As a student, a good affordable printer can make the difference between a deadline met or a deadline missed, and this is because, more often than not, the campus printer will not be available exactly when you need it.
Plus, you will lose anywhere between 1 and 3 hours just getting the documents you need, finding a free machine, and making the copies you need.
Best Printers for College of 2020
Can you do it without your own printer? Yes, of course, but life can be so much simpler if you do have access to one. So the real question becomes, what is the best printer for college students? And the answer is, it depends. If you are an English, philosophy, psychology major, the best printer will allow you to print and copy at the very lowest price possible, since you will clearly have more documents to print than someone majoring in Mathematics.
Basically, it does not matter whether you write on your own or get papers from Essay Pro or similar platforms – the volumes will be much higher. So care to choose a quick and durable option.
Yet, if you do major in something like engineering, you will know just how important it can be to be able to have a good printout of various diagrams and charts together with your most important calculations. In this case, care for the quality of print more.
However, if you do major in something like engineering, you will know just how important it can be to be able to have a good printout of various diagrams and charts together with your most important calculations.
A similar case could be made for the sociology majors too, so what we decided to do was to consult with our friends at Sprayer Guide and come up with the top 10 best printers for college, and in detailing their characteristics, we are also explaining what type of student needs they would fulfill.
1. Canon Laser imageCLASS MF4770n Monochrome Printer
The Canon Laser imageCLASS MF4770n is one of the most expensive printers you are going to find on our list, but we really think it is worth every penny. The first thing you have to take into consideration is that this is actually a laser printer, not an inkjet one.
That means you can fill its ink cartridges at your campus’s dealer for a much lower price than you would have to pay if you were to buy cartridges for an inkjet printer. It does cost almost double what some inkjet printers that we are going to talk about further down, so you need to be very clear about your printing needs.
If you know that you would go through 2 or 3 cartridges a year, then you absolutely need this printer. Still, you should also consider the fact that in this price range you will not be able to buy a laser printer that can print in color. So you will only be able to print in monochrome, that is to say, black and white with various shades of gray.
On the other hand, though, you will be able to print out high-quality pages at a speed of 24 pages per minute, you will be able to copy various documents at the same speed given the fact that the printer has an automatic feeder, and you can stock it up with 250 pages and just let it run.
2. Brother HL2280DW Wireless Printer
Before we move on to cheaper inkjet printers, there is one more laser printer that we need to talk to you about, and it is the Brother HL2280DW Wireless Printer.
It falls in the same price range as the Canon, but it has a slightly higher 27 ppm speed. However, the reason why you may be more interested in this printer is the fact that it comes with its own built-in a wireless system.
So this may be the perfect choice if you can find a few friends on campus that want to share the costs, but also the benefits of having their own printer. You still get all the advantages of an inkjet printer, like much cheaper ink costs, but you also get to share the capabilities of a true modern college printer.
This goes without saying, but it is still worth mentioning, the printer has automatic duplex capabilities, so it will print on both sides of the page to reduce the costs of paper.
3. Brother Printer MFCJ450DW Inkjet All-In-One Color Printer
When it comes to laser printers, it can be really difficult to find an excellent choice for a reasonable price, however, when it comes to inkjets, all you need to do is choose your price range and favorite manufacturer. We prefer the Brother printers because they usually endeavor to come up with affordable products that still achieve a high level of quality.
The Brother Printer MFCJ450DW does everything you would want from a college or even an office printer. It works as a regular, color printer, and it can give you an output of 33 ppm for black, and 27 ppm for color when in Fast Mode. It also has its own wireless system, and it works as a scanner, copier, or even a fax machine.
The one thing that you should know, though, is that you will not be able any printout that came from the Fast Mode for an official paper. For the best quality the Brother Printer MFCJ450DW only puts out 12 pages per minute in black and 10 in color.
4. HP Officejet 4630 e-All-in-One Printer
The HP Officejet 4630 has the same basic characteristics as the Brother printer, in the sense that it works like a regular printer, a scanner, and a copier.
Its high-quality settings will allow you to print 9 ppm in black and just 5 pages per minute in color. And you need to know that, on average, HP cartridges are more expensive, in terms of how many pages the can print, than the Brother ones.
However, the HP Officejet 4630 does come with a function that will make you the envy of the campus. It can be connected wirelessly to the internet and you can send print commands directly from your smartphone, even when you are not at home.
5. Canon PIXMA MX922 Wireless Color Photo Printer
An interesting alternative to the HP printer is the Canon PIXMA MX922. It too can be connected to the internet and has the proprietary software that allows you to send prints to it not only from your iPhone or iPad, but also from your Google account via the Google Cloud Print.
That means you do not need to install any additional software or drivers to your computer, and, once paired, you can send files to be printed from wherever you are.
However, the really interesting feature of the Canon PIXMA MX922 is that it can print automatically on both sides of the paper, and that is a feature that will truly come in hand and save you a lot of money.
6. Epson Expression Home XP-410 Wireless Inkjet Printer
There is one more big printer manufacturer that we have not mentioned so far, and its best printer for college is the Epson Expression Home XP-410. It will allow you to connect via a wireless server or even through wireless direct.
You can set it up to print from class or from the library and have your files ready when you get home. It is somewhat cheaper than the Canon, but it does not have the automatic duplex capabilities that we were talking about.
However, you can use it to also scan and copy files and it does allow you to change each color ink cartridge as it runs out, so you will not have to spend too much at any one given time.
7. HP Envy 4500 Wireless Color Photo Printer
Now that we have gone through our favorite printers for college, we can tell you about a few alternatives that a few selected few of you are going to need. The HP Envy 4500 for one, has a somewhat lower price on the cartridges but also has a lower printing quality than the other HP printer we have talked about.
You can connect to it wirelessly or via USB and it has the same abilities to print from a smartphone or a tablet. It does have one feature that graphic design students are going to love, which is borderless printing, basically transforming a piece of paper into a picture.
8. Epson WorkForce WF-3620
If, and only if you need a color printer that can get close to the speed of the laser printer, you may want to go for the Epson WorkForce WF-3620. It comes at the same price as the 2 laser printers we have already featured, which is 19 high-quality black prints per minute.
Still, when it comes to color printing it can only do 10 pages per minute. When it comes to black only prints, the Epson WorkForce WF-3620 still comes out as the more expensive printing solution, but it is a cheaper printing choice for color prints, in terms of the cost of the ink.
Still, given how much you would be paying, this printer does come with everything you would expect from automatic 2 side print, wireless connectivity and the ability to print from a smartphone, tablet or laptop.
9. Canon PIXMA MX472 Wireless Inkjet Printer
If you need a printer that will give you color capabilities, but that you will often use for copying purposes, you will probably want to buy the Canon PIXMA MX472. It has a 30 sheet auto document feeder, that will make your life a lot easier than having the feed in the pages one by one.
It also has an incredible 4800 x 1200 dots per inch color print capability that will give you prints that come pretty close to professional photo printing capabilities.
10. HP Deskjet 1512 Inkjet All-in-One Printer
Our final choice for the top 10 best printers for college available on the market today is the HP Deskjet 1512. It is the last choice both in the sense that it is the last on the list, but also that it would be our last resort for someone who cannot afford a big initial investment.
It does everything you would want from one of these machines, including scanning and copying, but it only connects to via a USB cable directly to a laptop, and the printing quality is average at best.