Choosing a Color Printer: InkJet or Laser?


When it’s time to purchase a new printer, one of the first questions to consider is whether to purchase a laser printer or an inkjet printer. This page offers some considerations and suggestions in exploring your options.

Color InkJet Printers

Here are some points to consider regarding InkJet printers:

  • Lower purchase price compared to laser printers.
  • Cost of operation may be higher for those who print a lot. Although, some inkjet printers in the $400 price range or higher have economical high capacity ink cartridges.
  • Cost of operation may be higher (per page) for those who print very infrequently because the ink cartridges on some printers can dry out when not used for long periods of time (several weeks or more).
  • Good for people who print frequently (several times a week) but don’t print a lot of pages.
  • Good choice for people wanting to print pictures on photo paper.
  • Printing in high quality mode can be slow unless you purchase a more expensive inkjet printer.
  • Lower priced inkjet printers are typically small and light weight.
  • If you want scanning, copying, printing, and possibly faxing, there are inexpensive inkjet printers that offer these features.

Color Laser Printers

Here are some points to consider regarding Laser printers:

  • Higher cost to purchase initially, but long-term lower cost of ownership for those who do a lot of printing.
  • Toner is used instead of ink and it doesn’t dry out like ink cartridges used by inkjet printers.
  • Typically faster printing than low priced inkjet printers. Although, at the $400 to $500 price range, many inkjet printers are now as fast as laser printers.
  • Generally heavier and bigger than inkjet printers because multiple large toner cartridges are used and the printing mechanism is heavy. However, some expensive inkjet printers can be as big or bigger than laser printers, so it depends on the printer.
  • To get scanning, copying, printing, and possibly faxing capabilities, a laser printing system will likely cost more than an inkjet printer offering the same features.

Purchase Choices

Here are links to some top rated inkjet and laser printers on Amazon that you can consider based on your budget.

It’s best to choose from the above options based on what you feel your needs are, and then contact us to confirm it’s the right choice for you.


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