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Good home-use laser printer?

Can some of you give me a good recommendation for a b&w laser printer for home use?  I'm just sick of my ink jet and I don't want to keep buying overpriced ink.

I'm looking to spend in the $350-or-less range and I'm more than willing to get something used off eBay.  So, it doesn't have to be a new model.  As long as it prints fairly quickly (say, 10 ppm or so) and isn't too big, I'll consider it.  Hell, older may well be better, as they're probably much more reliable.

David
Wednesday, October 22, 2003

Lasers are generally much better quality than inkjets, even the cheap ones.
Ive had an OKI for two years and its not fast, but the print is good and it hasnt given me any trouble. HPs cheaper models are also good. Mum and Dad have HPs and I have had no trouble from them. (Somehow, all their computer related problems end up being my problems)

Eric DeBois
Wednesday, October 22, 2003

We have an HP LaserJet 6L. It's dirt cheap to run. Its only downside is the pitifully slow print speed (but, hey, it's like 4 years old :-p).

Brad Wilson (dotnetguy.techieswithcats.com)
Wednesday, October 22, 2003

HP LaserJet 1100.  600dpi 8ppm.

The only problem is the separator pad will give out after 1000 pages or so, at which point you buy the DIY repair kit from http://www.fixyourownprinter.com

David Jones
Wednesday, October 22, 2003

Can the laser printer toners be refilled?

I can refill inkjet cartridges, and so I get a much lower cost per page.

If the laser printer toners can be refilled, that's excellent!

Jack
Wednesday, October 22, 2003

http://www.gotapex.com has cheap deal on laser printer listed today


Wednesday, October 22, 2003

"Lasers are generally much better quality than inkjets, even the cheap ones."

I've gone through laser printers for several years now based upon this, but I have to say that some of the current crop of inkjet printers, like the Canon i550, have extraordinarily good black print - easily comparable to better lasers. It also prints far faster than I would ever have imagined (literally I am agog over how the print head could possibly move that quickly the page comes wailing out so quickly). Having said that I realize this is offtopic and specifically disclaimed by the poster, as inkjets are woefully inappropriate if you print a large number of pages (which I don't) ,where the cost per page eats you alive.

Dennis Forbes
Wednesday, October 22, 2003

There seem to be any number of "personal" laser printers these days.  Dell started selling some rebranded ones, manufactured by Lexmark.  You should be able to find reviews on places like CNet.com or PCWorld.com.  (My Okidata 6e that I bought in 1997 is still going strong.  <g>)

One feature that you might want if you're using multiple computers is an ethernet connection -- you can share a printer if it's connected by USB or parallel port, but then the host computer has to be on. 

>Can the laser printer toners be refilled?

>I can refill inkjet cartridges, and so I get a much lower cost per page.

AFAIK, generally no.  However, laser printers are cheaper on a per-page cost than ink jets.  You can also buy third-party cartridges that are generally less expensive, although I just bought one from OfficeDepot ("Nu-Kote" brand) and it's junk.

Robert Jacobson
Wednesday, October 22, 2003

Problem with inkjets is cost per page. I have an HP 5550, cheap and a generation old, and the quality of print is as good as laser or better.

If I can manage to use the refiill kits - which I have never done before - then the cost per page is comparable with laser.

Stephen Jones
Wednesday, October 22, 2003

One cautionary note - have lasers gone the way of inkjets with the stupid "win" thing? (Offloading the print engine to the CPU). Although I don't notice so much any more with uberfast CPU's, winprinters used to drive me crazy, while my laser with 8MB of RAM was very++ nice - slow down for a second then it's doing its own thing.

Philo

Philo
Wednesday, October 22, 2003

Samsung ML-1710.  Easily found for $100 - $150 with rebate.  I've had mine for a few months and love it.  Probably not suitable for anything beyond light SOHO use.

Jason
Wednesday, October 22, 2003

A lot of the lower cost (under $200) laser printers do offset some of the rendering to the CPU.    The Samsung ML1710 and the HP Laserjet 1012 are such "host-based" printers (Win-printers, as Philo put it).

I think you have to spend a little more to get a "real" laser printer.

anon
Wednesday, October 22, 2003

Investing a few hundred into a Laser Printer is worth it. You can expect its life to be much, much longer than those $40 Inkjets, and if you shop well, you can find one where the per page cost is about 1/100th that of an Inkjet.

Brad Wilson (dotnetguy.techieswithcats.com)
Wednesday, October 22, 2003

+1 to Brad. I've had my HP LaserJet 5P since 1995. I only replace toner cartridges about every two years, and I print a LOT.

Philo

Philo
Wednesday, October 22, 2003

Not only are they winprinters, Philo, but a lot of the new laser printers are designed for the inkjet profit model...

i.e. the cartrages can't be refilled or replaced by third party ones and they are really expensive.

Flamebait Sr.
Wednesday, October 22, 2003

My Xerox XE80 is so good my wife and I want to be burried with it. I don't think Xerox is in the home/small office market anymore. We've been printing at about 5x it's recommended rate for nearly 3 years. Once is a while we'll find a toner cartridge that prints 4 times more pages than average.

tk
Wednesday, October 22, 2003

Be careful if you refill laser toner cartridges (or by re-manufactured ones). Depending on brand and model the 'toner' cartridge may have mechanical parts in it that wear out. A good re-manufacturer will probably check or replace that stuff, but a really cheap one (or a do-it-yourself toner refill kit) will not.

Just something to keep in mind.

Michael Kohne
Thursday, October 23, 2003

My friend recently bought a cheap Kyocera and mostly it's pretty good althoug it does have a nasty habit of curling pages.

I wanted good print production in my home office so I spent £2000+ on an OKI C7200 colour laser a couple of years back. It's great and has all the features you could want (duplexing, every type of connection and a hard disk).

However, were I to have my time again I'd opt for a printer that is whisper quiet! I only turn the thing on when I need to print because it has noisy (fans I presume) going the whole time, even when sleeping. I'd much rather leave it on 24/7 but can't.. Unless I ship it into the cellar which is then inconvenient...

Gwyn
Thursday, October 23, 2003

Is it reasonable to get an older printer, say an HP 4, 5 or 6 model, and have it work with Windows 2K or XP?  Are there drivers?  I seem to remember that although XP is built on NT, the drivers are always different.

I wonder about some of the older Xeroxes as well.

David
Thursday, October 23, 2003

My HP Laserjet 5P is currently hooked to a system running Windows XP. Works like a champ.

Philo

Philo
Thursday, October 23, 2003

Laser printers, especially HP printers, are generally guaranteed to have good support in future windows versions simply because people wouldn't upgrade if they didn't have good support.  Well, that, and because the over-the-wire interface hasn't changed that much in quite some time.

I think pretty much every cartrage has mechanical parts that will wear out.  It's just a matter of how many refills it will last for.

Flamebait Sr.
Thursday, October 23, 2003

Thanks for the advice folks.  After reading about a million different models, I think I'm going to go with the Brother HL-1850.  The cool thing about this one is that it does full duplex - a pretty nifty trick for a cheap printer.

It's normally about $500, but I found a refurbished one here - http://www.pcnation.com/web/details.asp?affid=305&item=851430 for only $250 and free shipping.

Can't beat that with a stick!  I hope...

David
Thursday, October 23, 2003

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