Purchasing a new printer: read this first
Learn about printer features that add convenience, savings, and fun to all your printing needs
Support & Drivers
With so many features to choose from, it’s hard to know what’s most important when purchasing a new printer or All-in-One. Get the lowdown on where to start, and then find out about HP’s latest printer innovations.
Consider these four printer features first
Toner cartridges typically have higher yields than ink cartridges and need less frequent changing.
Several HP original ink cartridges come in an XL size, which offers a lower per-page cost.
The HP LaserJet P3015 Printer has a duty cycle of up to 100,000 pages per month; its recommended monthly page volume is between 1,500 and 5000 pages.
1. Toner vs inkjet
HP LaserJet printers use toner rather than ink, and are the go-to option for high-volume printing (more than 2000 pages/month) or for those who always print in black and white. There are also high-quality color models available.
HP inkjet printers and All-in-Ones are often the printer of choice for those who want to print their own photos, print shop-quality documents and marketing materials, and those who want to print larger formats.
Get more information about the differences between laser and inkjet in the article, Get the best printer for your business needs (which offers plenty of advice that will work for home printers, too).
2. Multifunction vs. printer only
Even if it’s rare that you need anything other than straight-up printing, consider the convenience and potential savings of owning three or four machines in one. An HP inkjet All-in-One or an HP LaserJet MFP lets you print, scan, copy and, on some models, fax. Discover why an HP All-in-One is right for you.
However, if you already have a dedicated scanner, fax, and/or copier, or you’re looking for a printer with certain attributes (lab-quality, large format prints, for example), a single-function printer might make sense.
The primary options to Share a printer on a network are Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and Ethernet. Wi-Fi offers the greatest mobility, but there are advantages to the other technologies as well. Printers that connect solely by USB are usually not networkable without an accessory.
4. Duty cycle
Duty cycle is a printer spec that measures the maximum number of pages a printer can handle per month.
It’s useful to consider duty cycle (or RMPV—recommended monthly page volume) to select a printer that can meet your volume needs. Typically, HP LaserJets offer the highest duty cycles, along with HP Officejet Pros.
Select photo-friendly printer features
Large touchscreens, like the one featured on the HP Photosmart 6510 e-All-in-One above, make photo printing easier than ever.
HP iPrint is remarkably easy to install and use.
Look at the comparison charts available on the HP Photosmart printer buying guide
to see which products have these printer features (Some are also available on certain HP Officejets and HP LaserJets):
Memory card slots for photo printing without a PC
The HP Photosmart line of printers, several HP Deskjets, and some HP Officejets have slots for memory cards. Just insert your digital camera’s memory card and print right away – no PC required.
Photo paper tray
Many HP Photosmart printers and All-in-Ones have a dedicated photo paper tray, eliminating the need to switch out papers when you switch tasks.
Many HP printers feature interactive touchscreens for fast photo printing plus easy access to a variety of functions—including web-connected print apps and HP ePrint mobile printing.1,2
Check out HP iPrint, a fun and useful feature for Apple iPhone and iPod touch owners to print photos directly from their devices—no PC or cables required.
Opt for work-friendly printer features
Double-sided printing can help cut your paper use by 50%.
Make large copies of delicate collages or high-impact marketing materials with legal-sized scan glass
The HP Officejet Pro 8600 Premium e-All-in-One features web-connected HP ePrint apps and HP ePrint mobile printing.1,2
Automatic two-sided printing
This printer feature will help save space, money, and paper. Duplexing automatically (printing documents double-sided) can also save you time.
An automatic double-sided printing accessory can add the capability to many printers that don’t have it built-in.
High capacity ADF
Some printers allow you to leave up to 50 pages unattended in an ADF (Automatic Document Feeder) so that they can get copied, faxed, or scanned, while you get more done.
Legal-sized scanning glass
If you’re working with fragile legal-sized documents or those that have staples, clips, tears, tape, or excessive folds, manually scanning them on a legal-sized glass is the safest option.
Learn how to Handle legal-sized documents easily with this feature, available on some HP Officejet, HP Officejet Pro, and HP LaserJet All-in-Ones.
Embedded Gigabit networking
A few HP LaserJets feature embedded Gigabit networking, offering incredibly fast connections between a group of computers and a single printer.
High volume inkjets
While laser printers are normally the default for high-volume printing, the latest HP Officejet Pros offer a duty cycle of up to 15,000 pages per month, along with the stellar, vivid color of inkjet printing. The best of both worlds!
Many new HP printers now offer Web-connected HP Print apps, so you can print customized web content straight from your printer—without having to turn on your PC.1
Also, with HP ePrint now featured on many HP printers, you can e-mail photos and documents directly to your printer using any mobile device with e-mail capabilities.2
Find out more about HP Printers
- 1 Requires a wireless access point and an Internet connection to the printer. Services may require registration. App availability varies by country, language and agreements. For details, www.hp.com/go/eprintcenter.
- 2 Requires an Internet connection to the printer. Feature works with any connected Internet- and email-capable device. Print times may vary. For a list of supported documents and image types, see www.hp.com/go/eprintcenter. And for additional solutions, see www.hp.com/go/mobile-printing-solutions.