View Full Version : Multifunction or not?

15-11-2010, 05:46 PM
I run a small office with a network. We currently run seperate machines, i.e, b/w laser printer, colour ink printer, photocopier, fax and terrible old portable scanner.

As luck would have it the colour printer is suddenly very unreliable, the fax essentially needs to be force fed paper to print, the laser printer has been playing up with jams a bit lately and I've been meaning to get a new scanner for sometime. (Photocopier is good for the timebeing).

Am I better to stick with seperate machines or get a multifunction laser printer (and can you get multifunction colour laser printers)?

Any suggestions as to what I should get? I get the impression individual machines will give me better quality features but will cost a lot more to purchase and I am also concerned at my ability to install everything successfully on the network...

Speedy Gonzales
15-11-2010, 05:52 PM
If you want to save space, get an MFC

15-11-2010, 06:19 PM
A networked MFC would be the cheapest option in the long run. That way every one get to use it and Total Cost of Running is cheaper than multi printers all requiring their own consumables.

Most purpose Designed basic networked MFC are quite easy to set up.

You set the IP address in the machine via its control panel to suit your Network range - then install the software on each PC - if asked for the IP address, put in what ever you have set it to or normally the software will search for the machine - then you use its functions as normal.

15-11-2010, 06:34 PM
Yeah, networked multi seems to great sense.
The only worry - when one aspect of it begins to fail you may loose the functionality of all those features all at once... in which case consider having two of them so that you're never without all of those capabilities.

15-11-2010, 07:22 PM
I've had bad reliability issues with Cannon MFCs.

Speedy Gonzales
15-11-2010, 07:24 PM
I'm using a canon mfc atm. Altho it doesnt have fax, and its not laser. Havent had a prob with it yet

15-11-2010, 07:28 PM
I have a Canon b/w laser with scanner. I prefer HP myself.
The Canon tended to stop after certain about of pages are printed like 20 and needs a reboot.

It also tends to not have latest drivers for x64 while my 10yr old HP does :D

Personally laser is cheaper in running cost and looks more professional.
I get a MFC personally. Just simpler.
And actually, even in large private corps or govt depts, they now tend to use a computer compatible colour photocopier.

15-11-2010, 08:24 PM
I think the biggest plus for laser, and minus for ink is that laser prints won't turn into a mess if they get wet - very relevant if doing envelopes / labels

15-11-2010, 09:06 PM
If you don't mind black and white only I recommend the HP 1522nf, great device.
It supports network scanning too, the canon I have doesn't.

16-11-2010, 09:24 AM
larger companies lease colour photocopiers which are just large professional MFC's anyway.

Only real downsides to using one device is the potential for it to die taking all your functions with it, and of course mutlple devices can all be used at the same time.

You could compromise by going to say 2 devices instead of multiple. Perhaps a good MFC colour inkjet with fax and a decnt laser printer as well. Although if you do a lot of photocopying a colour laser MFC would proably be the way to go.

16-11-2010, 10:16 AM
I wouldn't want an MFC.

I don't need the space saving and I prefer to have things separate so I can mix and match - and like Paul.Cov said, if one breaks you can still use the other.

My Laser printer is networked anyway, so all computers can use it (with the exception of Linux, Ubuntu has no drivers)

I don't use scanners much but I have 3 of them (including one small Canon LiDE which is powered from the USB port so I can plug it into pretty much anything)

The only thing missing is a quick copy feature without having to manually scan and print, but since I do that maybe once a year the extra time doesn't worry me much.

16-11-2010, 02:02 PM
Thanks very much for all your help. Very much appreciated.

Space isnt important for me and I have a photocopier so I think I will get a reasonable colour inkjet MFC to do the colour printing, faxing and scanning and keep the current laser b/w printer to do the bulk printing.

Now to find the right colour inkjet MFC...


16-11-2010, 02:40 PM
The HP MFC software is terrible. Buggy, Bloated & poorly designed.
Software may stop working if IE is updated to new version.(has happened in the past with some HP MFC models)