There are literally thousands of office printers available, and although that means there is a lot of choice, that doesn’t always mean it’s a good thing. Too much choice can be overwhelming and it can lead to people simply picking the first printer they come across, or the cheapest model they can find. What’s important to note is that not all printers are made the same and not all printers will work perfectly for each office space – it does depend on how you want to use it as well as, of course, your budget. Let’s take a look at how to choose the right office printer – there are a few things to take into account.
This is the best place to begin because once you have made this choice you will have limited the decisions you have to make elsewhere, making the process so much easier. So, inkjet or laserjet?
Inkjet printers are much cheaper to begin with, but they do have higher overall running costs – the cartridges can be extremely expensive. The laserjet costs more to start with, but they are more economical when printing large quantities, so they cost less over time. This is where budget may well be the most important factor.
This is one of the easiest decisions to make when it comes to your office printer. If you only ever need to print with black ink then you won’t need to pay extra for a printer that allows you to print in colour too. This will save you money on both the printer itself and the replacement cartridges because black ink tends to be the cheapest.
Of course, if you need to print anything in colour then this decision is not one you have to make – you’ll need to opt for a colour printer.
Each printer will have a maximum amount of prints it can cope with during a monthly cycle. This is an important factor to look at to ensure that you don’t get a machine that can’t manage what you need it to do – the last thing you want is to try to print too much and the printer malfunctions. Equally, if you’re not going to be printing huge amounts, you don’t want to buy a printer that is far too powerful for your needs as you’ll be spending too much.
Something else to consider on top of the print cycle is print speed. Check this out and remember that there may be different speeds for monochrome and colour printing. The speed will tell you how many pages can be printed per minute. If you are going to be printing high volumes you’ll want a higher print speed otherwise you’ll have the printer working all day.
There are times when a multifunction printer is the best option for an office. A machine that can copy, scan, fax as well as print can save money and will save space in the office. But again, spending more than you need to on the off chance that you’ll need these functions can be a disaster for your cash flow. Getting a simpler unit and using smartphone apps for the additional functions should you need them might be a better idea; if you start to need them on a more regular basis, you can upgrade.
Something else that is now a factor in many offices is how eco-friendly the printer is going to be. If you want to look after the environment a little more then search for printers that offer power-saving mode (even auto-sleep mode) as well as other features which could include cartridges that are easy to recycle. As a bonus you’ll save money on your energy bills too.