Inkjet Printers Vs Laser Printers

For the most part, choosing a printer can be a daunting task and entails balancing price, speed, and print quality. In order to choose the right printer for you, you will have to ask yourself how much you print per month, what types of documents you will need to print, what quality print you require, whether or not you need color, and if you care more about the initial cost or cost over the printer’s lifetime. The difference between inkjet printers and laser printers is day and night, but once you understand their differences and decide which type is most suitable for your needs, you are more than half-way to finding the right printer for you.

As a rule of thumb, laser printers produce crisp, speedy text documents and decent images, while inkjet printers produce top-quality, long-lasting photos and not-so-crisp text, all at an uncomfortably-slow pace.

Inkjet printers are best if printing high-quality photos are much more important that high-quality text and graphics and if speed is not an issue for you. Their major selling point is their superior color accuracy and print resolution for vivid photos, so this does add time to printing each page. They are also best if you have light printing needs and are more concerned with the cost upfront since replacing the ink cartridges can get pricey if you start to print a lot, but you can often find a good inkjet printer for under $100 or $200.

Laser printers are best if high-quality text documents are more important than high-resolution photos and that speed is essential. Laser printers major selling point is their ability to quickly print crisp documents at a very low cost per page. Color laser printers major selling point is their ability to print documents with a mix of text, graphics and photos at a fast speed, but they do run a bit more expensive because they can “do it all.” Overall, laser printers and color laser printers cost much less to maintain and operate and have a lower cost over the printer’s lifetime, but have a higher price-tag initially.

It’s worth explaining in detail the huge difference in the cost of ownership of the two types of printers. An inkjet printer costs a lot less initially but its cost per page is much higher than a laser printer’s cost per page. In fact, companies practically give away inkjet printers because the profit for most manufacturers is in the ink cartridges, or consumables as they call them. On the other hand, a laser printer costs a lot more initially, but over time its toner will cost much less per page. For example, let’s say you print 5000 pages in two months. You would have to replace the inkjet’s ink cartridges about 25 times compared with the two times you would have to replace the laser printer’s toner cartridge. The cost of the inkjet ink cartridges would almost double the cost of the laser toner cartridges. If you print a couple hundred pages per month or a thousand pages per month, laser printers are more cost effective overall.

Conclusively, if your business’ output volume is moderate to heavy, your best bet is to go with a laser printer due to the laser printer’s total cost of ownership. If you print very infrequently, whether it’s for personal use or for your small office, then an inkjet printer would be more cost effective.

At the end of the day, the types of documents you need to print may determine what printer, or printers, you select. If you’re printing mainly photos and documents for personal use, such as directions in which you don’t care about the quality, then you should get an inkjet printer. If you print a lot of text documents and are cost conscience, then a budget monochrome laser printer would be your best fit. Finally, if you print a moderate volume of text, graphics, and mixed documents, then a color laser printer would definitely best suit your needs and would be a good investment.

HP printers are great in both the inkjet printers and laser printers categories. Epson printers, Canon printers, and Kodak printers are very popular for inkjet and photo printers. Brother printers, Xerox printers, HP printers and Samsung printers are best in class for laser printers with Xerox probably the best in class for color laser printers for businesses. So figure out your printing needs and do your research and you will find the right printer for your needs at the right price.

Laser Printer Buying Guides

If you are looking to purchase laser printer, here are some features of laser printers which would be helpful to those who are purchasing laser printer or those who need information about laser printers.

Laser printers give the highest quality text and images among the printers. Laser printers got different model. Some of them are perfect for small businesses and home offices. Some reliable low-cost models are also available that are perfect for everyday personal printing.

Some of the features of Laser Printers are

Resolution, Quality, and Color: –

The standard resolution of leaser printer is 1200 dots per inch (dpi). For everyday printing, including small DTP jobs this type of laser printer is well-suited. But still some laser printers have a resolution of 300 dpi. Resolution enhancement technology is used in such laser printer with a resolution of 300 dpi because such printer causes rough edges on the images. RET are used to smooth the rough edges.

