Assignments, Essays and Exams: Printer Shopping for College Students

Although many colleges and universities offer printing services for students on campus, it can turn out to be either expensive or inconvenient to use, so many decide to bring their own printer with them.

Although you might think that you don’t print as much as you used to, that will probably change when you are a student as you will need to print out course notes and assignments, so you will want to find a printer which will do everything you want and is reasonably inexpensive to use.

Identifying the right printer

Trying to figure whether you should buy a laser or inkjet printer and what features you want it to have, will largely depend on where and how you use your printer.

Many students often choose an inkjet over a laser printer primarily because they are cheaper to buy and you can replace Canon ink cartridges or whatever brand you are using, at a lower cost than replacing the toner in a laser printer.

Another plus point for inkjet printers is the fact that you can often buy models which have some extra built-in features such as a scanner, which can come in handy if you need to copy something.

Other factors to consider

Halls of residence and a good number of student digs are often cramped for space, so if you are moving into a room or shared house with fairly cramped dimensions, you should try and find a printer that doesn’t take up a lot of desk space.

A good solution might be to choose an all-in-one printer, so you get all the features you might need without the need for more than one device.

Check out the cost of replacement ink cartridges or toner for the model of printer you are considering, as some models are really inexpensive to buy in the first place, but printing costs can turn out costly if the print supplies are higher than some others.

Another factor to consider is connectivity. A good number of printers are now available with Wi-Fi connectivity but check whether you have access in your room on campus, as you could need a printer that can be connected via a USB.

Alternatively, if you are using an iPhone or an iPad, it might work well to get an Airprint enabled printer for greater convenience.

Choosing your technology

If you are planning to print plenty of images and photos in amongst your printing demands, it is probably best to go for an inkjet printer over a laser version.

Laser printers offer faster printing of documents but don’t always fare so well against inkjet’s when it comes to printing images. If you are not that bothered about printing out photos or images and want to effortlessly print pages of clear text in a fast time, you might want to consider a mono laser as a possible alternative to an inkjet of a comparable price.

If you are short of space and want to get the best value for money, it may well turn out that an all-in-one inkjet might offer the best solution, but do think about how you are going to use your printer before you part with your cash.

John Sollars runs a successful printing ink business. Whenever he has the chance, he likes to share what has worked for him with others. You can read his articles mostly on business, marketing and technology websites.

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