Discussion in 'Buying Tips, Advice and Discussion (archive)' started by mjhinnant, Aug 7, 2004.

  1. mjhinnant macrumors newbie

    Aug 7, 2004
    I plan on doing a lot of BW and Color print jobs.

    Should I get a color laser printer for all my printing or should I get a BW laser printer also?
  2. homerjward macrumors 68030


    May 11, 2004
    fig tree
    what kind of print jobs? unless u do an incredible amount of printing it's not cost-effective to get laser as opposed to a good inkjet printer.
  3. mjhinnant thread starter macrumors newbie

    Aug 7, 2004
    Pretty large jobs. Hundreds to a few thousand.

    I am a graphic designer and own an advertising company. I am going to start printing some jobs myself to avoid the vendor cost of printers.
  4. Blackheart macrumors 6502a


    Mar 13, 2004
    You might check this out, could be worthwhile to you.
  5. flyfish29 macrumors 68020


    Feb 4, 2003
    New HAMpshire
    Laser printers are by far the most cost effective printers when doing large amounts of black and white prints.- no comparison. Toner cartridges cost much more per cartridge, but do hundreds if not thousands more than a typical ink jet, not to mention that ink jets are not as clear when it comes to quality. I don't know for sure about color lasers, but I would assume the same.

    Actually for anyone that does any decent amount of printing it is cost effective in the long run for lasers, but there is more up front cost. But for the average printer a laser cartridge can last years unlike the $30-50 ink jet cartridge that can last months.

    Do a google search for laser vs ink jet printer cost and I bet you come up with many web sites that examine the cost of both. Mac world often does a comparison of cost per print and I know for sure the per print cost is cheaper for laser every time.

    Laser printers tend to be better quailty products as well as long as you get a decent one.

    It is better recently, but from what I remember about color lasers, the color accuracy is not always great, depending on how accurate you need the prints to be. If you designate a certain PMS color you might end up with something quite different with a normal color laser, unless you get a very expensive one.

    Unless things have changed drastically in the last 5 years, I would go with a black and white laser and outsourse the color stuff, but that is just my opinion and based on my graphic design/printer background from about 5+ years ago before I became a teacher.

    Good luck
  6. kant macrumors 6502

    Jul 22, 2004

    That's just not true.

    I did the math for my gf when she wanted to know why I insisted on having both a laser and an ink-jet printer. My laser is about .4 cents to print a standard 5% coverage page while the ink jet is about 4.5 cents to do the same page. It doesn't take all that many pages to pay for a $250 laser printer at that price/page differential.

    (That is strictly for BW printing however)
  7. Don't panic macrumors 603

    Don't panic

    Jan 30, 2004
    having a drink at Milliways
    it seems to me the question is not [laser] vs [inkjet], but [color laser] vs [color laser + b/w laser].

    If you have a significant amount of prints, get two printers: the costs of the color go beyond that of the toner alone, so it's worth it to print b/w on one and color on the other

    p.s: specifically, stay away from tally and solid inks. i'd go with HP
  8. flyfish29 macrumors 68020


    Feb 4, 2003
    New HAMpshire
    If I remember right, generally when you price out lasers the more expensive of a black printer you get the cheaper per page price it is...generally speaking. However, you of course have more upfront cost the higher you go so try to estimate how many pages a year you will print, then look at the capacity of the ink cartridges of various printers and do the math to determine when you would break even witha specific printer and start reaping the rewards.
  9. Sun Baked macrumors G5

    Sun Baked

    May 19, 2002
    For pure B&W....

    The HP 8150 & 9000 should be decent printers for standard duplex 11x17 printing.

    I think the HP printers above the 8150 may not work on standard house power, I thought I saw that some of the newer faster HP printers may requier the big power plug -- though that may actually be the 9065-9085 (the big boy HP multifunction printers with the larger paper sizes and copier capability).

    The HP 8150 & 9000 have large duty cycles, and maint. kits to them going.

    Anything in the 8150, 9000, or 9065-9085 can chew through reams of paper.

    And the 8150/9000 are quite reasonable for the volume you can pump through them. Just check easy toner availability, the cartridges may seem expensive but they have high capacity compared to a $200 Laser.

    EDIT -- Looked again the 9000 is 120V (or 220V if you want) and is the 8150 replacement, didn't see a price on the 90XX maint kit consumables but they may last longer than the typical 350k pages.
  10. emw macrumors G4


    Aug 2, 2004
    Just note that sometimes taking on that business from a professional printer is not always as simple as it may sound.

    That being said, if you want to do professional color printing in an advertising world, you may want to consider the Xerox Phaser series of printers. They are color (but of course also do B/W), but you can calibrate them to match certain printing characteristics, or simply to provide more robust colors for given situations.

    They're also reasonably fast, with a number of optional accessories for binding, or other functions.

    If, on the other hand, you don't need anything that fancy, you may also consider one of the all-in-one devices that scans, prints, faxes, makes coffee, dresses the kids in the morning, etc. These devices can give you more bang for the buck if you'd otherwise be purchasing those things separately.
  11. mjhinnant thread starter macrumors newbie

    Aug 7, 2004
    Thanks everyone.

    As I deliberate, I keep going back to my sense that a BW laser is a definate, but that a color is an uncertainty. I have searched for an affordable outsourcer and haven't found one for smaller than 5,000 in quantity. The chain service outlets don't seem afordable unless I'm missing something. Anyone know if they have bulk discounts or something?

    I have looked at some phasers and I get the feeling ink and maintenance is heavy and bites into affordability.
  12. Dave00 macrumors 6502a

    Dec 2, 2003
    6,250 to be exact. :)

    Actually my experience has been a little more expensive than 4.5cents/page in an inkjet printer, especially on printers that use colors to produce grayscale. So, I'd agree that over time, laser printers pay for themselves if you do alot of b/w printing. Although, at 4 cents a page difference, it'd take quite a few pages. :)

Share This Page