10 Best Multifunction Printers: Reviews and Buying Guide (2018)

Some printers can print more than just papers and other media. Sometimes printers are equipped with additional functions. These printers are called multifunction printers. They usually have three or four functions. In addition to the print function, these include a copy and a scan function and partly a fax function. Multifunction printers can be used in many areas. For example, you can use a multifunction printer for the office, home office, or home.

If you want to buy a multifunction printer, it is important that it fits your purpose. Therefore, it is best to check the models thoroughly before purchasing. At gametoaid.org we present 10 different models in a multifunction printer comparison. These devices are mainly suitable for the home, smaller offices, and small businesses. In our multifunction printer guide, we also explain the difference between a laser and an inkjet printer and show, among other things, the most important features of a multifunction printer.

10 Best Multifunction Printers

What types of multifunction printers are available?

Multifunction printers can be divided into two types: There are the laser multifunction printers and the inkjet multifunction printers. At STERN.de we compare the two types below and explain the advantages as well as the disadvantages of both variants.

The laser multifunction printer

In the case of a laser multifunction printer, printing takes place through the side process. Here, the pressure and the exposure take place simultaneously. The basis of this procedure is the electrophotography. The initial cost of laser multifunction printers is often higher than the price of inkjet printers. But you can permanently benefit from lower follow-up costs for these devices. Because laser printers work with so-called toner cartridges. These have a longer shelf life than ink cartridges. From a laser printer, you can benefit especially when printing texts. These printers can create fine lines and precise images. In addition, they are not particularly sensitive to moisture or UV radiation. That’s why the printed documents do not fade so fast.

The inkjet multifunction printer

Inkjet multifunction printers work with ink cartridges. These are driven back and forth by a sled. Most of the inkjet multifunction printers are cheaper. In particular, the entry-level printers are usually associated with lower acquisition costs. The ink cartridges are also cheaper to buy. For this, they have a partly much lower durability. Therefore, an inkjet multifunction printer can be more expensive in the long term. In addition, you should keep in mind that ink cartridges and printing nozzles can dry out. You can save money if you use the multifunction printer without original cartridges. However, the No Name ink cartridges often offer a lower quality.

A disadvantage is the lower printing speed. If you only have to print a few documents, the slower printing speed will not be noticeable. If you have a lot of pressure, you will quickly notice the disadvantage. These multifunction printers are usually louder than laser printers. In addition, the quality of the printing devices is often worse, so that they sometimes do not last as long as the laser printer.

The application areas of multifunction printers

If you regularly or occasionally need to print, copy, scan and/or fax documents, photos or graphics, purchasing a multifunction printer makes sense. But which multifunction printer suits me? Whether you can better access a laser or an inkjet multifunction printer depends on the application area. Below we will show you the purposes for which you can ideally use a laser printer and in which areas an inkjet printer is better suited.

For which purposes are laser printers suitable?

Laser multifunction printers are ideal for printing as well as for copying written documents. For example, such a printer can be ideally used in the following areas:

  1. In principle, the laser multifunction printers are worthwhile for small businesses, for the office as well as for the home office.
  2. Typically, a color laser multifunction printer is suitable for teachers who need to print or copy documents without images.
  3. If you want to print documents intended for long-term storage, a laser printer is usually the better choice.
  4. Laser printers can be used optimally if you want to print or copy a large number of written documents.
  5. For this purpose, a laser multifunction printer for Wenignutzer come into question. Finally, a laser multifunction device is equipped with no ink cartridges or nozzles that can dry out.

For which applications are inkjet printers worthwhile?

If you need a multifunction printer for photos, an inkjet printer is recommended. This allows especially on special photo paper a higher quality photo printing. Inkjet multifunction printers are very well suited for private households. The inkjet multifunction printers are ideal for students, students, teachers and sometimes for offices.

How do I recognize the best multifunction printers?

Which multifunction printer is the best, depends in particular on the application. In addition to printer technology, the models differ in the market in terms of many features and properties. But what should a multifunction printer and how can I recognize the best multifunction printer? Below we present the most important purchase criteria on gametoaid.org.

The functions

Multifunction printers are equipped with up to four functions. These include printing, copying, scanning and faxing. Most multifunction printers can at least print, copy and scan. Some models also have a fax function. A multifunction printer with fax allows both receiving and sending faxes.

The color print

There are multifunction printers that can only print in black and white. These are suitable for you unless you need color prints. If, for example, you only want to print documents without images and graphics, a black and white printer, also known as a monochrome printer, is usually sufficient. Some of these monochrome printers can only scan in black and white.

If you want to print photos in color, you should grab a color printer. If you want to scan documents in color, you should pay attention to a color scanner.

