Inkjet Printer vs Laser Printing Comparisons
When deciding on printing between an Inkjet and Laser printer, the initial thought is what the printer will be used for as there are many different types of printer. Laser printers are usually more associated with an office type environment, but can be used at home for ideally a small office. Inkjet printers are usually associated with the home environment, general printing and photo printing.
Once you have decided on the printer use that should then help the decision on the type of printer. A printer can have additional options such as scanning, coping and faxing in combination to printing. Usually this can affect the price of the printer and the printing speeds of the sole printer against a multifunction printer of the same price, and the price difference can be seen straight away.
Different types of printers include:
- Standalone Basic Inkjet Printers
- All in one printers
- Wireless printers
- A3 printers
- Photo Printers
- Officejet Printers
As always with all machines and printers there are pros and cons to all machines. We are going to try to outline some of the factors that you may need to think about when choosing the type of your printer, between an Inkjet and a LaserJet.
InkJet Pro Comparisions
Smaller and Compact
Generally one of the main differences can be the size of the printer. Due to the amount of components that go into making each of the machines. The Inkjet printer is definitely more compact of the two. Yes, they do vary in size depending on whether you choose an all in one compared to a standard stand-alone printer. But with the increase in modern technology and printer design, they won’t look out of place in your home, with various colours available from jet black to ruby red.
Initially what strikes you first and what we all look at is cost. Inkjet printers can cost as little as £30 all the way up to over £300 for an A3 inkjet printer, but for the home user these are definitely the cheaper option.
Cheap Ink Cartridge Costs
Ink Cartridges that come with an Inkjet printer do have the cheaper prices across the board on ink cartridges in both OEM, compatible and remanufactured cartridges. Prices can range between 0.99p and up to £50 for an ink cartridge dependant on your usage and printing preferences.
Replacing ink cartridges
With the improvements of technology, an Inkjet printer is very simple to change the cartridges, as easy as 1, 2, and 3. All machines are different and some printers may only take 2 cartridges for the colour and black, compared to a photo printer that can take 5, 6, 7, 8 cartridges.
Photo Quality Printers
Printing photos has become increasingly easy to print from home, costs can mount up and even professional artists and photographers can start a business from using a decent photo printer. Comparison between using a compatible or remanufactured cartridge to the original cartridges can bring differing results, depending on the printer, but utilisation of modern ink technology combined with good printers, this is a lot easier than a LaserJet.
Inkjet Cons Factors
Less efficient ink use (cost per page)
Buying original ink cartridges (OEM) sometimes is not cheap. Whilst the initial cost of the printer may be acceptable, a set of printer cartridge might not be so acceptable. Companies do offer a variety of cartridges and packs to make purchases cheaper.
Slower Print Speeds
Generally Inkjet printers are not designed for massive amounts of documents to be printed at once, this can lead to overheating and burnout. Plus the more you print may mean your ink cartridge will run out quicker on your printer.- Cleaning times (harder) – Much harder to clean than a Laser as being built so compact the printer is harder to get at, depending on most uses for the printer, you may be required to clean the nozzles and print heads, with checking for dust and debris, but unlike a laser you won’t be able to get into the main printer so easily.
Start-up and initial noise levels on a printer can be loud depending on the printer, as with most models you generally get what you pay for.
Different types of laser printer include:
-All in one Laser printers
Here we are going to outline some of the features and compare the pros and cons of using a laser printer in home or office environment.
Laser Printer Pro Features
Printer cost and toner usages
Cost for toner cartridges are always higher, yet the item to look at here is page yield and cost per page. Again this depends on what you’re printing. Again you get what you pay for; the more expensive laser printer can be over £1000 so make sure you have them for the long term.
Faster printing speeds
Laser printer are designed for busy offices and so are great for printing a lot of documents, page speeds can vary depending on the mode. Once powered up a laser printer can rack off quite a few documents, in a very short period of time, ideal for printing invoices.
Generally laser printers are a lot quieter than their Inkjet counterparts they.
Laser Printer Cons
High initial costs
If you were to compare the price of a toner cartridge to an ink cartridge the price would always be in favour of the ink cartridges, simply there is less technology and parts in an ink cartridge, yet a toner cartridge can last a lot longer in term of page yields and pence per page.
Bigger Bulkier Printers
Unfortunately lasers are built for the office, they tend to be bulkier and can have additional tray and parts added on to them, so laser printers with all the add-ons can easily get up to 4ft high and wide.- Noise levels – You get what you pay for, if you buy a modern eco printer and pay a good price for your laser, it should reflect in all printing methods, such as quality, noise and power output. Unfortunately some of the cheaper laser printers can still pack a good noise level, which you would probably notice more at home.
High Cost Per Colour
One of the problems with laser printing is they aren’t designed for photo printing in general. The type of toner you use between OEM, compatible or remanufactured cartridges can make a difference, however the price you will pay for 3 colour toners on a colour laser printer could be as expensive as the printer per toner.
In comparison to the differences in laser and inkjet printers, it comes down to the size of you printing output as your needs will be difference. For the smaller user the home printer, an inkjet all in one will be more than sufficient. For the bigger business and office user, money and outlay for a laser printer will be offset for future saving made by the cost of printing per page.
James T Graves