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What’s New In Version 8

Scan2CAD v8 Banner

Please note: Our latest release is Version 9. You can learn about v9 here

Scan2CAD v8 saw the introduction of new functionality such as PDF conversions, improved bezier curve drawing,  flexible licensing options and much more.

Features marked in the list below are available in the Pro version of Scan2CAD only.

Convert ANY PDF file to CAD

There are two types of PDF file, raster and vector. Scan2CAD converts both.

Raster PDF files are normally created by scanning a paper drawing and saving it as PDF. Vector PDF files are normally created by saving PDF from a CAD program.

Internally the two types of PDF are quite different. Raster PDF files are essentially a raster image, like a TIFF or JPEG file, held in a PDF wrapper. They need to be converted to CAD in the same way as any other sort of scanned image, using raster to vector conversion. As vector PDF files already contain vectors, although not CAD vectors, the conversion process is quite different.

Before – v7
Scan2CAD v7 Pro was able to load raster PDF files, vectorize them, and save them as DXF. However, it was not able to load and convert vector PDF files.

NOW! – v8
Scan2CAD v8 Regular and Pro can load ANY sort of PDF file – raster, vector, or hybrid (both raster and vector) – and convert it to DXF. From now on you should NEVER get a PDF or a raster file you cannot convert to DXF with Scan2CAD!

General PDF conversion

  • Load single or multi-page PDF filesIn a multi-page PDF file, navigate between pages using Next and Last buttons or jump directly to a known page.
  • Rotate the PDF pageIf the PDF page is the wrong way up, you can rotate it on load.

Vector PDF conversion

    • True arcs, circles and Bezier curves for easy editingThe reason for converting a PDF file into DXF is usually because you want to edit it. In a vector PDF file, there are no arc or circle entities. Arcs and circles are either made up out of many short lines that are difficult to edit or out of Bezier curves.Scan2CAD includes Make Vector Arcs and Make Vector Circle options. If you select these, Scan2CAD will replace the short lines or Bezier curves with true arcs and circles that are easy to edit.Curves in a PDF file may also be made up out of short lines. Scan2CAD’s Make Vector Beziers option replaces these curves with easily editable Bezier curves. For example:
      Circle converted by
      Circle converted by
      another PDF converter

      We took the screenshots above in our CAD program, with nodes turned on. Scan2CAD has created true easy to edit circles. The other PDF converter has failed to convert the circles, which are represented by short lines in the PDF file, into true circles.

    • Creation of text strings for easy editingVector PDF files allow for very fine positional accuracy of text. Words and sentences are often held as a set of individual characters, each with associated positional information. The “reassembly” of these characters into strings is challenging. If it is not optimally done, the text in the resultant DXF file may be made up of discrete characters and split words that are very difficult to edit.Scan2CAD uses high quality “reassembly” of characters into words and sentences, making the text easy to edit in your CAD program.For example:
      Text converted by Scan2CAD.

Text converted by another PDF converter.

Text converted by yet another PDF converter.

The little boxes in the screenshots above show the origins of the text strings created by Scan2CAD and two other PDF converters. Only Scan2CAD has reassembled the text characters correctly.

  • Retains PDF line typesA vector PDF file may contain user defined line types (e.g. a line comprising a sequence of dashes and dots of varying lengths and order). Where these line types have been used, Scan2CAD identifies them and saves them accurately to the DXF file.For example:


User-defined line types converted by Scan2CAD.

User-defined line types converted by another PDF converter.

The screenshots above show the key on a vector PDF drawing with user-defined line types. Scan2CAD has converted the line types to their correct dash types. The other PDF converter has converted all the user-defined line types to a continuous type.

    • Retains PDF line widthsScan2CAD retains the line widths used in the vector PDF file while giving you the option to turn them off when saving DXF.For example:

Line widths converted by Scan2CAD.

Line widths converted by another PDF converter.

  • Save to DXF as True Color or on layersVectors from a vector PDF file can be saved on one DXF layer as True Color (i.e. in their exact original colors). Alternatively, they can be saved on layers either according to their color or according to their type.
  • Save to the correct size and scaleThe vectors from a converted vector PDF file can be saved to the DXF file at the correct size and scale.

