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Here at CityInkExpress, we are often asked for advice on which printer model would be best for our customers. In this blog post, we hope to shed some light on the sometimes bewildering array of options available in the market.

 

 

Toner or Inkjet?

 

Traditionally, businesses have always chosen a laser printer over an inkjet because of the reduced running costs involved with a laser printer. That is no longer necessarily the case, and many small or medium businesses (SMBs) are taking advantage of the latest business inkjet offerings from the various printer manufacturers, with real-world print speeds of up to 22 pages per minute. Fitting a continuous ink system can often be cheaper than using toner cartridges, and the reduced startup costs are very attractive.

 

 

Which Printer Manufacturer?

 

Generally speaking, Canon produce the printers most suited to photo printing, and many of their models are able to handle cardstock up to 300GSM (grams per square metre).

 

Epson produce fantastic all-round printers, and their small-in-one printers from the Expression range are well suited to families on a budget.

 

Brother printers are relatively fuss-free, cheap printers suited to a variety of uses. Whether you are a small business looking to print invoices, or need a printer to handle your children's homework, a Brother printer may well be the way to go.

 

 

How Much to Spend?

 

Budget is a concern for most people, and we will always do our best to meet all of your requirements, but as with everything you get what you pay for. We can help you find a professional quality photo printer, or a high-speed printer for invoices, for under £100, but there will be a trade-off in terms of other functions. Ideally, you should look to buy a printer which does everything you need it to, and nothing more. That way, you won't be spending money on a function you won't use.

 

There is also another key point to consider when buying a new printer: running costs. One of the cheapest printers currently on the market is the Canon iP2850, starting at around £30 plus VAT. If you need a basic printer for occasional use, it may well be the way to go, but the cartridges can cost £25 a set, and will only last for around 180 pages. Clearly, printer price isn't everything.

 

 

You're Not Helping. Which Printer Should I Buy?

 

Alright, back on topic. You need a printer, and you don't know which one. There are too many to choose from, and you don't know how to narrow it down. The easiest way to choose a printer is to ask yourself the following questions:

 

  • How much do I want to spend?
  • Do I need a scanner/copier, or just a printer?
  • Should the printer be wireless? Will I want to print from my phone?
  • What kind of things will I be printing? Is it for card-making, invoice printing, photo printing, or a mixture of everything?
  • How much printing will I do?
  • Will I need to print double-sided?
  • Do I want to print in A3, or just A4?
  • Is there anything else I want the printer to do, or any other features I would like (e.g. printing onto CDs, fax capability, or a rear tray for cardstock).

 

If you can answer most of these, we will find the printer for you. Here are some examples of printers which we might recommend for different uses*:

 

 

"I just want a printer. For printing."

The Epson WF-3010DW is a fantastic little printer. It is completely lacking in bells and whistles, which means that the money goes to producing one of the best small printers on the market. At 9.2 colour pages per minute (or 15ppm in black and white), with automatic duplexing and wireless functionality, and a 250-sheet paper tray as standard, the WF-3010DW punches well above its weight in terms of print quality and speed. If you want all of this and a scanner as well, you would have to spend twice as much on the printer!

 

 

"I need something cheap with a scanner to print the kids' homework, and occasional photos."

Epson's Expression small-in-one printers are ideal for light use in a home environment. The XP-225 is the cheapest currently on offer, and for just £45 you can have a USB printer/scanner/copier capable of handling all types of printing.

 

 

"I need a printer for the office, as cheap as possible. I mainly print invoices."

Brother's all-in-one printers offer a very competitively priced option for small businesses or home offices. With prices from £75, the DCP-J4110DW is a real workhorse. With print speeds of 16 pages per minute, and the option of occasional A3 printing as well as a scanner/copier, many businesses should look no further than Brother's J4000 range of printers. For larger offices, the J5000 series is well worth a look, as they are more suited to heavy use.

 

 

"I want a professional-quality photo printer, but I don't want to spend any money."

The Canon Pixma iP7250 was made for photo printing. For just £60, you can have a wireless printer with a maximum print resolution of 9600*4800 dpi, and capable of handling cardstock up to 300gsm.

 

 

"I would like a printer for heavy use in the office."

This is a request we get a lot, and there are plenty of options to choose from. Whether it's Epson WorkForce Pro range, Canon's new MAXIFY printers, HP's OfficeJet Pro or Brother's J5000/6000 range, there is a huge range of inkjet printers available for SMBs. Different prices and print speeds, along with other options such as fax and double-sided scanning, enable you to find the perfect printer for your requirements.

 

 

"I don't like any of those. My needs are different."

That's not a problem. Drop us an email to admin@cityinkexpress.co.uk and we'll find a printer/CISS combination to suit any environment.

 


*Prices and current models are correct as of 29/01/2015. Links provided are to printer bundles, with a CISS and 100ml bottles of ink included in the price.

