When it comes to buying a printer in the thousand-dollar price range, research is paramount.
Any expensive purchase comes with an ample amount of exploration and evaluation, and printers are no different.
Buying a machine that turns out to be inadequate can not only be costly from a financial standpoint, but it can cost you valuable time and cut down on daily business operations while you look for a replacement.
As a locally managed print vendor, we have an extensive background in finding the right machine for printer-seekers, no matter what the situation may entail.
The fact that we maintain platinum status as a Xerox Agent Channel gives us the credibility to properly review their product catalog and provide you with a comprehensive analysis that you can use to vet out your printer options.
This blog is not meant to highlight all the great things about the AltaLink B8155 multifunction printer and why it outpaces its competitors.
There are drawbacks that you need to know about, and there might be options out there that better fit your circumstances.
With that being said, let’s get into our review of the AltaLink B8155 model, which will include the printer’s specifications, features, configuration options and pros and cons to help you assess whether it’d be a fit for your business.
AltaLink B8155 Basics
Here are some general statistics and information about the AltaLink B8155 to help you get a feel for print speed, volume, resolution and cost:
Print Speed: Up to 55 pages per minute (ppm)
Monthly Duty Cycle: Up to 250,000 pages per month
Recommended Monthly Print Volume: 75,000 pages
Print Resolution: 1200 x 2400 dpi (dots per inch)
Copy Resolution: 600 x 600 dpi
First-Print-Out-Time: 3.20 seconds
First-Copy-Out-Time: 3.70 seconds
Base Model Weight: 286 pounds
Cost: Starting at $8,750
For a look at the AltaLink B8155, see the picture below:
AltaLink B8155 Key Features
Now, let’s look at some of the key features that come with the AltaLink B8155 multifunction (MFP) printer:
Touchscreen Interface and App Gallery
The Xerox AltaLink B8155 contains a customizable, 10.1-inch tablet-like color touchscreen that allows you to complete printing tasks simply and effectively.
You can tailor the user interface to your business’s goals by choosing from the numerous applications on Xerox’s App Gallery. A few examples include:
Email Connect, a free application that lets you scan to your email address by choosing your email provider, putting in your email address and then pressing save.
ET-Badge, which allows employees to clock in and out with their badge or a PIN number. The price of the app is $150 a year and requires registration to the ET-Badge portal, which can be done by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Connect for Moodle, an application primarily for teachers, students and administrators that digitizes hardcopy documents and lower costs by allowing for printing on demand. The price of the app is per device and will vary depending on the term length you choose: $10 a month, $99 a year or $208 for three years.
An example of the Email Connect app:
The Xerox App Gallery contains several industry-specific and general applications that can help increase overall office productivity. For more information on the different kinds of apps, read the following blogs:
The touchscreen interface and app gallery are a part of Xerox’s ConnectKey technology, which, among other things, gives you the ability to convert hard-copy records into accessible cloud-based documents and allows you to control your printer from your smartphone with mobile connectivity features.
AltaLink devices also include specific features such as a smart proximity sensor and multi-destination scanning that aren’t included with Xerox’s other machines. Read our blog about the Xerox AltaLink family to learn more.
The AltaLink B8155 contains a four-point approach to security that’ll help prevent, detect and protect against cyberattacks at all points of vulnerability.
According to Xerox’s website, these include:
Network intrusion and data transmission
Protection from unauthorized access
Stringent data encryption and secure overwrite.
Added security to individual documents
Some of the security measures involve a comprehensive Firmware Verification test upon printer activation, and further security enhancements by Xerox’s external partnerships with McAfee and Cisco, which includes McAfee’s Whitelisting technology and Cisco’s Identity Services Engine (ISE).
Last year saw a 50 percent increase in weekly cybercrimes on corporate networks, according to Forbes. The rampant surge in cybercrime has made it critical to inform yourself of the security measures that companies are taking before making a purchasing decision. To learn more about Xerox’s security measures, read our blog about Xerox’s approach to cybersecurity and why it matters.
Xerox’s ConnectKey technology features:
AltaLink B8155 Accessories and Upgrades
Let’s take a look at some of the standard accessories and different configuration and finishing options that will allow you to customize and upgrade your machine in ways that best optimize your business needs:
Here are the accessories that come standard with the AltaLink B8155:
Single-Pass Duplex Automatic Document Feeder (DADF)
Two 520-sheet Adjustable Trays
High-Capacity Tandem Tray Configuration (Holds up to 3,140 sheets of paper)
Bypass Tray (Handles up to 100 sheets)
Now, let’s look at some of the additional accessories you can have included with your machine upon purchase:
Envelope Kit (Replaces the first tray and provides feeding of up to 60 envelopes)
High-Capacity Feeder (Holds 3,000 sheets of letter/A4 paper, increasing maximum paper capacity to 6,140 sheets)
Long Sheet Feed Kit (Can print up to 12.6” x 52” prints)
Lastly, here are the finishing options you can include with the Altalink B8155:
Business Ready Finisher
BR Booklet Maker Finisher (creates 64-page saddle-stitched booklets—2-to 16 sheets)
Integrated Office Finisher (Provides 500-sheet stacking and 50-sheet, 2-position stapling.
Convenience Stapler (Staples up to 50 sheets of 20 lb. / 75 gsm (Grams per Square Meter)
For a look at how the AltaLink B8155 could look with additional upgrades, see the picture below, courtesy of Xerox:
Pros of the AltaLink B8155
Now, let’s look at two of the main pros of the AltaLink B8155:
All-In-One Printing Solution
The AltaLink B8155 is a multifunction printer, which means you’re getting a machine that not only has print capabilities but also can act as your scanner, fax machine and copier, as well. With an MFP, you get all these basic office functions in one machine, without having to invest in or make space for a separate scanner, copier or fax machine.
