Laser printers often offer unparalleled speed, clearer text and more economical printing than their inkjet counterparts. Although laser printers tend to be more expensive to start with, they handle a much higher monthly print volume, are quieter and don't require frequent replacement of their toner cartridges, making them very low maintenance. They can struggle when it comes to photo printing or other specialty media sizes, but you can't go wrong for other printing needs. This makes laser printers one of thebest home printeroptions.
The market is saturated with printers and most of them are eerily similar, so we're here to help you determine which color laser printer is best for you. We've added multifunction options that can scan, copy and fax, along with speed demons ready to spew out color pages like nobody's business. There are several inexpensive options and even printers that are ready for heavy workloads. View our favorites below.
TL; DR - These are the best color laser printers:
- Canon Color imageCLASS MF753Cdw
- Brata HL L3270CDW
- HP LaserJet Pro 4201dn
- Brother MFC-L8905CDW
- HP LaserJet Pro M283fdw
- Xerox VersaLink C400/DN
Canon Color imageCLASS MF753Cdw
The ultimate color laser printer
If you're looking for a laser printer that does it all effortlessly, grab the Canon Color imageCLASS MF753Cdw. You won't have to wait long to print even the largest files, as black and white and color copies are produced at a speed of 35 pages per minute. Automatic double-sided printing also helps save paper. This is a high-yield option that allows you to print thousands of pages without having to worry about replacing a toner cartridge. This makes high initial costs more manageable.
Of course, the Canon MF753Cdw doesn't just print: it copies, scans and faxes, all via the 5-inch LCD touchscreen. You'll especially appreciate the single-pass duplex scanning and the automatic document feeder, which makes handling large documents much easier. It is possible to save these scans directly to a USB stick or connect the printer via Wi-Fi and Ethernet, making it easy to perform tasks from any device.
Brata HL L3270CDW
The best cost-effective color laser printer
Laser printers get expensive quickly, and adding color to the mix makes them even more expensive. The Brother HL L3270CDW gives you those super-fast laser prints you love, but at a more palatable price of $300. It's no slouch, pumping out 25 pages per minute with sharp text and graphics. Automatic two-sided printing and a 250-sheet paper tray keep your hands free throughout the process.
Although the Brother HL L3270CDW saves you quite a bit of change compared to other printers on this list, you do lose the scan, copy, and fax capabilities. Running costs are also slightly higher than more expensive offerings, so this printer is better for lighter workloads. But we can't complain about the extensive connectivity, including Apple AirPrint, Alexa Print, Ethernet and Wi-Fi. The 2.7-inch LCD screen even supports print jobs from the cloud and social networking sites.
HP LaserJet Pro 4201dn
The fastest color laser printer
Want a laser printer that spits out pages like it's nobody's business? The HP LaserJet Pro 4201dn prints at 35 pages per minute in both black and color and the first page appears in less than 10 seconds. Even if you receive these documents quickly, they still have sharp details and accurate colors for a professional look and can be handed out at business meetings or sent as flyers.
The HP LaserJet Pro 4201dn has a recommended monthly page volume of up to 4,000 pages, so you can print all those long documents without worrying about your printer's performance. The 250-sheet paper feeder also offers a set-and-forget option. You even get the latest connectivity, including easy mobile printing with the HP Smart app, Apple AirPrint and Mopria certification. Please note, however, that there is no scanning or copying.
The most economical color laser printer
Laser printers can cost quite a bit of change up front, but they can save you money in the long run, especially when compared to inkjet printers. The Brother MFC-L8905CDW is one of the best values available thanks to its high yield toner. Brother's high-capacity replacement cartridge has a yield of approximately 8,000 pages, giving you a much lower cost per page than other printers. Even their regular cartridges should last nearly 2,000 color prints before needing to be replaced.
The Brother MFC-L8905CDW is not just a printer. It excels at both scanning and copying. Thanks to both the automatic document feeder and single-pass duplex scanning, you don't have to do much while scanning. Whatever you use this device for, the output documents must be sharp and detailed. Best of all, maintenance is minimal: just replace the toner cartridges and refill the paper trays from time to time. But it's bulky, so make sure you have room.
