"Digital" — whether referring to recorders, video players or cameras — has become the watchword for all things new and innovative. Given this fact, it's not surprising that digital technology has also revolutionized copy machines.
When they first appeared a few years ago, digital copiers were 20 to 50 percent more expensive than conventional copiers. Now they're often just as affordable — and better.
Traditional photocopiers use either a moving or a static scanning device to capture images for copying. Moving scanning devices pass over a document multiple times, once for each copy being produced. Static devices use repeated flashes — one flash per copy (think of them as clicks of a camera).
A digital copier, on the other hand, uses optical technology to scan the image once. It then stores that image and prints copies using either inkjet or laser printing methods.
The difference between conventional (or analog) and digital copiers is great enough that analog copiers will eventually be phased out altogether. Digital copiers are superior because they:
Digital copiers use either laser or inkjet technology to produce copies. The main difference: inkjet digital copiers can produce color copies, laser copiers can't. One exception: Digital color laser copiers. Digital color lasers copiers cost more than inkjet and laser copiers, however, and are suited only to businesses that produce large volumes of color copies.
If you plan to print mostly in color, but not in large volumes, then you might want to opt for an inkjet digital copier. If you plan to copy in black in white, opt for a laser digital copier.