- 1 Top 6 Best Printers for Home Compared
- 2 Home Printer Buying Guide
Because no one wants to have to go to the office, or to Fed Ex every time you need to print something out, we’ve compiled this list of the best home printers that are actually worth the money. All the printers on our list are capable of at least 7 pages per minute, can be configured to print on multiple types of paper and use common, readily available cartridges. From printers intended to professional home office settings to wireless home printers designed for printing out your photos, here are some of the best home printers you can buy online. They are all worthy companions for the best computers.
Our top pick, the HP OfficeJet 5255, is among the most versatile and convenient home printers thanks to its dual band WiFi, easy online set up and smartphone scanning and faxing features.
Top 6 Best Printers for Home Compared
#1 HP OfficeJet 5255 – Top PickWHY WE LIKE IT: Fast, high quality printing and easy set up with dual band wifi, plus the convenience of the HP app that lets you use your smartphone as a scanner or easily print from the cloud, make this one of the most well rounded printers on the market. It’s great for professionals, creatives and students, basically anyone who needs to fax, scan and print documents with as little fuss as possible.
This OfficeJet printer is designed to be an all-in-one device for those looking for maximum convenience. To that end, a major selling point is its ability to print wirelessly via mobile app. It can also pair with a mobile phone to scan documents, though the device does limit the format of scan outputs– no TIFF format is available. However, it’s not designed primarily for photos. It does come with a 35-sheet auto loading feature and a clear, responsive touch screen. It has a 100-sheet input and 25-sheet output capacity and prints at up to 10 pages per minute in black and white or 7 ppm in color.
This printer also works with HP’s Instant Ink, a scheduled ink cartridge replacement that theoretically ensures you never run out of ink. No need to look for the best home scanner with this one as it is included.
#2 HP Office Jet 3830 – Honorable MentionWHY WE LIKE IT: A lower priced multifunctional home printer that supports mobile printing and the HP instant ink service, it’s also compact enough to fit unobtrusively in your home office. It’s great for those looking for a home printer that doesn’t take up too much space, and those not needing to print out large volumes of pages or mostly photos.
Though it’s marginally slower than the HP OfficeJet 5255, our top pick, the HP 3830 is much less expensive and matches most of the 5255’s features. It lets you print from anywhere with the HP app and like the 5255 it’s compatible with HP’s Instant Ink for automatic cartridge delivery. It’s also compact, with a footprint of less than 18 by 15 inches, so it can fit neatly next to a laptop or desktop with keyboard. It supports auto feed of up to 35 sheets, and like our top pick, it allows you to use your mobile phone to scan documents. You can also check out the best all in one printer.
The OfficeJet 3830 also functions as a copy machine and fax machine as well. It’s Energy Star- certified and gives you the option, as with the pricer 5255, to use HP’s high yield cartridges. Also like the 5255, our top pick, this OfficeJet functions as a scanner and lets you scan documents with your mobile device, too.
#3 Brother HL2300D – Best MonochromeWHY WE LIKE IT: Professional quality black and white laser printing for the home office, offering speeds of up to 27 pages per minute, more than twice that of the HP OfficeJet printers. It’s great for writers and other professionals who need to reliably print larger documents with multiple pages and who don’t need wifi or color printing.
This is a compact personal laser printer designed to quickly print out black and white documents at a resolution of 2400×600 dpi. With a footprint of about 14 x 14 inches it’s smaller than our top pick, and prints much faster (27 ppm vs 10 ppm for black and white) though it’s not for everyone as it lacks color printing, mobile connectivity or built-in wifi. The only way to connect it is to use your USB cable. However, it can be made to print via wifi if connected to a wireless router or a wireless-enabled computer through the USB connection. Have a look at the best printer for computer for more options.
Its paper tray holds up to 250 pages, handles letter size or legal size paper and it features a more efficient straight through pathway. It also, like our top pick, the OfficeJet 5255, supports automatic double sided printing. The included toner cartridge is rated for 700 pages but may print more if you reset the page count. However, this is an inconvenient process. It must be noted also that laser toner is typically more expensive than inkjet ink.
#4 HP Envy 5055 Photo Printer – Best Photo PrinterWHY WE LIKE IT: A low priced all-in-one printer that supports typical 4X6 photo sizes and borderless printing. It’s great for those looking to print graphics, brochures, postcards or photos and wants the convenience of wireless mobile printing at a low cost.
Designed with small photo printing in mind, this “3-in-1” from HP features dual band wifi, a 2.2-inch touch screen and an input capacity of up to 100 sheets. While it lacks an auto-document feeder or high speed black and white printing, being limited to 10 ppm or 7 ppm with color, these are likely to be less of an issue for those looking to print photos and .PDFs containing graphics. A plus with the HP Envy 5055 is that it supports 4×6 photos as well as letter and legal size paper, something not all printers do. Have a look at the best inkjet printer while you are here.
It also works with the HP app to allow seamless mobile printing and it comes with the option of enrolling in HP’s Instant Ink replenishment service, although the cost of this service, once any promotional periods expire, can quickly exceed the bargain initial price of the printer itself.
