Laser printing has had a tough time of it in recent years. The pace of innovation with this older printer technology (barring tweaks to toner formulations) has slowed to a crawl. Plus, high-speed business inkjet printers with low costs per page, such as those in HP’s PageWide and Epson’s WorkForce lines, have been nibbling through laser printers’ lunch—and are now eyeing their dinner. When you’re debating inkjet vs. laser, it’s even odds which one will come out on top.
Still, laser printers have remained relevant by focusing on their traditional strengths: fast print speeds and reasonable costs per page (especially for text output), as well as the extremely clean look of the finished product and the resistance to fading or smudging of toner. On the downside, lasers often have a significantly higher up-front cost, and they’re nowhere near as capable as inkjets at reproducing fine gradients in complex color output such as photos.
So, who would find a laser printer a more attractive proposition than an inkjet? In most cases, not the person seeking an occasional-use printer for motley tasks: at one moment to print a personal e-mail, the next to copy a color image out of a book, or to print photos. Lasers are better suited to bulk text output: contracts, long research papers, book drafts. If you print a lot of large jobs, and stick mostly to text and clean graphics instead of color photographs, a laser printer is the right match.
Read the entire review at PCMag.