Printer Buyer’s Guide: Back to School 2009

by Reads (3,691)
Cameras | Desktops | Notebooks | Phones | PRINTERS | Software

Much to the chagrin of students everywhere, it’s August and the summer is officially winding down. But the season brings one bonus to kids and parents alike: back to school sales!

Back to school

The staff at PrinterComparionson.com has put together a buyer’s guide of all the top printers for those students, teachers, and parents getting ready to hit the books again this fall.

But since the recent economy has hit us all, we’ve split our guide into three price ranges to make things as simple as possible. So what are you waiting for? Go on – find the perfect printer for your student!

Under $100 | $100-$300 | Over $300

arrow Under $100

HP Deskjet D2600

HP Deskjet D2600


A single function color inkjet printer that is under $100 and made from 50% recycled materials – perfect for the green at heart and the student who needs to print hundreds of papers.

Canon Pixma iP4600

Canon Pixma iP4600


More interested in printing photos than papers? Take a look at Canon’s Pixma ip4600, a great photo printer that can handle a ton of paper types.

Canon Pixma MX330

Canon Pixma MX330


Need an affordable all-in-one for college? The Pixma MX330 gives a student the power to print, scan, copy and fax while promising quick print speeds, borderless 4×6 photos and a built-in 30 page ADF.

arrow $100-$300

Epson Artisan 800

Epson Artisan 800


One of our personal favorites, the Epson Artisan 800 is the creative person’s all-in-one printer. I have yet to review an inkjet in this price range that prints photos like the Artisan 800. Plus, Epson offers a ton of features for designing and creating projects and crafts through the provided software and the Epson website.
Epson NX515

Epson Stylus NX515


New to the scene, the Stylus NX515 is stylish, compact all-in-one with many layers. Features include built-in Wi-Fi and Ethernet connectivity, laser quality text, a built-in card reader and print speeds up to 36 pages per minute.

arrow Inkjets versus laser printers

Laser Printer

When it comes to printers, most general consumers go with inkjets because they have a low initial cost and manufacturers generally market inkjets as home or student printers. But laser printers can often save users a bundle of money over the long run thanks to a super low cost per page – even when printing in color. The best plan of action when deciding what kind of printer you or your student needs is to make a list of features you would like: duplexing printing, wireless connectivity, scanning, or photo printing to name a few.

Once you’ve made the decision of what you need in a printer, its time to shop around. There are many great name brand prints on the market for cheap this time of year so if you don’t think you can afford the high initial cost of a laser printer, you may be pleasantly surprised. If you do go with the inkjet to save on your budget now, price out the ink supplies before you make a purchase and read up on the estimated prints per cartridge you can expect. Also, many new inkjet printers have individual cartridges which can help consumers save money on color prints over the long run.

HP Photosmart Premium

HP Photosmart Premium Fax


Another Editor’s Choice, the latest Photosmart Premium Fax all-in-one from HP comes with all the bells and whistles standard. It prints, scans, copies, faxes, prints photos and CD/DVDs. It is also DLNA certified meaning your student can print wirelessly from any DLNA certified device (think PlayStation 3). It may be the perfect dorm accessory!

HP Photosmart C4780

HP Photosmart C4780


The Photosmart C4780 was one of the highlights of HP’s back to school campaign and it doesn’t hurt that at $129, it barely made this price bracket. This all-in-one printer features print speeds up to 29 ppm, built-in Wi-Fi and the HP TouchSmart Panel. Oh, did we mention it uses HP Original recycled ink cartridges?

Kodak ESP 9

Kodak ESP 9


If you haven’t seen Kodak’s Print and Prosper campaign then you might not know that the ESP line of printers could save you some serious dough when it comes to ink costs. Plus, its prints great color photos.

Lexmark X6650

Lexmark X6650


A proud member of Lexmark’s home and student line, the X6650 is an easy to use all-in-one with wireless connectivity and print speeds up to 25 pages per minute. Plus, the $129 price tag isn’t bad, either.

arrow Over $300

Lexmark E360dn

Lexmark E360dn


Happen to be a grad student or teacher that prints like it’s your job? A laser printer may be for you, my friend. This compact monochrome laser may seem expensive at first but after you’ve printed over 2,000 pages without changing the toner, you may be glad you spent a little extra.

Xerox Phaser 8860

Xerox Phaser 8560


The Xerox Phaser 8560’s solid ink system is environmentally friendly and great for printing high quality, bulk color documents for close to the same cost of a laser printer using toner cartridges.

Canon Pixma Pro9500 Mark II

Canon Pixma Pro9500 Mark II


Photography student or just a photo enthusiast? Either way, the second generation of Canon Pixma Pros is definitely a great choice for printing high quality photos of various sizes. The Pixma Pro9500 is the way to go for black and white fiends but if you aren’t looking for that perfect black and white shot go with the Pro9000, the less expensive version.

arrow Looking for more?

Moms, Dads, and Grads

Whether you’re shopping for your student or just looking to land a great deal, back to school season is a great time to check out what’s next in tech. Let the editors of the TechnologyGuide.com network help you pick the right camera, smartphone, printer, desktop, or notebook, with our Back to School Buyer’s Guide.

To see our top tech picks in all categories visit our main buyer’s guide page on TechnologyGuide.com.

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