Production printers are practical for more than print shop owners. Whether you run high volume print jobs, print on multiple media types, or need finishing options, you may be ready to make a change to a production printer. Ask yourself the 8 questions below. If you answer yes to 4 or more of these questions, production print could be the right fit for you.
Is your business a print-for-pay environment?
Commercial print shops often have a wide variety of print jobs on the docket, some of which are extremely large. A production print device is critical to keeping costs down for large jobs. Additionally, the production printer is built to give users the most versatility in creating a job and completing it in a timely manner.
How many pages are you running a month?
If you notice that your print volume has been increasing to an amount that is costly to run on your current device, then it may be time to consider a production unit. Non-production multifunction printers, copiers, and desktop printers are not rated to run large quantities of prints/copies a month.
Each model of a multifunction printer has a maximum monthly volume determined by the manufacturer, as well as, an average monthly volume that will result in the best ROI. Running more than the machine’s maximum monthly volume will affect quality, cost and reliability. Overworking your MFP will quickly destroy the device. In contrast, production units have a faster per minute page count and are built to handle large print quantities with ease.
Do you need to print on media other than plain copy paper?
All paper is not made the same! There are many differences in media/substrate types, such as, size, weight, color, and material. The type of media you plan to use for print jobs will affect whether you should be in the market for a production printer.
Print devices and individual paper trays have a maximum paper weight they are capable of handling. If your organization prints on heavy paper, you’ll benefit from a production printer. Production devices can handle many different heavy stocks in their main paper trays. Additionally, the bypass tray on a production device can handle significantly thicker media than a high-end business-class multifunction printer.
Do you have a need for finishing options?
Do your print jobs need to be made into booklets, include a heavy cover page, or require folding? Depending on what finishing features your print jobs need, you may want to make the decision to move to a production device. Finishing options such as binding, folding, stapling, and hole punching, are often only available on a production printer or as individual offline products.
Is your organization color critical?
All production printers are subject to the toner or ink. Each print manufacturer uses a different formula to make their toner, which can throw your color reproduction off. Color calibration is a great tool to return color to the factory standards. However, color calibration doesn’t always mean the color will print to your standards.
Production devices incorporate cutting edge technologies such as EFI Fiery to ensure brand colors, logos and images are reproduced accurately across multiple substrates. This software allows you to change how the color is printed, i.e. matching Pantone colors.
How much toner coverage is typically on the page?
If you are frequently printing brochures, flyers or other image-heavy designs, you’ll benefit from a production print device. Production printers are designed to output high-quality photographic or graphic-based jobs that require large amounts of toner. This level of device will provide predictable, consistent color and image control.
Are you frequently producing mail merges?
Producing mail merges does not necessarily mean that you need to have a production device. However, if the content of the variable data printing (VDP) is graphics-rich and it’s for a large job that is needed multiple times throughout the year, then a production level device should be considered as an option.
Are you outsourcing print jobs?
If your company is outsourcing many print jobs a year, a production printer may be a justifiable expense that could save your organization money and time in the long term.
If you answered yes to multiple questions above, it is in your best interest to discuss production print devices with an expert before your next print device purchase. the switch could save you from many headaches in the future. While production printers are an investment, there are a number of factors that could save on costs in the long run. For example, you’ll likely spend less on service calls, outsourcing and supplies.
Production print devices are not a great fit for all businesses! Our specialist will work with you to steer you towards the right machine for your business needs. If production is not right for you, we will be sure to tell you. However, a conversation about your print environment will ensure you have the right device(s) for your goals!
Contact a production print specialist below to discuss whether production is right for your organization.