Differences Between a Laser Printer and an Inkjet Printer

Printers are easier to shop for compared to smartphones, computers, and laptops. You don’t need to be a master of printer specs, and there are also fewer considerations to take than purchasing the latter devices. Primarily, the most crucial decision you’ll only need to do is choose between a laser printer or an inkjet printer. What actually are their differences? Which of the two will suit your needs? Both printers have their advantages and drawbacks. So, let’s cut through the chase and compare these printers to determine which one will work best for you.


The main difference between laser and inkjet printers is how they operate. While both can produce text and image, the way they do it is quite different. An inkjet printer works pretty straightforward by spraying ink as the cartridges move onto the page. While most inkjet printers only have the basic colors, cyan, magenta, yellow, and black, they can hold up to nine cartridges, delivering impressive color prints.

Meanwhile, a laser printer uses toner cartridges instead of pigment or dye ink to print text or images. The toner is a powder, which is transferred to a page by using high temperature. Laser printer utilizes electrical charges to determine when and where the powder should be placed and printed onto the page. Though laser printers produce beautiful black and white prints, they are less reliable at printing colored images or texts.


Another thing you need to consider is space. Are you working at home and have limited space? Your best bet is to get an inkjet printer. It is portable, and all it needs is a shelve or desk where it can sit. On the other hand, laser printers tend to be larger and heavier and are generally intended for office use.  You will definitely want to make this a consideration if your setting up a new home office.


Of course, the price will always be a part of any purchase. However, when buying printers, you need to look at the different sides of the picture. First, you need to consider the initial. An inkjet printer is relatively cheaper than a laser printer, saving you much on the initial cost.

Moreover, an ink cartridge also is less expensive than toner cartridges that come at a hefty price. The catch is that an inkjet printer needs cartridge replacement more often, and costs can accumulate if you print more than usual. Meanwhile, a toner cartridge may cost you more money, but it needs replacement less often. Thus, allowing you to save in the long run.

So, assess how much do you print. If you print less, go for an inkjet printer. If you print a lot, then opting for a laser printer is economical.

Speed and Volume

Laser printers print faster than inkjet printers, have a bigger capacity, and can print in large volumes. This makes them an excellent choice for offices and businesses with larger workgroups who often need bulk of documents printed sooner. However, if you intend to use a printer at home and don’t mind the extra wait time, an inkjet paper will do just right.

Quality and Performance

There’s no doubt that both inkjet and laser printers can provide quality prints. However, they can vary in quality and performance. Since it uses ink, inkjet printers often have issues with their nozzles getting clogged or dried up. That isn’t the case for laser printer’s toner cartridges. Second, the ink tends to feel wet and get smudged if not handled properly. Things that you won’t need to think about if you use laser printers.


Choosing between laser or inkjet printers depends heavily on which of these factors you value most and what purpose you plan to use your printer. Evaluate all those features carefully, and you’ll get the type of printer that fits your needs.