Let me be very clear that the average sales person at your local Electronics Store have usually no experience whatsoever in this area so be warned !
So let's begin with the main criteria we looked at. Firstly we looked at Reliability. Based on my own experience as well as feedback from our 15,000 customers scattered throughout Australia over the past 7 years. There are only 2 brands which stand out for reliability and these are Canon and Brother.
Statistically the worst performer of all was the Epson Printers which proved to be by far the most problematic printers of them all.
Secondly I looked at the type of ink cartridges they used and wether compatible cartridges were available for the printer. The type of printer to avoid is ALWAYS the ones on special which only use the 2 cartridges. One is a Black and the other a Tri-colour and when one colour runs out the whole cartridge becomes unusable. What a ridiculous waste, avoid these type of printers regardless of brand or price !
Next I looked at the cost of the ink cartridges and wether the printer would work trouble free with compatible cartridges and give excellent print quality as well as be cheap to run. This is a very significant point as it's no use having a great looking printer if it is too dear to run!
Finally I took into consideration the "Ease of Use" as well as the ability for the average home user to carry out maintenance which is also important in the case that a problem occurs. With this in mind the Canon stands out by a long shot as the print head is a bubble jet which is less prone to clogging and also is removable which makes them very easy to clean if needed (very rare for these to clog).
So without rambling for too much longer the winner by far is the Canon Inkjet Printers. The Model I highly recommend as the BEST PRINTER for home use for 2013 is the Canon MG5460. Priced between $125 - $180 (depending where you buy it) The Canon MG546o represents great value and should perform trouble free for many years to come.
If you would like more advice on printers for home use feel free to contact Dean at Ink Hub on (08) 7324 3065