Laser Printer vs. Inkjet Printer

Difference between a Laser Printer and an Inkjet Printer

When buying a printer, it is important to know the differences between each one. This article helps determine the differences between laser and inkjet printers.

What is a Laser Printer?

A laser printer uses technology that is similar to xerography in order to produce high-resolution text and graphics. Color laser printers use 4 toners: cyan, magenta, yellow, and black (CMYK). These are more durable than the ink dyes used in inkjet printers. Laser printers have high printing speed and quality, and they can be shared by connecting computers on network facilities. It may be bulky and quite expensive but the printing cost per page is less, especially with large volume printing.

What is an Inkjet Printer?

An inkjet printer uses an array of microscopic nozzles to eject ink drops on the surface. There are three or four color inks used in color printing: CMY or CMYK. There are actually also three types of inkjet devices: the continuous inkjet printer, the drop-on-demand, and the phase change. Inkjet printers are good for home use where there is a lower quality and quantity of printing needed. Its printing speed is low but its price is also reasonably low. You also need special inkjet papers for good quality image and photo printing, and the color cartridges have to be replaced frequently. However, the latest versions of color inkjet printers can produce better color images than laser printers.

In summary:

  • Laser printers have 4 toners (CMYK) while inkjet printers can use 3 or 4 (CMY or CMYK)
  • Laser printer toners are more durable than the ink dyes used in inkjet printers
  • There are three types of inkjet devices: continuous, drop-on-demand, and phase change
  • Laser printers are good for large volume printing while inkjet printers are good for smaller volume printing
  • Laser printers are more expensive than inkjet printers