A good color laser printer is now part of most households and makes for nice handouts on student lectures, project documentation for work, or neighborhood posters.
Before buying, take a moment to think about how many printouts you need in everyday life. For large stacks of paper to be printed, the speed of printing is a critical factor . On the other hand, if you need particularly clean prints with pin-sharp images, a high-resolution color laser printer is important . Some of the models are multifunction devices that also scan and faxcan. If you do not use it, you’d rather save the money and grab a cheap printer.
How to find the color laser printer in 2019?
- Color laser printers do not laser the letters on the paper, they also need a toner and printer cartridges. However, the laser ensures that especially texts and letters are printed very sharply on the paper.
- You get the printer both as a “simple” standard version and as a multifunction printer , which can then also scan and copy. However, because you pay a not insignificant surcharge, you should only buy these printers when you really need them.
- If you also want to use the device as a photo printer , you should pay attention to the highest possible print quality, which is measured in so-called dpi (dots per inch), or grab directly to an inkjet printer.
In the office we use the printer almost every day, but at home the devices often dust up. Those who then throw a classic inkjet printer after three months break, usually finds that the print quality suffers greatly in the first color printing. For example, a color is completely missing or the finished image looks streaky. Why? If the inkjet printhead is not used for a long period of time, it will clog with dried ink.
But is a laser color printer really better in this situation? At least the ink will not dry up on this machine, even though the last print was months ago. And the laser can also be convincing when it comes to printing text .
What advantages and disadvantages the model has, what you have to pay attention to in terms of print quality and printing speed and other useful tips we have put together in the large color laser printer comparison 2018 for you. Guaranteed to find your personal color laser printer test winner.
1. How does a color laser printer work?
Contrary to popular belief, the color laser does not simply laser the desired image or text onto the paper . Rather, the information of the computer or smartphone are merely passed by laser to the printer itself.
Specifically, the laser “shoots” the image to be printed on a rotating mirror, which in turn then projects this image onto the image drum.
Just like the inkjet printer, a toner is used. This is loaded via the image drum and then dispenses the ink onto the paper.
First of all, even with the color laser printer, you can not get around a toner and printer cartridges . Due to the special printing process but it can not come to stick the printhead.
1.1. Which consumables does a color laser printer need?
If you want to print inks with your printer, then of course you need corresponding printer cartridges. Most devices use between three and five cartridges for color printing. If the cartridges are empty, supply must be provided accordingly.
Of course, you also need paper on which the colors can be printed. Here you have the choice between cheap recycled paper, glossy products and photo paper. Foil printing is also possible with high quality color laser printers.
1.2. What is better: laser printer or inkjet printer?
All in all, this question can not be answered. But: laser printers are significantly faster than inkjet printers , which is especially useful when printing many pages in a row. Plus, this device does not mind if it’s not used for a month or so – the inkjet printer will then dry up. The costs are slightly lower per page.
But the color device is usually quite loud when it’s working. In addition, you should not use the laser printer as a photo printer , here provide inkjet printers for significantly better results. As you can see, whether you buy a color laser printer or opt for the inkjet depends on your individual use.
All advantages and disadvantages at a glance:
- prints very fast
- especially with texts produce sharp results
- does not dry up
- relatively low cost per printed sheet
- not really suitable as a photo printer
- expensive to buy (from around $200)
- quite loud during printing
Types of color laser printers
Laser printers basically come in two different categories: mobile printers and fixed printers.
This variant should be particularly suitable for outdoor use, the term is somewhat misleading.Even these printers weigh a few kilos and are rarely equipped with a battery. In addition, many of the models can only print in black and white.
Multifunction laser printers
Significantly larger and of higher quality are these color laser printers as a multifunction device . You can always scan and copy, most of the products are even networkable. There are now hardly any newer color printers that do not support these features
We recommend that you do not rely on the mobile versions. They rarely print in color, are relatively slow and, despite their name, are not really suitable for mobile use.
Pay attention to the color laser printer test
3.1. Print quality in dpi
One of the most important criteria in your personal color laser printer test should be the print quality. After all, you want images, texts and co. To be easy to read – especially if, for example, they are to be presented to customers in everyday business. Concretely measurable is this print quality in so-called dots per inch (dpi).
