Multifunction Printers Bridge the Digital Divide

Didja ever wonder why the paperless office never happened? It's no secret; the proverbial 'we' introduced a second data stream into the equation, the digital stream. So now we need to convert paper faxes into emails, emails into text, scans into images... you get the picture (yes, it's a pun.). Read The Myth of the Paperless Office to put the skin on the bones.Recently, multifunction printers (MFP) have been made available to provide one stop shopping for all these woes. These amazing devices can print, scan, copy, fax, email, and save files to your network, and act as an information hub to bridge the gap between your paper data and your digital data. There are dozens available; which ones are green? Unlike the typical green printer, the choice is not so simple.

First, look for a machine that does everything you need; if you do a lot of faxing you will want to spring for the fax-to-email functionality that some of these devices have, even though it will cost you more; the same goes for color printing. Neaty green features include sleep mode (turns itself off), a black only print mode (much cheaper than color), using solid stick ink, skipping blank pages, and recycling of ink cartridges. The Xerox Phaser Line is a good choice for these reasons; it doesn't have all these features but it does have a lot of them. More high end, but with better graphics and speed, is the Epson AcuLaser line which is also a good bet. :: Article Friendly :: Macworld

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