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Solid Ink Printers

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Reason I'm asking is...

A few months ago, I sent a print for a client to a print shop, and was impressed with the results. I called the guys at the shop, and asked them about the printer they used. It was a Xerox Phaser 850, which is a solid ink printer.

Nowadays the 850 was replaced with a newer model (Phaser 8400), but thats off topic...

From doing some reading across the web, the 850 is a good printer, and the technology saves a lot of money for medium to high printing quantities.

I just happen to have the option of purchasing a used 850 for less than $600 (with some extra Ink Stick - those are expensive but last for thousands of prints). The ppl who owned it never used it the way it was built to be used (lots of prints), and thats why they sell it. I probably wont either, but I dont need to pay the amount they did when they first bought it.

I just want to hear opinions from ppl who got the chance to use such a printer.


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I've actually not heard of these types of printers until you mentioned them. I'd love to see the output though. The 8200 looks pretty slick, albeit a $2000 printer. I wonder how they compare to Kodak Dye-Subs in terms of color reproduction and acuracy. That woudl be the one thing I woudl worry about. They might look good, but how accurate are they.

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After this one print I was impressed with, I sent them 4 other files to print, so I can test the results on a wider basis. The result was the same. I'm no expert in colors like some of you guys are, but to my "semi proffesional" eyes it looked sharp and accurate.



Papers... thats the beauty of it. It doesnt matter what kink of paper you use cause it covers it with this solid ink, so the finest glosy and cheapest copier paper, are all equal in the eyes of... Xerox Phaser...


There is no catch there. expenses should be lower than any other type of printer as it was designed for large amounts of printing. My only concern is reliability. what happens if you dont use it that often - any chance it will act like an epson ink printer that only works till the first week that you dont use it (afterwords the ink gets dry, heads are dirty...) or any other problems?


I guess that if you guys never used, or even heard of it, then probably my chances of getting some info about it here is...

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Hey bigcahunak,


The last place that I worked at, I bought an at the time Tektronics Phaser 380x for the office and the main reason I bought it was like you said, it produced great colour. When we were in the market for a new mid priced proofing system I went through large format ink jets, colour lasers, and the solid ink printers and the only printer that could give consistantly good colour from page to page was the phaser. We had a $15,000 canon colour laser in at one point and had the canon techs down at our office for 2 weeks to try to fix the printer and they never could get consistant colour from page to page. For example print the same page 4 times within about 5 to 10 min and the colours on the page would be different on each. Thats why I bought the Phaser, the colour profiles worked great in getting colours to closely match the local offset printer and we didn't have to say to the client "if you can imaging this colour being slightly different like the pantone swatches we stuck on the print...."


There are a couple things I didnt realy like about it:


1) If you leave the printer on for a long time it will actually USE ink as it keeps some of it sort of melted to be ready for a print.


2) Warm up time was around 20min. (this mite be better now with the new printers)


3) It can get expensive if your printing alot off of it. (I think it was around $150-$200 for a two pack of ink)


4) The prints them selves scratch easily



If you use it for good proofs to sent to the clients or include the proofs in the quote then its not so bad.



Let me know if you have any more questions and Ill help where I can.



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Thanks Dave.

Ink is pretty expensive (eventhough there is a replacement brand) but thats about the only thing you need to replace in the printer - no drums and such.

On the other hand, so I heard, if you dont plan to have the maintenance agreement ($700 a year) than dont buy it...

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The only consumeables that I can remember were, paper, ink, and a media tray. But in the I think about 3 or 4 years we had it, we replaced the media try once and if I remember it was only about $150cdn. And we didnt have any maintenance agreement with it just the standard warranty that I think we had extended for an additional year or so.


BTW the prices in my previous post were in CDN dollars so the ink would be around $15us to $20us :p j/k



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We use the phaser 8200 in our office. The output is nice like you say. I believe as long as you leave the printer on the ink will not clog up if you aren't printing often. We use it for graphics and daily office printing so I am not sure how it performs with limited use.

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