Whether it’s for business or personal use, the print quality of documents and images go a long way. So, what determines print quality? Check out the basics:

DPI

Dots Per Inch (DPI) is the overarching measure of print quality. Think of the DPI of printed materials like that of the pixel resolution of a digital image. Images with higher DPIs align more closely to the intended result than images with lower DPIs. DPI becomes most evident when printing on large-scale canvases.

Driver of the Printer

The role of the printer’s driver is to tell the ink/toner dots where to go on the printer pages as well as the color of these dots. Thus, if the driver of the printer sends the wrong instructions, the printed image will be off.

Ink or Toner

Whereas ink is liquid-based, toner is powder-based. What’s key here is to match the machine with its appropriate ink or toner:

Laser printers use static electricity to attach powder toner to the paper. A laser “draws” the image on a drum that has a positive charge. Anywhere the laser hits the drum, the positive charge is replaced by a negative charge. Toner is then released onto the drum and only sticks to the places the laser has drawn, the negatively charged areas. Then, a sheet of paper is rolled through the printer. As it passes, the toner transfers to the paper. Finally, heated rollers fuse the toner into the paper.  

Inkjet printers have a printhead with hundreds of small nozzles that spray thousands of ink droplets onto a sheet of paper as it feeds through the device. In the majority of inkjet printers, the printhead moves left and right across the paper to create the print pattern, while electricity heats the nozzles to release the ink droplets.  

Inkjet vs. Laser Printer

So, which type produces a better quality print then? Inkjet or Laser? It should be noted that both inkjet and laser printers do in fact produce quality printing. Nevertheless, it is important to consider the type of printed document you require when deciding between laser or inkjet:

If you need crisp text-based documents, laser printers are superior to an inkjet printer when creating thin lines and small font sizes. On the other hand, if you need vivid, high quality photos with a wide color range, a photo inkjet printer is the best option. 

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