Laser printer VS Inkjet: Which is right for you?

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We all send digital documents, PDF files, ePub files, and PowerPoint presentations, along with a myriad of other types of digital files every day. One could say that we send far more digital files than we send actual snail mail. 

But printed works are still an important part of communication and expression in this world. When we have to send digital files, we don’t need any extra equipment. All we need to do is upload it to our Cloud account, send it via email, or upload it to a torrent site so other people can receive it. But if we want to hold printed documents in our hands, we will need access to a printer.

For the average consumer, there are two types of printers available at pretty much any electronic brick-and-mortar or online retailer: the laser printer and the inkjet printer. 

Each one has its pros and cons and situations in which they are made for. So in this article, we will discuss the differences between laser printers and inkjet printers and which one is right for you based on your needs.

What are you looking for in a printer?

Unless you were perfectly fine with any printer at all, you should always buy a printer that can fulfill your needs. 

So there are few aspects of printing that you have to consider before stepping into an electronic retailer. Here are the questions you can ask before shopping for a printer:

  1. What is my budget? How much am I going to spend? Printers can go for $200 up to $2000 and higher. Inkjet printers are more expensive than laser printers, but this is just a general rule. We’ll talk more about this. 
  2. How much money can I spend on ink and toner, and how many times do I have to buy ink and toner during the year?
  3. Do I need my printer to perform scans and make copies? Remember, the more features your printer has, the higher its price will be.
  4. What do you value more, quality or quantity? Are you going to print a lot of arts and designs, or will you print out documents?
  5. How big do I want my printer to be? This question may not seem as important as the others, but 

Now that you know the right question to ask, it’s time to learn about the printers themselves. Each printer has pros and cons in each category, but these rules are not set in stone. 

Inkjet printers can be just as fast or as affordable as Laser printers, and Laser printers can produce high-quality prints like inkjet printers. It all depends on your budget and what kind of printer you can find that fits all of your needs.

Laser printers

Laser printers use a combination of heat and positive and negative charges to melt powder toner on the paper. In general, laser printers are designed to print a high volume of papers at medium quality.

If you were to compare the cost of a printed paper from an inkjet printer to a laser printer, the inkjet printer would be less expensive per page.

Toner and toner costs

On a per-page basis, toner is usually the cheaper option. Laser Printers are designed to print at a high volume, so laser prints can print more papers than an Inkjet printer can with the same amount of ink.

But that doesn’t necessarily mean that toner cartridges are cheap. Since Laser Printers are designed to print volume, toner cartridges are fit with enough ink to print hundreds of papers.

Laser printer speed

A medium-quality laser printer can print text documents in black and white and at a rate of 30 pages per minute or ppm. If the ppm of a laser printer is higher than 30 to 40, the printer will likely be more expensive. Some printers can reach up to 60ppm or one paper a second.

Cost to repair laser printer

When your laser printer breaks down, it is up to the user to repair it at all. Because most laser printers are in the lower price range, especially ones built just for document printing, it may not be worth repairing a laser printer.

If repairing a laser printer costs $150, and the user bought the printer for $200, most people would rather buy a new laser printer.

Inkjet printers

 Inkjet are the preferred printers for designers, graphic and digital artists, and professionals who rely on high-quality prints. An inkjet printer works by using heat to cause the ink to expand.

The expansion causes bubbles to push the ink through thousands of tiny openings located on the printhead and drip down onto the paper. Commercial enterprises have used ink printers since the 1860s. In the 1990s, inkjet printers were refined enough to sell to consumers.

Ink and Ink costs

Since inkjet printers are made to print high-quality photos and designs, these printers will use more ink than a laser printer would use toner for the same design. Ink cartridges are smaller than toner cartridges, so they will be cheaper in general. But if you were to try and print the same amount of papers as a laser printer, your printing costs would skyrocket.

Inkjet printer speed

Inkjet printers are not known for their ability to print documents and designs at lightning-fast speeds. Plus, once the printing process is done, the freshly printed paper has to dry, or else the ink will smudge and smear, so be sure to set the paper aside.

On average, an inkjet printer will print out 13 to 15 black and white papers per minute. Higher quality inkjet printers can print black and white documents at 30ppm.

Cost to repair Inkjet printer

Unlike repairing a laser printer, repairing an inkjet printer depends on the sale cost of the printer. If your inkjet printer costs $200, and repair it would cost $50, then it is best to repair it. Some inkjet printers are cheap enough to replace completely if they break down.


Choosing the right printer that fits your budget and can fulfill all of your needs will take some time to find. But the right printer is out there.

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