What printer should I buy?
This question is a hard one as there is no "one printer fits all" that I can recommend. The final choice really revolves around what you want to do with the printer and how much printing you will be doing. If you print reasonable volumes and frequently then you need a printer that can use generic or 3rd party inks or toner. In saying this almost all printers fit this category other than some of the latest HP's. The latest HP printers are becoming a huge headache for those wanting to use 3rd party cartridges as they are employing tactics that block non genuine cartridges and the HP "e" series printers go one step further as they are locked to the HP server and are only able to run on genuine HP cartridges. Most other printer brands such as Brother, Canon and Epson work perfectly fine with generic cartridges and by using them you can save a fortune.
The factors that we must consider depend fully on the requirements of the user. Are you happy with a straight printer or do you need an MFC (print/scan/copy)? Are you requiring colour or will black and white be acceptable? Do you print regularly or only once a fortnight? These questions are very important in helping us to select the printer which best fits your needs. Before we get too involved just a warning: When you purchase any inkjet printer which is "on sale" remember that companies don't sell stuff cheap if there's not some kind of ROI for them. All of these "on sale" printers at bargain prices use cartridges with built in printheads. This means that part of the printer is actually built into the cartridges and you are paying for this every time you purchase them. What I'm saying is that they are a rip off, printer manufacturers have been doing this for years and they ALWAYS make their money back and more on the cartridges. DON'T GET SUCKED IN BY THIS! It's a SCAM. You can identify these printers as they almost always use only 2 cartridges. One being the black and the other a tri-colour.
Some advice when buying a printer
One point I cant stress enough when buying a printer at your local Officeworks, Harvey Norman or any other large store is don't believe all of the advice that you are given. The number of people we get ringing up who have been fed the wrong information on printers is ridiculous. I always tell people that the amount of training that most of these sales people have is only very basic as they have a huge range of products that they need to cover so their actual knowledge of various printers is minimal. They are also trained to promote certain brands as companies receive kickbacks and incentives if they sell certain amounts of a particular item.
This is in no way a criticism of these folks as I am simply trying to get across the fact that we are talking everyday of the week to customers Australia wide so we know what works and what doesn't. Also we know which printers are cheap to run, easy to use and reliable so PLEASE take our advice on the printers we recommend. Also let me stress that almost every other site that has a post like this on best printers to buy are complete nonsense. The majority of them are written by people in third world countries and they are simply posted to provide fresh content for SEO purposes.
When recommending printers there are several aspects that I always take into account.
1. The initial cost of the printer
2. The reliability and longevity
3. The running costs
4. Does it meet the users requirements
Let's take a look at the top contenders and why I chose them.
Best Black and White Laser Printer for under $150
The Brother HL-L2305W is a mono-laser printer meaning it only prints in black and white. This printer is a basic print only, no copy, scan etc. It is fully wireless and it prints super fast and works fantastic with non genuine toners. Cartridges for this printer are $39-90 and they will print around 2,600 pages. All Brother laser printers are incredibly reliable and will give many years of reliable service. I recommend this printer for it's reliability, it's longevity, it's ease of use, high print speed and it's extremely low running costs.
Best MFC Black and White Laser printer for under $250
The Brother MFC-L2713DW is a multi-function laser printer, it has all the bells and whistles but once again only prints in black and white. Toner cartridges for this model are $39-90 and they will print around 3,000 pages. As with the previous printer it is super reliable, cheap to run and will last for many years, I use one of these in my own office.
>> Brother MFC-L2713DW Specifications
>> Brother MFC-L2713W Cartridges
>> Brother MFC-L2713DW Reviews
Best Value Colour MFC Laser Printer
The Brother MFC-L8690CDW is without doubt my first choice for any business or home office. It has all the functions that you need, it is robust and cheap to run. As mentioned previously all Brother laser printers are built like trucks and will last for many years. Running costs using generic toners are very reasonable with a full set of toners costing you $169-00. This will allow you to print a whopping 4,500 pages with the black and 4,000 pages for each colour.
>> Brother MFC-L8690CDW Specifications
>> Brother MFC-L8690CDW Cartridges
>> Brother MFC-L8690CDW Reviews
Best inkjet printer under $100
Epson Expression XP-4205
The Epson Expression XP-4205 is a great little printer, it has print/scan/copy, wi-fi and 2- sided printing. Generic inks for this printer are $49-90 per set, page yield is Black 500 pages and Colour 350 pages.
>> Epson Expression XP-4205 Specifications
>> Epson Expression XP-4205 Cartridges
>> Epson Expression XP-4205 Reviews
Most economical Inkjet Printer under $300
The Brother MFC-J4440DW is a multifunction A4 inkjet printer with all the features you could possibly need and also EXTREMELY cheap to run. In saying that a generic set of XL cartridges will set you back around $139-00 however they will last forever as the black will do 6,000 pages and each colour 5,000 pages. Overall this makes the Brother MFC-J4440DW the most economical inkjet printer on a cost per page basis.
>> Brother MFC-J4440DW Specifications
>> Brother MFC-J4440DW Cartridges
>> Brother MFC-J4440DW Reviews
Best A3 Colour Inkjet Printer under $300
The Brother MFC-J6540DW is a great buy if you are looking for a A3 colour inkjet printer that is reliable, cheap to run and has all the functions you need. By using generic inks you can get around 3,000 pages out of each cartridge at a cost of $79-90 per set. This makes it an extremely economical printer when compared to the cost per page of comparative printers.
>> Brother MFC-J6540DW Specifications
>> Brother MFC-J6540DW Cartridges
>> Brother MFC-J6540DW Reviews
We strongly recommend any of the above printers as they represent great value and reliability as well as economical printing. If you would like further advice on inkjet printers call Ink Hub: (08) 7324 3065