In an increasingly computerized age, many people are swapping out the paper documents of old for their digital counterparts. However, this change is far from all-encompassing, and many businesses applications call for physical, printed documents. If you’re in the market for a new printer, there are many quality options on offer.
Printer technology has quietly marched on, getting smaller and more manageable, while producing clearer, sharper pages, in far less time, for far less cost. Adding on to this convenience, many manufacturers now implement handy features such as wireless printing, integration with mobile phones and tablets, all at an eco-friendly low energy cost, as well as being far kinder to your wallet.
Here, we will compare and contrast some of the best consumer-level printers for every individual’s needs. Our main criteria for comparison included wireless and mobile capabilities, paper tray capacity, printing speed, and color printing capabilities.
10. Brother HL-L2300D
The Brother HL-L2300D is more fit for a home office than a busy business, but its sleek exterior and relatively small size aren’t enough to make up for its lack of features – the device does not offer wireless printing, nor color, and doesn’t even come stocked with a USB cable, meaning you’ll have to provide your own. If these points don’t phase you, then it may be a good choice for a simple home that doesn’t require a lot of documents, as its $80 price point saves it from complete obscurity.
09. Dell E514DW
At just over $90, this monochrome multi-function printer is a good budget option for those who don’t need all the bells and whistles that the competition offer. Dell’s device features a crisp 600 dots-per-inch printing quality, so if all you need is a simple, all-in-one device for a low cost, this may be the printer for you.
08. Xerox WorkCentre 6027/NI
One of the few color printers on this list, the WorkCentre is a fantastic pick for a workplace that can’t make do with monochrome documents. It also offers scanning and copying, as well as a large paper tray for less frequent refills, all at an affordable price point of $239.99. Xerox has been an industry staple for decades now, and its build quality stands the test of time.
07. Canon imageCLASS MF236n
This is an industry-standard printer at a very affordable price. The MF236n offers your usual printing, scanning, copying, and faxing, as well as mobile and wireless printing, controlled by a touch-screen LCD panel for easy navigation. While, again, only monochrome, this printer offers many features, and is currently listed at only $109.99. Its usual listed price of $199.00 is far more standard, but still a good deal for the features on offer.
06. HP Laserjet Pro M127fn
HP’s only entry on this list is, frankly, underwhelming. Reaching only feature parity with its competition, its lack of color printing doesn’t warrant its $299.98 price tag – it’s simply not an economical choice. Not to say that it’s a bad device, it does the job just fine, but HP’s offering is outshone by its competitors.
05. Samsung SL-M2885FW/XAA
Samsung’s second entry on this list is far more business-oriented than its first, with scanner, copier, and fax capabilities, mobile printing, and 29-page-per minute printing speed, and an eco-mode that claims to reduce toner, paper, and energy use. At $159.99, this device is an average entry for business-level printers, and is outshone by some of its competition, especially considering its lack of color printing.
04. Canon MX492
A smaller device, this printer would be a happy fit in any home office, with color printing from PCs, phones, tablets – all over WiFi. It also offers scanning and photo printing from mobile devices using the Canon “PRINT” app. For only $49.99, this printer is a great pick for a budget-oriented user, but its extremely low cost indicates that it may have lesser longevity in comparison to its pricier competition.
03. Lexmark MX310dn
Another industry-level printer, this network-enabled device offers rapid scanning and copying, and wireless printing, and boasts “state of the art paper handling”, which should help eliminate some of the maintenance hassles that printers are notorious for.
02. Brother DCP-L2540DW
Another monochrome offering, this Brother printer boasts far more features than the former Samsung device, with a 250-sheet paper tray, 35-page document feeder, and page scanner. A bulky device, this printer will be more at home in a busy office or workplace environment, and is not suited to the average household.
01. Samsung SL-M2020W/XAA
Along with a catchy name, this Samsung printer lacks color printing options – it’s black-and-white only. However, its laser printing mechanism will allow for far sharper lines and text in comparison to its ink-jet counterparts. The device also boasts Near-Field Communication (NFC) connectivity, allowing printing with a tap of an NFC-enabled device. At only $79.99 USD, this printer is a great option for the frugal home user, who doesn’t need color pages.