Whether you require a printer for work or home (or WFH), there are printers to cater to different budgets and needs. Choose from printers ranging from a cheap inkjet printer to print out the occasional photo, to a premium multifunction laser printer that will produce high volume print within minutes.
The Brother HL-L2305W is a reliable printer that has been praised by reviewers for offering an impressive printing speed, while maintaining ink cartridge longevity.
Rapid printing speed
Easy to connect
- Build Quality4.5 (10)
- Value for Money3.3 (11)
- Ease of Use3.4 (10)
- Cleaning & Maintenance 3.6 (10)
- Ink Cartridge Longevity4.0 (8)
- Reliability3.7 (9)
- Printing Speed4.1 (9)
- Wireless OptionsWi-Fi
- Maximum Paper SizeA4
- Print Speed 23 ppm
- Printing Resolution2400 x 600dpi
- Dimensions 183 x 356 x 360 mm
Reviewers are divided over whether this inkjet printer performs well or not. Not the worst printer you’ll come across, but also not the best, the Canon iP7260 is middle-of-range.
Price (RRP) $129.00
Two trays for paper storage
Average printing quality
Not always reliable
- Build Quality4.7 (3)
- Value for Money3.7 (3)
- Ease of Use4.3 (3)
- Cleaning & Maintenance 3.7 (3)
- Ink Cartridge Longevity4.0 (3)
- Reliability3.7 (3)
- Printing Speed4.3 (3)
- Wireless OptionsWi-Fi
- Maximum Paper SizeA4
- Print from PhoneYes
- Printing Resolution9600 x 2400dpi
- Dimensions 128 x 451 x 368 mm
Canon Pixma TS5060 / TS6060 · includes 2 listings
The Canon Pixma TS5060 offers many features that would be useful if they could actually function properly.
Price (RRP) $89.00
Often breaks down
- Build Quality3.0 (11)
- Value for Money2.9 (12)
- Ease of Use2.8 (12)
- Cleaning & Maintenance 3.4 (11)
- Ink Cartridge Longevity2.9 (8)
- Reliability2.5 (11)
- Printing Speed2.6 (11)
- Build Quality2.8 (11)
- Value for Money2.3 (14)
- Ease of Use2.8 (13)
- Cleaning & Maintenance 2.7 (12)
- Ink Cartridge Longevity2.0 (10)
- Reliability1.8 (10)
- Printing Speed2.5 (10)
- Maximum Paper SizeA4
- Print Speed 8 ppm
- Printing Resolution4800 x 600dpi
- Scanning Resolution600 x 1200dpi
- Dimensions 145 x 426 x 306 mm
When reviewers could get the Epson Expression XP-420 to work, this inkjet printer was quite handy. Unfortunately, for the most part, this wasn’t the case, with many reviewers ending up disappointed.
Price (RRP) $299.00
- Build Quality1.6 (9)
- Value for Money1.4 (12)
- Ease of Use1.4 (11)
- Cleaning & Maintenance 1.4 (11)
- Ink Cartridge Longevity1.3 (11)
- Reliability1.4 (12)
- Printing Speed1.8 (10)
- Maximum Paper SizeA4
- Print from PhoneNo
- Print Speed 10 ppm
- Dimensions 169 x 375 x 347 mm
Most Popular Printers
Inkjet printers spray ink droplets onto paper to create professional files or colourful pictures. The printer ink releases from cartridges that you load into the printer during set-up, and require replacement as you continue to print. Inkjet printers are the most commonly bought type of printer. They’re ideal for the home: from printing out a last-minute school assignment or decking out a WFH office.
Laser printers are powered by a complex laser system that involves using static electricity and toner to print onto paper. Unlike ink, toner is powder-based. Toner contains a mixture of plastic particles, carbon, and colouring agents. Laser printers are often found in professional settings such as offices or universities, as they are efficient at producing large volumes of printed pages, rapidly. Many people also choose to buy laser printers for their homes.
Colour printing: inkjet vs. laser
In general, inkjet printers are thought to produce better quality photo prints. The is a highly sought-after colour printer. Be warned though, as the ProductReview community has had mixed opinions about whether Canon Pixma printers are useful or not.
