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Recommendation for a multi function laser printer

Posted on 2008-10-26
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Last Modified: 2013-12-27
Hello, I am looking for a B&W multi function laser printer for the office but am somewhat confused in which brand to invest in.

What I am looking for is a printer that will handle:

- 1000-2000 pages a month
- duplex printing
- a ADF with will scan, copy and fax(send) 2 sided pages.
- network connectivity
- Scan pages, convert them into a PDF, or Jpeg and store them on a network shared drive somewhere.


The models that I have been looking at are:
Brother MFC 8870DW
HP 3027x MFP

The Brother seems to have all the correct features that our office needs, though a local dealer insisted that it's operating costs would be too high and the quality of the brand is not good at all. The local dealer then suggested that we invest in a Savin 816 MF. What is the opinion on this printer?

The 3027x also seems to be very nice, but according to the documentation it can only Scan to Email.
What does that exactly mean? I interpret it as, the printer can only send scans to an email address, they cannot be store on the computer? I would need a printer that will scan a document and store it on a computer's harddrive somewhere on the network so other people can have access to it.

The budget for this investment is around $1500 range, if you have any recommendations or opinions, I would be grateful.  
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Question by:dev45
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Expert Comment

by:michko
ID: 22817378
I really don't think you're going to find an HP with the options you want in that price range.  

Your interpretation on the "Scan to Email" is correct - it will email, but is not able to map to a network drive and scan to there.

Personally, I still like HP printers and multi-functions.  I'd recommend talking to one of their people in a chat, see if they can come up with anything that meets everything you need and stays in your budget.  http://www.hp.com/sbso/assist/chat.html

When you chat with them, make sure they don't skip any of the specifics you need, and be firm about the network scanning.

We have one big all-in-one that we use for network scanning, and its not an HP, its a Canon C5870, and it was a bit more than $1500.

As far as the Brother goes - I consider them a step below the HP models.  Haven't heard much about Savin, so I don't have a basis for comparison (although that says something right there).  Ask your local dealer to explain, using exact figures, why the operating costs of the Brother are so high, and compare with the Savin.  If they are going to make a statement like that, they should have the figures to back it up, including a side by side cost comparison, also including a total ownership cost per page.

You may also want to consider Xerox.  nobus, one of EE's experts on printers, consistently recommends Xerox machines.  Don't know if they have anything that meets all of your needs within your price range, but they are certainly worth looking at.

And that is about what I have to offer.  Feel free to ask if this post brings up any additional questions.

michko
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by:dev45
ID: 22842518
Thank you for your response Michko. So I find out the Savin is a rebranded Ricoh 161. How is the Rioch brand in comparison to HP?
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by:michko
ID: 22844217
Here's HP's response to how they compare to Ricoh printers (as of 2005 (?))
http://www.hp.com/sbso/expert/competitive_ricoh.html

In fact, if you're interested, here is HP's "Printer Comparison Center"
http://www.hp.com/sbso/expert/competitive.html

I don't have any personal experience with the Ricoh's either.  I have done some research on them and most of what I see indicates they may cost less than HP to operate, yet they do tend to have more service calls.  Again, that is strictly from some web research, and not personal experience.  How much you can trust the data put out by HP - that is debatable - they are trying to get you to buy their printers, so ...  On the other hand, Ricoh doesn't put out a comparison guide - which means either they don't want to, or they don't think they need to.  

I could probably make a case either way.  I tend to stick with the HPs because they do what I need them to within a budget I can handle.  I'm not continually having to fix/replace them - and most problems I can fix on my own if they do go down.  However - Ricoh wouldn't still be in business if the consistently made low quality products.  So, ask yourself the basic question - which of them does everything you want?  If neither, then which options can you do without.  
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Author Comment

by:dev45
ID: 22844628
I went thought those links before, but I was skeptical since there are some bias influences.

I talked to the a sales representative for the Savin. Their quote on the printer was $2400, yet all the quotes online I get around the $1200-$1400 range. That is quite a difference. The sales rep's explanation was that there is a hardware and software difference those printers and her printer. Those cheaper printers are not commercial grade even though they have the same model and the same specs, resulting in the motor being burn out due to not being able to handle the print volume.  Those cheaper ones are "PC's".

 I personally have never herd of such a thing but is this a fact? Are there such differences in a given printer? Or am I being blown smoke at.
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Expert Comment

by:michko
ID: 22844988
If they are a "commercial" grade versus a "standard" grade, or "consumer" grade, what have you, then they would have SOME indication of such.  If it were "commercial" grade, then it would have to have at least some different parts than the regular model they sell.  So, ask their sales rep this question "If there is no difference in model and specs, then how would a future service technician know to purchase the "commercial" grade replacement parts?"  Otherwise, I don't care if you call it a BMW, if it's a built by Hyundai with Hyundai parts, then it's not a BMW.  (And I own a Hyundai, so don't think I'm picking on them).  

Don't go to the manufacturer - you'll typically pay more.  Go to a third part reseller who can purchase in bulk, then pass that savings on to you.  For example, I purchase our HP printers from CDWG.  
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Author Comment

by:dev45
ID: 23016389
Thank you for your suggestion Michko.

I did look into some Xerox printers, and I was quite taken by the Phaser 3635X. It looks like a great printer on paper.  Feature wise the Xerox is better than the HP 3035xs. Price wise they are the same. But I've had no experience with Xerox products.

Are Xerox machines as dependable as HP's?
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Accepted Solution

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michko earned 2000 total points
ID: 23027761
Well, I'll admit upfront that I stick with HP printers.  Mostly because we've had a good history with them, and I know how to work on them.  That being said, Xerox is a good name brand.  And there are experts that I respect here that consistently recommend Xerox products.  So, I'd say if you're getting more for your money, go with the Xerox.

michko
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Author Comment

by:dev45
ID: 23099885
Thank you for your help Michko, for all your help.
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LVL 27

Expert Comment

by:michko
ID: 23100492
You're certainly welcome dev45.  That comment right there is the biggest reason I do this.  Thanks for the accept, and glad I was able to help.

michko
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