Buying Large Format Printers Pays Attention to Size, to Meet The Floor Space Needs
Category : Blog
Often, the purchase of large format printers is the need for factory mass production. So when you buy the printer, to choose the right for the factory. For example, to consider the factory floor space, it is necessary to limit the printer’s floor space.
Most people try to define the large format printer that they will need for the coming three years. However, as it is difficult to predict the future, consider how the large format printer can be adapted to changing needs if and when these needs occur.
Why is it important?
Ideally you invest in a product that will offer you a long-term solution. However requirements evolve over time and when your business enters a new phase your requirements can change. If you buy a feature now because you think you might need it next year, you might be throwing money away. On the other hand if your needs change other than in ways you had expected, you might need to buy a new printer.
- Field upgradability When looking at the field upgradability of your large format printer consider the following:
- Hardware: can you add hardware such as a scanner, a folder, additional paper rolls, and additional working memory to the print engine in the future? Also consider if these upgrades can be done on site at your company.
- Software: does the manufacturer offer firmware updates to stay compatible with new IT developments?
- Service: can you change your service contract to, for example, shorter response time if needed?
- Financing of field upgradability Financing of new upgrades can be cumbersome because of investment approvals needed. Keep in mind that leasing contracts are an option that may help you with these administrative consequences.
Instead of trying to predict the future, make sure that your new large format printer can adapt to future needs. In other words make sure your large format printer is adaptable if and when needed.
When thinking about floor space, you tend to think of the 2- or 3-dimensional size of a large format printer. For sure these physical dimensions of the printer should be part of your considerations. Exact measurements can be found in the technical specifications of the product. It is, however, even more important to take the operational floor space into account. This is the space required to make prints, copies and scans in the most efficient way possible and includes, loading media, collecting the original, collecting/collating prints, loading originals for scanning and more. There should be sufficient room for the handling and finishing of prints such as folding, enveloping and distributing. Media, toner and ink cartridges also need to be stored in close proximity to the printer for easy access.
Why is it important?
It is important to balance the cost of floor space versus efficiency cost. The latter may be difficult to quantify. But, in the end there are significant consequences to not having enough space such as:
- Damaged prints because they fall on the floor.
- Damaged originals because there is no space to handle sets of E-size originals for scanning.
- Cost of incomplete sets—i.e. how do you measure the cost of a construction site having to slow or even shut down while waiting for additional prints to be made?
Considerations A lot of printers are presented or promoted as a single footprint multifunctional solution. When you are considering this keep in mind the additional operational floor space the large format printer requires to fully operate. Sometimes a better solution can be to place a separate scanner, maybe even in a separate space.
For making the best use of your floor space, consider a single or dual footprint set-up:
- A single footprint: with multi-functionality allowing you to copy, print and scan.
- Dual footprint: with a separate scanner next to your large format printer (depending on your needs and workflow situation).
When evaluating your floor space needs, looking at the physical dimensions is just the first step. It is difficult to judge the space that you actually need.
To make your choice easier check out your current printer and perform a print, copy, and scan job while evaluating the actual space you need to comfortably perform your tasks. To complete this picture, follow up on your prints and perform whatever finishing tasks you usually need. This way you find out what actual space you need when folding, enveloping and distributing your prints.
To conclude, don’t just look at the footprint listed specifications. A real run-through like this will give you a better insight in your needs.