Should I get a Laser or an Inkjet Printer?  


September 29th, 2022

By Darren Jackson



Some of you may be in the market for a new printer, and that may come with some questions on if you should be getting a Inkjet printer, or a laser printer.  This brief guide may prove helpful for you if you haven’t considered the pro’s and con’s
of a laser printer vs an inkjet printer.


1. Cost
In today’s market, cost is usually at the front of peoples minds when it comes to purchasing new tech, such as a printer.  With that being said, there are two main costs associated with printers.  Upfront costs, and the cost of printing (the cost of ink/toner, paper, etc). 
Typically the upfront cost of an inkjet printer will be quite a bit lower than the upfront cost of a laser printer.  This is due to the technology that goes into an inkjet usually being less advanced.  Some manufacturers will also sell inkjets for a loss because they know that they will make up the difference when it comes to ink refills and new ink cartridges.   Ink cartridges will also dry up and get clogged if you go too long without printing something.  This is especially common in color inkjet printers since most people typically don’t print in full color, so even if they print in black and white every day, the color cartridges can still clog and dry up from disuse.  This all adds to the cost of having to repurchase ink frequently.
Laser printers on the other hand, while typically having a higher upfront cost, the cost of printing is usually far less than with its inkjet counterparts.

2. Print Quality

The suitability of liquid ink and toner powder for particular forms of printing is also influenced by their unique properties.
Inkjets, with their dye- and pigment-based inks, do particularly well when handling color. Due to the nature of liquid ink, inkjet printers can reproduce certain mixes more easily than laser printers.

In other cases, laser printers are not always designed to print photos; instead, they use halftone dots to produce specific colors on papers. It is significantly less convenient to use normal photo paper on an inkjet than it is to use specialized laser-printer-ready photo paper with laser printers, even those that can handle the higher-quality color for photo printing.

However, laser printers are frequently better suited to printing text since they provide sharp, distinct letterforms that most inkjet printers just cannot match. While the print is still readable due to inkjet printing’s tendency to slightly bleed, the individual letters won’t have as much detail when closely inspected.

Inkjet users must be aware of the likelihood of smudged papers since ink has a propensity to smear and because inkjet prints continue to dry after printing.  Since laser printers use a heat-transfer process, t he print is set and smudge-proof the instant it exits the printer 

Takeaway: Laser printers are better for text documents, especially at high volumes, but inkjets have an edge when it comes to printing photos.


Bottom Line:

The decision between Inkjet or laser printers usually comes down to what you want to use your printer for.  

Inkjet printing is generally a better fit for the occasional printer. On a per-page basis, ink will be more expensive than toner, but refills are less expensive. Due to laser printers’ propensity for being bulkier, inkjets are also more suited for confined places. Additionally, since ink gives more vibrant color and fewer printing restrictions, it is a superior alternative for printing pictures and photographs.

Contrarily, laser printing provides the most cost-effective means of printing numerous pages with a lot of text. It is also quicker, providing polished, smudge-free pages in a matter of seconds. And if clear, easy-to-read text is your top goal, use a laser printer, which consistently produces excellent text printing.