Before you go out and buy the first printer that you see, which can sometimes be a costly mistake. You need to ask yourself a few questions.
What am I going to print?
Will it be word documents or will it be images photos. Or will it be both?
What is my budget?
When buying you have to take in consideration as well as the cost of the printer the cost of the ink cartridges and paper.
What features and specifications do I need or want on my printer?
There are numerous features and different specifications on today’s printers. It all depends what is important to you. It’s best to check out what you need and if there are extras you would like to have on your printer. Here are a few features that you might be interested in.
Auto document feeder which saves you from manually putting each sheet into the printer,
Stop button. This is ideal if you press the wrong amount for printing.
USB ports for direct printing
Memory card slots
Double sided printing
The Speed – Its best to check out how fast the printers print this is shown in pages per minute (ppm)
Resolution – This refers to the maximum of dots per inch (dpi) and can determine the quality of the print higher the resolution the more detailed the text and clearer images.
Once you have answered these fundamental questions you are half way there to getting the right printer for you.
You also might want to know more about the types of printers that are on the market to help you decide. There are five types of printers on the market right now. Inkjet, laser printer, multi functional, photo printers and mobile printers
The inkjet printer is the most popular and cheapest of the desktop printer on the market today.
As the name suggests the ink is propelled and tiny droplets of ink onto the paper with precision to create good quality letters and pictures.
More often than not these printers start at £30 and are cheaper to buy than buying the new cartridges for them unless you can find a company that sells quality recycled cartridges.
The reason why these printers are so cheap is because manufacturers rely on ink sales for their profit. Another reason is because the print head is incorporated onto the cartridge itself and the printer has less problems therefore lasts longer. The paper also used in the printer can greatly determine the quality. You can use normal copier paper, or get a better quality print with Ink Jet paper.
Even though an Inkjet printer itself is cheap, you have to take into account the cost of the cartridges and the paper if you want a more superior quality print. The inkjet printers are the most popular printers and are best for family use Small home businesses.
Laser Printers (Monochrome/colour)
The laser printer price starts at £50 this is what you would buy for a decent Inkjet so they are becoming more affordable to buy and the prices are coming down more quickly because of increased technology & innovation. Offset by the fact they are consistently fast and economical. Although the Toner cartridges cost a bit more but they last a very long time so the Laser Printer does not cost as much to run makes this a better investment than the Inkjet printer.
The printers themselves can be large and bulky so they are more suited to Office environment and small businesses. So if you are short of space this would not be an ideal choice.
Multi function printers
These printers are known as an All in One Printers. The cheapest inkjet all in one printer price starts at £29. They can be inkjet printers or Laser Jet, In addition to being a printer it can also has facilities to scan, fax or E-mail a document etc. Because the printers can have different functions and all of these processes are together you are saving s money and space. These printers are Ideal for home and small business use.
Check out each function individually on the printer to make sure it is suitable for your needs because each individual function may be slower or not as good quality as you would like.
Photo printers only print photographs so buying a photo printer would be only advantageous, if you print a fair amount of photographs.
Unlike standard printers Photo printers do not have to be attached to your computer. They have memory card reader ports or USB cable port, where you can input your memory card or USB cable so the printer reads from the memory card or from a camera. These printers normally use thermal die technology.
Inside the printer itself instead of spraying the ink onto the paper the heads on the printer melts the various dyes onto the photo paper which is usually a glossy paper which prevents smearing. This means that the picture looks natural and does not get the pixilated effect you sometimes get. When buying a photo printer make sure it has options of different paper sizes to make it more flexible.
As the name suggests these are printers where you can print on the move. They are very versatile you can print anything from Photos, Web pages, Power point presentations, Airline passes and contracts.
Some of the best have Bluetooth technology and Wifi. This allows one to wirelessly print photographs and documents from mobile phones and PDAs.
When these mobile printers first came out printing was slow but some of the newer models can now match the desktop printers.
There are a lot of printers on the market today the search for the most suitable printer for your printing needs starts with researching what your needs are and what you want to use your printer for. This is the start of finding the best possible printer.