What are the differences between printers?
- dot-matrix printers: Creates characters by striking pins against an ink ribbon. Each pin makes a dot, and combinations of dots form characters and illustrations.
- ink-jet printers: Sprays ink at a sheet of paper. Ink-jet printers produce high-quality text and graphics.
- laser printers: Uses the same technology as copy machines. Laser printers produce very high quality text and graphics.
Should I buy a "cheap" ink-jet or an "expensive" laser printer? Which printer is better to buy?
Laser printers are recommended for small, medium and large businesses that require medium to high volumes of printing. Laser printers use a laser or light-emitting diode to record dots on a light-sensitive drum. The image is transferred to paper using toner that's fused to the page. The initial cost of purchasing laser printers is more than an inkjet printer; however, they are faster and cheaper to operate than any ink-based printer. R 610 toner cartridges will print more than 4000 pages; the cost to print is less than 15 cents a page.
Inkjet printers are only recommended for home use and small businesses with low printing requirements. Inkjet printers operate by squirting droplets of ink on the paper from a print head that passes over the sheet one line at a time. R 125 ink cartridges can print 100 to 220 pages; the cost is about 56 cents per page for each colour used. The cost to print is between 4 and 16 times that of laser.