Monthly Archives: December 2017

Top 5 Best Reviewed Printers of 2017

Printer technology does not differ much, but it is still tricky to name one printer as better over another in an apple to apple comparison. This is because ink cartridge printers and laser printers differ. Within these two kinds of printers, are printers suited for different functions; some are good for printing photos, some are good for text. There is also the issue of features. Standard multi-function printers today combine printing, copying, and scanning. Which can be said to be the best printers of 2017 with these considerations in mind?

Brother MFC-J470DW

This inkjet printer has been dubbed the best printer under $200 for a home office. It has a scanner, copier, and printer. The J470 boasts cloud connectivity with Apple’s AirPrint and Google Chrome connectivity. Some of the features that make it friendly and easy to use include auto document feeder and an auto-duplexer.

HP Deskjet 3620

This is inkjet printer continues in the popular Deskjet line from HP. This printer is compact but very functional. It can copy, scan and print. It also comes with standard USB connectivity for easy connection to desktops and laptops. There is wireless connectivity over wifi. The 3630 is robust enough to print both text and photos. With an RRP of around $40, this is a really cheap printer that does the bare minimum.

Canon Pixma MG5620

This is an all-in-one inkjet printer meaning it can scan, copy and print. The MG5620 has made a name for itself for high-quality photo prints at fast speeds. It has wireless connectivity and can connect to smartphones and tabs. Printing is easy to setup including double-sided printing with the auto-duplexing feature. This printer is compact enough for a small office, measuring 18 inches wide, 14.6 inches deep, and 5.9 inches tall.

Epson XP-430

This printer has been dubbed the ‘small one’ because of its compact size measuring 15.4″ x 20.8″ x 11.0″ (39.1 x 52.8 x 28 cm). This home grade printer is unmatched it its photo quality printing. It has 4 ink tanks that hold black, cyan, magenta, and yellow for full-color printing. The connectivity options in this printer are also unmatched in a printer of its size and price. It connects to USB 2.0, wifi and cloud services AirPrint and Google Cloud Print.

Brother HL-2360DW

This printer makes the cut for its affordability in operation. It is a laser printer for text only printing. It is suitable for a small or medium office with its fast printing speeds. The versatility in connectivity makes it easy for a suitable environment as it can print over wireless and also connect to cloud services. The biggest advantage is the cheap cost of the toner.

Ultimately, when buying a printer, you need one that matches your needs in the type of printing you are doing, size, and price of maintenance.

5 Tips On How To Care For Your Ink Cartridges

Ink cartridges are some of the costlier consumables in an office. This cost can even go higher if ink cartridges have to be replaced more frequently than usual because of damage. Faulty ink cartridges can be damaging to the printer and incur more costs. The good thing is that ink cartridges are relatively easy to take care of. You can get longer and more efficient printing service from your ink cartridges with a few care tips.

Before installation

Before installing a cartridge inspect it for damage. Check if the plastic pull tab or clip (older models) was properly secured before shaking the cartridge. This is to prime the ink. You can also tap the cartridge a few times to achieve the same effect.

Inspect the gold contact chip for any scratches, dust or any other impurities on it. This is the point which provides data about the cartridge. Damaging this contact can cause the printer to sense incorrect ink levels.

Installation

Different printers have different procedures for ink cartridge installation. It is important to follow the printer’s manual. If a manual is not available, search for instruction videos on YouTube. The ink cartridge should fit in smoothly and easy. Forcing the ink cartridge in can damage the cartridge’s contact point, or dislodge the printer head.

It should also be easy to remove an ink cartridge when changing or inspecting it. Switch off the printer and let the printer head return to its resting position before removing it. Take it off gently to avoid dislodging printer components.

Ink levels

Modern printers have sensors to help monitor ink levels and will show a warning light when the level is low. Other signs of low ink levels would be patchy printing, blank prints, and streaking. The printer can sometimes erroneously show low ink levels if the printer has not been used for some time. This can be rectified by repriming the cartridge. A simple wipe of the print head is often all that is needed for the ink to flow again.

