What is a Multifunctional Device?

A Multifunctional Device, or MFD, is typically the printing device in most offices but is referred to as a printer or photocopier. These machines incorporate scanning, copying and printing as a minimum, into a single device – some can also be used for emailing and faxing.

MFDs offer a range of benefits and are popular:

  • They reduce costs
  • Lower space requirement
  • Provide a more practical solution than having 4+ separate machines to complete the same tasks.

Don’t think of MFDs as necessarily requiring a large floor space; in recent years they have been made more compact which has minimised their footprint.  Large, freestanding units that require several types of paper (typically A4 and A3 as a minimum) do still exist, some of which are suitable for production printing, but it’s important to specify these requirements when discussing your MFD to ensure that you have a machine that can fulfil your specific needs.

MFDs can also take the form of small desktop units that can scan and print, but normally do not have other functionality associated with the larger, freestanding units. These are suitable for companies that have small print requirements and small offices – typically start- ups or web-based businesses.

The printers within these devices often have a number of different functions, including:

  • Envelope printing
  • Collating, finishing functions
  • CD/DVD labelling
  • Different paper formats, and high-resolution printing for marketing materials.
  • Some models also print directly from USBs and other files, eliminating the need to boot up a computer for a quick print job.

MFDs are also sometimes known as Multifunctional Printers, and abbreviated to MFPs – there is no difference between the two, and the names are completely interchangeable.

Whatever your requirements, let Mode help with reviewing your options and suggesting a solution that works for you.

Should I Choose an MFD or Printer?

The majority of office environments need more than just a simple printer to deal with day-to-day document management. Modern printers do more than just print: many can scan and copy too and are able to handle significant volumes of work. Multifunctional devices (MFDs) often have extensive capability, allowing them to deal with large volumes of printing and very high-quality printing for marketing material, including a variety of different paper sizes and types.

Experience and Expertise

Mode recommends the print management solution that’s right for you, so you don’t need to know whether an MFD or printer is best for your document environment. Just let us know what you need to do on a regular and ad hoc basis and talk to us about your challenges. We take the time to listen to what you really need; we employ our knowledge and experience to satisfy your requirements and ensure that the solution fits in your physical space. Our experts will use this information to tailor a solution specifically for your needs.

Simply put, if your current solution offers scanning, fax, copying, collation or finishing in addition to simply printing out documents, it’s likely that you will require an MFD to replace it or risk having to add multiple machines to the office. However, if you find that your office does not use these functions at all or does not require a system that can also cope with faxing (for example) we will offer a solution that better fits your needs without having to support unnecessary functionality.