Color printer 101 how to choose the right one
Looking at the right color printer to buy can be an absolutely dizzying and confusing task, since there are so many different types of color printers out there that are available for you to buy.Also, as the price of color printers continues to drop, the options become even more varied and more numerous and more and more printers begin to fit within the budgets of everybody from students to small businesses to larger corporations.Making sure that you choose the right color printer can help you save money on paper, ink cartridges, and the cost of going outside to other printers such as Kinko's in order to print your projects, whether that project is for a large presentation to potential clients or if it is for your child's science report.
1.What to think about before you go shopping
Before you even head out the door or start looking online to see what type of color printer you should buy, there are a few questions that you need to ask yourself.For example, which software package will I be using in order to format my documents and print my projects?Do you mostly use Microsoft Word and PowerPoint?Do you use graphics programs such as Photoshop and/or Adobe Illustrator?What will you be printing?Will you be printing charts, photos, flyers, checks, posters, presentations, etc.?And how often will you be printing in color?
You will need to know what you will be using your color printer for most frequently-if you are going to be printing a number of banners or larger documents, then you will need a certain type of printer.Also, if you will be printing the majority of your projects on transparencies or heavy stock paper, then you will need to keep that in consideration also.
So what will be your volume?If you will be using your color printer for your business work, then you will need to know that business color printers are rated based on their monthly print volume.Also, you will need to know if you will be using your printer for pre-press, which is when you create your own printouts of work that you will then be taking to a print shop.This pre-press work will need very high quality print quality, because you will need exact color reproduction.
2.The types of color printers
There are a number of different types of color printers that you can choose from, though color laser printers are the most popular type of color printer for businesses, from small to large.
Color laser printers use a laser beam which then produces electric charges on a rotating drum.Then that rotating drum transfers toner onto the paper.You can find color laser printers from low end models, which are designed to handle 30,000 pages per month, or you can go all the way up to high-end color laser printers, which can handle 200,000 pages per month.Color laser printers also provide sharp graphics and show a relatively high tolerance to smudging.Operating costs are lower than other types of color printers.
Inkjet printers actually spray liquid ink onto the paper.Color inkjet printers are the most popular color printers for home use, though they aren't a great idea for business use because of the higher operating cost.The cost of the ink cartridges are much higher than that for laser printers-the cost per page runs from 15 to 50 cents, which makes an inkjet printer cost 7 to 25 times higher than a laser printer.Color inkjet printers are probably going to be your best choice if you are going to be printing high quality photographs.However, color inkjets printers cannot handle nearly the volume of a color laser printer.
Taking these different types into consideration, along with what your color printer needs are, you can make a much more informed decision as to which color printer will be the best for your own particular situation.