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Need help on good quality business card printer

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  • Need help on good quality business card printer

    I mostly do graphics. Business cards, brochures, etc. I would like to start printing the business cards in house but don't know what kind of printer to get that makes this worth doing. I see some people charging very cheap for business cards so I guess they are doing it with some type of good quality inkjet or laser.

    What printer could I buy to do work like this. I am looking for a quality printer to printer quality graphic business cards on. I don't mind if it's either inkjet or laser as long as it's good quality and affordable to charge the clients. As close to offset quality as possible.

    Can anyone help me or point me in the right direction?

  • #2
    Re: Need help on good quality business card printer

    What is your budget?

    You're looking at about 400'000 US for the press alone. (Hey, you wanted offset quality!)

    And then you'll need a guillotine - a new +small+ Polar is about 25'000 US. And, if you're dedicating yourself to business cards, throw in a business card cutter - about 10'000, I'm guessing, for a Duplo, maybe.

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    • #3
      Re: Need help on good quality business card printer

      That;s crazy. I was looking for something along the lines of $5,000. This is for runs of 1000-5000 business cards. I would settle on a little less quality instead of spending 400k. So many copy centers offer this service. I'm sure they aren't using machines of 400k. I'm just looking for a way to avoid going to these places and making a little more from the work for myself.

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      • #4
        Re: Need help on good quality business card printer

        I can't say for sure, But I assume most of these copy centers send this stuff out to printers that specialize in business card printing. Even notice how many restrictions there are on those cards?
        They keep the cost down by offering a small range of options which allow the printer to gang jobs together. It's all about volume.

        $5k will barely get you a nice laser printer.

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        • #5
          Re: Need help on good quality business card printer

          We produce a heap of colour cards which most customers can't tell from offset, and we use an OKI 9500 Colour Laser printer. It handle up to 12 point, which is as heavy as we make them, 10 up on an 8.5 x 11, then guilotine cut. The printer is less than 5K

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          • #6
            Re: Need help on good quality business card printer

            I would suggest you get in touch with a local wholesaler and buy the BC's at wholesale - mark it up a little and provide a high quality - very fast turn around for your customers. Like BCT (Business Cards Tomorrow) BCE (Business Card Express) etc... not a Kinkos or similar. And Thermography is usually the cheapest and fastest.

            There are many wholesalers for this, and they typically offer Lt Head, Envelopes, Invites, Rubber Stamps and so on.
            I did this for quite some time just after high school, and made good - consistent $$ while working at a print shop 2nd shift.

            Just my .02,
            Vee

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            • #7
              Re: Need help on good quality business card printer

              By the time your factored in your Labor, Ink/Toner, Paper, Printer Cost and Maintenance you might be looking money ahead just paying someone to print them for you.

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              • #8
                Re: Need help on good quality business card printer

                I would forget about it if I was you, those places use offset presses geared up for at least 40 cards on a sheet, the business card market is covered, even if you want to try and sell printing you need to spend a lot of money, think $200,000 and have a business plan, otherwise, forget it pal.

                Edited by: max on Mar 7, 2008 8:26 AM

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                • #9
                  Re: Need help on good quality business card printer

                  Come on guys, it's ONLY printing! It can't be that complicated or expensive right??

                  This is what happens with the proliferation of all the ganged-run shops, if you can get it done cheaper then go for it.

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                  • #10
                    Re: Need help on good quality business card printer

                    Blair Wolfe people like you give printing a bad name and take away money from real print shops.
                    No wonder I'm sitting here with nothing to do...

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                    • #11
                      Re: Need help on good quality business card printer

                      almaink,

                      You should ask yourself why {Mr. Wolfe's} methods are diminishing your returns. He recognizes the customer's perception of quality and the ability to match it with a cheaper-than-offset process. That you perceive a quality difference is irrelevant; you aren't buying your own product.

                      I would take offense if you distinguised my print shop from a "real" print shop. Mr. Wolfe may do the same and I would not blame him.

                      Also, when you're not working, you should be working to find work. You always have something to do; growing your customer base is 24/7.

                      -Brian

                      Edited by: QualityGuy on Mar 12, 2008 7:52 AM

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by almaink View Post
                        Blair Wolfe people like you give printing a bad name and take away money from real print shops.
                        No wonder I'm sitting here with nothing to do...
                        A bad name? That's probably a little bit much don't you think?

                        If his customer is willing to pay what he considers profitable for the level of quality he provides, then what's the problem? I'm a 100% digital shop, and I listen to this stuff from "real print shops" all day. In the end....our business is growing because we go out and WORK for the business we have. Times change...change with them or be ground to dust like the other 100 shops in my area that have closed their doors in the last few years.

                        As far printers go, I run the snot out of two Oki 9650's, mostly on short run envelopes. They have a nice straight paper path, and you can shove damn near anything through them. I've got almost a million impressions on one of them, and both are still running strong.
                        Last edited by JayDA; 05-27-2010, 10:05 AM.

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                        • #13
                          If it just for business cards, check out the Xante Ilumina. It can easily run 130lb stock, uses LED so it does'nt smear, and is affordable.

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