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Adding Pizzaz to Printouts

Liven up pale printouts with a color printer or multifunction device.

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This story appears in the October 2006 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

When it comes to reports, brochures, charts and marketing materials, color creates emphasis and impact that grayscale can't convey. With color printers reaching a new level of affordability, there's no need to stay stuck in a black-and-white mind-set. It can cost you less than 10 cents per page for living color. Share a color printer or multifunction device on a network to really get some bang for your workgroup buck.

You'll notice some radically different prices in the chart. The higher-priced models tend to net you printers with higher monthly duty cycles, faster color printing, larger paper capacity, bigger hard drives, expandable memory, built-in finishing options like automatic duplexing, and high-end printer management features. If you don't need extra copying, scanning or faxing features, look to a model like the $399 (all prices street unless noted) Lexmark C500n. It's a network-ready laser with a reasonable 8 ppm output in color and a snappy 31 ppm in monochrome. For a comparably affordable multifunction, check out the $750 Brother MFC-9420CN. It covers printing, copying, scanning and faxing. And it does double duty as a stand-alone fax, a nice extra feature for the price.

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