#5 Canon Pixma TS512 – Best Cloud/ Mobile PrintingWHY WE LIKE IT: An all-in-one inkjet printer that supports photo printing, mobile printing and scanning, plus it works with Canon’s PIXMA cloud print service. It’s great for busy students and creative professionals who need convenient mobile scanning and printing options.
This is one of the most affordable all-in-one print, copy scan and fax machines for the home office on the market that also supports photo printing in common 4×6, 5×5 and 5×7 sizes. It’s also WiFi-enabled and promises wireless and convenient mobile printing via PictBridge or Canon’s PIXMA cloud print feature. The TS512 lets you scan and save documents to your mobile phone or laptop, send a fax, and print documents ranging from 5×5 to 8.5 x 14 legal size. It will also print on US #10 envelopes. It supports double-sided printing and borderless printing, though set up is a bit tricky, involving software installation and wifi set up on the printer itself, and it lacks a touchscreen.
It prints decent quality black and white as well, with an output speed of up to 13 ppm, slightly faster than our Top Pick, the HP 5255, though still far behind the Brother HL2300D’s 27 ppm. It’s definitely more of a budget all-in-one than a dedicated office printer. See what the best home printer has to offer for comparison.
#6 HP DeskJet 2622 – Best BudgetWHY WE LIKE IT: The most compact all-in-one wireless printer, copier, scanner and fax on our list, it’s also about half the cost of the HP 5255, our top pick. It’s great for anyone looking for an easy-to-use and unobtrusive printer that can fit just about anywhere.
This wireless printer is among the smallest all-in-one home printers on the market, with a footprint of only 16.74 x 11.97 inches. Input and output trays fold up when not in use, adding to its compact form factor. The DeskJet 2622 also has some features even the more expensive Canon Pixma TS512 lacks, such as fax capability. As with the other HP printers on our list, this wireless home printer lets you print from a smartphone or tablet easily, pairing with HP’s Smart App for on the go printing, scanning and ink-level monitoring.
Compared to the more expensive HP 5255, this compact printer may be less suited to higher volume tasks, as it prints slower, 7.5 ppm vs 10 ppm, and its input tray is limited to 60 sheets rather than 100. If you are rocking a Chromebook, check out the best printer for Chromebook.
How We Decided
For choosing the best home printers we looked for models capable of at least 7 pages per minute, and that can be configured to print on multiple types of paper and use common, readily available cartridges. Therefore we included both color printers and the monochrome Brother HL2300D laser printer, which prints black and white but does so significantly faster than the ink jet printers on our list.
While we made an exception for the Brother laser printer, due to it being one of the most affordable home laser printers available, we included only those inkjet printers that offered WiFi for convenient set up and printing.
Home Printer Buying Guide
The Most Important Features to Consider
- Ink Type
Most of the best printers for home on our list use color plus black inlet cartridges; this is the most affordable and generally reliable way of getting good quality color prints at home. A notable exception is the Brother HL2300D, a monochrome laser printer. If you only need to print text or other black and white documents, but printing speed and volume are a priority, you may want to consider a monochrome printer, as this gives you the benefits of laser printing at a price comparable to color inkjet home printers.
- WiFi/ Bluetooth
Depending on your needs, some form of wireless connectivity may be important to you in a home printer. A wifi-enabled printer like our top pick, the HP 5255, can work with a smartphone app such as the HP Smart app and allow you to scan, print and fax documents remotely from your smartphone or tablet.
- Paper Type
The best home printers have input and output trays that don’t limit you to one format of paper. Most can do standard letter size 8.5 x 11 or legal size paper, while some such as the HP Envy, our # 4 pick, offer personal photo friendly 7×5 and 5×5 compatibility. Worth noting, the HP OfficeJet printers like our top pick, the OfficeJet 5255, as well as the Canon Pixma TS512, will print on envelopes as well.
- Scan, Copy and Fax Functionality
Many of the top home printers are “all-in-one” or “three-in-one” printers offering scan, copy and fax functions as well as printing. The HP 5255, our top pick, does all of these as well as letting you scan with your phone and then send the scanned document as a fax.
- Print Speed
When printing in black and white, most of the best affordable inkjet printers can do from 8 to 13 pages per minute, and when printing full color this tends to be more like 7 pages per minute. Any slower than that and you might feel you could have saved time by going to a print shop. If you’re looking to print longer black and white documents or print speed is a priority, consider a lower-priced laser printer like the Brother HL2300D.
Printer for Home FAQs
How long do the ink cartridges last?
Depending on the printer and cartridge type, the ink generally works for a few hundred pages with InkJet printers. The toner cartridge that ships with the Brother HL2300D laser printer is rated for 700 pages, though if you follow a complicated reset procedure you can usually get a few hundred more pages out of it. Laser printer toner cartridges are also more expensive than inkjet cartridges. The HP “high yield” cartridges, compatible with the OfficeJet 5255, our top pick, as well as the OfficeJet 3830, our #2 pick, are good for about 300 pages.
Are these difficult to set up?
Set-up complexity varies from printer to printer and depending on the operating system. Most of the best home printers offer a relatively easy, guided online process, or let you set them up with free downloadable software, as with the HP OfficeJet series which offers both. The Canon Pixma, our #5 pick, comes with a CD as well as a mobile app. The Brother HL2300D is somewhat more tricky to set up on a Mac, especially if you need to use a router to add wireless functionality to the printer.
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