Printer technology has advanced rapidly in the last 20 years, with printer capabilities expanding exponentially beyond their primary purpose of reproducing documents. However, no matter how many functions a printing station can perform, it’s the quality and convenience of printing that still matter the most to decision-makers who select printers for office applications. Whether you want a simple inkjet or a high-end laser printer with scanner, there are multiple considerations to think about when picking the right machine for your office.
If the time has come to acquire a new printer for your office, you’ll need to understand the benefits and drawbacks of both an inkjet printer and a laser printer in Anchorage. Each offers some significant beneficial characteristics, but only you can decide which best fits the printing and document management needs of your office. Keep reading to learn more about how to choose between inkjet and laser printers when purchasing a new machine for your office.
Inkjet printers represent a type of printer that uses ink to print images and text on paper. The inkjet printer works by processing images, then using an array of nozzle-like jets to spray the appropriate color of ink onto paper to render the images. The nozzle is heated by electricity, which creates a bubble that expands, forcing ink out of the nozzle and onto the paper. The bubble collapses, which draws more ink into the nozzle. It may take tens of thousands of tiny bubbles of ink to print a single page of a document.
Inkjet printers can be excellent for creating high-quality images because they are more adept at blending colors and rendering subtle changes in shading. Inkjets can print on many different types of paper, though papers that are affected by heat don’t work well with inkjets due to the heating of the nozzle and ink bubble. Inkjets have a longer cycling time, which means it can take longer for print jobs to be completed, especially when the reduced paper capacity of inkjets is considered. There’s also the issue of ink usage. High-volume printing can result in exorbitant ink costs. Inkjet printers are typically reserved for settings in which printing may need to include vivid color and intricate detail in low volume.
Laser printers represent more advanced printing technology, since they use lasers as part of the printing process. Laser printers process the image just as inkjet computers do, but that’s where the similarities cease. A device known as the photoreceptor drum, a revolving cylindrical drum, receives a positive charge as printing begins. A laser is fired onto a mirror and reflected onto the photoreceptor drum. The mirror is moved to etch the image to be printed on the photoreceptor drum, and everywhere the drum is touched by the laser, the charge shifts from positive to negative. That, in essence, renders a negatively charged image on the drum, which is then coated with positively charged toner. The toner creates an image which is then rolled against a piece of negatively charged paper. The positively charged grains of toner are transferred to the negatively charged paper before the charge is removed and a hot roller flattens the toner grains onto the paper.
While laser printers can’t match the clarity and range of colors afforded by inkjet printers, they have a faster cycling time, feature high capacity paper trays, and are ideal for printing high volume black and white documents. If you rarely need to produce color documents, such as photos, but need the ability to efficiently produce high volumes of black and white copies, a laser jet is perfect for your office application.