A few decades ago, traditional films were used for the cameras, and the photo printing was done in shops. Those days are gone now, thanks to the advancement of technology. These days, smartphone cameras can take great pictures, and one only needs a printer for the hard copies. The need to go to shops to have photos developed are gone. But which is better in the battle of the printers particularly, inkjet vs laser for photo printing?
One cannot fully understand why one printer is better than the other without knowing how the inkjet and laser printers work. These two are some of the most popular printers for home and offices, but they do not exactly work the same.
The inkjet, as its name says, uses the ink to reproduce the texts or images. The jet part of the name comes from the fact that this printer has small jets, which are responsible for spraying tiny dots of the ink. Once sprayed, the cartridge moves to print the scattered dots and the paper absorbs the ink.
The inkjet printers have their advantages. For one, inkjet printers are great in blending and smoothing out various colors, which makes it great for printing image and heavy color files. The cost of its cartridges is also an advantage as inkjet cartridges cost less than the laser toner cartridges. Plus, inkjet cartridges can also be recycled by refilling the empty ones with new ink. Unlike laser printers, one does not have to buy a brand-new toner cartridge as a replacement of the old ink cartridge.
The inkjet printers are also compatible with a great range of papers and can print on glossy photo paper or textured stationary. It also does not require warming up either. Inkjet printers are also more compact and portable than the laser ones.
Moreover, this kind of printer, like any other equipment or machine, has its disadvantages, too. Many people opt to buy other printers as the cost of inkjet ones are quite pricey. Plus, prints are prone to fade over time. The water damage is the enemy of the inkjet printouts since the ink is water-based, which means any contact of the print with water will partially or entirely erase the images or text.
Inkjets also print slower than the laser, and users who need to print in bulk will require some patience and experience a considerable amount of wasted time. Printing in high volumes is also a tedious task since inkjet papers do not have a provision for the printed papers or the output trays. Leaving the item to print in bulk will result in papers all over the table or floor. The paper capacity of its trays is another disadvantage since most inkjet printers only have 50 to 100 sheet paper capacity.
The laser printer works differently as toners along with the drum and static power are the primary reasons for the printing of this machine. These toners are charged with electricity and are fused to the paper once the two comes into contact. The electric charge directs the drum to start printing.
To best explain how a laser printer works, think of mimeograph printing, which has a drum in the shape of a rolling pin. This drum is charged depending on the original copy or the image or text to be printed. Once the drum comes into contact with the toner, then the image is reproduced on the clean sheet of paper, then goes through the printer fuser. It is the heat of the mimeograph that seals the image or text being copied on the clean sheet of paper.
Laser printers have their pros and cons.
For example, many people prefer a laser printer than an inkjet as the former prints faster than the latter, which makes it the perfect tool for those who print a large number of texts or images. This kind of printer also produces precise and sharp black texts and is favored by those who print mostly documents especially texts with small prints, fonts or fine lines.
There are also disadvantages in using the laser printer. For example, one might need a couple of minutes before printing because the machine takes some time to warm up. This printer is also prone to leaks, which can delay the printing. The laser printer also has a higher price tag when compared to others. It is also selective with the paper it will print on as the machine has difficulties printing on papers that are highly sensitive to heat.
Portability is also an issue with a laser printer as it often comes in big dimensions and heavyweight. One should also not expect to have a great blending of colors when printing with a laser printer.
Contrary to the belief of some people, inkjet and laser printers do not produce similar high-quality images.
When choosing the inkjet or laser for printing photos and images, the better choice is the inkjet. There are many reasons why the inkjet is the better item to choose when one wants to use the printer for photo printing.
For one, inkjet printers blend various colors well while laser printers are more suited for document printing. Plus, laser types are very fussy with the paper they can print on. On the other hand, inkjet printers can accommodate a wide range of paper types including the glossy photo papers.
Both laser and inkjet printers have their advantages and disadvantages. When choosing between the two, it is better to know beforehand on the intended usage of the equipment. Knowing how the machine will be used will come handy in deciding what kind of printer to buy. Failure to do so may result in the disappointment of the buyer as the purchased item may not fit one’s needs.
In the battle between the inkjet vs laser for photo printing, the former wins if the user intends to use the machine mostly for photo printing. The same cannot be said if the printer will be used mostly for bulk document printing as the laser printers are the better choice for fine and text printing.