Raster PDF conversion

  • Extract raster entities and/or vectorize themIf a PDF file contains raster entities, you can save them in a raster format such as BMP, TIFF or JPEG. Alternatively, you can vectorize them to DXF so they can be edited, using Scan2CAD’s normal raster to vector functions.
  • Efficient file management – one raster image per PDF pageA single PDF page can be made up of multiple raster images. Traditional PDF to DXF converters save each raster image as a separate raster file. Scan2CAD maps all the raster images into one raster file.For example: One PDF file we have tested includes several hundred arrow heads, each one a separate raster image. If you convert this PDF file in Scan2CAD, you end up with one raster image:
    If you convert the same PDF file in a traditional PDF to DXF converter you end up with hundreds of raster images:
  • Retain raster image qualityMost PDF converters take the raster data in a PDF file and save it as JPEG, which reduces its quality.Scan2CAD lets you assign color raster images in a PDF file to BMP (no quality loss but large files) or JPEG (quality loss but smaller files) – choose the format that best suits your end use.Black / White raster images are always assigned to TIFF Group 4.
  • Load “stripped” PDF filesSome scanners create “stripped” raster PDF files where the raster image is not one image but is made up of many horizontal strips.Most raster to vector converters cannot load in stripped files. If they do, they load each strip in as a separate image. Scan2CAD now collates the strips together and loads them as a single image.

PDF Batch conversion

Batch conversion now converts vector PDF files as well as raster images. There are three flexible options which can be used singly or in combination:

  • Include raster in DXF file – if a PDF file in the batch contains raster entities, these will be saved as a raster image (TIFF, BMP or JPEG). The raster image will be attached to the DXF file that is created.
  • Include vector in DXF file – if a PDF file in the batch contains vector entities, these will be saved as DXF.
  • Vectorization of PDF raster entities – if a PDF file in the batch contains raster entities, these will be vectorized and saved as DXF.

Flexible licensing options including Floating License

Scan2CAD now has four flexible licensing options including USB Stick (Scan2CAD Anywhere) and Floating / Concurrent Licenses that allow you to share a single copy of Scan2CAD:

USB Stick License (Scan2CAD Anywhere)
Work anywhere – in the office, at home, on-site – or let a colleague use your copy of Scan2CAD. The license is saved onto your own USB stick. Install and run Scan2CAD on any PC the USB stick is plugged into.

Floating / Concurrent Network License
Each license can be used on any workstation, so long as it is not already in use on another workstation.

At present our sharing options are available at no extra cost!

More information on Scan2CAD license options

Irregular (polygonal) raster area erase

At last! Scan2CAD v8 now has an irregular raster area erase based on a user-defined polygon. In addition, there is a new circle erase option which erases everything within a user-defined circular area.

Improved Bezier curve drawing

Scan2CAD’s raster Bezier drawing tool is very useful for mending broken raster lines. Its vector Bezier drawing tool is great for drawing around shapes on photographs where the variety of colors in the object and background mean that they cannot be automatically vectorized.

Draw Bezier curves through exact, specified points – Both the raster and vector Bezier drawing tools have now been improved so that the Bezier curve is drawn through the exact points you specify. The advantage of this new method of Bezier curve drawing is that on organic shapes you get a tighter, more accurate, better fitting Bezier curve outline.

A new right mouse button click menu – This new menu provides you with options to Undo the last drawn Bezier segment; to make the last entered point sharp rather than curved; to complete the Bezier curve; and to close the Bezier curve.


  • Save As PDF
    Save both raster and vector files as PDF. For example, you can load a TIFF or JPEG file and save it as a raster PDF file. Or you can load a TIFF file, vectorize it, and save the vectors as a vector PDF file.
  • Colortrac scanner support
    Adds direct support for the latest Colortrac Ci and Gx+ scanners.
  • HP Designjet T2300 eMFP support
    Adds direct support for the new HP Designjet T2300 eMFP.
  • Load a wider range of images
    You can now load images that use a CMYK color space or that have a color depth greater than 24-bit. These images are converted to 24-bit RGB on load.
  • Add white space to border
    A new Border function adds a white border x pixels wide around an image.
  • New raster Draw functions
    Polyline, irregular polygon, solid rectangle, solid circle, solid irregular polygon.
  • Updated Raster Cut, Copy, Move and Paste
    These are now available from a new right click mouse button menu.When moving an area you can choose to view its outline only (as in v7 – this can make moving a large area much faster). However, a small part of the area your cursor is attached to now remains visible in detail. This allows you to position the moved area more accurately without reverting to a slower detailed view to see what you are doing.After moving or pasting an area, you can now right click and rotate the area by center, by line or by degrees.
  • New vector Draw functions
    Select a vector line width, polyline, irregular polygon, solid rectangle, solid circle, solid irregular polygon.
  • Undo vector Erase
    If you erase all the vectors in an area, you can now Undo the erase.
  • Change vector color
    You can now change the color of all the vectors in an area as well as the color of individual vectors.
  • New True Color option
    If you select this, Scan2CAD creates a DXF file with all the vectors on one layer. Each vector is saved in its own true color.
  • Print raster and vector
    Print both the raster and the vector image together.
  • New command line functions
    New command line functions for PDF batch, PDF import and export settings, DXF export settings and PDF save.


Upgrade to v8 now