How to Select Color Laser Printer for Small Business Use

Unlike inkjet and black and white laser printers, color laser printer technology and pricing have not reached their matured stage yet because the demand in the consumer market is still developing. The choices of color laser printers that are competitively priced with good printing quality and low maintenance cost are limited.

An entry level or higher end color laser printer for small business use is sold in the market range of about $300 – $500 (not MSRP price). Some printers may be priced in the low $200 range, but they are for household light usage only.

Color Quality
It is important to compare the printout quality of the color printers. There are significant differences from one model to another. There is less difference in the printout quality of black and white laser printers. Most color laser printers can produce comparable quality printouts for general purpose light usage. However, when it comes to commercial printing quality, some brands and models can do better than the others.

Printing Speed
Some cheaper low end models print extremely slowly. To check out the speed of a specific model, you can test print some pages in the retail store. If you are making online purchase, you should compare the printing speed, that is, the maximum pages per minute (ppm) of the printers being considered.

Page yield specification
Page yield means the number of pages that can be printed at 5% coverage. A toner cartridge that has 4000 page yield can print roughly double the number of pages of a toner that has 2000 page yield. Comparing the cost per page of different printer models will give you an objective measure on your selection of printers. As an example, a $60 toner cartridge with a 4000 page yield ($0.015 cost per page) is actually cheaper than a $40 toner cartridge with 2000 page yield ($0.02 cost per page).

Cost of replacement toner
The recurring cost of replacing the laser toner is an important factor in the selection of your color laser printer. There are usually a set of 4 toner cartridges in a color printer: CYMK or cyan, magenta, yellow and key (black). A set of OEM toner cartridges can easily cost from $300 to $400. Compatible laser toners are sold at half of the price of OEM cartridges or at even deeper discounts. Therefore when purchasing your new printer, you should first check the availability and pricing of the compatible toner cartridges of the particular model you want.

Printer Brands
If the availability of competitively priced compatible laser toner cartridges is a significant consideration for you, you will find out that the supply of compatible laser toner cartridges is limited to a few brands, primarily, HP, Brother, Samsung and Canon. HP has over 50% of the market share and offers more choices of color laser printers. Followed remotely behind in the respective market share will be Brother, Samsung and Canon. You will be able to find limited supply of compatible toner cartridges for Dell, Lexmark, OKi, Minolta and Xerox color laser printers.

Color Laser Printers

In 1993, the ‘ColorScript Laser 1000’ was introduced by QMS for $12,499 as the first color laser printer. Today, laser printing has steadily grown as a useful means of communication. This has been given a good backing by color laser printers. Today, 60% of the home printers and 8% of office printers have color capability.

The basic idea was to combine the features of both laser and inkjet technology in order to achieve a printer package serving many purposes. In color laser printers, a CMYK toner mixture was used instead of the traditional black toner. This additional quality increased the cost of color laser printers to twice as much as that of monochrome laser printers.

A fine color laser printer has features such as good speed, low price, high quality, and excellent output. Samsung is believed to be the one of the best brands for getting a color laser printer. A color laser printer of entry-level can be obtained for about $1,300.

Saving time and increasing productivity are some of the obvious benefits of a color laser printer. The importance of getting a color laser printer is evident from the fact that color output has become a crucial element in building the image of a company, like that of an advertising agency, marketing institute or a media house, which is why it is looked upon as an ‘investment’ and not a ‘buy’. Even after purchase, the operating costs are very low. In case of outsourced printing, a 20% color covered page will be cheaper.

In this era of high-competition and a constant struggle to achieve excellence, it is imperative for organizations to run their businesses with the help of color laser printers in order to maintain their image.

Best Color Laser Printer: A Review of the HP Color LaserJet 2600n Printer

If you’re looking for the best color laser printer, it isn’t unlikely that you come across an HP model, since the company is well known for its excellent printers. One of their fantastic models is the HP Color LaserJet 2600n Printer, an older model with very good features. This review will cover everything you need to know about this printer.


The appearance of this laser printer is very unusual. It has the look of a small washing machine, and it’s also plain white and silver in finish which makes it simple and easy to match with any home d├ęcor. It has the dimensions of 14.6” x 17.83” x 16.02” and a weight of 34.5 pounds. It has a nice and compact footprint and you can easily settle it on any tabletop or desktop. But it is a little tall so you can’t keep it in a shelf or cabinet.

It has very simple buttons and a tiny LCD display which make accessing the device easier. This is an older model so it does not have wireless capabilities. You have to limit your distance from the main computer to this printer to the length of the wire that connects them. This is no problem if you only use the printer for a single PC, but if you have several computers that you need to access the printer with, then this is not the device for you.

Printing and Other Functions

This is not only a good printer in quality, but it also has great features such as printing speed. It can produce both color and black documents on letter size paper in as fast as 8 pages per minute or approximately 7.5 seconds per page. It has a true resolution of 600×600 dpi and the ImageREt 2400 produces 2400 dpi through a multilevel printing process. It also features manual duplex printing which allows you to save more paper and print brochures and flyers back to back easily.

It has two paper trays and the top output bin has a capacity of 125 sheets. You can add an optional third tray which is a universal tray that can carry up to 250 sheets for easier printing. This eliminates the need to refill the printer frequently and you don’t have to pause printing just to put more paper in the feeder. The memory of the printer is 16 MB which is big enough for you to keep several documents pending or print a very long and complex document without problems of getting cut in the middle of the process. These features easily qualify this model as the best color laser printer.

The only catch about this model is that it consumer ink at a very fast pace, and even if you only use black ink, the colored ink cartridges also get used up. This can be quite frustrating, especially because the original cartridges of this printer are worth more than the printer itself. But it produces excellent output and it’s a very good printing device so if you can overlook that, you’ll definitely be satisfied with its printing capabilities. Other Features

This printer features the N-up function which allows you to print more than one page on a single sheet – a paper-saving function that can also reduce your clutter. It’s also an Energy Star compliant device so you can be sure that it’s energy efficient. Not only you but Mother Nature also benefits from the use of this printer in lieu of another.


There may be a lot of laser printers in the market, but the HP Color LaserJet 2600n Printer can stand out as the best color laser printer that you can ever get. If you don’t mind the ink consumption and you’re after the excellent printouts that this device can produce, then I recommend you get it now while there are still some sellers who offer it. It has already been discontinued by HP and only a few people can have the privilege to use it, and if you want to be one of them, then you better move fast and find a seller today.