Types Of Photocopiers

  • Overview

  • Which Photocopier do I need?


Types of photocopiers

There are many types of photocopier available on the market today, all offering different features to the users. Midshire is able to supply any photocopier that a company requires, from an A4 desktop black and white photocopier right up to A3 heavy-duty, full-colour photocopiers with advanced finishing option.

Black and white (mono) photocopiers

Types of PhotocopiersBlack and white photocopiers only use one toner colour – black (k). They produce monochrome photocopies, which is why they are called mono devices.

These photocopiers are made for office use, where colour is not essential. They come in a variety of capacities, from low to high volumes. Some models can copy / print as many as 150 pages per minute!

Colour photocopiers

Unlike mono photocopiers, colour photocopiers are able to produce coloured copies. This type of photocopier is also able to produce black and white copies too, making them incredibly versatile.

These photocopies use 4 toners – cyan (c), magenta (m), yellow (y) and black (k) some time referred to as CMYK printing. These photocopiers can produce a wide variety of colours on the CMYK spectrum.

Desktop photocopiers

Desktop PhotocopierThese photocopiers do what they say on the tin – they are small enough to sit on a desktop and come with a whole host of additional features in one small box. Desktop photocopiers tend to be A4 only devices, as the mechanisms required to pass A3 paper through the photocopier would make the device to large and heavy to sit on a desk. Desktop photocopiers can be incredibly basic, or multifunctional. If you find that you need more paper capacity out of your desktop photocopier, many devices allow you to add additional paper trays, making them a floor-standing office photocopier device rather than desktop devices.

Office photocopiers

Office photocopiers are larger devices that are floor standing. These devices are able to deal with larger volumes than desktop photocopiers and can print at high speeds, whilst offering a range of different functions including: scanning, copying and faxing. If you choose advanced finished features your machine can also: sort, staple, hole punch and bind should you wish it to. Office photocopiers are designed to be used by larger work groups and as a shared device, can have print management software installed such as Papercut MF and Equitrac to manage users printing behaviour.



The term photocopier tends to be used interchangeably with the term multifunction printers. This is because over the past decade, both printers and copiers have been developed to include printing, scanning and fax functionality, making them ‘multifunctional’.

A3 photocopiers

Office MFPWhen choosing an office photocopier, it is important to think about the size of paper you are going to be printing from. The majority of people tend to print on A4 paper, but some businesses will need to have an A3 photocopier to print off certain jobs such as posters, spreadsheets or marketing materials.

You may be able to get more functionality from an A3 photocopier, so it is important to consider what you are wanting to print, before choosing between an A3 or A4 device.

Digital photocopiers

Digital photocopiers have replaced the traditional analogue devices. These photocopiers have larger paper capacities than their old analogue counterpart. They also tend to be multifunctional, meaning they are able to do more than just photocopying. Digital photocopiers are able to scan, fax and print too!

High volume photocopier

For businesses with large workforces, an office photocopier that prints at 20 to 30 pages per minute may not be sufficient. Instead, these companies may choose a high volume photocopier, which is capable of printing upwards of 50 pages per minute. High volume photocopiers are also ideal for use in reprographics departments, print or mailing rooms where they can be printing continuously all day. Some in-house marketing functions may also require a high volume photocopier to produce more advanced and impressive types of documents.


Network photocopier

There is a number of ways in which you can connect your photocopier to your computer. If it is just one computer, it can be connected via USB. If you’re sharing your photocopier amongst a number of computers, the photocopier can be connected via your network, to allow every user in the company to print and scan wirelessly. By connecting your photocopier to your network your IT Manager or IT provider has more control over its functions and can monitor the machine more easily.

Which Photocopier do I need?:

Still not sure what type of photocopier you need?
Our Guide to Photocopiers and Printers can help you decide.

Section 3 – Printers and Photocopiers – What do I Need

Sections 3 of the guide, comprises of 10 sub-sections each looking at different ascpects and functions of a photocopiers.
3.1 looks at the Types photocopiers and printers available, with 3.2 explaining printing processes.
3.3 describes standard machine features such as mono and colour printing.
After the guide goes into detail about specific features like 3.4 which explores copying; 3.5 looks at scanning; 3.6 talks about faxing.
3.7 of the guide looks at additional machine features such as colour matching and mobile printing.
3.8 explores Internal finishing features, including booklet printing and bindings.
3.9 looks at External Finishing equipment.
Finally, 3.10 discusses Other Consideration – like the size and dimension of the machine, it’s speed and software.

Section 8 – Which Printer or Photocopier is right for my Industry?