How to compare inkjet to laser printers? The short answer is that it comes down to how much you print, what type of documents you print and what your budget is.
Differences between inkjet and laser printers
Compared to laser printers inkjet devices are a more common form of office printing machine. They are usually relatively small and inexpensive to buy, and are refilled using colour and black and white ink cartridges. Essentially, the ink is sprayed onto the page through tiny nozzles in an array of small dots which make up the letters or image. The quality of printing is good for typed documents and small colour pictures, but the print quality may not be good enough for professional looking documents or large images.
In comparison laser printers offer a higher quality of printing, able to produce incredibly sharp images and high resolutions. Laser printing devices use large cartridges filled with toner powder, which is fused to the page by heat and a static charge. They work faster, with little noise and are capable of excellent print quality even on larger formats. However, the main downside with laser printers is that they are expensive and cartridges can be costly compare to inkjet devices. So they are currently less popular.
Who needs a laser printer?
A laser printer is especially good for producing high quality black and white printing at high speeds. Compared to an inkjet, a laser printer doesn’t always guarantee a good colour printing quality, unless you are purchasing a high-end model for very specific work. Whilst the initial outlay is expensive, servicing and toner costs tend to be lower in the long run, so laser printers are more economical than you might first think.
- Unbeatable print speed, so more pages can be printed every minute. Over time, this is more economical for companies with a large print volume.
- Waterproof printing.
- Cheaper laser printers can be purchased at around the same price point as an inkjet, although only for a mono-printer.
- Cartridges do not require frequent changing.
- Constantly lowering price point.
- Can be used with a whole range of paper thicknesses and finishes.
- Most suited to larger office environments with a need for large volumes of good quality printing.
Advantages of inkjet
It would be wrong, however, to write off the inkjet printer, as it still satisfies a lot of business printing needs at a very reasonable cost. In particular, a good quality inkjet still produces excellent quality colour images and is a very versatile device. The downsides are the frequent need to change ink cartridges (which can be costly), slow print speeds and lower resolution black and white printing.
- Cheap to purchase compared to laser printers.
- Versatile business printing solution.
- Good quality colour printing on images, especially useful for photographs.
- Affordable repairs.
- This printer is perfect for small businesses where space is at a premium.
- Suitable for most home and office needs where print volume isn’t too high.