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Do you know what the letters in the name of the printers mean?

It can be really hard to orient yourself in the different printer brand names. All the more so when manufacturers name the printer with abbreviations indicating what features, or multifunction, it offers. You don't have to do a lengthy search to understand what they mean. Read on to find out which abbreviations you'll encounter most often and what they actually mean.

Printer designations can be different

Knowing what a printer can do, just by looking at its name, can be tempting. It's not even that impossible. Just learn what the abbreviations stand for and you'll quickly be able to navigate the range of printers on offer. Of course, some markings may vary from printer to printer depending on the brand (manufacturer). Still, they give you a great overview of what you can expect from a particular printer.

An overview of the abbreviations that can be used to refer to a printer and their meaning:

  • B - (black) black and white printer
  • BT - (Bluetooth) - allows printing using Bluetooth technology
  • C - (colour) - colour printer
  • D - (duplex) - automatic duplex printing
  • DTN - (duplex - tray - network) these printers offer duplex printing, a wired network connection and also include an external input tray
  • E - (ePrint) - allows printing via e-mail. The feature has been developed exclusively for HP in the past. It is mainly used as a standby feature for offices when you can't connect via USB, Wi-Fi or Bluetooth. It was introduced in 2010, but is not used much these days.
  • F - (fax) - printer with built-in fax unit
  • H - (hard drive) - a printer with this letter has its own hard drive, which allows it to store large amounts of data. You will find it mainly in office and industrial printers.
  • i - (Imaging) - indicates that the printer has a memory card slot. You can insert this directly into the printer without having to convert the files first. Often used in printers used mainly for printing photographs.
  • M - monochrome - monochrome, black and white printing
  • MFP, MFC - (multifunction printer, multifunction center) - devices that offer multifunction, thus include not only a printer, but also a scanner and copier. Such a printer is also called "All in One".
  • N - (network) - allows you to connect the printer to a network, so you can print on it from multiple computers.
  • PS - (PostScript) - a printing programming language used for fast data processing. It allows the printer to lay out the resulting print on the page and program the print head appropriately.
  • S - (stapler) - a stapling device that can be used to staple printed sheets of paper together with a ring binder.
  • T - (tray) - it is an additional paper tray (A3 or A4) with a capacity of several hundred sheets. It is usually a part of printers with a large volume of printing (for example in the office).
  • W - (wireless) - an older designation that is standard on current models. It indicates the possibility of wireless connection to the printer from a computer, tablet or smartphone, or the possibility of connecting the printer to a local network.
  • X - For HP branded devices, the letter X indicates printers with an optional paper feeder. For others, it indicates printers that have duplex printing, wired network connectivity and an external input tray.
  • Z is the designation for HP's multifunction devices in the Flow series, which have faster scanners with a feature that allows scanned text to be converted into a format that can be edited in a word processor (OCR - Optical Character Recognition) and with increased Automatic Document Feeder (ADF) capacity.

Example of how to read the printer name

Epson WorkForce Pro WF-C8690DWF

  • Epson - indicates the name of the manufacturer
  • WorkForce - indicates the model series
  • Pro WF-C8690 - the specific printer model designation
  • D - duplex - automatic duplex printing
  • W - wireless - has a wireless connection
  • F - offers fax function