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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.

My first CISS from City Ink Express was bought 3 years ago and I am still using it! The original printer passed away 2 years ago and I just transferred the CISS to a new printer. Simples! Shane at CIE is wonderfully patient and helpful, and although I was a complete novice he managed to turn me into a CISS expert!

 

Currently I am running two ip4850 printers and an ix6500 A3 printer (which has to be the best A3 printer bargain on the planet), all with CISS’s from Shane - one of the CISS’s is on its 3rd printer (started with a 4700, then a 3600 and now on a 4850). The inks are all the same (just in different orders) and the chips from the cartridges supplied with the printer can just be transferred to the old CISS cartridges.

 

As my business expands (yes, I am making a profit thanks to the reduced ink costs!), I will be ordering more CISS’s from Shane. The range of Canon printers he now has CISS’s for is amazing. There is absolutely no discernable difference between a CISS with Lyson ink and the original cartridges. OK, my eyes are not what they used to be, but a young photographer friend of mine cannot tell the difference either.

 

If you are worried about investing in one of City Ink Express’s CISS’s then don’t – talk to Shane & if you are still not convinced email him & he will pass the email to me – I’ll soon convince you!

 

Ian

Cityinkexpress offer amazing value that makes colour printing cheaper than ever! I print approximately 2800 double sided colour A4 sheets (5600 prints) for a  village newsletters every 2 months plus a lot of business printing. I reckon the 5600 prints I have done in the last week cost slightly over 1 penny each! I actually printed nearly all of them with the ink that came with the CISS system apart from a top up of black ink.

 

I very quickly stopped buying the molten gold they put in original cartidges and for years I was buying cheap compatible cartridges then I started to buy refillable cartridges, refilling them with syringes. Then I saw Cityinkexpress’s CISS systems and I am certain there is no cheaper way to print.

 

With a decent printer and a CISS system you just keep topping up the CISS with ink (just pour it in) and that’s it! The huge amount of ink that comes with the system gives me an almost immediate payback. They are very helpful too, I wear out a printer every few months and I always ask them to suggest a printer then I get a CISS system and a printer to match it so I never have to buy any cartridges.

 

I see they now do packs with printers and CISS systems so it will be easier than ever next time. Thanks Cityinkexpress!

 

Best regards,

 

Cliff

Received CISS ink system within 3 days of ordering, up and running in a matter of hours with excellent print results. A must for anyone who is printing on a day to day basis.


Best Regards,


Jack

I have to say my CISS Ink System saves me a fortune, the ink quality is great, the set up is simple, refilling is a breeze, all in all we could not ask for more from a product!