When you walk in to buy a printer, it is a relatively simple task. Before you go fast-forward to deciding brands and models, the first question you need to think of is whether you would prefer an inkjet printer or a laser printer.

Both types have their features and upsides depending on what you are looking for.

Costs

The basic cost of buying either a laser printer or an inkjet printer is about the same and the real difference in cost comes from maintenance. The basic printer from both types does the usual i.e. print, photocopy and scan. As time goes on, an inkjet printer will have a cost of about 20 cents for a page of print which is for both color and black print outs. Only black is about 7 cents a page. Laser printers are about 5 cents a page and can go down depending on how much you pay for the printer. The ink for an inkjet printer is prone to clogging. Toner ink, though, is very expensive.

Speed

Laser printers are more an office printer than inkjet printers, so they have better speed than inkjet printers do. Laser printers are pretty unconquerable with a speed of 20 pages per minute as a minimum and it can go up to 100 pages a minute depending on the quality of the printer. Inkjet printers can hardly compare, with a cheap printer hardly printing 6 pages per minute and it can go up to about 16 pages a minute with a good quality inkjet printer. Inkjet also hold only 50-100 sheet paper trays. Laser printers have 150-250 sheet paper trays.

Color Printing

Laser printers are not exactly meant for color print outs. Color laser printers are bulky and not suited towards the job. Inkjet printers see the images as tiny points while laser printers see them as geometric shapes. In terms of color printing whether it is for at home use or for a graphic design company, you will almost certainly be better off with an inkjet printer. Inkjet printers also have special color cartridges that help show color graduation.

Size

If you want your printer to not look too bulky, or fit into your computer desk or below your table, laser printers are not the best option. Laser printers are normally not as small and light as inkjet printers. Laser printers that only offer the option to print, without a photocopy or scanning feature, could possibly be compact but that depends on what you would want out of your printer.

Functionality and Quality

Inkjet printers have ink being dispensed as the cartridge moves along the page, while laser printers on the other hand have toner ink. Inkjet printers can be used on a wide variety of papers such as photo paper, vinyl, etc. Laser printers have an electrical charge that instructs the printer where the toner ink should go. Quality for black-and-white printouts will be better with toner ink as there is a lot of precision involved compared to inkjet printers. Laser printers also give print-outs that are less likely to get smudged. For high quality colored pictures, an inkjet printer is best while if you need mainly black-and-white sheets with a few sharp diagrams, a laser printer would suit you well.

These are the main differences between laser and ink jet printers, and we hope this article helped you in buying the one that will suit your needs.

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