In the mid 1990s Oki introduced a revolutionary new type of toner for their monochrome page printer engines. Traditionally, a crushing/grinding process was used to produce the fine toner powder to be used in the electrophotographic printing process. Oki understood that this process led to some disadvantages to the printer user.
When toner is transferred to the paper during the printing process, it is attracted to the paper by electrostatic charge, rather like iron filings to a magnet. The jagged edges of the toner particles allowed the toner to form on the paper in poor image quality, especially on graphics.
Additionally the movement of the rough edged toner during the process caused a scattering effect that was visible at the edges of lines and characters.
To overcome these deficiencies, Oki developed Microfine Spherical Toner. A chemical process is used, producing smooth round particles about one-tenth the size of traditional toner.
The advantages were immediately clear. Virtually no toner scatter, with sharper, crisper characters. Surprisingly the smoothness and sharpness resultant of the smaller toner particles was also visible to the naked eye. Oki continues to develop and enhance its toner technologies.
Today's toners from Oki are even more of a technological advance. As users' printing demands increase and printers are required to print at higher speeds, the toner must be heat/pressure fused to the paper in ever shortening times. This means fusing at higher temperatures and therefore higher printer power consumption. Oki's commitment to preserving the environment dictated that Oki engineering should develop a low melting temperature toner to overcome this problem. A unique special toner was created. To stop the low temperature toner surface fusing and coagulating during storage, each individual toner particle is encapsulated in a polymer shell to preserve the integrity and free flow characteristics of the compound. Oki can now continue to produce printers that use no extra power to fuse the toner to the paper thus preserving the environment. As a by-product of this development, the user gets the print job faster as the printer takes less time to warm up! In some of our printers we can even dispense with the fan... keeping the noise down and reducing the power consumption, all this directly as a result of being able to fuse the toner to the paper at lower temperatures.