Choosing the best wide format printer for architecture isn’t like shopping for a regular office printer. Architects have demanding print environments and often require very specific capabilities to produce their documents. Getting the right device in the office is as critical as getting the calculations right on a blueprint.
Before purchasing a new wide format printer for an architecture firm, take a moment to gain some familiarity regarding what to look for in a wide format printer. There are many wonderful brands and models out there, but not all of them will be up to the task of handling schematics, blueprints, or other technical documents. Read on to discover what architecture firms need in a printer, what to consider before purchasing a wide format printer, and why the right device is such a great investment.
What Architecture Firms Need in a Printer
Wide-format, or large format, is a class of printers that print on paper sizes larger than A4 – the standard size of a sheet of computer paper. These are specialized devices designed to meet printing needs that standard office printers can’t handle due to paper size limitations. Wide-format printers are common in graphics design and marketing offices, but architects and engineers have also come to embrace them.
Designers and marketers frequently choose wide format printers because of their ability to deliver more stunning visuals. Architects, however, choose these printers due to their:
Architects and engineers regularly print highly detailed technical documents such as schematics or blueprints. These require ultra-clear printing with perfect precision. When workers are building from a set of plans, smudges or illegible text can be dangerous. The larger paper size makes these plans easier to read, and laser printing technology delivers the clarity of detail these documents demand.
For a long time, architects relied on a hyper-specialized form of printing known as a plotter. These were the only devices capable of delivering the precision and clarity that engineers needed, but they were slow. In contrast, today’s wide format printers are fast, lean machines that can produce technical documents in just minutes. While print speeds vary from device to device, architects frequently gravitate to faster devices that can keep up with the pace of the office.
Specialized devices don’t need to have just one use – in today’s office, and they shouldn’t. A versatile wide format printer can satisfy more printing needs than just a firm’s technical documents. The right device can also empower a firm to take control of its marketing materials, print drafts or in-house documents, and produce a range of visuals to support operations.
3 Things to Consider When Purchasing a Wide Format Printer
There are many things to consider when purchasing the best wide format printer for architecture. From the ability to produce precise visuals to overall versatility, the decision can get overwhelming. However, there are also things to consider that are frequently overlooked, including
1. Device Size
Although wide format printers are technically production printers, their sizes vary from one brand to the other. Some are small enough to sit on a desk. Others are larger and require heavy rolls of paper to operate. Consider device size in relation to the office – taking up too much room can prove just as annoying as a device that’s too small.
2. Finishing Options & Advanced Features
Most wide format printers on the market are digital and include an array of finishing options like coats or glazes, plus advanced features like variable data and automation. Take a look at what options are available on each device and see if your office needs them. Purchasing a device with inadequate features can hamstring productivity.
3. Other Printing Needs
Wide format printers have the advantage of being more versatile than most production printers. Therefore, choose one that can satisfy a variety of office printing needs. This makes the machine more valuable in the office.
The Benefits of an In-House Wide Format Printer
Many architecture firms invest in a wide format printer to keep their printing in-house. There are several salient reasons this is a good idea. An in-house wide format printer enables:
· Printing on demand: Say goodbye to waiting for turnaround times or for a printer to be free.
· More control: Print drafts or mockups and make changes quickly.
· Improved security: Keeping plans in-house protects them from being leaked or stolen.
· Reduced costs: In-house printing eliminates costs associated with outsourced printing, such as rush fees for fast work.
Get the Best Wide Format Printer for Architecture From DSI
Although there are many robust, reputable models out there, there’s no one best wide format printer for architecture – the ideal solution depends on the office itself. That’s why it’s essential to work with a knowledgeable technology partner.
DSI has partnered with leading manufacturers of wide-format printers like KIP and Epson. Whether an office needs an ultra-efficient laser wide format printer, or an ink-based machine for high-end graphics, working with DSI means getting exactly the device the firm needs.
DSI helps architecture firms acquire ideal printing solutions. Get started now with a specialist to discover a best fit wide format printer.