- Prints higher quality photos. The printer and computer collaborate to produce the colours you request by mixing together the primary colours (yellow, cyan, and magenta).
- Higher compatability with materials. Ink also works well with materials other than paper. Inkjet printers can print onto such as cardboard, which makes ink ideal for occasions you want to show off your prints - such as a photography exhibition.
- Expensive. Ink cartridges are more expensive than toner, and have a shorter lifespan.
- Prone to smudging. When the paper comes out of the printer, the ink is often wet-to-touch. It’s recommended to handle the pages by the edges to avoid touching the ink as it dries.
- Ink can dry up if the printer hasn’t been used in a while and will require replacing. Although, If this happens, there are plenty of DIY videos that suggest ideas for bringing dried ink back to life.
A laser printer with colour functions allows you to enjoy the benefits of scanning and printing vibrant-coloured pages while simultaneously taking advantage of the rapid, high-volume printing features of a laser printer.
- Cost-effective. A toner cartridge can produce a much higher quantity of pages than an ink tank can.
- Pricey. If you're considering investing in an advanced colour laser multifunctional printer, expect to pay at least around $800.
- Comprise on quality. Overall, laser printers don’t produce as vibrant of a colour as an inkjet printer. A laser printer is more suitable for home memories instead of professional quality pictures.
Whether you’re using an inkjet or laser printer, remember to switch your printer back to black-only printing when you’re not using colour. Ink and toner lives are both extended when the printer is set to black-only printing. You don’t want to be in a rush to print something, only to realise that you’ve used up all of the coloured ink.
If you’re aiming to set up a home office, the idea of purchasing separate devices can seem overwhelming, and like a potential strain on the budget. The good news is that many home printers are multifunctional and include inbuilt scanners, fax machines, or copiers.
Scanners store a digital copy of your document onto your computer. You might assume a printer that offers scanning and printing features will result in a dramatic price rise, but this isn’t the case. In reality, the cheapest laser printers are also laser printers with scanners.
A copier, also known as a photocopier, creates duplicates of documents and pictures. A copier prints the words and images onto a blank piece of computer paper, but doesn’t provide a digital copy.
Fax machines have seen a dramatic decrease in use over recent years. Due to this, printer and fax machine hybrids are less common, as most people are opting to send emails instead.
Factors to consider when buying a printer
Any device with Wi-Fi or Bluetooth features can connect with a printer that shares one of the corresponding functions.
Once you've connected your wireless printer to your home Wi-Fi, you can use any device, such as a phone, laptop, or Ipad, to send a document to the printer. Often, to set-up or use a Wi-Fi printer, you don't even need to be in the same room.
A similar concept applies to a Bluetooth printer, except that a Bluetooth connection is required. You'll need to confirm the connection request on the printer before you can print your documents. It can be as simple as selecting 'accept'.
Most printers these days feature an LED touch screen that makes life easier. Instead of having to fiddle around with confusing buttons, the options are all laid out on the screen. For example, to scan a document, simply tap on the scanner icon.
It's not impossible to find a multifunction printer that's both efficient and inexpensive. You can find inkjet printers for as low as $39, or for $100, you can buy a laser printer. Both mono printers will offer basic functions, including black and white printing and one-sided printing. However, your best bet is to invest a little more cash upfront, to avoid spending more later on a replacement.
A cheap printer might seem like a tempting offer, but in reality, are unreliable and prone to breaking down after only a couple months of use. After buying your printer, you'll have on-going costs to keep the printer running.
Ink and toner
Ink cartridges cost around $40 to $60, and last for a few months. There isn’t necessarily a printer with the lowest ink cost, as the price of ink will depend on the type you buy and how often you’re printing. Toner is more expensive but longer lasting. Expect to spend a minimum of $100, but with a lifespan of up to 2 years +.
Standard printing paper is inexpensive; you can find a pack of 500 sheets for as low as $5, working out to be only 5 cents per page.
Like any other tech, printers can also get themselves into a jam. If the paper gets stuck or the screen refuses to load, you can take your printer to a repair service. However, don’t get caught up spending more than its worth to repair it. Sometimes it’s more cost-efficient to replace the printer than get it fixed.
Overall, between the inkjet printer and the laser printer, the latter appears to be the most cost effective printer.