How to Achieve Better Scanning

Quality and efficiency are at the top of the list of everyone’s scanning needs. In order to help you achieve this, we’ve put together a few tips to help you get the best results when you scan documents.

Choose Your Weapon
● Flatbed or sheet-fed scanner? Stacks of paper are handled brilliantly by automatic document feeders, while flatbed scanners are ideal for oversized documents or books.

● What’s your speed need? Usually reported in pages per minute, scanning speeds can vary widely from one device to another. Depending on your scan environment, you may need a few dozen scans daily, or a few hundred, so make sure your scanner can handle the workload.

● Specialized document format? If you’re scanning lots of business cards, receipts, photos, slides, or negatives, specially-designed guides or scanners will maximize your scan quality.

Check Your Specs
● Use the appropriate scan resolution. Your optimal resolution will depend on the initial document and your ultimate usage of the scanned document or photo. For example, screen-only viewing works fine at 72 PPI (pixels per inch), but most printers output at 300 DPI (dots per inch). Scan at a higher resolution if your image will be cropped or enlarged.

● Select auto mode. Most scanners have an option that provides optimal resolution, contrast, and file format based on input type. Indicate whether you’re working with a picture, color document, or black-and-white document, and the scanner will handle the rest.

● Tweak the histogram. Manually defining the black, white, and mid-range points in the image or document can dramatically change readability.

Prep the Paper
● Remove all staples and paper clips. Prevent foreign objects from getting stuck inside your scanner, which could necessitate repair or replacement.

● Tape up any tears. Ripped paper can snag in the device and cause further damage to the document.

● Fan the paper. Treat your paper like a deck of cards you’re about to shuffle to separate individual pages and prevent double-feeding.

Scan away!
If you’ve followed these tips, you’re on the right path for a quality scan: pick the best scanner, adjust your technical specifications, and prepare items before scanning. To make sure your scanner is working best for your needs, contact Infomax Office Systems today.

Increase the Lifespan of Your Toner Cartridges with These Simple Tips

Printing can represent a substantial cost to businesses, in some cases as much as 7 percent of your total budget. One way to reduce your overall printing costs is by stretching out your toner cartridges to get the most use possible out of them. To make the most of your toner, we’ve put together a few tips for increasing toner lifespan and decreasing overall costs.

Optimize Your Printer Cartridge
Shake it — Each printer cartridge contains toner in powder form. Over time, this powder can clump and become unevenly distributed, leading to streaks, uneven pages, and wasted toner. To extend the life of your toner, remove the toner cartridge, cover it with a paper towel, and shake to redistribute the powder.

Unclog the nozzle — Clogged toner cartridge nozzles can lead to skipping and inconsistent output. Using a damp paper towel, wipe the bottom of the cartridge. Follow up with a dry wipe and you’re good to go.

Utilize Your Print Settings
Change print mode — Draft mode, fast mode, and toner-saver mode all use less ink by reducing the DPI (dots per inch). Utilize one of these modes when content matters more than print quality; they’re often perfectly acceptable for working with intra-office documents.

Print in grayscale — Conserve color toner by avoiding “rich blacks” that use additional color to produce deep-toned blacks.

Default settings — For the greatest impact, make your ideal print settings the default for your printer(s). In Windows operating systems, go to Windows > Control Panel > Hardware and Sounds > Devices & Printers. Right-click and select “Printing preferences” to make changes to your settings that will help you conserve toner.

Listen to Your Printer
Consider your cartridge credentials — While your choice of toner cartridge (Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM), generic, remanufactured, or refill kits) can often save you money while reducing your environmental impact, the quality of your printing can be less predictable.

Replace the toner cartridge — When all else fails, put in a new toner cartridge.

Printer toner can be a precious commodity in today’s cost-conscious office. Make your investment last longer by maintaining toner cartridges and using smart settings like draft mode or grayscale. Of course, the best way to save is by sparing your printer and minimizing your printing. Call Infomax Office Systems today for help optimizing your print environment.

Black vs. Rich Black: Why and When to Use Each

Printing is pretty straightforward, right? You have two options: there’s printing in color, and there’s printing in black and white. Actually, it’s a little more complicated than that. Black is a sneaky print color that comes in more than one flavor: black and rich black.

What’s the difference?
There’s more than one way to create print in black. “Standard” black is printed strictly with black toner (K cartridge). “Rich” black, however, combines K with sub-tones of the other print colors (Cyan, Magenta, and Yellow). This layering provides richness and depth to the color.

Why choose one over the other?
Quality — Color variation in blacks can be very difficult to detect on a screen. In contrast, when printed, rich blacks have a deep tone that pops from the page, while regular black can appear flat and even muddy.
Legibility — Layering toner to achieve a rich black can affect the printout’s crispness, especially in small font sizes, making regular black the better option in these instances.
Cost — Regular black uses less ink to print than rich black, because the printer doesn’t layer different colors of toner over the same area on a page.

When to use rich black
Solid Black Areas — Prevent blandness and muddy gray-blacks by using rich black on important print materials like brochures and posters.
Black Over Another Color — Rich black works together with the background colors you’re printing. Using black can confound the colors and let layers show through.
Large Type — Large font sizes need the same treatment as other solid areas, so use rich black for a deep—rather than one-dimensional—black.

When to use black
Text-Only Documents — Text, especially smaller font sizes, thrives in standard black.
Black-and-White Documents — Many documents, even those with images, can convey their information very well using only black ink.

Black and rich black have subtle but noticeable differences. Before you hit print, choose your blacks wisely to get the quality and legibility you want while limiting cost and conserving toner. Call Infomax Office Systems to optimize your printing strategy, including smart use of black and rich black.