While the idea of a paperless office can easily be made a reality, in today's business
environment it is an impractical one. Printers are a necessity in the modern office, and
it is equally important to choose a type of printer that best suits your particular needs.
- Thermal. thermal printers are small, rol-fed printers which use heat-sensitive
paper to produce a very sharp black and whit image at high speeds. They are ideal for
printing bar codes, receipts, coupons, and tickets, and can either be hard mounted in a
single location or puchased as portable units.
- Dot Matrix. these printers are inexpensive, and virtually
maintenance-free. Also they are ideal for printing multi part documents (using carbon
layering betwen sheets of paper) allowing you to print up to 10 documents at once. Its
track feed mechanism is well suited for printing multiple invoices, receipts, etc.
- Ink Jet. The biggest advantage Ink Jet
printers have had over all other types is their ability to easily and inexpensively print
in high-quality color. Modern Ink jet printers can reproduce text at Laser quality
standards, and in many colors at a fraction of the cost. Ink Jet printers can use fan fold
("banner-style") paper like a Dot Matrix, or can be loaded with individual
sheets, or even envelopes.
- Laser Printer. For extremely high quality,
high volume, and high-speed printing, a Laser printer is the only solution. Laser printers
are capable of anywhere from four pages per minute and up. Toner cartridges are relatively
inexpensive, and for about the same price as an Ink Jet cartridge they can produce more
than ten times the output, giving you maximum value for your dollar. Some Laser printers
are also capable of producing photograph quality color which are ideal for posters or
presentations, although at 10 to 50 times the cost.
Most printers can be fitted with special paper trays so that they can accept
non-standard paper sizes and various envelopes, giving mail a professional quality. If
your location has more computers than it does printers, you should look into printer sharing as well.