The top printers of 2009

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After months of research and feedback from online community members, publisher Sift Media has produced the definitive Business Buyer’s Guide to Printers.

Organised into four categories, the downloadable guides present recommendations and running cost estimates based on an online user survey and extensive research by Sift Media’s technology team, John Stokdyk and Jon Wilcox.

“Computer printers are one of those pieces of kit that you buy every once-in-a-while. Because the market moves so quickly it’s hard to keep up with which are the most dependable and cost-effective devices,” said technology editor John Stokdyk. “The recommendations we collected from members at the beginning of the year were so popular that we went back and asked for more detail about the printers people were using. The results we got helped us to pinpoint the machines and manufacturers that have proved their worth in real life.”

Data was collected on more than 100 separate models. Focusing on the printers that gained the highest ratings for speed, quality, reliability and value for money, the tech team then reviewed their availability and pricing as well as print and multifunction capabilities, paper handling, consumable costs and optional extras. This information was boiled down into four PDF documents shortlisting the best available printers in the following four categories:

Desktop - No fuss, small-size printers for small office environments typically printing fewer than 20 A4 pages a day. Prices: £60-£300.

Workgroup - Shared printers for small office networks, where users are happy to look after the printer themselves and print fewer than 100 pages a day. Prices: £100-£370.

Networked - Expandable machines able to cope with the varied document needs of 15+ people and workloads in excess of 100 pages a day. Prices: £200-£2,400.

Enterprise - Printer/copiers that can churn out several hundred pages a day, with automated paper-handling and finishing capabilities; often leased on a predictable “per click” cost per page. Retail prices: £400-£3,000.

Follow each link to find out which printers best match your document needs and budget.

The Business Buyer’s Guide to Printers series is published in association with Kyocera Mita and OKI

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