Color laser printers are more expensive as compared to black-and-white versions and require a great deal of printer memory to produce high-resolution images

Speed: –

As far as speed is concerned Lasers printer is the fastest among the printer. One can get full-color results as fast as 3 to 4 pages per minute (ppm), and black-and-white output as fast as 25 ppm. But it needs time to warm up the fuser to operating temperature when the printer is turn on. It generally takes 5 to 30 seconds to warm up the printer. But now laser printer with “instant on” fuser is available. This instant on fusers has been design to reduce the warm up time of a printer

Paper handling, size and capacity: –

Most laser printers use letter-size, cut-sheet paper. Supplementary paper trays or feeders can be added to increase the capacity.

Laser printers can print on a variety of papers sizes, types and weights, such as transparencies, labels and card stock. They can also handle non-traditional media like envelopes. But papers, such as iron-on transfers, are not suitable for laser printers, as the heat used in the transfer process could damage the paper and gum up your printer.

A laser printer with duplex printing can print on one side of the paper, then turn the paper over and print on the other side. Most laser printers, however, use the simpler manual duplex printing.

PCL or postscript:-

PCL – “Printer command language” is the standard printer language for HP’s and most other laser printers. PCL is used for printing letters, database printouts, spreadsheets and simple graphics. A laser printer that uses only PCL can be upgraded to Postscript by installing a software driver provided by the manufacturer of the laser printer.

Comparing Inkjet Printers Vs Laser Printers

We all like to save money when it comes to printers and cartridges but how do you decide what printer to buy in the first place? There are two main options – either an inkjet printer or a laser printer. This article gives some insight into the main differences and similarities between printing with a laser printer and an inkjet printer.

Firstly you need to understand the technology of the two styles of printers. The key difference is the means used to imprint the image onto the paper. Laser printers use a digital process that applies a laser beam and mirrors to project an image of the page onto an electrically charged rotating drum. Using a combination of heat and direct contact, the drum then transfers the image onto the paper. This process essentially burns the image onto your page making it smudge proof and permanent. Inkjet printers on the other hand use electrical impulses to spray the ink out of nozzles onto the page. The ink then bleeds into the paper before air drying.

Proponents of inkjet printers prefer the simplicity of their technology. The initial cost of the inkjet printer is often cheaper than a laser printer and replacement cartridges appear inexpensive. We would like to offer a word of warning however. The yield, or output, from replacement ink cartridges is usually significantly less than laser toner cartridges. This means that you need to look at the cost per printed page to do a true and fair comparison. Indeed, laser printers are typically much cheaper to run over time if you print high volumes. Whilst text output of inkjet printers is very good, it is their ability to print high quality images and photos that makes them attractive.

On the other side of the argument, laser printers offer much faster and greater printing output. This is because a toner cartridge can print between 2,500 to 10,000 pages before replacement. Laser printing is much faster than inkjet printing because, like a computer, a laser printer has an inbuilt memory enabling the image to be stored and accessed very quickly. This means that a simple page of text takes the same time to print as a complex graphic. Inkjet printers however have to spray each individual pixel meaning that large complex graphics takes a long time to print.

When you have decided if you are leaning more towards an inkjet printer or a laser printer you then need to consider other issues such as networking ability, paper tray configuration, media portability, memory, paper paths, optional font capabilities etc. There are many websites to help with your decision process.For example, PC magazine have investigated both laser printers and have several articles exploring printers and printer ink cartridges.

These days you can get some very reasonably priced and highly optioned inkjet and laser printers. We recommend that you consider the cost of the actual printer plus the cost of replacement cartridges over the life of your printer. To do this you need to have a good idea of the type and volume of printing you will do. In general, big business and sophisticated small business/home users choose laser printers whilst small business and the average home user is happy with an ink jet printer.