HP LaserJet Pro M283fdw
The ultimate color laser for the home office
If you work at home and have to print a lot, the HP LaserJet Pro M283fdw is your new best friend. This versatile option prints, scans, copies and faxes, producing sharp, clear documents every time. If several people are using it at home, there are plenty of connectivity options available, including mobile printing, USB and Ethernet.
When it comes to actual printing, the HP LaserJet Pro M283fdw manages 22 pages per minute and has an automatic document feeder and two-sided printing to make your life easier. It also supports a variety of media sizes up to 8.5 by 14 inches, so you'll have no problem printing everything from envelopes to postcards and legal documents, giving your business a more professional look.
Xerox VersaLink C400/DN
The ultimate high-capacity color laser printer
Those with demanding print jobs need a printer that's ready to handle even the largest jobs. The Xerox VersaLink C400/DN is up to the challenge. The main paper tray holds up to 550 sheets and the printer can print 35 pages in less than a minute. Automatic double-sided printing also saves on paper. With a maximum monthly duty cycle of 85,000 pages and toner cartridges capable of 2,000 color impressions and 3,000 black and white impressions, this printer is ideal for smaller offices.
Managing all your print jobs is easy thanks to the 5-inch color touchscreen, and if you're on WiFi you can even use the display to print from a USB stick or the cloud. If you're not using the handy touch screen, the printer connects wirelessly to your phone or computer, and there's also a wired Ethernet connection. However, you cannot do anything other than print on this machine.
What to look for in a color laser printer
There are a few important features to look out for when buying a color laser printer. We will discuss them below.
Speed:Laser printers are known for their fast printing because the toner cartridges work by applying toner to the entire page at once. However, each laser printer varies in speed. Some print black and white pages faster than color pages, while others print double-sided at lightning fast speeds. If you print a lot of longer documents, you need an option that reaches 30-35 pages per minute or more. There are even printers ready to handle more than 100 pages per minute, but they are extremely expensive. If you do smaller print jobs, you don't have to spend money on the fastest laser printer. Go for something cheaper instead, as even they can print at least 20 pages per minute.
Monthly volume:If you're buying a printer for a smaller office, you need something that can handle a lot of printing. Fortunately, most printers list the number of pages they can handle per month, so you know the reliability of the device before technical problems arise. This specification is often given as a monthly usage cycle and you can also note the recommended monthly number of prints to keep your printer in top condition. Our favorite high-volume printer, the Xerox VersaLink C400/DN, can handle over 85,000 pages per month, so unless you print thousands of pages per day, you should choose one of our options.
Communication:Nowadays, if your printer can only print via Ethernet or USB connected to your computer, there is a problem. Wireless printing makes life so much easier by allowing you to print from a variety of devices via Wi-Fi and apps such as AirPrint and Mopria. Some printers even allow you to use a small LCD screen like your smartphone to print from various cloud services or social media sites. It is also possible to connect a USB stick directly to several printers.
Print Resolution:For the best looking, sharpest prints, you need an option that offers a higher number of dots per inch, or dpi. In general, 300 dpi is ideal for most documents. All the printers we've selected exceed this number, so everything should look sharp and clear, even up close. However, keep in mind that the higher the resolution, the higher the cost per print, as more toner is used.
Tonercartridges:All our printers contain four individual toner cartridges: black, cyan, magenta and yellow. Unlike ink, toner is actually a mixture of powders, so drying is no problem, which means less waste. You can also typically print thousands of pages before needing to replace them, keeping maintenance to a minimum. Some of our picks even have the option of using a high-capacity toner cartridge, giving you an incredible number of prints before you need to replace it. Yes, toner cartridges are expensive, but they are still more economical than ink. Make sure the replacement cartridges are compatible with your printer, as many cartridges have special chips that allow the cartridge to work with specific printers.
Particularities:If you print longer documents, you'll probably benefit from automatic two-sided printing, which prints the front and back of the page without you having to lift a finger. You may also need a larger paper tray to ensure that you rarely have to intervene during printing. The mixed media tray can be useful for custom size paper. Other functions such as scanning, copying and faxing are ideal for using the printer in an office environment.
Danielle Abraham is a freelance writer and unpaid music historian.
- HP Color LaserJet Enterprise MFP M480f: Best overall.
- Canon PIXMA TR7520: Best home office printer.
- Brother MFCL2750DW: Most reliable laser printer.
