When choosing a printer the first choice will be whether to buy a laser printer or an inkjet printer. The following summarize the main advantages and disadvantages of inkjet and laser printers.
Inkjet printers works by propelling droplets of ink onto the paper. The ink is released from small removable cartridges and if it is a colour inkjet printer there will normally be a black cartridge and three different coloured cartridges. You can either replace the whole cartridge or refill the cartridges with a special refill kit.
- Inkjet printers are considerably cheaper to buy.
- High end printers are capable of producing good quality images when used with special paper.
- Most models are relatively light weight and compact so they don't take up too much space on the desk.
- Due to the cost of ink, running an inkjet printer over time is a more expensive than a laser printer.
- Prints emerge from the printer slightly wet and may need time to dry.
- Printing is slower and therefore inkjets aren't designed for high volume printing.
This printer incorporates a laser beam as a part of the image processing. Rather than using ink a laser printer uses toner, a dry plastic powder combined with carbon black or colouring agents. The consumable a part of the printer is encased in a cartridge which needs to be replaced from time to time.
- Laser prints are generally very high and very accurate.
- For high volume printing laser printers are considerably cheaper to run.
- Printing is fast so they can handle large volumes.
- Due to the technology used prints from a laser printer emerge from the printer dry to the touch.
- Buying a laser printer can be expensive when compared to an inkjet.
- Colour laser printers are significantly more expensive than a colour inkjet.
- Laser printers are larger and heavier as they need to contain the imaging drum and laser technology.