From time to time I'll see an interesting thread or post on a forum and I'll take the time to give an unbiased opinion based on the questions that are presented. Below is a thread I found on a forum that really didn't answer the question for the person who posted the thread. Please see the question below"
Thread from poster: I have to get 3 new MFP's (toshiba e-studio 305 and 455). They are currently under 10K per month print volume each. What is the best product out there?
Also we are purchasing (not lease) Should I go with no maintenance and just get the toner or go with a maintenance agreement?
We have looked at OKI mps5502mbf, HP m525c, and Toshiba e-studio306 so far..
My Repsone: please, let me answer your question. You have to look at the documents that you print and copy first in order to decide which maintenance/supply plan is the most economical for your company. If you are consistently using a high coverage of toner on the printed or copied page for color, then I would recommend to get a maintenance agreement that includes the toner. However keep in mind that there are clauses in all of the maintenance/supply agreements that will allow the provider to charge a higher cost per copy if they deem you are using to much toner. Also on most of these contracts there is an annual elevator increase of up to 10% PER YEAR! This can be a very pricey contract.
If you are an average color user or just printing a small color logo, a few lines of color or some excel spreads with limited color then your best best is to take the maintenance agreement and buy the toner on your own. With this contract if the cost of the toner cartridges from your supplier gets to expensive you can always source the toner elsewhere and please only buy the OEM toner, no generics!
Providers of the maintenance/supply agreements will always be take the position that you will use the maximum amount of color toner, thus they price those contracts to cover the high toner coverage.
As far as OKI and Toshiba, they are not major players in the market, in fact most of the OKI's are not user friendly with their user interface and there are not as many service providers for that brand. I mention this because what happens if you are not happy with your service provider if you do get the OKi's, depending on where you are located there may not be another service provider for you.
Toshiba, one of the bottom dwellers in market share at least in the US, Technology is ok, however they don't commit the resources to R & D like Ricoh, Canon, Xerox and KonicaMInolta. With Toshiba also, you maybe limited with the amount of service providers that may be in your area.
If you need more information you can always go here www.p4photel.com , if I can be of service please let me know with a PM or a reply post.
What is the best product out there?
Top four and not in any order are : Ricoh, Xerox, Canon and KonicaMinolta
Hope this helps!!