Storing ink cartridges

New ink cartridges that are not in use should be left in their airtight seals. This is to prevent drying out. This also keeps the nozzle from damage, which can make ink dribble out.  Leaving the ink carded exposed can also lead to crusting on the nozzle.

Upright position

Always store ink cartridges in an upright position with the nozzle in the upper position.

If you are storing a partially used ink cartridge, ensure to place the nozzle in an airtight space. This could be a polythene paper that is tightly wrapped with duct tape.

Caring for your ink cartridges is fairly simple and saves you good money in the long run. Follow the tips above for longer lasting cartridges.

10 Winter Printable Decoration Ideas

The season of cheer is here and with lots of snow. Of course, the Christmas festivities are the highlight of the winter season. Printable decoration ideas are one way of adding cheer to your home in an affordable and fun way. This can be simply done while involving everyone in the family including small kids. What are some winter printable decoration ideas to try this year?

Customizable menu

There will be lots of food and drink during this season, why not play pretend that your home is a 5-star facility serving 3-course dinners? Do this with a beautifully made customizable menu. You can easily do it with a downloadable font and design it with Adobe suite. Better yet, have the guests enter their orders and print them directly and instantly.

Tree placards

You have the real tree beautifully decorated and standing in the corner. Add a variety by making tree paper placards with your guests’ names on them. Place a placard at each guest’s place on the table just like they would have name placards in a conference, only this time it is more fun and colorful.

Thank you cards

Everyone loves to be appreciated. Do it with gratitude printables. These are commonly seen during Thanksgiving but they are also brilliant for Christmas season. These cards will remind everyone of who really matters during the sad and happy times in life.

Christmas banners

Printable banners are easy to make and are very versatile decorative items. They can be hung above the sideboard where you will set the buffet. You can also string them across the mantel and hang more on the front door as colorful welcome.

Printable food mats

This is a bit tricky to pull off but you can do it with glossy photo paper. Download and print your favorite designs for a colorful Christmas table.

Printable treat bags

Your guests have come, eaten and drank to their fill. Send them on the way home with a treat bags. These can be easily made using normal small grocery bags printed with merry and bright tags.

Winter monograms

Make fancy printer wreaths on store-bought card paper. A wreath design encircling your guests’ name initials is a very personalized touch that they will remember for a long time.

Winter bucket list

There is so much to do and see during the Christmas holidays. Why not make a printable decorative bucket list that you can stick on the fridge door for everyone to see? Fun items to tick off would include ‘Make Fudge,’ or ‘Bake cookies’ and whatever else you think would be fun.

Winter bookmark gifts

If you are having kid guests who love books, interest them with coloring printable bookmarks that they can work on as they enjoy their favorite reads.

Printable ‘Merry Christmas’

It is the season for cheer so announce it loudly with a big ‘Merry Christmas’ banner that you can put together from several printed papers.

Inkjet Printer vs. Laser Printer

When choosing a home printer sometimes we are likely torn between buying an inkjet printer or a laser printer.

Here are the things to consider in order to come up with the best buying decision.

Price

Initial cost is not much of a difference. You can almost purchase either printer at the same price. Although, the price may vary depending on the model. Nonetheless, if you are on a budget you can choose a printer that will suit you. Take this as an example for HP – LaserJet Pro MFP M130nw Wireless Black-and-White All-In-One Printer, it only cost around $149.99, while Stylus C88+ Inkjet Printer is at $119.99.

Printing Quality

Laser printers can print faster than inkjet printers if you are the type who would more likely go for efficient use. However, if your purpose is to print onto different types of paper, be it photo paper or ordinary ones, the Inkjet printer is the go-to printer.

Maintenance Cost

To properly maintain your printers, there are several things that you need to allocate your budget for. Commonly, the paper and ink do not cost as much as a cent per page.

It’s easy to compute because you only need to divide the number of pages your ink can produce.