When you have made the decision to buy a printer then your next decision is whether to opt for a laser or ink printer. Laser printers use a toner cartridge filled with fine powder and a fuser that is heated. Inkjet printers use liquid ink sprayed onto the paper via microscopic nozzles. Both types of printers are appropriate for a variety of printing requirements.
One decision that is immediately taken care of for you is cost. Both the average laser and inkjet printer is about the same price depending on where you buy it – so shop around. If you want a printer that suitable for home use then a multifunctional printer is the better choice. This is a printer that would be able to scan images, photocopy and print. Some models of the inkjet may only print color pages and lower end laser printers only turn out black and white documents.
When it comes to cost you must take into account that inkjet printers need refill ink cartridges. Laser printers need toner cartridges. Both printers need paper. These are ongoing costs of running a printer. To calculate the cost per A4 paper page – divide the number of pages an ink or toner cartridge creates (provided by manufacturer) by price of the cartridge. This calculation does not include the cost of paper. Usually, a laser printer brings down the cost per page. However, laser printers have extra costs like an additional fuser cartridge or parts replacement.
An inkjet printer is best for color. This printer creates better quality color prints. It is important to remember that a color printer is more expensive and also larger. Inkjet color printers give a color graduation that is subtle and laser color printers give a noticeable graduation of color.
A laser printer is best for black and white. Even the cheapest models create quality black and white prints up to twenty pages per minute. By comparison, inkjet black and white printers are very slow with six pages per minute. The quality of the print by both printers is fairly equal. Although, lasers create very good quality prints from small fonts.
If you want a printer for home then space may be limited. If so, then an inkjet printer is the most compact and would fit snugly under a desk. If you want to go really small then opt for a printer without the photocopying and scanning features – if you don’t need them.