Printing Speed and PPM

If you value speed when printing on your laser or inkjet printer, you'll want to understand what factors influence print speed and why. The manufacturer's stated pages-per-minute (ppm) rating for its printers is one speed indicator. Nonetheless, several aspects of a printer influence print speed.
Printing Speed and PPM

Begin with the Page-Per-Minute (PPM) Ratings.

When shopping for a new printer, look at the device's online specifications for the pages per minute (ppm) rating. Remember that ppm ratings usually depict printing under ideal conditions, with documents consisting of unformatted black text sent to the printer. Print speeds slow down as you add formatting, color, graphics, and images. Color-ink ppm ratings are typically half that of black-ink ppm ratings. Nonetheless, the ppm rating is one way to compare different printers.
Printing Speed and PPM

Variables Affecting Print Speed

The size and type of printed documents have a significant impact on the speed with which a printer operates. If you have a large PDF file, the printer must perform extensive background processing before printing. If the file contains color graphics and photographs, the process will be slowed even more.
However, if you print a large number of black-and-white text documents, the process is relatively quick. A lot is dependent on the printer.

The following factors influence print speed:

Printer age:
Modern printers are faster than those from a decade ago.
Printer technology selection: 
Laser printers outperform inkjet printers in terms of print speed. For black ink, many inkjet printers are rated at about 15 pages per minute. Laser printers typically print at twice the speed. Some monochrome laser printers can print up to 100 pages per minute.
Printer selection: 
Any printer marketed as high-volume is likely to be lightning fast. A laser printer is usually faster than an inkjet printer in the same price range.
Color printing versus black ink printing: Printing in black ink is faster than printing in color ink, especially when printing photographs.
Printer settings: 
Some printers have options for flipping a page to horizontal orientation, reversing the order of pages in a multipage document, applying edge smoothing, or collating multiple pages. These features necessitate additional work by the printer before printing can begin.
Printing a small image takes less time than printing a large one.
Printing high-resolution vs. low-resolution images: 
Printing high-resolution images takes longer than printing low-resolution images. For professional-quality photos, use high resolution. Images with low resolution work well in a newsletter or document.
Print quality: 
Most printers provide three options for print quality: high quality, regular quality, and draft quality. When printing for internal use, draft quality is the quickest mode to use, though the quality isn't as good as the other options.
Printing Speed and PPM

What is the best print speed for me?

That's an excellent question! Even from the A&A sales team, you're unlikely to get the same answer twice. You'll probably hear that it depends on your industry, document length, paper size, and whether you print in color or black and white, among other factors. And all of this is true! Finding the right fit can be difficult.
You could go all out and buy a 90 PPM copier, but if your print volume is low, that's like buying a Maserati to drive three streets over to work. You spent far too much money on your MFP. In contrast, if you have a high print volume and want to save money, a machine with a low PPM will not only leave you waiting for simple jobs, but will also put a lot of wear and tear on the parts. In the long run, you may end up spending more.

Based on monthly print volume, we developed the following general guidelines:
  • between 5,000 and 10,000 pages
25 - 35 PPM
Small business offices could be a good fit.
  • 50 - 60 PPM 25,000 to 35,000 Pages
Medium-sized business offices could be a good fit.
Firms of lawyers
  • 50,000+ Pages at 75-90 PPM
Schools and towns Pages per minute for a printer or office copier

The PPM rate is usually listed right on the product page. Ricoh / Savin incorporates the PPM into the model number! The PPM rate of a Savin C2525 is 25, and the PPM rate of a Savin MP 9002SP is 90.

Printing Options for Quicker Printing

If you have a printer, changing the printer preferences is the best way to speed up print jobs that are not intended for distribution to others. When you need speed, set the printer to Draft mode by default. You won't get great-looking results—fonts won't be smooth, and colors won't be vibrant—but draft printing will save you time. Even better, it saves ink. The best way to ensure an appropriate print speed for your application is to purchase a printer that meets your requirements. When you're at work, print speed can be the most important factor.

Hopefully, this blog not only answered your simple question, but also better prepared you to make future purchasing decisions.
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