Top critical review
11 people found this helpful
on September 3, 2012
I felt buying an all-in-one was a good idea to save desk space and avoid multiple cords for multiple machines. This Xerox 3210 machine has a significant benefit over HP all-in-ones. It has a feeder separate from the paper drawer for feeding in envelopes. My old HP had two feeders/drawers but when it stopped working after a good long run, I found that in the interim, HP had eliminated the second feeder on all of its machines to save manufacturing costs. That's a deal breaker, at least for me. As the office machine stores' salespeople informed me at each place I looked, every time I wanted to print an envelope, I would have had to take all 8 1/2 x 11 paper out of the drawer, narrow the guides and then put in an envelope every time I wanted to print an envelope. Then when the envelope printing was done, I would have to put the stacked paper back in the drawer. Xerox solved that problem by building a machine with one drawer and an additional feeder. That the good news. The bad news is that the Xerox machine costs more to buy.
Unfortunately, since buying it 7/27/11, the Xerox machine has repeatedly jammed while printing from my computer, and has also repeatedly jammed while the automatic feeder is taking pages into the scanner. Although annoying, it's possible to lift the lid and pull the half scanned pages out and start the job over. With a small job, this is not so bad but with 8 or more pages, doing the entire job over is a pain. When the printer jams, that is more of a problem because unless you have a small child available, your hand can't go way back to grab (pinch) the jammed page with adequate strength to pull it out against the resistance of the rollers. If you accidentally tear the jammed page, you might need to buy special long handled needle nosed pliers to reach back in there. Alternatively, carry the machine to a repair location. The jams are too frequent to use this later alternative.
I use the Xerox 3210 in my home-office where I work nights and weekends. Unfortunately, Customer Support is limited to 7-7 ET Monday-Friday so buying this meant I effectively had very little ability to get support without waiting until the next day and then having the phone call conflict with my other work. Of course, I don't have the machine in front of me during the work day. In the Mid-West, Xerox has cleverly made it support available only from 6 - 6 (7-7 ET Monday-Friday). That's 4 - 4 on the West Coast. If Xerox offered additional late hours such as 7 pm - 1 am ET on Tuesday and Thursday, that would provide support until 10 pm on the West Coast. This would be better. And Saturday hours would definitely help make buying Xerox more attractive. But once you've bought this machine, you have no bargaining power. In any case, support is only good for one year and the problems are less during the first year and then escalate after that time. As with most customer support, the customer is forced to pay extra to spend his/her time trying to figure out via long distance howto fix the machine.
With a higher price than the competition, expected the Xerox product not to have these continual jam problems with each of two separate parts -- printing and scan feeder.
One additional feature is that the Xerox Scan to Computer software procedure is too complicated and slow. Fortunately, the machine has a USB port. Just stick in your flash drive, scan to it, pull it out, plug it into your computer and see the scan.
At $100+ for the high capacity (larger amount of toner) is expensive even if you buy at Amazon where it's cheaper than buying direct from Xerox or elsewhere. There is no comparison provided by Xerox inside or outside the box, but I presume that toner machines are cheaper per page than ink machines. I also presume the larger Xerox cartridge is cheaper per ounce of toner but Xerox chooses not to inform customers of the volume or weight it is selling in either of the two sizes of toner. You'd think as a marketing tool, Xerox would encourage customers to pop for the more expensive larger size by showing that it contained more for the money per ounce than the smaller size, but it doesn't do this -- apparently too big an operation to be aggressive or competitive. Just like it doesn't tell customers ahead of time the downsides to and added costs of its support and warranty after one year.
If you buy Xerox, be sure you have plenty of extra time and patience to un-jam then start the machine again. It doesn't happen every time but it's frequent enough to be annoying. Also, when your job prints with extra bland pages in between printed pages, you have to take the time to look through each job and remove the blank unprinted pages. Be careful trying to use them again by putting the pile of blank pages you accumulate back into the paper drawer. If they aren't perfectly straight, that will cause yet another type of jam.
One other reason to buy this Xerox instead of HP is that HP won't operate unless you pay for colored ink - even if you don't want color. You have to pay for both color and black ink. Some of the color is used to print black. Sometimes it's hard to avoid having Internet pages print in only black and white (cheaper) than color and black and white. That HP problem doesn't exist with Xerox because it doesn't offer color in the all black toner. This saves a good deal of money on not having to buy color just to print black office letters. So this is a plus for Xerox -- and other laser printers that use toner instead of ink.
I would like to know what machines others have found that have these features
* separate feeders for envelopes and sheets
* use toner instead of ink
* all black printing
* are all-in-one machines
* more robust support
* External USB port for receiving scanned images