CNET's Cheapskate scours the web for great deals on PCs, phones, gadgets and much more. Questions about the Cheapskate blog? Find the answers on our FAQ page. And find more great buys on the CNET Deals page.
I'll never buy another inkjet printer -- not when I can get a color laser for about the same price. Inkjets have always kind of annoyed me, in part due to their expensive, low-capacity ink cartridges... OK, entirely due to that. And when an ink cartridge dries up because it hasn't been used for a few weeks, and have no choice but to replace it? Cheapskate-rage!
So what do I mean by "about the same price"? For a limited time, and while supplies last, Staples has the Dell C1760nw color laser printer for $74.99 shipped plus tax. Price elsewhere: at least $125. Technically this is an LED printer, but the end result is the same. Tomato, tomahto. Update: Aaaaand...sold out already. Ugh. Sorry, gang.
Before I delve into that, let me mention that Staples also has the Dell E310dw monochrome laser printer for $49.99 shipped and the Dell E525w all-in-one color laser for $139.99 shipped. Those are equally excellent deals, though on rare occasion I've seen the latter for $10-20 less.
Let me also mention that Staples historically runs out of inventory very quickly when running deals like this, so I hope you're able to get one if you want one.
The C1760nw is about as compact a color laser as I've seen, and in fact its input tray holds only 150 sheets -- not ideal for an office, but okay for home use.
It offers all the key connectivity options: USB, Ethernet and Wi-Fi, though if you want to print from an Android or iOS device, you'll have to use Dell's app -- the machine doesn't support AirPrint or Google Cloud Print.
It's always important to check the cost of consumables, and I'm happy to report you can buy an entire set of third-party toner cartridges for as little as $39 -- or a high-yield set for just a few bucks more. As you well know, a set of ink cartridges usually costs at least that much, but toner tends to stretch a lot farther. So in the end, a laser costs a lot less to operate.
CNET hasn't reviewed the C1760nw, but reviews elsewhere peg it as "pretty good." Around 130 Staples customers rated it 4.4 stars on average, and it scored a 4.2 from Amazon buyers.
My advice: Toss your inkjet and embrace the awesomeness that is a color laser. This is a stellar deal.
Bonus deal: If you frequently find yourself thinking, "My phone's camera just isn't cutting it," consider investing in a DLSR. Like this one: Today only, and while supplies last, Meh has the Canon EOS Rebel T6 for for $384, plus $5 for shipping. Price nearly everywhere else: $449. It comes with an 18-55mm lens and has overwhelmingly positive user ratings -- though I will note that professional reviewers (such as CNET's Lori Grunin) were a little less kind. Of course, it was $500 when reviewed. A few flaws are perhaps easier to overlook $116 later?