ABBYY FineReader Express for Mac: general question

macOS and Mac Apps
Is anyone currently using the ABBYY FineReader Express for Mac OCR app and, if so, how is its accessibility; ease of use, etc.? Some time ago I purchased prizmo 2 and after using it for some time now I find that I do not like it. I also have docuscan plus but for the high price I paid for it it is very limited. So I'm thinking that if I can get any usage information on ABBYY, I would purchase it as its character recognition is known to be superb. Any information would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.



Submitted by JimInTexas on Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Hi! I use abbyy fine reader express for the mac almost daily and I love it. I would say it is pretty accessible. Maybe not with all the bells and whistles of k1000 but way cheaper. I believe there is still a trial version at: It uses software on the mac to read and navigate documents. If you download it and have specific questions I'd be happy to help if I can. Jim frmac

Submitted by JimInTexas on Wednesday, November 20, 2013

One more thing I forgot to mention, I am running across more and more pdf documents online that are just the images and they need to be scanned. Abbyy fine reader express works very well for this in my opinion. Just download the file with option-enter and once it is saved to your hard drive you can recognize it with abbyy. Hope this helps. Jim

Submitted by John W. hess on Wednesday, November 20, 2013

JimJim, are you able to scan multiple pages to one file? When I used it many years ago only one page per file could be scanned. If so would you pleas outline the steps to do this? Thanks.

Submitted by Tree on Wednesday, November 20, 2013

I love fine reader. As a student who has to scan parts of books from time to time as well as handouts Fine reader is the only OCR app I use. As to the post asking about multiple pages in one file, I think they are referring to the only tiny problem with fine reader that can easily fixed.After you scan i your first page a window pops up with a button that says something like continue. This button does not work but this is not a problem. The only thing this button does is get rid of this pop up so that you can scan your next page. If you look through the apple menu there is an option to close this window. choosing this option will get rid of the page and you can scan your next page. What you need to do is assign a key stroke to this so you can do it with ease. I picked command w which makes the app act just like any app now.

Submitted by JimInTexas on Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Well I think that says it all. You can scan more than one page but be sure to download the free trial if it is still available. That's what finally convinced me to purchase the software. And its recognition is amazing. Hope it works for you. Let us know. I'd be curious. Jim

Thanks for the answer to this question. One more question: I see the trial won't allow multiple pages so I'll need to by this. When I had it before if I clicked the continue button it would then ask to save the file. So are you saying I could just press cmd-W to close the window and then I would see a button to add a ad a new page or would there just be a scan button? How did you set up a specific keystroke to click the button if cmd-W isn't the way to do it? Thanks. Knowing this would be of great benefit to my clients.

Hey just wanted to chime in. I started scanning my own mail back in February. I got a Canon scanner for about $80, but was really frustrated as the OCR software that came with it was terrible, and I constantly got a lot of garbled text. After trying the free trial for Abby Fine Reader, I was really impressed. I don't scan multiple pages, which I do hear this program might not be the best at, but if you are looking to scan mail, this program is fantastic and well worth the money. I need to play with it some more, as I would love to be able to see if I cut down a few steps of scanning and just have the program automatically scan and OCR a document all in one step, but that is my only gripe with the program, as I do have to hit scan twice. If someone has figured out a way to do this, please let us know.

Submitted by Rafaela Freundt on Friday, January 24, 2014

Hi, is the pro version of FineReader (FineReader OCR pro) as accessible as the express version? what are the differences if there are any in terms of accessibility?

Hello Rafaela,

The short answer is that ABBYY FineReader Pro is just as accessible as the Express version, but has a better (and faster) OCR engine, and more features, including expanded language support (mostly in terms of OCR recognition for languages like Chinese, Japanese, Thai, Arabic, Hebrew, etc.) as well as being able to handle an unlimited number of different languages in the same document (the Express version is limited to 3 languages), and support for password-protected PDFs.  If you already have the Express version purchased either from the Mac App Store or directly from ABBYY's web site, you can upgrade to the Pro version for a reduced price ($79) by purchasing this directly from the ABBYY web site.  Alternatively, you can purchase the new Pro version from the Mac App for full price ($99).  The main differences are that versions from the ABBYY web site store will support Mac OS X Lion and above (while the Mac App Store version requires Mountain Lion and above) and that subsequent updates to the app have to be run from within the app, rather than checking for updates under your Mac App Store purchases.

In addition, the ABBYY web site store offers educational discounts for both new and upgrade purchases of their software. The links are specific to each country's store, and I know that you're not in the U.S., but I can only navigate to the ones for my country. You'd have to check whether there is a similar program and web page site for your own country.  For the ABBYY U.S. Store, these are the links for Educator and Student discounts:

• ABBYY Educator's advantage page:• ABBYY Student Savings Program page: A new purchase of ABBYY FineReader Pro from these pages with Educational discounts (currently) costs $69.99, while an upgrade costs $55.99. This information is excerpted from one of my archived Mac-Access list posts from December that discusses the upgrade.  That post contains a few more bits of information and links, but I think I've excerpted the highlights. HTH.  Esther



Submitted by Tree on Friday, January 24, 2014

If one is not interested in the extra language features is the upgrade worth it in your opinions? I love the express version of this app. One of my favorite mac apps, but it can take a while at times and sometimes its scans are not quite perfect. Might the upgrade improve this?

Most of the people who upgraded to the Pro version did so for the better OCR, and not for any additional language features. Also, a lot of people used to have to use a combination of VueScan and ABBYY FineReader Express for multi-page scanning, and now only need to use ABBYY FineReader Pro. That's not necessarily true across the board, because VueScan is also used to support older model scanners (or sometimes the ones people got that worked under Windows), where the manufacturer didn't issue updated drivers or the drivers didn't work particularly well. If you're in that small category, and your particular model scanner is not supported at any level by the manufacturer under the latest operating system, the obviously none of the performance improvements in the software will make any difference to you! However, for most people, I think the upgrade to ABBYY FineReader Pro from the Express version is worthwhile. There no longer seems to be a link at ABBYY web site for 15-day trial versions. (That was only for FineReader Express, and it now seems to have disappeared.) So you'll have to make your decision based on review comments, I'm afraid. You can read external reviews that mention the improved OCR accuracy. Also, this version's performance has been optimized for the dual processors, though that may not make as obvious a speed difference if you're running this on a Mac that is more than a few years old.