How to Pick the Perfect Printer

1. Do You Want a Dedicated Model or an All-in-One?
A dedicated or “regular” printer does nothing but print. All-in-one models offer additional functions such as scanning, photocopying, and faxing, and they come in inkjet and laser versions. The advantage of an all-in-one is that it can save space and is less expensive than buying a separate scanner, fax, and photocopier. The downside is that an all-in-one printer doesn’t generally offer the range of features of a dedicated scanner, fax, and photocopier. And if one of the functions of an all-in-one printer stops working, you’ll have to repair or replace the entire unit.

2. Should You Go With an Inkjet or a Laser Printer?
Each type has distinct benefits and drawbacks. Here’s a comparison of the two:

More on Printers and Ink

More From Consumer Reports

Editor's Note: This article also appeared in the March 2017 issue of Consumer Reports magazine.

Copyright © 2005-2017 Consumers Union of U.S., Inc. No reproduction, in whole or in part, without written permission. Consumer Reports has no relationship with any advertisers on this site.