As a guideline: The laser printer should bring color to paper with at least 600 x 600 dpi . The higher the number, the better the print result and the color coverage. However, if you prefer to print in black-and-white rather than color anyway, 600 x 600 dpi will be enough.
3.2. print speed
You certainly do not want to wait hours for the 50-page exposé to be presented to a client. Even private texts should be able to be printed as quickly as possible. The best color laser printers manage to spend more than 25 pages per minute . Even at 15 to 20 pages, the speed is still good.
3.3. Printer cartridges & favorable follow-up costs
More expensive than the all-in-one printer are often the follow-up costs incurred by printing. Although the color laser is always cheaper than a toner, but the prices per printed page vary:
- With cheap color laser printers, you get about 8 to 9 cents per side.
- In the middle segment move printers, which cost 15 cents per page.
- The most expensive devices in maintenance cause costs of around 25 cents.
If you print about 1,000 pages a year, you will see cost differences of around $150 between the most expensive and the cheapest model. Thus, the acquisition costs are almost completely covered again.
Basically, all color laser printers output paper in A4 format. Some higher-priced models, which are usually designed for the office, are also available as an A3 color laser printer.
The additional investment is only worth it if you print regularly in A3 and not just twice a year. Then you can better go to the next copy shop for these special cases.
3.5. Connections & Wi-Fi
In your color laser printer test, you’ll quickly find that there’s little difference between the devices in terms of ports. So you can almost always connect the printer via USB to a PC or even a smartphone .
It is especially convenient if you buy a WLAN color laser printer. Then annoying cable clutter is a thing of the past because you can dial the device directly over the network with all devices. Again, it should be noted that almost all newer models are now equipped with such a connector.
Tip: There are also pure LAN laser printers. You can install this over a classical LAN cable in an existing network. This variant offers the advantage over WLAN, much less susceptible to interference and a little faster.
3.6. Additional functions
One of the additional features is that the color laser printer can print, scan and copy. These color laser multifunction printers are particularly useful in everyday office life when, for example, invoices or delivery notes are to be digitized. But even your private documents can be easily transferred to the PC with the color laser printer with scanner.
3.7. Price-performance ratio
Good color laser printers quickly cost more than $200. For the top models you pay $500 or $600. Make sure you pay attention to the price-performance ratio: Is a high dpi count important or do you print mostly in black and white anyway? Are the expensive acquisition costs reimbursed because the device causes very low follow-up costs? How important are additional functions such as scanners, copiers and WLAN?
3.8. included supply
Last but not least, the included accessories can also be included. Often, the printers are already equipped with toner and cartridges, so you can print directly. On the other hand, paper is rarely supplied, and you also always have to buy a roll to be printed separately.
Also, find out how expensive a so-called fuser unit is. Although this is a solid component of a laser printer, it suffers the most damage – and would have to be renewed after expiration of the guarantee for expensive money.
4. Manufacturers & brands of color laser printers
The market for printers is large, there are a variety of products from numerous manufacturers available. The most well-known are broker color laser printers, Samsung color laser printers and HP laser printers . All important brands at a glance:
- Oki Systems
- Hewlett-Packard HP
- Konica Minolta
5. Regular printer tests
Almost all models knew how to convince, with the consumer organization clearly pointing out that laser printers should not be used as photo printers. It makes more sense in this case, to put on inkjet printer.
Those who rarely print photos, the Samsung Xpress V1810W , which secured the test victory with a score of 2.0 , according to the test report best .
6. Questions and answers about the Tema laser printer
6.1. Which paper is needed for laser printers?
Basically, you do not need special paper when using a laser printer. Even with plain paper, the printer manages to achieve very good results. Even if you want to print on both sides of the sheet, you do not have to grab extra thick paper. For plain paper, the other side does not shimmer even in bright light.
6.2. What is a duplex printer?
A duplex color laser printer can automatically print on both sides of the paper . The sheet is then turned on request in the printer and filled from the other side with texts or images. This saves you a lot of paper and ultimately also printing costs.