DataMaster provides better electrical consumption comparisons than Energy Star’s TEC

29 June 2023

To compare the electrical consumption of equipment you can look up its Energy Star “Typical Electrical Consumption” (TEC). We publish TEC values for all the copiers and printers in our sales-enablement service DataMaster OnlineDMO subscribers can compare electrical consumptions for printers and copiers side by side.

The TEC shows the electrical consumption of a machine over a typical week of usage. It is measured in an accredited lab. It ought to be a good basis for comparisons, but there are quite a few problems with it. We have come up with an improved solution that we call TEC(DMO).

The Energy Star TEC test procedure involves printing a number of jobs and images per job. These test print volumes are based on the speed of the machine concerned (from 1ppm up to 100ppm) without regard to whether it is an A4/Letter printer or a larger A3/Ledger device!  In reality, A3 machines have higher overall print volumes than A4 machines.

That is not the only problem. From time to time, Energy Star change the way TEC is measured, and in 2020 version 3 became the standard. TEC3.1 testing is based on print volumes which have been reduced by a factor of four to try to make them fit with the real world. At the same time, TEC3.1 introduces evaluation of downtime electrical consumption at night and at weekends, around 150 hours in stand-by mode.

Machines launched before 2020 show typical electrical consumption figures which are much, much higher than machines launched and tested since. DataMaster provides sales-enablement services to sales and marketing teams in the document imaging and printing world, and our customers need meaningful comparison tools. A means to compare the power consumption of machines launched before 2020 with newer ones has become a priority for us. However, adding down-time consumption to the “typical” week means you cannot just convert the one from the other like you can between miles and kilometres, for example.

There is another issue. Since the TEC test print volumes vary with the ppm print speed, one should not compare the TECs of, say, a 22 ppm machine with a 25 ppm machine. The published figures for the latter will be based on more printing, 24% more, running for much longer, so its “typical” electrical consumption will be artificially increased. A standardized figure for electrical consumption between machines in the same market segment is required.

DMO already provides data on machines’ electrical consumption in all modes, stand-by, ready, running, etc. and also all their warm-up and first page out times. DataMaster’s own figures for Typical Electrical Consumption, TEC(DMO) are calculated by modelling the typical usage using published data from technical specifications for electrical consumption in a printer’s various modes of operation (stand-by, ready, running, etc.) as provided by the manufacturers. As per the Energy Star TEC procedure, our calculations use print volumes based on a machine’s print speed, with different volumes for A3 and A4 devices, taking into account the manufacturers’ monthly volumes.

DataMaster Online now provides:

TEC(DMO) comparing the electrical consumption of all printers and copiers regardless of when they were launched or tested, with a different process for A4 and for A3 machines

TEC(DMO) for a market segment allowing fairer comparisons of machines with similar but not identical manufacturer-specified print speeds

Energy Star Typical Electrical Consumption figures can be misleading.

You can try out all our comparison tools by registering for a trial of DataMaster Online here.

Printer Benchmark : DataMaster provides better electrical consumption comparisons than Energy Star’s TEC

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