For years I've been swearing that you don't really need a printer at home need a few pages printed, I just do it at work like everybody else.
But now that we've been officing in place for going on 11 months now.
All right, you might actually need a printer.
So here are my top five tips to find a printer that won't drive you crazy.
The first question I always get is, should I get an inkjet printer or a laser printer?
Now some people are intimidated by laser printers.
I think they're gonna be very expensive or very complicated.
They started life with more professional tools, but now you can get some very inexpensive laser printers.
Not as inexpensive as those impulse buy inkjet printers where it's maybe 50, 60 dollars.
You take it home you use it a few times the ink starts to run out, then you go to replace it, you find out the cost more than the printer itself.
Those may seem less expensive to start with, but your total cost of ownership really adds up over time.
I found by switching to a laser printer for most of my printing needs over the last several years, I've been a lot happier because the results have been better.
My long term costs have been lower and the printer just seems less frustrating.
I less often want to throw it out the window although I still occasionally want to throw even laser printers out of the window.
Now if you're looking for some specific printer ideas to start with I've been using a lot of brother laser printers for the last few years, I found that to be generally pretty reliable.
There's some popular models that go on sale a couple of times a year.
In fact, when that happens, they usually sell out very quickly.
That means they're popular.
The brother L2395 DW, that's a good basic monochrome laser printer monochrome, meaning black and white.
One of the big advantages with laser printers is instead of inkjet cartridges you're buying laser cartridges and these tend to look just as good on the last page as they do on the first.
Whereas with inkjet often you can see the end of life of the cartridge coming up long before it acts.
I also tend to find laser printers are just a little bit more reliable long term probably because they started life as Office products and some of that professional DNA has filtered down to the consumer models.
But even though I prefer laser printers in general there There are exceptions if you are printing a lot of photos on glossy paper or on photo paper.
Well, then you're going to want an inkjet printer.
Preferably one that is a specialized photo printer Laser Printers.
Don't do great with color photos or even Big Blocks of color.
It's good for occasional here and there but if you're going to get like fotomat style prints if you remember
Fotomat is Then you're going to need a specialized inkjet printer and those use more expensive inks and give you more photo like results.
If you want to step up to color.
Then there's a brother 3270 cd w the see obviously must be in color, I guess So that's more expensive, but again, it's discounted a couple of times a year, usually at the big office store that Amazon wherever, if you need a photo printer, a lot of companies make specialized photo printers.
Canon has a very well known line called the pixma.
And the P 8720s is the middle of the line there.
That's really where you want to start looking The next question I often get is do I need to get the kind that has the scanner in it the all in one printer?
I'm just gonna say no.
When was the last time you really needed to scan anything?
If you ever do, I've taken, you know, financial documents, legal documents, I just take a picture of them with my phone.
I send them in nobody has ever complained about that.
Now if you're gonna scan in a stack of like 50 documents, then you need something with like a professional, you know, sheetfed scanner, that's a more high level pro level office device that's not a simple consumer home printer, you probably did another category altogether.
One of the most nefarious things I've ever seen is when a handful of printer companies started putting DRM on their printers.
That meant that if you went and bought a third party inkjet cartridge, you put it in the printer, even though technically it should work, the printer would say, That's not an official cartridge, we're not gonna use it.
So of course there was a huge outcry over this because people wanna buy the ink cartridges they wanna buy and all the companies that were doing that right then rolled it back.
They patched it out.
So again, you could use any ink cartridges in your printer.
I have no doubt that this will someday make a return.
But until it does save some money by the off brand ink cartridges, more importantly by the off brand laser toner.
I would consider spending a little bit more and making sure that you get a decent touchscreen on your printer.
Now, it's not something you're gonna use all the time, but very occasionally, especially during setup, you really need it and you're gonna be glad to have it, especially when you're punching in the password for your Wi Fi network, which is very difficult to do if you're doing it one letter at a time by rotating up and down the alphabet because your printer doesn't have a nice size touchscreen.
The other thing I look for is a manual feed slot.
That's if you want to take one piece of let's say thicker cardstock paper or label paper or something like that, and just feed it in and have it print on that one piece and then go back to your regular.
Paper that you have in the paper tray some of the least expensive printers out there may exclude this lat I think you should make sure to get it.
It'll just save you a lot of hassle in the long run and you won't have to change all the paper out of just to do one sheet of something else.
So you follow these tips and you end up with the printer at home for printing things and you'll still want to occasionally throw it out a window, but hopefully not as often as you would have.
Without my help, and if you insist on ignoring most of my advice and getting an inkjet printer, well then you should do the smart thing to get one of those big tank printers.
That means that you refill the tanks with ink, usually from a little bottle and it's actually much more economical in the long run.
Then just buying the cartridges and throwing them away.
Epson has aligned they call the Eco tank because it's more ecologically responsible to refill the tank than to just throw this plastic cartridge right in the trash or recycling.
I'm sure everybody actually recycles it.
The ecotank 4760 is the mainstream middle of the line product there.
So start with that and that's probably going to be the best fit for you.