What to look for in a new laser printer

What to look for in a new laser printer

Selecting a new printer for work or a home office is an important decision. That doesn’t mean it needs to be a difficult one. With endless variations, features and designs, choosing the right printer is about assessing your own needs first.

To help you make the best choice for work or your home office, you’ll need to review a few printing basics. How will your printer integrate into your current suite of digital assets? What are your printing needs? And most importantly, how much is a new printer actually going to cost?

Let’s get started clarifying the role a laser printer can play in your work.

A couple of co-workers in the office printing documents.
When choosing a printer, be sure your device is fit for purpose

The different types of laser printers

There are many types of printing solutions and they all cater to different needs. Before you set off to buy, however, you’ll need to know which type is right for you.

In addition to inkjet, laser printers are exceptionally efficient. When you look at laser printing closely, there are really two different types: regular laser and LED. Their technology is so similar to one another that they ought to be considered at the same time.

Though both great, laser and LED printers serve slightly different functions. Let’s take a look at each one to decide which is the best printer for you.

Assessing your printer needs, at home or in the office

It’s essential to have a keen understanding of you or your team’s printing requirements. Even the most high-end colour laser printer isn’t going to be helpful if it isn’t fit for purpose. So, what types of printing do you need?

You might consider:

Print quality

When it comes to print quality, you can’t go wrong between laser and LED. Both print solutions produce top-of-the-line results, with only minor differences. Generally, laser printers may hold a slight edge over LEDs when it comes to quality. This is because lasers contain one single light source, which means every pixel you print is illuminated with the same amount of light. LEDs, on the other hand, have many light sources, which means illumination may vary.

What’s more, LED printing uses a fixed resolution. Laser printing, in contrast, can adjust the resolution by changing the dot size. If you need to maximise quality when printing photos, a laser printer may be the right call.


Just how much paper are you printing? If you work at a large office, you can track this metric several ways, including to simply note how much paper is being used — and thus reordered. You may also be able to glean metrics from your existing machines themselves.

Laser printers generally print higher volumes due to a larger toner capacity. However, when it comes to small or home offices, an LED colour printer will likely handle more than enough volume.

Printing speed

Is print speed important for you? Fortunately, most printers will be rated for a certain print per minute speed, or PPM. This metric should be readily available for every printer and aims to convey how many A4 pieces of paper the machine can print in a single minute.

Laser printers are typically speedier than LED, but the difference is almost unrecognisable. You can’t go wrong by choosing either printer; each are amongst the fastest in technology.

And for bulk jobs? Look for an Automatic Document Feeder (ADF) and strong paper tray to put your multi-function printer to work for you.

A large multi-function printer next to colleagues in an office boardroom.
If printing in bulk, both laser and LED are efficient at printing large volumes in little time


How much colour will you need to print? Are you a paper-centric business that relies on forms, such as a medical team? Are you in a student-centric environment or law office, where pouring over paper is part of the assignment?

These are important questions as it will determine the initial device cost and running costs of your printer. Our recommendation is to choose a monochrome laser printer unless you are certain that colour printing is vital to your work.

Size and mobility

Where is your printer going to live? Are you purchasing for a large office, small business or for your home? In any context, the size and mobility of your printer is going to be an important factor.

Laser printers are often very large machines. Consequently, they’re very heavy and require a lot of physical space. For offices that lack the luxury of space, LED printers may be the best option. Not only are they smaller in size, they also are much lighter and mobile. Rather than a single dedicated space, LED printers are easier to relocate due to their weight and size as compared to a laser printer.

Printing cost

Owning and operating a printer goes beyond a one-time payment for the machine. It’s also about maintenance and supplies and replacing them when you run out.

So how will you assess printing cost to make the right choice? One efficient metric to consider is the cost per page of printing. To reach this figure, take the cost of a new toner cartridge and divide it by the expected page yield — usually listed in the description of the printer. Doing this math will help you determine which type of printer makes the most sense for your specific budget.

Generally, laser printers can print thousands of pages before a toner cartridge needs replacing. However, because they’re bulkier machines with many moving parts, they also consume more energy than the smaller LED printer.

In terms of machine maintenance, both laser and LED can be cost-effective, if used in the right context. Of course, the more a printer is used, the more wear and tear it may experience over time. Since they have fewer parts, LEDs generally endure less mechanical wear than laser and can sometimes be deemed as more reliable.

Two female colleagues sitting down at a desk with printed documents and a multi-function printer in the background.
Choosing between laser and LED is all about considering your needs

Deciding on your print solution

Now that you have a comprehensive understanding of laser and LED printers, the final decision will come down to context. If your printing needs include smaller size requirements, reliability and colour quality, an LED printer may be your best choice — especially if you’re working from a small or home office.

Larger operations stand to benefit from laser printing. With a greater print speed, laser printers are more effective than LED when it comes to printing large volumes of paper in a very short amount of time.

When it comes to choosing the right print solution, you can’t go wrong with either laser or LED. In the end, the context of your printing needs should be the biggest deciding factor.

The experts at Brother are always happy to discuss how our laser and LED printers can integrate with — and accelerate — the way you do business, whether in the office or from home. Please contact us with any questions about our printers. We’re happy to assist.


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