Buying a Printer
Whether you're printing important documents or beautiful family photos, a printer is a vital part of any home office. While these machines serve basic functions, many new models have features and technology that make printing much more efficient. Before deciding which printer is right for you, here are some important features to consider.
In households with professionals, students and home business owners, having the right printers at home can be fast, convenient and save money. It's easier to print documents, photographs or assignments at home instead of relying on professional services, which can sometimes be expensive.
New printers are available in many shapes to fit your home office. Small, basic printers get standard printing jobs done, while large, multifunctional models can take on professional-level tasks regularly.
Advances in printing technology have not only enhanced the quality of printers, but they've also improved the function and speed.
Features of Printers
- All-in-one models feature built-in scanners and copiers, so you can perform multiple tasks from one, compact machine.
- Wireless printers allow you to print from computers, mobile devices or digital cameras using a Wi-Fi connection.
- Many all-in-one wireless models also let you email scanned photos or documents from these machines.
- Multifunctional printers with built-in phones and fax machines provide both a dedicated landline and the ability to fax documents quickly.
- Home 3D printers allow users to manufacture everything from architectural layouts to designs of toys. Models with 3D capabilities are ideal for small business
- Some machines have use light-emitting diode (LED) instead of laser technology to print documents or pictures.
- Printers with special photo-printing capabilities create clear and concise pictures for any personal album or photography business.
- Color and photo printing lets you create and design unique items and products, ranging from one-of-a-kind postcards to personal gifts. These capabilities even allow you to print off business cards or creative cover letters.
- Commercial printers are large enough to provide professional-quality printing jobs for businesses and offices. While mid-range and compact printers offer similar quality in smaller machines, they might not be able to process a high volume of tasks as efficiently as commercial models.
Types of Printers
All-in-one printers can print documents or photographs and include a host of other capabilities, depending on size and need.
- These devices include a printer, copier and scanner in one, space-saving machine.
- Multi-functional units can print photos, but they might need additional ink cartridges to produce high-quality photographs.
- Some models include landline phones and fax machines to send and receive faxes from your home or office.
- These machines are available with traditional hardwire connections or wireless capabilities.
All-in-one printers are best for...
Small offices: If your workplace frequently scans and copies documents in addition to printing them, these machines are a perfect choice.
Faxing: Many models have built-in fax machines, which allow you to fax over documents from the comfort of your own home.
Inkjet printers are time-tested and produce images or documents by using small jets of ink.
- Inkjet technology prints in black and white or full color, producing clear, high-quality text or intricate graphics.
- Many of the latest models are wireless for your convenience, but they're also available with hardwire connections.
- Inkjet printers create high-quality pictures that perfectly capture colors and moments in fine details.
- Colorful graphics and sharp text take any project or presentation to a more polished, professional level.
Inkjet printers are best for...
Printing photos: Inkjet machines allow you to produce professional-style pictures in your own home.
Saving space: These models typically come in compact designs, so you can save space in your home office or workspace.
Laser printers are solid, durable machines that use small laser beams to generate documents.
- Laser printers can produce top-quality graphics and text on many types of documents.
- Due to the digital printing process, these models can handle large printing jobs, making them ideal for high-volume settings like offices or home businesses.
- These machines use toners instead of ink cartridges, meaning you won't have to change ink as much as an inkjet or other counterparts.
- Laser printers are available with wireless capabilities or traditional hardwire connections.
Laser printers are best for...
High-volume printing jobs: These machines have the technology to handle large printing tasks, which means they're ideal for printing large documents.
Saving on ink: Since laser printers use toners, you won't have to change ink frequently like you would with other models.