Three Questions to Ask While Printer Shopping

January 1, 2012

1. How much am I willing to spend?  You can find inexpensive (i.e., less than $100) printers fairly easily. But to get better print quality and more features, be prepared to spend at least $150. For an office with high print volume, products can run from $500 to $1,500.

2. How will I be using it?  If the primary purpose of your printer is administrative in nature—for example, for forms and other documents—then you won’t have to worry too much about print quality. However, if you’re planning to produce marketing materials, then you’ll want to pay more attention to concerns like color resolution and ink. Also, consider whether you want the scanning and copying capabilities that a multifunction printer offers.

3. Will I use it with multiple devices or in the field?  If you plan to print from a tablet or laptop without a USB cable or if you’ll need to print documents away from the office, a portable printer might make the most sense.

For more information about the products in this category, be sure to read our 2012 Printers Buyer’s Guide.

Brian Summerfield is the former manager of business development and outreach for NAR Commercial and Global Services.