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    Types of printers

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    Aina Prat Blasi
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    A printer is a peripheral that when connected to a computer or computer network with a wired or wireless connection offers the ability to print on paper, text or graphics products with an application. Inheriting typewriter technology, they have undergone major changes over time.


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    Currently, most of the printers sold in the market are so-called models multifunction printers, which provide us, in addition to the ability to print, copier and scanner functions or image acquisition.



    These types of printers incorporate a technology barely dreamed of a few years ago when the dot matrix printers reigned, and which provide the user with very important flexibility, since they can perform many tasks, even without being physically connected to a PC.

    Types of printers

    Printers are generally classified taking into account characteristics such as the color scale it is capable of printing, i.e. color or black and white, the type of connection, the number of pages per minute they can process and print and the specific type of technology it uses for this.


    As for the type of connection, there are several protocols to be printed like Ethernet, wireless via Wi-Fi, parallel port and USB, the latter is the most modern and used today.

    In the following paragraphs we will get to know the different ones types of printers we can find on the market and their main characteristics. By knowing how they work and the type of functionality they offer, we can have a better view and, in this way, make a smart purchase that fits our real needs.



    Needle printers

    One of the oldest printing technologies. In this type, there is a print head consisting of one or more vertical lines of needles, which upon impact on an ink-impregnated ribbon print one dot per needle. The more needles, the higher the definition of the print. There are models of dot matrix printers with 4, 9 or 18 needles.


    Although this is an outdated technology, they are still used for printing tax documents, thanks to the ability to print using carbon paper and continuous forms. It is a low cost printing system prepared for large print volumes.

    Normally used in offices or companies where large volumes of paper have to be printed, a Costi very low and without excellent print quality.

    Inkjet printer

    One of the most used and widespread printing technologies, since they are cheap to maintain and easy to use. These printers use one or more different ink cartridges, which usually are cyan, magenta, yellow and black, pigments usually used in offset printing and which guarantee excellent print quality. sometimes it has a quality similar to color laser prints.


    The most common uses of the inkjet printer, as it is also known, are for shops, small offices, home, industry and graphic design, among many other areas.

    Laser printer

    One of the most important features when we talk about laser printers, it is undoubtedly the quality you get from the printsCurrently we can find really cheap laser printers on the market and with amazing features. The most common uses of the laser printer are commercial, small office, graphic design and all those places where large volumes of high speed printing are required.



    The basis of its operation is laser technology, but in a sense it is very similar to the operating principle of copiers. This printer uses the modulated laser beam to send information to be printed on a photosensitive drum. The lasers create a complete electrostatic image of the page to be printed.

    After this process, an ultra-fine powder called TONER is applied to the drum, which adheres only to areas sensitized by laser rays. When the drum passes over the sheet of paper, the dust is transferred to its surface, forming the letters and images of the page, which passes through a heater called FUSOR, which burns the toner fixing it on the page.

    The main characteristics of laser printers, in addition to their speed and quality, depend on the laser printer model, they can print in color or black and white.

    Advantages and problems of laser printing

    Laser printers are much faster than inkjet printers. They also have a broader definition and the toner is cheaper than ink, the making them more profitable for an office, where they print large quantities of documents every day.

    As a major drawback, the price of a laser printer is higher than that of inkjet printers.

    When it comes to color printing, i Laser printer toners are much more expensive than inks. The same happens with the price of printers. This means that for color printing for normal users, the choice is always an inkjet printer.


    Plotter

    This type of technology is widely used today to perform all kinds of advertising projects such as Adversting board, and extra large advertising signs. This is a tool that allows the user to accomplish large print projects, as some models are capable of printing up to 160cm wide. 


    Another frequent use of plotters, also called tracers, is in the field of architecture. Currently, plotters work with inkjet technology, which offers them excellent flexibility and quality. The most common uses of plotters are architecture, advertising, graphic design and printing.

    Types of most used printers and their applications

    Inheriting typewriter technology, printers have undergone drastic mutations over time. Even with the evolution of graphics computing, printers have specialized. Therefore, there are printers optimized for vector drawing, photographs and others optimized for text.

    The printer is one device used to print information, the result of data processing. As the name suggests, it is the peripheral that carries information from the computer to the paper. There are different types of printers, and it should be chosen according to the need. The most used types of printers that we can find today are:

    Ink Jet printer: printers Inkjet printers are priced much lower than dot matrix printers. They inject ink droplets that form the character to be printed. The drops pass through an electrode which receives an electrical charge. Inkjet or Inkjet printers, as they are also called, they are very fast, having the ability to print many characters per second. Its print quality is very good. They are ideal for color printing.

    Laser printer: system similar to that used in photocopiers, for the sensitization of paper and the use of toner for printing. high speed and high resolution printing, both for text and graphics. Exist color laser printers which use 4 toners in addition to black, one for each primary color (CMYK).

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    Further Reading:

    • The best wireless printers
    • The best multifunction printers
    • The best inkjet printers
    • The best laser printers for home and office use
    • What is the LAN? The definition and use of a local network
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