Updated: Aug 16, 2019
Exploring Modern Business Laser Printers
Laser printers have come a long way in the last few years. Not too long ago, laser printers were expensive commodities restricted to the few serious businesses that could afford them. However, the precision, speed, printing consistency, and image quality offered by laser printers made them extremely attractive peripherals.
As computer designs continued to advance into the 2000s, laser printers also advanced while printer prices plummeted. Today, laser printers are available for under $200 (U.S.) and have become commonplace in homes and small businesses all over the world. This article shows you how modern laser printers work and explains how to maintain them effectively.
The intense competition between printer manufacturers has resulted in a staggering variety of laser printer models--each with different sizes, shapes, and features. In spite of this physical diversity, every laser printer ever made performs the same set of functions to transcribe the output of a computer into some permanent paper form.
The process seems simple enough, right? In reality, however, It requires a complex interaction of electrical, electronic, and mechanical parts all working together to make a practical laser printer.
Stop for a moment and consider some things that a laser printer must be capable of First, the laser printer can do nothing at all without a host computer to provide data and control signals, so a communication link must be established. To operate with any computer system, the laser printer must be compatible with one or more standard communication interfaces that have been developed.
A printer must be able to use a wide variety of paper types and thicknesses, which can include such things as envelopes and labels. It must be capable of printing a vast selection of type styles and sizes, as well as graphics images, then mix those images together onto the same page.
The laser printer must be fast. It must communicate, process, and print information as quickly as possible. Laser printers must also be easy to use. Many features and options are accessible with a few careful strokes of the control panel.
Paper input and output must be convenient. Expendable supplies such as toner should be quick and casy to change. Finally, laser printers must be reliable. They must produce even and consistent print over a long working life-often more than 1,000,000 pages (expendable items must be replaced more frequently)
What is electrophotographic?
You are probably wondering why people use the term electrophotographic printer when talking about laser printers. In truth, electrophotographic (or EP) is a broad term that refers to a printer that functions using the electrophotographic process.
Laser printers are electrophotographic printers that use a laser beam to write image data, but there are also LED light-emitting diode) page printers that use a bar of microscopic LEDS, instead of a laser beam, to write image data.
Both Laser and LED printers are electrophotographic printers (although laser-type printers are more common). You can learn much more about the electrophotographic process and see how laser and LED printers work in this book. In this book, the terms EP printer, laser printer, and LED printer are interchangeable.
Make it a point to know your laser printer specifications and features before you begin any repair. The specifications and features give you a good idea what the printer can do, which might help you to test it more thoroughly during and after your repair.
A listing of specifications is usually contained in an introductory section of the printer service manual or at the end in an appendix. If you do not have a copy of the printer documentation on hand, the manufacturer can often fax a copy of the specifications directly to you. Remember that there is no standard format for listing printer specifications.
The format is up to the preferences of each manufacturer. Regardless of how the specifications are listed, you will most often find the following specifications: power requirements, interface compatibility, print capacity, print characteristics, reliability life information, environmental information, and physical information. Each of these specifications has some importance, so you should be familiar with them in detail.
Printer Power requirements
As with any electrical device, a printer requires power to function. Voltage, frequency, and power consumption are the three typical specifications that you will find here. Domestic U.S. voltage can vary from 105 to 130 Vac (alternating-current volts) at a frequency of 60 Hz (hertz). European voltage can range from 210 to 240 Vac at