How To Choose a Portable Printer

Not everyone works in a traditional office all the time.  Many people choose to sit in coffee shops, local libraries or anywhere where they can sit and park their laptops.  Some even travel the globe.  Everything has gone mobile including the printing of documents, photographs, web pages and other types of files and information.

Portable printers are compact and versatile.  People in business find them most useful because they can make printouts anywhere in the world!  Most portable printers weigh less than five pounds.  They can fit in briefcases and backpacks.  You can even operate them without the need for an electrical power source.  Different types of batteries, car adapters as well as AC adapters can power these printers on the go. They can be connected directly to your laptop or digital camera or accessed via USB, SD card or through Bluetooth technology.

Here are some things to consider when shopping for a portable printer.

Define your printing requirements.  Even before searching for that portable printer for your laptop, make sure you know what you will be printing.  Documents only?  High quality pictures and presentations?  Receipts and invoices?  Purely black-and-white or colored?  Will you be doing volume printing or just a few pages at a time?  By knowing what you need to print, you can narrow your search for a portable printer.

Set a budget.  There are pricey portable printers and there are mid-range ones.  Set a ceiling on what you are willing to spend.  Then you can work out which printer to purchase when you have a list of candidates.  There are printers starting at $250 going up.

Printing technology.  There are three basic types of printing technology to choose from:  Inkjet, Laser and Thermal.  The inkjet is a popular choice for its versatility.  You can choose high quality inkjet printers for picture quality.  Or opt for lower dots per inch (dpi) if you always print text anyway.  Laser printers are best for presentations materials.  This type of printer is used for bulk printing jobs.  Toners are more expensive than ink cartridges but they last longer.  Thermal printers are great for printing invoices and receipts but not presentation quality materials.  Thermal paper may be quite pricey but you can find printers of this type that weigh no more than 10 ounces.

Weight.  The heavier the printer, the less portable it is but the performance may prove worth the extra load.  The printed pages are also bigger and the larger printers are often less expensive.  The life of the battery is usually longer compared to smaller models.  Still, smaller portable printers are easier to take a long even if they are costlier and have shorter battery life.

Portable or wireless model.  Wireless models allow you to print without your laptop being physically attached to the printer.  This requires an Ethernet port and a wireless router.

Printing on the go has never been easier with the many options for portable printers in the market.  Whatever your needs are, there is a portable printer out there for you.  Your specific requirements will be the basis for selecting the right portable printer.   Check out user reviews online of portable printers and ask colleagues and friends for recommendations as well.  They may offer you more useful information as users rather than relying solely on sales persons.


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