A printer is a device that accepts data from a computer and transfers it to a medium such as paper, film or plastic. There are many types of printers, and they have a range of functions and features that make them suitable for different uses. The best printer for you depends on the type of printing you need to do, as well as your budget and preferred brand.

A basic office printer is a good choice for the average user who needs to print out everyday business documents and correspondence, but it doesn’t have all of the features that a multifunction printer or a photo printer offers. Those features include scanning and copying capabilities, faxing support, and sometimes photo support.

Choosing the right printer is easy if you know what to look for. Here are some of the key features you should consider:

How many paper trays will be needed?

The number of paper trays you need will depend on the size and quantity of paper you use. Most personal laser printers have input and output trays that can hold at least 100 sheets of paper; some models are configurable, allowing you to add extra trays as your needs change.

How quickly will the printer produce text and images?

The speed of a printer, measured in pages per minute (ppm), is important to consider when comparing printers. Unlike toner yields, these numbers are not as well standardized, so it’s important to know whether a given printer is capable of producing the amount of prints you need.

Resolution, dpi and droplet size

Printers can be described as having high or low resolution. Often, the higher the resolution, the better the detail. A higher-resolution printer is able to reproduce fine details and small, precise lines more accurately than a lower-resolution printer.

Usually, a printer’s vertical resolution is higher than its horizontal resolution. Depending on the design, this can be determined by the density and nozzle size of the printhead or by the paper feed mechanism’s ability to move paper reliably through the machine.

Ink yields

If you’re looking for an affordable printer that’s easy to use, you might consider choosing one with low-cost ink cartridges. While these cartridges are more expensive up front, they typically print a lot of pages for your money and will save you money in the long run because you won’t need to replace them as frequently.

Ink or toner costs are another factor that affects the total cost of ownership. Toner or ink cartridges can be costly, and you’ll need to purchase them periodically, as well as replacement drum units if your printer is a laser model.

Other costs you’ll need to consider are maintenance and repairs, such as replacing a worn printer drum unit or fixing the ink cartridge that stops working. Keeping your printer in good shape will help you avoid downtime and the loss of productivity that can come from it, as well as keep your office running smoothly.