best color printers for FH

Issues related to the use and operation of Family History Centers
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best color printers for FH

Postby farwest » Wed Sep 29, 2010 7:50 pm

What is the best printer cost wise for FH? We have a couple of older ones but was looking at the cost of consumables.

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Postby lrawlins » Wed Sep 29, 2010 9:18 pm

When printing in color you only have two choices - Laser or Ink Jet.

While the Laser may sound like a bargain in the beginning the cost of replacing the toner cartridges will make you cry.

The main thing to consider on an ink jet is how any colors does it use and are they in separate tanks. Personally all my ink jet printers are Canon and take 5 to 8 different colors. Two have CMY & two black tanks and the other has 8 different colors. There some that use 10 colors which would really hurt on that odd day when they all want to be replaced.

Avoid any inkjet that combines CMY inks into a single cartridge. You hardly ever run out of all three colors at once and end up tossing out some amount of unused ink.

You would want to charge a bit more for the color printed pages than those from a regular laser printer.

Either way you go make sure the printer is network ready and connect via Cat 5 rather than printing through a PC.

We just moved our FHC and I should have dropped the one old HP 1300 printer we have so I could have replaced it with something better.


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Postby russellhltn » Wed Sep 29, 2010 9:47 pm

I can't tell you from experience, but I'd suggest looking at the local cost of the different consumables, the expected lifetime and estimate the cost per page.

When checking models, I'd look for complaints about cartridges that "die" unexpectedly.

I have been impressed with a Canon inkjet that sat unused for 3 years with and when asked to print, every color of the used cartridge worked.

You might also consider the security of your center. If you get a color printer, you may discover mysterious use when the center isn't open.
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Postby aclawson » Mon Oct 11, 2010 5:33 am

While the cost of the cartridge is important the total yield is more important.

Cost per page of color lasers consistently beats the cost per page of color inkjets. With lower end color lasers costing about the same as higher end inkjets it all comes down to usage. If you are in a small FHC with light usage the inkjets are probably the way to go. If you are printing out a few dozen color pages every single day then the cost advantage tips to the laser. (Laser cartridges are usually good for a thousand or two pages, inkjets a few hundred at best, subject to local use - some sites print more green than others, for example).

If you go the inkjet route then look at the Kodak EasyShare 5500 which was designed from the ground up to use very economical inks: Staples sells the 10C (color) cartridge for $17.00 (estimated yield = 420 pages), while the color cartridge for a Canon BJC-5500
is sold for $24.99 (estimated yield = 100 pages).

As a comparison, my Konica Minolta Magicolor 2430DL has a current cost (from Staples just to keep everything on the same page) of $229.47 to replace all three color toner cartridges with an expected yield of 1,500 pages. Though from first-hand experience I'm getting about 2,000 pages before any one of the cartridges is empty and they don't run out at the same rate.

Color laser = $0.11/page
Canon = $0.2499/page
Kodak = $0.04/page

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