Multifunction Printers

Written by Charles Peacock
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One of the best thing electronics product designers have been doing in recent years is combining different products into new multifunction units. Cell phones now act as cameras as well as personal organizers; DVD players also play music CDs and even digital photos. One of the most useful multifunction gadgets out there is the new line of computer printers that have three or four other great features packed into the same unit.

What Multifunction Printers Can Do

The first multifunction printers were designed to act as both a computer printer and a fax machine. Interestingly enough, combining these two functions meant that you got two more functions without even trying: since fax machines require a telephone, it was easy to add a telephone handset to these units. And since a fax machine also requires some type of image scanning equipment, it wasn't difficult to make the unit into a scanner as well.

Most multifunction printers can now perform as five separate machines: a printer, a fax machine, a telephone, a scanner and a copier. Because the price off components for each of these types of machines are so low, it's easy for manufacturers to make one unit that performs all of these tasks very well. You'll find that buying a multifunction printer doesn't mean sacrificing anything in terms of quality.

A great thing about the newest multifunction printers is that their features are integrated so seamlessly. Any unit you buy will come with great software and drivers that allow you to control the machine quickly and easily from your computer. And in most cases, the machine will also have an on-board menu screen that allows you to perform functions without using your computer at all.

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