Classification of Printer

Printer classification based on their technology. Typical printer types are:
1. Dot matrix printer
2. Ink-jet printer
3. Laser printer

Dot Matrix Printer

dot-matrix-printer, Toner SaveA dot matrix printer or impact matrix printer refers to a type of computer printer with a print head that runs back and forth on the page and prints by impact, striking an ink-soaked cloth ribbon against the paper, much like a typewriter.
Dot-matrix technology uses a series or matrix of pins to create printed dots arranged to form characters on a piece of paper. Because the printing involves mechanical pressure, these printers can create carbon copies and carbonless copies.
The print head mechanism pushes each pin into the ribbon, which then strikes the paper.
Many offices and government agencies use them because they can make multiple copies at lowest cost. Although dot matrix printers have been replaced in most homes and offices by newer, sexier inkjet and laser printers , they still retain a substantial portion of the market in their niches. Purchase your ribbon here.

1.They can print on multi-part stationary or make carbon copies
2. Low printing cost
3. They can bear environmental conditions.
4. Long life

1. Noise
2. Low resolution
3. Very limiter Color performance
4. Low speed

Ink Jet Printers

An inkjet printer is a type of computer printer that creates a digital image by propelling droplets of ink onto paper. Inkjet printers are the most commonly used type of printer and range from small inexpensive consumer models to very large professional machines that can cost up to thousands of dollars. Its consumable called inkjet cartridge.

1. Low printer cost
2. Compact size
3. Low noise
4. no warm up time compare to laser printer


1. The ink is often very expensive (for a typical OEM cartridge cost RM70 for 16ml, RM4375 per liter)

[Updated 26 Oct 2012] This point no longer exist in some latest models of InkJet Printer. For Example,  HP 46 Black can print 1,500 pages at the price of RM 37 

2. Lifetime of inkjet prints produced by inkjet printer is limited. They will eventually fade and the color balance may change.
3. Easy get “blur” if get water drop.
4. Easy to get clogging on inkjet nozzles.
5. Must print it once every few days. Make sure print head won’t dried up.

Laser Printers:

Laser printer, Toner SaveLaser printing is the most advance technology. In Laser printing, a computer sends data to the printer. Printer translates this data into printable image data. This kind of printers uses xerographic principle. A laser beam discharges photo sensitive drum. A Latent Image is created on drum, during development process toner is attracted to the drum surface and then transferred to the paper. Its consumable called toner cartridge or laser toner. Buy laser toner here.

1. Low cost per page. Compare to inkjet printer
2. Low noise
3. High speed
4. High printing quality


1. Laser printers are more expensive, but getting more affordable these year. (Now can get RM 2xx for mono laser printer, below RM 600 for color laser printer)
2. Their size are generally larger.

Need some suggestion on Laser printer? read more on How to choose your entry level mono laser printer?

About Nelson Ng

I live in Klang Valley, Malaysia and run a Toner Cartridge Supply business.