For more information about multifunction printers, read these blogs:
In addition to being able to perform as an all-encompassing print solution, the AltaLink B8155 is also built to act as a permanent printing solution for your workplace.
Investing in an advanced multifunction printer is a long-term investment, which means you can expect the machine to last for a significant amount of time if you follow the recommended monthly print volume.
Although printers have a monthly duty cycle that lists the volume they can print at, it’s always recommended to use a machine’s monthly print volume as a barometer for how much you should print in a month.
Consistently printing at the machine’s duty cycle rather than the recommended print volume can result in more service issues and a shorter product lifespan.
Read our blog about understanding your machine’s duty cycle and print volume to learn more.
Cons of the AltaLink B8155
Let’s now go through two of the main cons of the AltaLink B8155:
Arguably the main downside to the AltaLink B8155 is that it’s a large multifunction printer and requires you to have adequate space that can accommodate the machine.
The AltaLink B8155 weighs 286 pounds and contains a base configuration width of 24.4 inches, a depth of 28.5 inches and a height of 44.5 inches.
For reference, see base configuration of the AltaLink B8170 (roughly the same dimensions as the B8155 model) below:
Because of its large size and high volume, the AltaLink B8155 is likely not a fit for small businesses that don’t have the requisite room or need for an advanced multifunction printer.
You will also need the following electrical requirements to install the AltaLink B8155, courtesy of Xerox:
“Voltage: 110-127 VAC +/- 10% Frequency: 50/60 Hz +/- 3%, 15 A”
A machine’s space and electrical requirements are crucial determinative factors that must be considered before purchasing. Read our blog about the differences between equipment measurements and space requirements to learn more.
No Color Printing Capability
The main downside to the AltaLink B8155 is it only prints/copies in black-and-white, which means the machine can’t satisfy color printing needs.
If you’re looking for a similar multifunction option that can print in color, the AltaLink C8135 could be an option for you.
AltaLink B8155 Cost
As listed previously, the base cost of the AltaLink B8155 is $8,750. This doesn’t include optional upgrades or maintenance plans that you may want to include upon purchase of your machine.
You will also need to purchase a separate Wireless Connectivity Kit to set up WIFI on the AltaLink B8155. You can purchase the WIFI accessory for around $50.
Buying a multifunction printer will almost always be more expensive than buying a single-function printer, and it’s a purchase that should not be taken lightly.
Some vendors may offer trade-ins and there’s also the option to lease your printer, rather than purchase it outright. Leasing a printer breaks down the total price into more affordable monthly payments. For more information on this, read these blogs:
Who is this printer a good fit for?
The AltaLink B8155 is a good fit for:
Medium-to-large-sized businesses that need an all-in-one, high volume, printing solution with color printing capabilities.
Those looking to purchase a printer with advanced technological features and industry-specific applications that help automate workflows.
Those who require advanced finishing options on a multifunction machine.
Those looking to make a long-term printing investment.
If you fall into one of these categories, then you are a candidate for the AltaLink B8155. However, you would want to extensively evaluate your specific printing goals with a business consultant before purchasing.
Who is this printer not a good fit for?
The AltaLink B8155 is not a good fit for:
Those searching for a single-function printer for personal use.
Small-to-medium-sized businesses that don’t print at a high volume (around 75,000 pages per month).
Those who don’t have the space requirements and electrical capacity to house the machine.
If you fall into one of these categories, then this is not the model for you. Read our blog on how to choose a printer for your budget and business needs to help with choosing the right model for you.
What are the other models in the AltaLink B8100 Series?
The AltaLink B8155 model is the second of the three printers in the AltaLink B8100 Series, with the others being the B8145 and B8170 models.
They all contain the same basic technological features and accessories but differ in function efficiency. The more advanced the model gets in the series, the more efficient it will be.
This is displayed by the ascending print speeds in the series: the AltaLink B8145 has a print speed of up to 45 ppm, the B8155 has a print speed of up to 55 ppm and the B8170 has a print speed of up to 72 ppm.
The same can be said for the recommended monthly print volume. The B8145 model has a monthly print volume of up to 50,000 pages, the B8155 has a monthly print volume of up to 75,000 pages, and the B8170 has a monthly print volume of 100,000 pages.
If you like the technological features of the AltaLink B8155 but want a less efficient, cheaper option (B8145), or a more efficient, higher-priced option (B8170), then you would want to look into the other two models in the Series.
Read our review of the AltaLink B8145 model to learn more about the first model in the AltaLink B8100 Series.
Think the AltaLink B8155 is Right for You?
The AltaLink B8155 is a solid printer model capable of satisfying the needs of medium-to-large-sized workgroups that need a black-and-white multifunction option that is equipped with advanced technological features and includes a range of finishing options.
However, the AltaLink B8155 is not a fit for small workgroups that don’t print at a high volume or for individuals that seek a personal desktop printing solution. The machine is also not a fit for workgroups that require color printing capability or don’t have the space to accommodate the printer.
When deciding which printer model to go with, think about your situation and goals: What volume do you print at? What features do you desire? Will your workgroup be expanding soon?
Take these questions and calculate what your office equipment budget is to help figure out a direction toward attaining your ideal machine.
Our time in the printer/copier industry has given us valuable insight into what it takes to get the right machine in place for your company.
If you’ve read through this and think the AltaLink B8155 could be for you, or you need help finding a print solution for your situation, reach out to us and we will guide you through the next steps.