What Should You Look for in a Quality Printer?

An office printer in businesses, schools, and government offices in Singapore is an invaluable tool. With so many types of printers and different features to choose from nowadays, such as the laser printer, colour printer, and graphic art printer, how do you pick a printer in Singapore?

What Does a Printer Do?

Simply put, an office printer is a device used to prepare a permanent output on paper. Printers are connected to another device, such as a computer, that will input the information that need to be printed. Throughout the history of printing, the function of the machine has not changed much, although technology has greatly improved.

Today, a printer and copier machine can be connected to a network, print colored photographs, and can even print on materials other than paper.

Find out how each model differs before you buy printer or copier for your office.

What are the Types of Printers?

All printers are divided into two categories based on how the text or pixel is transferred on the paper.

1. Impact Printer

This type of office printer has an electromechanical function with pins or hammers that strike against a ribbon and paper to print the text.

• Character Printer: This type of impact printer that you can get from copier leasing in Singapore will print one character at a time, which is why it will take time to fill out a piece of blank paper.

• Dot Matrix: This model is a type of character printer that combines dots. The ink pass through a matrix of pins (usually 24 in number) and there is a carbon paper in between the paper and the pins.

• Lines Printer: As the name suggests, this type of printer will print one line at a time instead of characters.

2. Non-Impact Printer

This type of office printer or copier uses non-impact mechanisms to print characters faster.

• Character Printer: Like the impact character printer, the non-impact character printer will print one character at a time instead of a whole page.

• Ink-Jet: This type of office printer or copier prints by spraying patterns of ink from a jet or nozzle with fine holes on a blank piece of paper. When the ink is sprayed, it turns into vapor and passes through a reflecting plate before a character is printed. This is often the first choice for offices when they buy printer.

• Page Printer: Unlike the character printer, a page printer will transfer an entire page to a drum and the toner is applied before it seals the page on a blank piece of paper.

• Laser: This type of office printer in Singapore uses a laser beam to print an image on the drum by altering electrical charges on it. The drum will roll through the toner so that its charged surface picks up the toner and then transferred through the paper. To permanently print the character, the laser printer seals it with heat and pressure. The laser printer works similarly to a copier machine when printing. Some laser printers don’t use laser, and instead rely on LEDs and LCDs.

Most offices have a laser printer, inkjet printer, and even graphic art printer. But while the features of a laser printer might seem attractive, newer models of inkjet printers have better quality than the old models and are still cheaper than laser printers. For more sophisticated needs, like printing photos, brochures, booklets, invitations, and artworks, you will need more specialized printers like a graphic art printer or a colour printer. However, remember that some laser and LED printers have poor photo quality and require frequent resupply of ink.

What Should I Look for in a Printer?

Before you buy a printer in Singapore, you need to consider who will be using it, how many will use it, how much printing needs to be done daily, and whether you need colored or monochrome printouts.

Your office might not need all the extra features of new technology printers, so pick only the model that will suit your needs to save money on ink. These are the most important factors you need to consider:

1. Resolution: This refers to the maximum number of dots per inch that your printer can print. A 600-dpi printer or copier machine should be good enough for printing documents and 1,200 dpi for photos.

2. Print Speed: You have to estimate your office’s print volume per day so you can get a good idea of the printing speed you will need for an office printer or copier. Your best bet is to check the specifications of a printer (look for the label “ppm” or pages per minute) to check the speed. Offices should ideally have a printer with 20 ppm or more, but if you need to print more, look for models that have a 40-ppm output.

3. Connectivity: While all printers can connect to a computer, make sure that it can also connect to your office’s network and has a pairing option with mobile devices for easier printing. Mobile printing has become popular in some offices in Singapore, so look for an office printer with NFC or near-field communication support.

4. Paper Handling: Personal printers can hold a maximum of 150 sheets and is ideal for small offices, but if your employees need to print more than 200 sheets, you should consider printers with upgraded features and several paper trays to minimize paper loading.

5. Photos: If you’re an artisan or a photographer, keep in mind that some inkjet printers can produce excellent quality printouts with the use of CMYK inks, but might be impractical if you need to print a lot of photos. Instead, consider getting a graphic art printer or a colour printer that is built specifically for printing photos.

6. Ink and Toner: You should not forget the costs of the ink and toner when buying a printer, because some inks for specific printers can be more expensive than others. Before you buy printer or copier, check the price of its ink or toner, and remember that a cheap office printer will usually require an expensive ink or toner.