As a little homage to Epson, we thought we’d review one of their most popular laser printers – the Epson C1100! Now we sell Epson C1100 toner cartridges, but we’re also interested in how well the printer itself performs. Here’s how we got on:

 

The Epson C1100 is a great printer for small offices or workgroups. With a speed of 25 ppm (pages per minute) this is a fairly speedy machine that will make light work of large documents. If it’s vivid colour you are after the Epson C1100 creates uniform colours using special AcuBrite toners!

 

The Epson C1100 has a fairly simple control panel that is intuitive and pleasantly illuminates. With a 180 sheet multi-purpose tray this device will more than suffice for small workloads and office duties. Though you shouldn’t need to purchase Epson C1100 toner cartridges too often, when you do you will be pleased with the clear, colourful results it produces – this is thanks to Epson AcuLaser Colour 2400 Resolution Improvement Technology no less.

 

 

What we mainly like about this printer is just how simple it is to use and maintain. The last thing you need in a small office environment is an arduous machine to drain precious time. The Epson C1100 is perfect as it is a great little workhorse of a colour printer that even has some gusto too.

 

Should you need Epson C1100 toner cartridges, you can find a stunning selection here at City Ink Express.

It’s no wonder we sell a lot of Epson toner cartridges, they make some of the finest laser printers on the market. To celebrate the wondrous Japanese manufacturers, we have thrown together a list of our top 3 best-selling Epson toner cartridges, and a little about the printer models themselves.

 

Epson M2400D


We sell a shed load of Epson M2400D, which is somewhat surprising considering how long their cartridges usually last - due to their high page-yield. The Epson M2400D itself is a fine little workhorse of a machine making it ideal for small to medium-sized office spaces. The quality of the print itself is nothing but professional, and with a speed of up to 35 ppm (pages per minute) it is a fast little worker too. If you need Epson M2400D toner cartridges – original or compatible – please visit our model page.

 

Epson C1100


A significant amount of Epson C1100 toner leaves our store, whether it be black or coloured, or indeed Epson’s own cartridges or a compatible alternative. This is another fine Epson laser printer, though intended for slightly less-ample use than the previous model. As such, the Epson C1100 is aimed at small workgroups, or even individuals. This affordable printer still benefits from a swift speed of 25ppm, and the fact it’s a colour model means you needn’t waste money on separate devices. Should you need Epson C1100 toner, we have plenty of options for you to choose from.

 

Epson M2000


 Last but by no means least, customers just can’t seem to get enough of our Epson M2000 toner cartridges, and with the selection we have to offer it’s no wonder! The printer itself is equally popular, and with its 28ppm speed and flexible duplex options it is a high-quality machine also. The Epson M200 was aimed at individuals and small workgroups, where it reliably produces professional looking prints time after time. To see our selection of M2000 toner, follow this link and see what we have to offer.

If you are looking for an Epson CISS printer bundle, the good news is we have now some brand new models in! We now stock the Epson XP-510, XP-610, XP-615, XP-710, and the XP-810!


This means that if you are seeking a cost effective printing solution for a quality Epson printer, your choice has grown even larger. All of our printer bundles contain eveything you need to get started, so all you need do is pick whichever one caters to your particular printing needs!


Why pay more for your printing?

I have dealt with Cityink for a few years now.  During that time I have purchased two of their kits for 2 different Epsom printers.  The kits are of excellent quality and have saved me a fortune in cartridges.  My first printer needed 6 different inks, and before my Cityink kit, one set of "genuine" Epson cartridges cost as much as the whole kit, which was complete with six bottles of good quality ink. 

 

Apart from the initial cost, the other obvious advantages are that, whereas with cartridges, every time you clean the heads a lot of ink is used which soon empties the cartridges: also, when putting in new cartridges, a lot of ink is wasted.  The kit, on the other hand, as its name implies "continuous ink supply," gives a constant supply of ink so there is no wastage due to continual changing of cartridges.  When I changed my expensive printer (due to mechanical malfunction) I bought a cheaper Epson with 4 inks and so had to buy a new kit, which I am still using 3 years on.  The kits are GREAT. 


I must also mention, that I am not a computer expert and the number of times I have e-mailed for assistance it has been immediately forthcoming from Shane, who must have sometimes been tearing out his hair with frustration.  He has been, and is, an absolute brick and the advice, help and prompt after-sales service he has given me is second to none. 

 

A final note; I thought I was going to have to replace my printer because it was telling me it was at the end of its life.  I contacted Shane for advice and he put me in touch with another company who supplied me with a plastic tank to catch the surplus ink instead of it running into an absorbent pad inside the printer, and more importantly how to reset the printer.  Thanks to Cityink and Shane I am still up and running and printing out pictures, by the boatload, for family and friends. 

 

In conclusion; I can highly recommend Cityink and will continue to use them as long as I am able.  Thanks very much Cityink.

 

Richard