Recommended: Color Thermal Printer (just like a Color Laser Printer)
So if you’re an owner or work in a small business, you know that keeping expenses down is a priority all around. Yet you want to act an.d look like big business — and one way is getting a color laser printer for the office. While the prices of color lasers are coming down (like the HP Color laser can be had for under $600 now), what’s better than FREE?
Here’s one deal that I can whole-heartedly recommend — why? Because I just got a free color printer from Xerox myself — and now it’s all mine! I love my printer. It’s networkable, it double-sides (duplex printing), it’s fast, it does a great job for regular black and white printing too, it prints up to 1200 dpi, I use it a lot to make custom greeting cards with the manual feed tray, and it really impresses people to provide completely color prints that are a cut above inkjet quality. In fact, my printer is a newer and better model than the one at the 2 local Kinko’s I was going to for my digital color printouts previously!!!
The deal with FreeColorPrinters.com is that they give you the printer to use for 36 months — A Xerox WorkCentre C2424. You just use it as normal. Once a month, you simply print out a “usage report” which is easily printed from the printer’s control panel and then fax it in to them, so they keeps tabs on your usage. They provide all the black ink you want completely free (yes this part is true). You do have to pay for S&H, but it comes out to something like $5 for DHL ground for 15 black sticks of ink, which should last you about 50,000 pages depending on how much ink coverage you use. But basically, it’s nothing. The other colors of ink (it’s a CYMK printer, so Cyan, Yellow, Magenta, Key (black)) have to be ordered through the program, but the pricing isn’t bad either. They don’t mark up the ink like crazy. And during the program, you get on-site tech support. So if the printer goes down and it needs to be fixed, they’ll send someone out to your physical location pronto. I’ve had to call support 2 times over the 3 years, and the 1st time they came next day, the 2nd time, they came within 1.5 hours of my call. All the repairs were free and the technician even gave me a couple of free ink sticks.
The only other cost invovled is “maintenance kits” which keeps the ink drum clean and the printer uses it up over 10,000 pages (it’s based on an odometer type thing). They sell an “extended” maintenance kit, but unless you really think you’re going to be doing high volume printing, it’s not necessary. The kits go for about $120 I believe.
At the end of 36 months, Xerox sends you a nice little note stating that they are official turining over the deed of the printer to you. After that, you can do whatever you want with the printer. You don’t have to use it at all. You can sell it. You can use it to death. You can use 3rd party ink (i.e. Media Sciences makes compatible ink sticks for about 1/3 the price of OEM ink).
They have a completely no-risk application where you basically have to commit to 2,000 pages/month. It doesn’t have to be all color pages, but a certain percentage should be color. You should be careful on the application to be realistic because that usage # ends up being your “committment” # of pages you have to print every month. If you don’t hit that # on a given month, they look at your life-time monthly average. If you still don’t hit the “committment” # of pages, then they charge you $75 for that month — which is still cheaper than an equipment lease for a color printer. One way around it that I was told from a customer service rep is to create a word doc with a single character like a period in grey and run double-sided pages to reach the “commiitment” # of printed pages for the month. Although this is not what they intend, it’s what the guy told me to do. I only had to do it once or twice I think over the 36 months, but usually it wasn’t a problem for me to hit that #. So be realistic, but conservative, yet you have to be in the 2,000-4,000 pages/month range.
This program is perfect for churches that want to printout color bulletins and other promotional flyers; for small businesses that serve clients or do a lot of pitching to prospective clients; even restuarants that need to print take-out menus and placemats; and one really good segment is educational — schools are perfect for this program.
The application process is totally risk-free. You can sign-up just to see if you qualify and then try again with different mix of numbers if they come back to you to turn you down (just make sure you can realistically use the printer that much).
I compeltely love my Xerox Tektronix Color Printer. You can love your own too!