The 8 Best All In One Laser Printers
This wiki has been updated 14 times since it was first published in January of 2018. If you or your business regularly needs to print high-resolution documents, scan and copy for your records, and even send the occasional fax, then you should get your hands on one of these all-in-one laser printers. Compared to inkjet models, these create much sharper text, and they do so incredibly quickly. We've ranked them for you here by their print quality, speed, and menu design. When users buy our independently chosen editorial recommendations, we may earn commissions to help fund the Wiki. If you'd like to contribute your own research to the Wiki, please get started by reviewing this introductory video.
August 19, 2020:
Many of the models included on our previous list have seen upgrades, like the Canon Color ImageClass MF743CDW, which gained an NFC connection point over its predecessor that allows users to tap their phones and instantly initiate jobs they have queued up. Other models, like the Lexmark MC2535 and the Brother 3750CDW Digital Color remain among their companies' top choices for laser units, with that Brother model being particularly fast.
Newcomers to the list include the HP Laserjet Enterprise Flow, which is undeniably a professional-grade selection, and that could serve the needs of a busy office. Its touchscreen measures nine inches — larger than many tablets out there — and it pairs with a full QWERTY keyboard for task handling that conveniently tucks away when you don't need it. This is a very pricey option, though, so it's definitely not ideal for the average home. Anyone looking for something simple they can deploy in their house to get the speed and clarity of laser prints without as much fuss should look to the Brother Compact HL-L3290. It does away with the automatic document feeder you see on so many office-oriented models, saving you space and helping to keep its price as low as possible.
May 01, 2019:
The entirety of last year's list has been removed, and rightly so. There's nothing inherently wrong with the ranking we'd created, but every model on it comes from a company that's released something better since then, and our new set of products reflects that. You'll find more reliable Bluetooth and Wi-Fi connections, better performing apps, and increases in the speed and quality of printing. The Canon ImageClass model at number one is a great example of this, coming from one of the most lauded imaging companies in history. In addition to a large, responsive touchscreen interface, this model gets its first page out in just a hair over 10 seconds.
One of the things you'll notice as you move down the list is that the quality and size of the interface degrades the farther you get from the top three. Since most of these machines are intended for home and small business office settings, it's important that they be as easy to use as possible, and an archaic, monochromatic display only makes things tougher to use in this day and age.
Why Choose Laser?
Inkjet printers are also generally smaller, less expensive at the entry level, and faster in terms of warm-up time.
The two most ubiquitous types of printers on the market are the inkjet and the laser printer. There’s a good chance that you know some of the differences between the two, but it’s important that we go over it here to make sure you get exactly the product you need.
Most of the printers you’ve probably encountered in your life have been of the inkjet variety. That means that they physically spray their ink onto a page as it’s passing by. This can be a great thing, especially when it comes to blending colors together to create more realistic images from photo documents. Laser isn’t the best at this. Inkjet is like Bob Ross mixing paints on his easel, creating otherworldly hues that somehow fit perfectly into his landscapes. If Mr. Ross were a laser printer, those colors would have strange edges to them, or seem alientating to the eye when applied to his canvas.
Inkjet printers are also generally smaller, less expensive at the entry level, and faster in terms of warm-up time. Of course, that’s not to say that everything's coming up roses for inkjet. There are a lot of problems lurking beneath the surface, especially if efficiency and clarity are important to you. And the cost of ink for inkjet printers can become a real burden for most users, especially if their printer is intended for office use.
Laser printers may take a minute to warm up, but once they get going, they’re plenty faster than their inkjet brothers. When handling text in particular, laser printers create some of the clearest prints imaginable. This is particularly important in fields where multi-page, text-heavy documents are needed frequently, like law offices, for example. Because of this, laser printers are also usually built to withstand long, intensive print jobs, making them the more durable choice for professionals.
What Qualifies As An All-In-One Printer?
If you’re in the market for a printer, whether for your home, office, or home office, you’ve probably seen the term “all-in-one” bandied about on nearly every model you’ve come across. It raises the question as to what exactly a printer has to be capable of to be considered an all-in-one model.
It raises the question as to what exactly a printer has to be capable of to be considered an all-in-one model.
Obviously, an AIO printer should be able to do more than just print. Any printer claiming that status that does nothing but produce printed pages is probably from a manufacturer you don’t want to trust. For the most part, however, the industry sticks to a relative standard when it comes to this kind of machine.
Most AIO printers will print, scan, and copy, while some also fax. The inclusion of a faxing feature was once an expected part of an all-in-one, but as that technology becomes less and less ubiquitous, it isn’t necessary any longer for a printer to fax in order to earn this designation of versatility. Not sure how a fax machine works? Never even heard of one? Well, use your space phone to read this, and you’ll get the idea.
At the end of the day, you might not utilize all the features that an AIO printer has to offer, but you’ll be glad you have access to them if and when you need them. Otherwise you’d end up taking up half an office with dedicated scanners and copiers, which may be some office employees’ vision of hell.
What To Look For In An All-In-One
Now that you’ve decided that you want a laser all-in-one all to yourself, you still need to choose from a litany of viable options. Presumably, you’ll need a printer that can copy, print, and scan (and maybe even fax), but there are other features to look out for that differentiate one model from the next.
One important feature to look out for is the duty cycle. This is especially important if you know you’re going to be bringing a tremendous number of pages. A printer’s duty cycle is usually listed per day or per month, and it’s a maximum amount of pages you can run through a printer before you risk it needing unscheduled maintenance. Generally speaking, the higher this number is, the better, though you can sacrifice some cycle capacity if you know you won’t use your printer to its full potential and you want to cut costs.
Now that you’ve decided that you want a laser all-in-one all to yourself, you still need to choose from a litany of viable options.
On the topic of capacity, a given printer’s tray capacity is another important feature. That will determine how often you have to refill its tray, and can create unnecessary limitations on larger jobs that require more than the tray can handle. Some larger options will have multiple trays capable of handling a variety of paper sizes, as well, and these can be very useful if your office deals in different formats.
If you know you’re going to rely heavily on scan, copy, and faxing features, an auto-feed tray is a must. This is the slanted platform on the top of a printer that allows you to line up a series of pages, hit a button, and have them automatically make their way through the machine’s scanning face. A good auto-feed mechanism makes quick work of large copying jobs, but each has its own page capacity, as well, so make sure it suits the task at hand.
Of course, none of this is relevant if the printer itself isn’t easy to use. Most manufacturers today have taken pains to create intuitive menu interfaces, many of which work with touchscreen displays to make navigating and organizing jobs that much easier. That said, some people prefer manual buttons dedicated to certain functions, so they don't have to go diving around through menus and submenus to get simple jobs done.
On the off chance that you work in an industry that still relies heavily on faxes, you’ll want to look for a unit with a physical number pad. This is one of the most useful of the few button features that sometimes still exist outside of the touchscreen display, and it makes dialing up for faxes a breeze.
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