by December 2, 2003 0 comments

There are two kinds of printing needs in the organization: personal printing and bulk printing. By personal printing we are do not mean printing for personal needs, but small volume printing. This small volume printing need may arise from a need for better quality or a need for confidentiality of the documents. There are different answers to these two needs. Typically, an organization would need a mix of printers to meet these differing needs.

The traditional answer for small volume printing needs is an inkjet printer. Today’s inkjets give you good enough print quality and color for you to be able to print snazzy documents. The plus point for an inkjet is the low costs of the printer. But, bear in mind that you would spend at least five times as much ink, if not more. Heavy color printing can make that amount shoot up even more. As the volume of printing goes up, your inkjet printer will find it difficult to cope with the load.

Bulk printing is for lasers
n Under sizing your laser printer can result in queues of users waiting for their print outs to come out
n Inkjet are good for small volume printing and for color
n Personal lasers should be considered in place of inkjets if you do not need color
n MFDs are a hot option in the personal printing space. Check them out, particularly if you also need scanning

The answer for bulk printing needs is a laser printer. Sizing the laser printer is an important issue. Many smaller organizations tend to be penny-wise by choosing a smaller laser printer, and then they end up being pound foolish when long queues of people form, waiting for their printouts to come out. A laser printer has traditionally been a monochrome (black) beast, meant for workgroup printing. This definition was primarily driven by the higher costs of laser printers.

Today, there is a thriving market of personal lasers, driven by cheap machines that produce crisp printouts. If you do not need color in your printouts, you should seriously consider buying a personal laser instead of an inkjet. Although the initial cost is a bit higher, running costs are far cheaper with personal lasers.

Another hot prospect for the personal printing space is an MFD (Multifunction Device). An MFD marries a printer, scanner and faxing machine, making it an ideal candidate for home business and personal use. In the initial years, the MFD faced many teething problems and so could not find acceptance. On the contrary, today’s MFDs not only produce very good quality prints and copies, but are also robust machines available at a mean price. 

A regulation office would not need a specialized scanner. Minor and occasional scanning jobs, including for in-house magazines and the like, can be handled by cheap, entry-level scanners or by MFDs. An occasional, heavy scan job can be sent to a DTP center or a prepress house. 

Krishna Kumar

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