify that the scanner works in Windows by using your Fax and Scan Scanner Wizard.  If you're using a Macintosh, verify that you can scan using your Macintosh's built-in Image Capture application.  Also test your scanner with any bundled scanning software from the manufacturer.  If your scanner is malfunctioning outside of Kurzweil, please contact your scanner manufacturer for technical support.
  2. If possible, download and install the latest drivers for your scanner.  Updating or reinstalling your scanner drivers will often fix scanning problems.
  3. If your scanner is only malfunctioning within Kurzweil, please contact our technical support department.  We may be able to modify settings for its TWAIN driver, improving how it interfaces with Kurzweil.  Although this troubleshooting process usually results in success, it is not 100% guaranteed to work.

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