Features and Options

There are two main types of copiers: analog and digital.  Digital is the far superior choice.  Most digital copiers can be linked to a network that is already in place, and have memory capacity for printing and faxing.  When evaluating a digital copier, here are some features to consider:

Multi-function Devices
A Multi-function device is another type of printer copier. The all in one printer fax scanner copier can link to your existing network, and can allow employees to store information and print only when necessary.  A multi-function device saves time and money- only one service contract is needed, only one set of supplies must be purchased.  Most vendors can provide “consumables” such as paper and toner for a MFD to be delivered on a monthly basis, eliminating the need to run out and purchase printer ink for a variety of different machines.  A network device can be stored in an accessible place, and free up space at employee desks.  Most businesses find that printing costs decline measurably after installing a network printer copier.  Make sure that you have the network capacity to support such a machine before you purchase one. 

Memory
Most newer copiers store document information in order to copy using different features (booklets, collation, printing multiple “sets” of a long document, etc.).  For this reason, you’ll need to make sure a copier has an adequate amount of memory to support these functions.  Copier memory is similar to the memory capacity of your desktop computer- it can be purchased as included up-front, or added when it is needed. Make sure that any copier you purchase has the option of adding memory, especially if you plan on using it for print and fax functions. 

Other Features
Office copiers have a myriad of different features, some which rival those of a professional printing company.  Here are a few other features you might be able to take advantage of:

  • Color and Photo Printing- The print quality can vary depending on how much you’re willing to spend.
  • Sorting- A copier can print booklets, large documents, or reports and sort them into “bundles” of a specific number for distribution to different clients or employees.
  • Feeders- Copies can be made onto paper of almost any size, or onto cardstock, envelopes, or postcards.
  • Document Editing- A copier can add page numbers, copy 1-sided documents into more efficient 2-sided copies, and re-size documents and images.
  • Energy Saving- EnergyStar copiers “sleep” when not in use to conserve electricity.

Make sure that you consider which features you will use regularly, and those that you may only take advantage of once in a while.  Accountant offices, for example, might hope that to print high-quality advertisements using photos and postcard printing features, but the bulk of the copying will probably be basic, black-and-white document reproduction.  In that case, it might be better to outsource the once-a-year color project and purchase a less expensive copier with fewer features for everyday use.  Make sure you research the features you want to get a good idea of the costs they can add to a machine.

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