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What is the best printer for a small business? Details inside.

#1LukvierPosted 11/18/2013 4:29:08 PM
This will be used in an insurance office.

-500-1000 pages a month
-just need black and white
-must be wireless

and it's gotta be compatible with an HP Pro 3500 series desktop which shouldn't be a problem.

Any specific brands you'd recommend or not recommend? Specific models? Thanks guys.
#2ShubPosted 11/18/2013 5:21:05 PM
Question: does the printer itself have to support wireless, or can it just support a wired network connection so you can hook it up to a wireless access point via regular Ethernet?
You're right that the printer doesn't have to be compatible with your HP Pro 3500 series desktops, what matters is that the printer has drivers for the version(s) of Windows that you use.
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#3Orestes417Posted 11/18/2013 5:26:08 PM
You're almost certainly going to want to go with a laser printer, it's just the most economic choice for that sort of usage. Samsung makes some really nice units last I looked although I couldn't recommend a specific model off the top of my head
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#4fataliPosted 11/18/2013 5:43:08 PM
Samsung makes the cheaper laser printers, and HP printers are more expensive but, they have given me less problems. I take care of printers for many companies, and usually prefer to recommend them HP.

One thing you should also consider is the price of the toner cartridges, a cheaper model could have a toner that costs more than the one used in a more expensive model, and you'll end up paying more through the life cycle of the printer.
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#5Orestes417Posted 11/18/2013 5:49:26 PM(edited)
HP I can't support these days just because of their business shenanigans. The "expiring" printer cartridges and the increasingly bloated drivers on the consumer side was the last straw there. These days, I view them somewhere along the lines of BOSE on the getting buy on name recognition scale.

Definitely watch the price of toner cartridges though.

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#6Treason686Posted 11/18/2013 6:14:55 PM
Orestes417 posted...
HP I can't support these days just because of their business shenanigans. The "expiring" printer cartridges and the increasingly bloated drivers on the consumer side was the last straw there. These days, I view them somewhere along the lines of BOSE on the getting buy on name recognition scale.

Definitely watch the price of toner cartridges though.


I feel like I've probably got more experience with consumer/small office printers (printers under $1000) than anyone on this board.

Many inkjet cartridges expire. Toner cartridges do not expire.
http://h10025.www1.hp.com/ewfrf/wc/document?docname=c01764161&cc=us&dlc=en&lc=en

The price of the toner cartridge is largely irrelevant; you'll probably notice cheaper printers have less expensive cartridges. These cartridges print fewer pages, however. For a small business, look at the cost per page, or page yield of the cartridge.

Brother laser printers are very good, and what I generally recommend. Assuming you don't need a scanner, copier, or fax, this is an excellent machine and a good value:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16828113780

The high yield, TN-750 cartridge yields 8000 prints. The standard TN-720 yields 3000.

One con with the Brother printers is their separate drum. This has to be replaced between every 10-30k+ pages. On this particular model, it's every 30,000 pages.

Factoring in all the costs, you're looking at:
Drum cost: .0053 dollars per page
Toner cost: .01 dollars per page
Making it 1.5 cents per page which is a pretty good value on a $200 printer.

Alternatively, there is this model:
http://www.amazon.com/Brother-Printer-MFC8910DW-Wireless-Monochrome/dp/B008CNXZS6/ref=dp_ob_title_ce
Which includes a fax, scanner, copier, but is the same machine.

And this one:
http://www.amazon.com/Brother-Printer-MFC8950DW-Wireless-Monochrome/dp/B008CJ1M44/ref=pd_sim_e_10

Which adds a bigger paper tray, color touch screen, and can use an even larger, 12,000 page yield cartridge.
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#7Orestes417Posted 11/18/2013 6:22:16 PM
Oh yes, I'll agree Brother makes excellent hardware. For some reason I tend to associate them more strongly with sewing machines though so they never pop into my head first.

As for the expiration of cartridges, it's more a matter of principle with giving the company money in any form than it is about the specific product. HP used to make amazing hardware, got an ancient Laserjet 5p sitting beside me that's probably more durable than most soviet tanks and I love my HP48G+ calculator... but that time has passed and the current company can blow me.
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#8Lukvier(Topic Creator)Posted 11/18/2013 7:36:09 PM
Out of the ones listed so far, this is what I'm leaning towards:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16828113780

But even that one says up to 50k pages a month, and I know I'm not going to be printing out anywhere near that many pages. Thoughts?

You're right that the printer doesn't have to be compatible with your HP Pro 3500 series desktops, what matters is that the printer has drivers for the version(s) of Windows that you use.

Windows 7. And I'm 99% sure it's 64 bit.

And thank you for the replies, guys. I appreciate it.
#9PraetorXynPosted 11/18/2013 7:55:54 PM
A bit off topic, but you'd think after 3 decades and then some, they could make a printer that wasn't a complete pain in the ass upkeep wise. Seems like every time I go to print something something's f***** up and I have to fix it.

I'd highly recommend you get a printer with an ethernet connection and just connect it to your wireless router, as in my experience most printers that only have wireless require you to have the machine connected via USB to scan, etc. or other such piddly problems.
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#10Lukvier(Topic Creator)Posted 11/18/2013 11:24:36 PM
bump