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Most printer manufacturers offer multifunctional models that provide the capabilities of multiple machines in a single unit. These devices often include print, scan, copy and fax capabilities in the form of one all-inclusive machine. Originally marketed for home and small business users, many manufacturers now offer larger and more robust models for medium to large business use. Understanding the advantages and disadvantages of a multifunction printer helps you make an informed decision when purchasing new equipment.
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Advantages of Multifunction Printers
A multifunction printer offers the convenience of additional features you may not have purchased otherwise. For example, if you normally do not send or receive many fax messages, you may not have invested in a separate fax machine. However, a multifunctional printer that includes fax capabilities allows you to send or receive the occasional fax without an added expense. In addition, the ability to scan an image and then print that image using the same machine offers another level of convenience by saving you the time of walking to two separate devices.
Perhaps one of the greatest advantages of a multifunctional printer includes the space savings offered by the device. Rather than having to find space for a printer, a copier, a fax machine and a scanner, you can have the same functionality in a single machine. This space savings may benefit those trying to make the most of their home office space or those working with significant space constraints.
Another advantage of a multifunctional printer includes the cost savings of purchasing one device that performs multiple functions. Although the purchase price for an all-in-one printer may exceed that of a traditional printer, the overall cost typically remains less than purchasing multiple machines. Therefore, you can benefit from increased functionality without paying for each feature. In addition to the savings associated with the original purchase price, maintaining one device costs less than maintaining multiple devices.
Multifunction printers typically require one cord to power the entire device. Not only does this reduce cable congestion, it lowers the electricity required to run the device. This power savings also leads to increased cost savings.