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You probably think of a cash counter as something that’s only used by banks and casinos. After all, who else needs to count that much cash?
It may surprise you to learn that millions of retailers, nonprofits, and even churches use bill counting machines. They do this both to ensure an accurate cash count every time, but also to take advantage of the other features a bill counter has to offer.
So what can you get out of a bill counting machine? To answer that question, we’ll have to look at the basics of how a cash counter operates.
If you’re like the average person, you probably think of a cash counting machine as a mechanical device. So how does a mechanical device sort bills so quickly?
The answer is that a cash counting machine is not mechanical. Modern bill counters utilize a bill of light underneath the bill, paired with a sensor that sits on top of the bill. As a set of rollers pulls the bills through, the light beam is interrupted with each bill that passes. The sensor picks this up, and tallies a count for each bill that passes through.
In this fashion, modern bill counters can count hundreds of bills per minute with near-100 percent accuracy. That’s tens of times faster than even the most nimble-fingered human being can perform, and degrees of magnitude more accurate.
But that really just scratches the surface of what a bill counting machine can do. If you buy a more advanced machine, you’ll have access to more advanced features, including:
That’s a good, quick overview of these extra features. Let’s take a look at how each of them works in practice.
Mixed value bill detection is a feature that allows your bill counter to also tabulate denominations. Essentially, the same light that counts bills as they pass through also scans the surface for telltale markings of various bill denominations.
At the end of the count, it not only displays how many bills went through, but also the total value of the stack. Many machines will also display the number of bills of each denomination, but that depends on the model and manufacturer.
So what does this feature offer you in practice?
It saves you the trouble of sorting bills by denomination before you run them through your counting machine. If you’re tallying up a large number of payments, this can be a huge time saver, since sorting multiple payments by denomination and then re-combining stacks of bills by denomination is the very definition of time better spent doing literally anything else.
Many cash counting machines double as a fake note detector. This isn’t the case for all machines, but it’s an available option for a lot of quality machines. There are three different ways that a bill counter can do this. Here’s a quick explanation of how each system works.
While this method is very reliable for detecting counterfeits, it often falsely identifies older, legitimate bills as counterfeit. This is because the iron powder in the ink wears off over time, eventually degrading to the point where a machine won’t pick it up.
This method is more effective than magnetic detection, because very few counterfeiters have been able to replicate it. On the other hand, there are plenty of UV-sensitive inks on the market, and their availability is only growing.
This is the most effective method of all. As of today, we’re not familiar with any counterfeiters who have come up with a way to defeat infrared detection. But they’re always trying, and coming up with new methods.
Of course, not every business needs an advanced, counterfeit-detecting cash counting machine. If you’d rather save money on your bill counter, but you’d like to have some detection from counterfeits, here are a few tips for checking high-value bills without the need for a machine:
As you can tell, these counterfeit detection methods are either time-consuming or easy to defeat. If you’re seriously concerned about counterfeit bills, a cash counting machine with fake note detection is your most reliable solution.
Batching is a useful feature that’s designed for retailers who want to sort or count multiple registers as efficiently as possible. There are two times this is done; at the beginning of the shift, and at the end of the shift.
When you think about how much time this can save you if you’re counting fifty $1 bills for a dozen tills every morning, it’s easy to see the value a cash counting machine brings to the table.
At the end of the shift, you can take all of the cash from one drawer, set it in the cash counter, and count it. Then use the batch feature to count additional drawers. At the end, you’ll see a total count, plus a breakdown of how much cash is in each drawer.
This feature makes it easy to count all of your register drawers as efficiently as possible, while still holding your cashiers accountable for their accuracy.
As you can see, batching is primarily a benefit for retailers. For that application, it’s a fantastic value. For most other users, there’s no reason to buy a cash counting machine with this feature.
At the end of the day, a bill counting machine is just like any other tool for your business or office. Either it justifies the cost of purchasing it, or the juice isn’t worth the squeeze. In this case, you’ll need to decide what features you’re actually going to need.
For example, only one in 10,000 US notes in circulation is a counterfeit, but those counterfeits are concentrated in certain geographic areas. If your business is in one of these areas – you know better than we do – it may be worth investing in a cash counting machine that offers fake note detection. If not, you may want to save money by purchasing a machine with fewer features.
The same goes for a batching feature. It’s nearly indispensable if you’re dispensing – or counting – multiple cash drawers. But if you’re a landscaping contractor who just wants to verify your count at the end if the week, you could care less about being able to sort bills into stacks.
Regardless of what kind of machine you end up choosing, we hope you consider a Carnation. We manufacture a wide variety of cash counting machines and coin counters that will fit just about any need or budget. If you want an accurate count and a minimum of fuss, try a Carnation.
Carnation money counters, bill counters, cash counters, multi currency counters and counterfeit detection machines are used by a wide range of industries with a wide range of business sizes. Carnation remains the industry standard in Bill Counting Machines and continuously strives to bring the most innovative technology to cash counting, sorting and counterfeit detection equipment for all sizes of business. As you can see from the below list, many of our clients span a wide range of industries.
Our clientele includes churches, marijuana dispensaries, restaurants, wholesalers, fairs, police departments and other law enforcement, schools, credit unions, hospitals, casinos, convenient stores, gas stations, real estate companies (believe it or not), car dealerships, the US defense departments and defense contractors and others.
If you are looking for a currency counter, or cash counter for any purpose be sure to check out our products page to find which machine is right for you.