We get this question all the time. Without knowing precisely what you’re looking for, we can answer by saying somewhere in the ballpark of $500 for a small printer, to $100,000+ for a production machine with all the bells and whistles.
That’s not a helpful range.
The answer to the question, “How much does a copier cost?” depends on what you need…
We know... we used the “D” word: It depends. Exactly what you were hoping to hear. This guide to what you need to know before buying a copier or printer was assembled to help break down all the “depends on” factors to help you get a better feel for what you need and what you can expect that device to cost.
What you don’t want is for a sales representative to come into your workplace with questions that you’re unprepared to answer. This isn’t good for you: You may over or under estimate your needs and end up with a copier that doesn’t fit your workplace. This isn’t good for the sales representative: they won’t be meeting your needs and could end up with a dissatisfied customer.
Use this as a guide so that you're prepared for a cost discussion.
Keep in mind that pricing is subject to variables like whether you lease or buy, what kind of a lease rate you get, which accessories are added and whether you have service and toner costs included in your contract. All of these variables are discussed below.
First things first: You should identify whether you need a device that only prints (a standard printer), or one that will serve multiple functions such as printing, copying, scanning or faxing. Devices that serve many purposes are often called copiers, or more accurately, multi-function devices (MFDs).
It's amazing how many questions you need to consider to help determine what you need.
You may think you just need a machine that makes copies quickly, but we’d be doing you a disservice if we didn’t ask for the context of your print environment and assess your needs. Hidden cost savings can be found in offices that have forgotten, overpriced or underused devices.
Questions about Networking and IT Infrastructure
How much a copier, printer or MFD will cost depends on how you answer the above questions. It depends on your organization’s unique print needs.
Black & White Printers: $400-$600
Color Printers: $800-$1,200
Black and White MFD / Copier Desktop: $500-$2,100
Color Desktop MFD / Copier: $800-$2,600
Black & White Business Class MFD / Copier: $2,000-$8,000
Color Business Class MFD / Copier: $2,500-$15,000
BW Production: $20,000-$30,000+
Color Production: $24,000-36,000+
All the bells and whistles: $100,000+
Understand which tier of manufacturer you’re purchasing. One manufacturer may sell a machine for $10,000, while another sells a similar machine with the same basic functions – let’s say copy, print, scan and fax – for $5,000. The higher-priced machine likely comes with a more intuitive interface, more reliability, higher speed abilities, etc. It's like weighing an Audi versus a Kia: both will perform the basic function of getting you from point A to point B (most days), but one will perform at a higher standard.
We wish copiers and printers could run forever and never need maintenance. But that's not reality. Every copier and printer will need maintenance, whether that means cleaning, fixing a jam or networking help. Where do you turn when your device breaks and needs a fix? Many printers and copiers are sold with maintenance contracts so you don't have to worry about finding someone to repair your machine when needed. These repair costs are decided at the time you agree to buy or lease the device, so there are no surprises at the time a fix is needed. Some dealers offer device as a service (DaaS) plans that offer unlimited copies, monthly service and support, all on one invoice from one vendor. Learn more about service and repair here.
Whether you lease or buy office equipment is up to you. Some organizations prefer a capital expense, while others want an ongoing operational expense. Considerations when you're making the decision to lease or buy a copier are how it affects your taxes, whether you prefer a capital or operational expenses and whether you're planning to grow and expand your business in the coming months and years. Read more thoughts on leasing vs. buying a copier here.
Printers can be a huge burden on an organization. The more printers you have, the more there is to manage. Are they secure? Is printer placement optimized to help control costs? Are you using too many vendors for toner? Who orders toner and when? How do you report meter readings? Managed Print Services (MPS) provides a solution to these burdens, which can often fall on an organization's IT team. Advantages of MPS include printer security, controlled costs, eased IT staff burden, consolidated devices and vendors, automated supply fulfillment, automated meter readings and more.
What good is having a fancy new printer, copier or MFD if no one knows how to use it? Having proper training for your new device, as well as affordable access to ongoing training as needed throughout the device's lifetime, is important to ensuring you're making the most of your purchase. Proper training can show you how to set up default print settings, how to use your machine's accessories (such as booklet folding or hole punching), how to print envelopes and tips to keep your machine running optimally. Working with a partner who provides top-notch training is key.
Let's say you know your 50-person office needs to print 10,000 pages per month. Anyone in the copier industry can offer the gear in one way, shape or form.
The biggest advice we can offer is to choose a partner you trust and to allow them to make printer, copier or MFD recommendations, so you don't just get gear that does the job, but you get the best gear for the job.
You want an office technology partner that gives you choices, provides you the best value and does all the research legwork for you. This will mean working with a sales representative. It is in their best interest to make a recommendation based on your workplace's unique needs. They do not benefit from overselling equipment you do not need. Having an upset customer is not a good feeling for a salesperson, and equipment that does not fit an office environment costs a service team time and money. You don't want a recommendation made to you simply because it's the cheapest option. You also don't want one made because it is the most expensive. The right partner will want to recommend the best, long-lasting solution for you, with premier service to go with it.
So, which printer, copier or MFD do you need? Do you need a top-tier manufacturer, or will a middle-tier manufacturer serve your needs? Loffler represents four of the top five top-tier manufacturers in the world. These manufacturers offer best-in-class products and services while applying best practices to keep your devices, documents and network secure.