- HP OfficeJet Pro 9025: Best for easy setup.
- HP OfficeJet Pro 9015e All-in-One Printer: Best smart printer.
A Global Chip Shortage Follows Global Pandemic
In 2021 and 2022, the shortage of printers and printing supplies was blamed on trucking delays and a backlog at shipping ports. But as shipping and transportation slowly recovered, printer manufacturers faced other problems.
Resolution. The standard resolution in most laser printers today is 600 dots per inch (dpi). This resolution is sufficient for normal everyday printing, including small desktop publishing jobs. A high-end production printer might have a resolution of 2400 dpi. Some laser printers still use a resolution of 300 dpi.What are two disadvantages of laser printers? ›
- Although laser printers work faster, they take time to warm up.
- Although toner is cheaper in the long run, upfront costs for laser printing are more.
- Toner leaks are a nightmare.
- Laser printers can't handle a variety of paper or printing materials like inkjets.
Epson in an announcement said it will transition fully to inkjet printers and end global sales and distribution of laser printers by 2026.How long do laser printer toners last? ›
A typical toner cartridge will produce anywhere between 2,500 and 4,000 pages, based on a coverage of 5% (roughly third of a page of double-spaced text). Dense pages filled with small font text or graphics will dramatically reduce this output and you may only get up to 1,000 pages per cartridge.How long does a color laser cartridge last? ›
For toner cartridges, there is no expiry date. Toner may degrade over time and the print results may not be as good as they were, but toner does not expire. If an ink cartridge is unopened or not used, so long as it's kept away from humid environments, it should last at least 2 years.How long should a color printer last? ›
The average lifespan of a printer is around 3-5 years. With proper upkeep and maintenance, some printers can last longer, but eventually your machine will need an upgrade.Why are laser printers out of stock everywhere? ›
The pandemic disrupted the global supply chain for many industries – including printer manufacturing.Which printer gives the best quality print out? ›
|Top 6 Laser Printers||Amazon Ratings||Amazon Price|
|HP Laserjet Tank 1005W Printer for Home||4.0 stars||Rs 23,090|
|Canon MF3010 Digital Multifunction Laser Printer||4.2 stars||Rs 18,100|
|HP Laserjet 136nw wifi Printer||4.1 stars||Rs 17,999|
|HP Laserjet 108A Monochrome Laser Printer||4.2 stars||Rs 11,999|
The difference between leaving your printer on or turning it off is generally insignificant in terms of energy costs. For healthier print heads and more efficient ink consumption, however, it's better to leave your printer on.Is it worth getting a laser printer for home use? ›
They're significantly more reliable, too, based on our exclusive surveys of CR members. Laser printers don't have ink nozzles, which means clogs aren't a problem, so unlike inkjets, which use ink just to keep those nozzles clean, laser printers don't waste toner on maintenance.What color takes the least ink to print? ›
Cyan and yellow tend to be the least used cartridges in your printer.What is the easiest color for a printer to print? ›
Of the three composite colors in computer printers, red colors tend to be used most. Red printouts use the magenta ink in your toner cartridges. Since red tends to be used frequently, your cyan and yellow ink will often be least used.Should I get a mono or colour laser printer? ›
Monochrome printers usually use one laser scanner assembly, whereas colour printers tend to have at least two. They also use coloured toner cartridges as well as black - the main colours used in colour laser toner cartridges are cyan, magenta and yellow, as well as black.How long do laser printers last? ›
Color Laser Printer or Black & White Laser Printer
As print quality goes down over time, this will be a reason to replace the color printer. We find a black and white printer can sometimes last 10 years or more and most color laser printers are replaced every 3 to 5 years.
To get the best print quality, do not store the imaging cartridge in a place subject to direct sunlight, dust, salty air, or corrosive gasses (such as ammonia). Avoid locations subject to high temperatures, humidity, or abrupt changes in temperature or humidity.What dangers could be associated with laser printers? ›
Laser toner is made up of a dry, ultrafine powder, which has a positive electrical charge so that it sticks to the printer's drum. Laser toner also contains a compound called carbon black, which the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) calls a Class 2B carcinogen [Source: IARC].What is the best alternative to laser printer? ›
Great at producing photo quality prints and image-heavy documents, as inkjet printers do a better job of blending and producing vibrant colors than laser printers. The price of an inkjet printer is less than most laser printers. No warm-up time needed before printing.Is toner cheaper than ink? ›
Inkjet printers typically run at a lower price point than laser printers, and printer ink is cheaper than toner. However, laser printers and toner have a longer lifespan despite their high cost. Meaning laser toner cartridges have a lower cost per printed page than printer ink.