The print resolution

The printing resolution is indicated by the manufacturer in dpi. This unit stands for “dots per inch”. The rule is: a higher dpi value means a higher resolution. If you are looking for a multifunction printer for photo printing, you should put a lot of emphasis on the resolution. The same applies if you want to print graphics more often.

The printing speed

The printing speed is given in the unit ppm. This abbreviation means “page per minute”. Thus, the print speed indicates how many pages the machine can print per minute. Regarding the printing speed, you should note that the actual speed does not have to correspond to the specified value. In practice, the printer usually does not provide the specified ppm value.

The speed depends on many factors. These include:

  • The document type
  • The paper type
  • The transfer mode

In addition, it does matter whether you are printing a color or a black and white print. Color prints usually succeed slower.

The paper capture volume

The paper acquisition volume describes how many sheets you can place in the paper tray. Most models have a paper capacity of between 100 and 500 sheets. The paper capacity is especially relevant for bulk print jobs. Similarly, a multifunction printer with a large paper capacity may be useful if you do not want to constantly insert new paper. Furthermore, it is advantageous if the paper cassette is closable. This will prevent the paper dusting.

The interfaces

Most multifunction printers are equipped with a USB port. This allows you to connect a PC or a notebook or a mobile device to the multifunction printer. In addition, some multifunction printers have a card reader. Via this the data transmission via a memory card is possible. Some printers are additionally equipped with a LAN connection, also called an Ethernet connection.

The wireless connection

Many a multifunction printer allows the data to be sent wirelessly to the printer from a PC or similar device. This is possible, for example, with the following features:

  • WLAN: Often a multifunction printer is equipped with WLAN. If you have a Wi-Fi Multifunction Printer, you can wirelessly transfer the data from a PC or other wireless-enabled device to the printer over the Wi-Fi network.
  • Bluetooth: Partly a multifunction printer is equipped with Bluetooth. This feature allows you to pair the printer with a Bluetooth-enabled device.
  • NFC: Some multifunction printers have NFC. If your smartphone is NFC-enabled, you can print using this feature.
  • AirPrint: In some cases, multifunction printers are equipped with AirPrint. AirPrint has been developed by Apple. This allows you to connect an Apple device directly to the printer via the Wi-Fi network. This succeeds without a previous software installation on the appropriate device.

The display

It is advantageous if the multifunction printer is equipped with black/white or color display. This is usually a simple operation of the printer possible. Some displays can even be operated by touch. It is important that the display is big enough. This is especially true if you want to use the printer frequently.

The volume

The volume is often expressed in decibels (dB). It varies from model to model. Often, laser printers are quieter than inkjet printers. Nevertheless, some people find laser printers annoying because they are continuously burbling.

The size

The size of a printer is often dependent on its functionality. Multifunction printers with many features are usually larger. These can be used, for example, as a multifunction printer for the office. If you are looking for a multifunction printer for home, a smaller model is often enough.

The weight

If you place the printer in a certain place and do not want to adjust, the weight plays only a minor role. If you want to adjust the printer more often, you should pay attention to the weight. Some printers are relatively light and weigh only five to six kilograms. Others come to a weight of over 20 kilograms.

The costs

Often the purchase price plays an important role. In addition to this, you should take a closer look at the follow-up costs. In part, a cheap multifunction printer is permanently more expensive than a model, which is associated with high acquisition costs. If you opt for an inkjet multifunction printer, you will need to buy ink cartridges. These are available individually for about ten to 20 euros or as a combination set for about 20 to 30 euros.

If you select a laser printer, you will need toner cartridges. These are available from about 60 euros in the trade. For this, they can convince with a much higher pressure range of up to 3,000 pages. Ink cartridges usually only hold up to 300 pages or less.

The Extras

A multifunction printer can be equipped with various functions. Practical extras can be, for example, the following features:

  1. Duplex printing: Thanks to duplex printing, a multifunction printer can print on both sides automatically. Thus, with a multifunction printer with a duplex printing function, you can automatically print on both sides of a sheet of paper. For printers without this feature, two-sided printing is only possible manually.
  2. The automatic document feeder: If you often use the printer for copying or scanning, the automatic document feeder (ADF) may be useful. This feature allows you to insert different documents. This automatically feeds the multifunction printer with a document feeder gradually to copy or scan.
  3. The DIN A3 print: With many a multifunction printer it is possible to print DIN A3 sheets. This function is usually not required in the private sector. For the industry, however, this can be useful. However, such a multifunction printer is usually larger.
  4. Automatic on/off function: An automatic on/off function allows the multifunction printer to turn on and off automatically. This is especially useful if you want to transfer the data wirelessly.

Multifunction printer vs. Single devices: which version is the better?

Printers, copiers, scanners and fax machines can be purchased as a multifunction device or as individual devices. Whether multifunction printers or individual devices are the better choices, depends on your wishes and needs as well as on the purpose. Below we show the advantages and disadvantages of multifunction printers compared to single devices.

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