Xerox hopes Phaser printers will stun

Attempting to gain market share in the monochrome arena and to offer customers more bang for their buck, Xerox Canada last month introduced the Phaser 5400 black-and-white laser printer, which the company said can be applied in virtually any office environment.

With print speeds of 40 pages per minute (ppm) and a first-page-out time of nine seconds, Xerox said the Phaser 5400 is approximately 25 per cent faster than the comparably priced offerings of other market leaders.

“It is a little more than an incremental bump in speed from our previous platform,” said Mike Kovalski, product marketing manager for Xerox in Wilsonville, Ore. “(The 5400) is versatile, especially in paper handling. This product has the ability to do handle a wide variety of media including custom sizes.”

The Phaser 5400 has a 266MHz PowerPC processor, and offers duplexing and high capacity paper tray options. Also included in the release is Xerox’s CentreWare Web enterprise-wide printer management tool that aids users in installation, configuration and troubleshooting of all printers on a network.

“We have three levels of support,” Kovalski said. “We have CentreWare IS which is basically a printer-level support theme. We also have CentreWare DP, which is the client-level solution. CentreWare Web would be applicable in a larger customer environment. It provides powerful features, one of which is the ability to do multiple product installs.”

The 5400 feature set includes 32MB of memory standard up to 192MB maximum; Adobe PostScript 3, PCL 5e and PCL 6; 650 pages input standard with 3,150 pages available with optional trays; as well as 10/100Base-Tx Ethernet, USB and parallel connectivity standard.

Xerox is well known and very strong in the colour arena, said Bill Fournier, but in order to be considered a full company, it needs to have strong monochrome offerings as well.

Fournier, senior market analyst with Evans Research in Toronto, said in terms of high-speed printing, all products in the market are moving up while pricing stays relatively low.

“Xerox is very small in terms of shipments in (the monochrome) group,” Fournier said. “What they have to do is provide far more features at a lower price. The (5400) handles 11×17 media and the speed is 40 ppm. Xerox’s strategy has to be, ‘We’ll give you more for less.’ The gist of it is that they have to have the products in their arsenal that will allow them to not only win the colour business, but mono business as well. They have been doing that over the last year or so.”

The Phaser 5400 is available in three configurations. The 5400N is priced at $3,299 and offers 650 pages input standard. The 5400DT is priced at $4,099 and offers auto-duplexing and a total input capacity of 1,150 pages. The 5400DX is priced at $5,499 and offers 2×500 sheet feeders, auto-duplexing, 32MB of additional memory as well as a hard disk. For more information, visit Xerox on the Web at