Although laser printer cartridges are more expensive, laser printers have a significantly lower cost per page than inkjet printers, particularly if you're looking to print a lot in black and white.Is it bad to sit next to a laser printer? ›
Airborne particles within an office environment are a combination of particles generated from various sources, included are laser printers which emit paper fibres, organic vapours and inorganic gases. Research has shown that laser printers emit nanoparticles of substances, which could increase the effects of exposure.What happens if a laser printer is not used for a long time? ›
During long periods of disuse, the oil evaporates from the mixture, and the exposed print heads can develop a film of dried ink that must be cleaned before the printer will produce presentable output.Is it safe to sit next to a laser printer? ›
While you still should keep your distance from that coughing coworker, you also should avoid sitting near the printer, as its toner could be toxic to your health.How much does it cost to replace toner on a laser printer? ›
Replacement toner: The cost to replace toner each time is approximately $55 for a toner cartridge that will allow you to print approximately 2,600 pages.How many toners do you need for a color laser printer? ›
Monochrome laser printers use just the black cartridge and only print in black. Color laser printers use all four cartridges and can print in black and color.Why are laser toner cartridges so expensive? ›
Ink Research and Development
Research and development are often cited as the main reason for the high cost of supplies for inkjets and laser printers.
What's the difference between an inkjet printer and a laser printer? An inkjet printer uses ink to print documents, while a laser printer uses a laser to print documents. Pretty simple, right? The different printing processes affect each printer's speed, functions, and image quality.What is the difference between color laser printer? ›
The biggest differences between inkjet and laser printers is that an inkjet printer uses ink, is suitable for low volume printing, and is the traditional choice of home users, while a laser printer uses toner, is ideal for high volume printing, is mostly utilized in office settings but is also suitable and is a more ...Which is better photo quality color laser or inkjet? ›
Laser printers produce higher overall print quality when taking into account both text and images. However, inkjet printers specialize in color image printing and produce high-quality color photos. When it comes to crisp, clean black and white text and color images, laser printers are unmatched.
As print quality goes down over time, this will be a reason to replace the color printer. We find a black and white printer can sometimes last 10 years or more and most color laser printers are replaced every 3 to 5 years.Should I use CMYK or RGB for laser printer? ›
So I would suggest to create your artwork in an RGB document. "intended for laser printers or inkjet printers, since those are RGB devices." Inkjet printers are generally capable to reproduce more colors than CMYK printing presses. So I would suggest to create your artwork in an RGB document.Do laser printers need ink or toner? ›
While ink is standard in most conventional inkjet home printers, laser printers depend on toner and lasers for their output. Given that they're based on their own unique technology, you'll find that they also have their own unique advantages and disadvantages.Do color laser printers need special paper? ›
While you can use plain paper with your laser printer, using quality paper that has been engineered for use with a laser printer tends to provide better results. Laser printer paper has a high level of heat resistance, as laser printers generate heat when printing.Does laser color matter? ›
do the different colors of lasers affect the velocity of the laser light? A: No, the speed of light in a vacuum doesn't depend on the color (i.e. the wavelength or the frequency). The different colors will travel at slightly different speeds through materials such as glass.Do laser printers need color toner? ›
Laser printers use toner powder instead of dye or pigment-based ink. Laser printers produce electrostatically charged dots on a light-sensitive drum which attracts toner powder. The toner is transferred to the paper and fixed by a heating process. Laser printers deliver crisp black and white and brilliant color prints.Why are color laser printers so expensive? ›
Well, laser printers use toner that is deposited onto the paper to create a digital image. The toner is then fused with heat and pressure to create a permanent image. This process is expensive because it requires high-quality materials for the printer, which are also expensive.How do I get the best quality from my laser printer? ›
Protect the laser printer from sources of excessive heat.
Thermal stress can reduce the quality of documents and images printed on a laser printer. Ensure the printer is not set up next to computer towers, CRT monitors and other devices that may radiate heat and affect the print quality.