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Thread: SoHo Colour Laser

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    Pork & Beans Powerup Phage's Avatar
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    SoHo Colour Laser

    Hi All,

    My wife was recently elected as a Councillor and the inkjet printing costs are now totally out of hand.

    Please can someone recommend a quality small colour laser ?
    Society's to blame,
    Or possibly Atari.

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    Re: SoHo Colour Laser

    Not directly I can't, as I haven't looked at recent models.

    But I did do an analysis for a corporate client a few years back, and I doubt the principles have changed much.

    First, decide on criteria. Is print quality critical? I.e. photo quality. I'm guessing not, but it depends on what she'll be printing.

    Second, get a firm idea of anticipated print volumes. It's critical.

    Third, extea features needed? In part, this depends on point 2. How sophisticated do paper handling options need to be? Do you need duplex? High capacilty bins?

    Fourth, do a breakdown of running costs.

    Some machines just require regular toner cartridge changes because the bulk of the consumables are in it. For others, you might find toner changes every 1500 pages, something else every 5000, another bit at 15000 and yet another at 100,000 pages.

    So you need to work out how long you expect the machine to last. How many pages you print per day, or week or month. Multiply that up to the projected life of the machine, figure out which components need changing and how many times over the projected life, and factor all that into the cost of consumables.

    If you don't, you're heading for a nasty shock when you find out that at 18 months, you need a £150 replacement for a major component.

    In general, very cheap machines are good for low-volume personal desktop use, but the cost per page will be high. As you go up the price range for up-front costs, cost-per-page typically drops.

    The trick is to hit the balance that suits your needs.




    Or, pop down to Currys and grab whatever's on "sale". Replace it in 12 months if it's too expensive to run.

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    Re: SoHo Colour Laser

    We use Oki here, reliable, expensive to buy, but running costs are good.

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    Re: SoHo Colour Laser

    Cheers both.
    I think that quality isn't top of the list, I was thinking of your standard office laser that is great for text, and just OK for pictures. It's about printing policies and documents mostly. Not huge bins, but defintely >250 sheets. Something like the ones I'm used to like the HP 4250N
    Society's to blame,
    Or possibly Atari.

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    Re: SoHo Colour Laser

    If you haven't bought one yet, I'll recommend the Dell 1760W. My niece has it and cartridges are around £20 a full set.

    I had the older 1250 (non wireless) which I've recently passed on to my brother - took the same cartridges as the above model.

    I think ebuyer do the 1760W for around £100 or £90 when on offer.

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    Re: SoHo Colour Laser

    I'd personally steer clear of colour laser unless it's absolutely essential. The only times I've ever got them for people (against my advice) they've never been happy.

    First thing I'd do is work out how much printing can be got away with NOT doing - could any of that paperwork be carried/viewed/distributed electronically? I know a number of councils invested in tablets for their councillors/staff a few years ago, and I can well believe that even a reasonable quality tablet could pay itself back in a year of printing costs.

    Second, I'd consider just how much that colour is essential to the task at hand, and whether it's appropriate to be printing that at home anyway. It may be more effective to work up a good relationship with a local print shop for any volume colour work that needs doing.

    Third, my understanding was that councillors got some level of expensing for council-related business? Certainly I'd expect printing that is essential to council business would be carried out by the council. if that is the case you may find that home printing can be minimised anyway.

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    Re: SoHo Colour Laser

    I've got an old and cheap HP Color LaserJet 1510, must say it's been a workhorse (although I doubt you can buy them any more)......I wouldn't use it for high quality photo prints though.

    I've done less than 5000 pages, although TCO has been SUBSTANTIALLY less then if I had an inkjet (which I'd get about 5 pages out of before not printing anything for 1 month+ and then would find the ink had dried!!)
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    Re: SoHo Colour Laser

    Some of the HP machines are specifically designed for high volumes, not up to date with latest, but Id definitely think about a smaller cheaper mono Laser, keeping a colour prints for colour Laser only.

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    Re: SoHo Colour Laser

    We've just bought an Officejet (Inkjet) but it seems to be reasonable.

    Otherwise, have you seen the Epsons with the large (external) ink tanks and a continuous feed type system? If you don't want to go all the way to a colour laser, that may be an option?

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    Re: SoHo Colour Laser

    Epson Ecotank series should fit the bill, They finally did away with cartridges and it lets you fill your own CISS system. Best of both worlds if you don't want it to spit out a lot all at once. Still bloody quick compared to most SOHO inkjets. https://www.epson.co.uk/search/products?search=ecotank

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    Re: SoHo Colour Laser

    My previous experience ( circa 4 years ago admittedly) with Colour Laser for SoHo = don't bother if you're talking HP. The quality is OK but the features are rubbish. They needed a load of crapware installing on any computer that wanted to receive scans whilst the inkjets can do direct to network share for example.

    However with their High Volume Inkjet MFP's, well worth considering provided your print model fits. I have an Officejet 8620 and it's very good for me. The important thing is that it's used reasonably regularly (i.e. 2-3 sessions weekly or more often) or the heads get bunged up.

    Don't make the mistake of assuming Laser = cheaper per page than inkjet. For anything colour, it's now more expensive to use a laser printer per page than a decent SoHo inkjet.
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    Re: SoHo Colour Laser

    I picked up a cheap Dell colour laser from IJT direct, it was £125 with 1 starter set of toner and 2 refilled sets of toner, its been running for over 5 years and has been faultless for over 10K prints. Might be worth checking out what deals IJT are doing, they class them as free printers when you buy the toner

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