Printer & Cartridges

Which Type of Laser Printer Is Best for You


Which Type of Laser Printer Is Best for You



– Presentation and operation of the laser printer

– 2 types of laser printers: monochrome and color

– Characteristics of a laser printer

– Price of a laser printer: from $150

There are 3 leading printing technologies: laser, inkjet, and thermal.

Robustness, reliability, and speed are the main qualities of the laser printer.

Presentation and operation of the laser printer


The technology used by laser printers is comparable to that used by photocopiers.

The only difference is that the laser printer, to print a document, uses a laser beam on a photosensitive drum, whereas photocopiers use a lamp.

You can also find laser technology in some mono function or multifunction printers.


Four stages take place during a laser printing:

1. The toner (dry ink in the form of powder) is negatively charged thanks to the electrostatic energy, which then is transferred on the drum marked beforehand by the laser beam.

2. The drum then deposits the dry ink on the paper.

3. Once heated, the ink melts and is pressed onto the substrate.

4. When the printing is finished, the drum is cleaned, and the image marked on it is removed.

Precision: As regards the color laser printers, the process is repeated four times, once for the black, then once for each of the three primary colors: yellow, cyan, and magenta.

The laser printer is less noisy than the inkjet printer without a mechanical print head.

2 types of laser printers: monochrome and color

Laser Printer


There are 2 types of laser printers: monochrome and color. The printing technology does not vary.

Monochrome laser printer

The monochrome laser printer prints in black and white: its use is mainly dedicated to printing text and graphics in black and white. If you want to print a document in color (text, image, or photo), the printing is done in shades of gray.

Therefore, the monochrome laser printer requires only one type of cartridge or toner: black ink.

Color laser printer

A color laser printer is versatile: it can print text and graphics, and images in excellent quality.

Characteristics of a laser printer

The main features of a laser printer are :

The print quality

Also called the resolution, the print quality is expressed in dpi (dot per inch); most laser printers have an outstanding print quality for office automation and graphics. On the other hand, the quality is rarely there to print photographs. It is considered that 300 dpi is needed to print a black and white text correctly, and 600 dpi to print a color image correctly.

The speed of printing

The printing speed is expressed in the number of pages per minute (ppm); it can reach 40 ppm, but the average speed is 18 ppm.

Energy consumption

Although it also depends on the type of printer, we can also mention the energy consumption: it is expressed in watts (W).

Note: Do not forget to take into account the energy consumption in standby (< 1 W) and in operation (can reach 400 W depending on the type of printer used).

Price of a laser printer: from $150

You will find monofunctional, monochrome laser printers starting at $150 in the entry-level range.

For color, entry-level laser printers start at $190.

Laser printer price

Printer type




High end



$150 à $250

$200 à $500

$500 and more


$190 à $300

$300 à $550

$550 and more

It is also essential to consider the cost per page when choosing a printer or print type. On average, there is a cost of $0.8 per page in monochrome and $0.13 per page in color.

Note: A $400 laser printer (at $0.08/page) will be cheaper than a $100 inkjet printer (at $0.13/page) after about 1500 pages. After the fourth ream of paper, you can be sure to save money, only if the printer is still in good working condition, though!

Read more:

Which Printer for Which Use?

Is the Inkjet Printer for You?

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