Printer Guide

          There are two main types of printers: Laser and Inkjet. Lasers typically have a higher initial cost but a lower price per page and operating cost. Inkjets have a lower initial cost and a higher price per page and operating costs.

          Lasers are thought of as primarily high-speed black-and-white printing for business applications. A new generation of color lasers (single pass) deliver fast, high-quality color printing and allow companies to keep print jobs in house to save time and money. HP's LaserJet line and Color LaserJet line have many options for both color and black-and-white printing.

          Inkjets are subdivided further into specialized applications. Wide-format inkjets are for the people who need to be able to print large size jobs like banners and graphics applications as well as graphs and charts. HP's DesignJet line fills this niche.

          Photo Inkjet printers are designed specifically for printing photographs. These printers typically have 6-8 ink colors to increase photo quality. Standard inkjet printers have 3 colors (cyan, magenta and yellow) plus black. Photo printers usually have other functions, such as ports for memory cards, the ability to print directly from camera to printer through a USB port, on-printer displays and function keys for viewing and simple editing directly on the printer. HP's PhotoSmart line has a wide range of photo printer options.

          Multifunction, or all-in-one, printers not only print, but also scan and copy—some also have fax and digital sending capabilities. Both laser and inkjet printers are available in multifunction combinations. These all-in-one devices save money and space. HP has OfficeJet, PSC, and MFP units that range in price and performance for every need.

          Consider Your Options…

          Networking – Ability to allow multiple users to access the same printer over a network

          Paper Trays – Increase the paper handling so you can have different size papers or more paper for less printer interaction

          Duplex Option – Ability to print on both sides of the paper

          Staplers/Stackers – Ability to group and staple documents together

          Extra Memory – Increases speed for large jobs and graphics-intense jobs

          Hard Drives – Store standard forms on the printer so they do not need to be sent over the network (helps keep the network running quickly). Hard drives can also provide an added measure of security. If you are printing confidential material, you can send the job to the printer and have it reside on the hard drive. You then print the job from the printer using a pass code.

          Standard Printer Terminology

          DPI (dots per inch) – number of dots per square inch a printer puts on the page. Typically, the higher the dpi, the better quality print job.

          Duty Cycle – number of pages a printer is manufactured to handle in a month.

          First page out – How long it takes the printer to produce the first page from an idle or resting mode.

          Input Capacity – maximum number of pages the printer can hold.

          Output capacity – maximum number of pages the printer can handle for one job.

          Media Size – The size range of the paper the printer can handle (letter, legal, poster, etc.).

          Paper Trays – number of different paper holders (one for letter, one for envelope, etc.).

          PPM (pages per minute) – number of pages a printer can produce in one minute.
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