Putting a hard disk in a printer used to be an expensive option, if an option at all. These days, however, desktops and network printers are increasingly being designed with hard disks as standard equipment or relatively inexpensive add-ons.

Font Storage
Having a hard disk on a printer can significantly reduce printing time and free-up computer storage. For one thing, you can download fonts to the printer, storing them on the hard drive rather than having to store them on your computer and send them with each print job. That frees-up computer disk space and cuts processing time, an important consideration in a networked environment where numerous users compete for the printer’s attention.

Forms and Documents
Once your fonts are downloaded to the printer’s hard disk (the first priority), you’ll probably have room left over for storing frequently printed forms and documents.

If you want the best looking results, printed documents almost always look better than copied ones, and it takes fewer steps to produce them, too. Although a high-end copy machine, say at your local copy shop, can produce near-original-quality output, the cost per page for smaller runs can be up to twice as much as printing it yourself, not to mention the time and inconvenience of sending jobs out for copying.

The best documents to store on your printer’s hard drive are those that seldom or never need to be changed. They should be documents that are printed regularly, p to 200 or so per month.(For larger quantities, you are better off going to a copy shop or commercial printer – saving stress on your network and your machine.)

Document size, in terms of storage space required, is another important consideration. If a single document eats up all the storage space left after fonts have been loaded, other frequently needed forms and documents will have to remain o their respective computers.

Fonts First
Be aware that in order to produce a document stored on the printer’s hard drive, the fonts used in the document must also be stored there. Your printer can’t go back and ask the computer to send over any missing fonts. If you’re thinking about adding a hard disk to your current printer, give us a call. We can supply and install it for you, and help you determine how best to take advantage of it.

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