Now more than ever, with work and school shifting to home for the foreseeable future, what’s the best home printer to keep you and your family productive? Is it one that’s versatile — able to copy, scan, fax and just generally do more than your average paper-pusher? Or would you prefer a fast home printer, able to complete the job before you’ve pulled your finger off the print button?
Maybe the best printer for your needs is one that connect to whatever devices you own. Or maybe it’s all of that. If you’re going to spend hundreds on a new printer, it should do be able to perform multiple tasks, do them well, and do them reliably.
Below, I’ve outlined the best home printers for every conceivable need, from an overall workhorse to a photo-only printer. One thing to note, the availability of these printers and their associated refills can be a little inconsistent. With everyone trying to outfit their home office, demand has been high these past few months. You may have to keep checking back to get the device you’re looking for at the price you want to pay.
- Best Overall Home Printer: Brother MFC-L3710CW
- Best All-In-One Printer for Home Use: Epson Ecotank ET-3760
- Best Inkjet Printer for Less Than $200: Canon Pixma G3200
- Best Hassle-Free Inkjet Printer: HP Envy 6055 All-in-One Printer
- Best Monochrome Laser Printer: HP Neverstop Laser Printer 1001NW
- Fastest Color Laser Printer: Canon Color imageCLASS MF644Cdw
- Best Photo Printer: Canon Selphy CP1300
Best Overall Home Printer
The Brother MFC-L3710CW digital color laser printer all-in-one lets you print, copy, scan, and fax. With a top print speed of 19 page-per minute (ppm), you’ll be able to power through long assignments or large workbooks in no time.
It’s a reliable performer, able to connect to all your devices wirelessly. Even when set to sleep mode, the Brother consistently activates (which, surprisingly, is something not all printer manufacturers get right) and starts churning out documents, fed by the 250-page paper drawer. Scanning is a simple task as well—the 50-page automatic document feeder will let you make quick work of whatever you need to digitize. The 3.7-inch touchscreen on the device is responsive and easy to use. There are quite a few handy features, including connecting the printer to Google Drive, Dropbox, OneNote and more for direct printing from the web.
The Brother MFC-L3710CW comes with four starter toner cartridges which should last for at least 1,000 pages. You can also set up automatic refills through Amazon Dash but make sure your bank account can handle it. A high-yield, 3,000-page black toner cartridge costs $75 while 2,300-page color cartridges cost $96. Ouch.
Despite the toner refill cost, a good laser printer like the MFC-L3710CW is worth it. The output is crystal clear and the speed is unparalleled, plus you don’t have to worry about smudging. If you need the highest quality documents you can possibly get at home, and the toner price doesn’t scare you away, this is the best home printer to get.
Best All-in-One Printer for Home Use
Epson Ecotank ET-3760
Refillable tanks are the most interesting development in printer technology in the past few years. Epson pioneered the cartridgeless system and now, in its latest generation of Supertank printers, the EcoTank ET-3760 seems to have perfected the technology.
No longer bolted on to the side like some weird growth, the EcoTank is built directly into the front of the device, making it easier to refill and see how much ink you have left. Not that you’ll have to worry about that too much, since the ink that comes in the box should last you for about 2 years (or 7,500 pages, whichever comes first). That’s assuming you print about 200 pages a month.
Features include wireless printing, voice-activated printing, direct printing from your smartphone, copying, scanning, automatic two-sided printing, and direct SD card printing. I like this model in particular because of the automatic document feeder (ADF) on top. You might think you don’t need it, but the first time you have to scan a multi-page document, you’ll be wishing you had it. The Epson EcoTank ET-3760 is ready to take on just about any home print job you can throw at it.
Best Inkjet Printer for Less Than $200
Canon Pixma G3200
Also ditching the expensive and waste-generating cartridge system, Canon’s MegaTank lets you refill permanent ink reservoirs in the Pixma G3200 from bottles that cost considerably less than your average cartridge. The tanks have the added bonus of letting you see at a glance if you need to top things off before you start a big print job. This makes the G3200 cost a little more upfront (since the cost isn’t defrayed by expensive print cartridges), but it’s considerably cheaper to operate over several years.
In addition to making worrying about cartridges a thing of the past, the Canon Pixma G3200 solves a lot of the common headaches of printer ownership. It’s a multi-function device, able to scan, copy, and print. It also supports wireless printing from Google Cloud Print and Apple AirPrint, enabling you to print directly from your phone or tablet. The MegaTank will last for 6,000 pages—if you don’t have a ton of documents to print or scan each month, the Canon G3200 will last for years right out of the box.
Best Hassle-Free Inkjet Printer
HP Envy 6055 All-in-One Printer
There’s nothing worse than either sending a bunch of print jobs to your printer and having it fail to connect or get halfway through printing and have your ink cartridges run out. The HP Envy 6055 All-in-One Printer circumvents both common printer issues. It’s “self-healing” dual-band Wi-Fi is able to recover from common connectivity issues and can connect on either a 2.4 or 5 GHz band network (many printers are limited to one or the other).
HP’s Instant Ink program sends you cartridges automatically whenever you run low for as little as $2.99 per month, based on the number of pages you print. The Envy 6055 is also a capable photo printer, able to print borderless images. It can also copy and scan, sending documents directly to Google Drive or Dropbox. In all, it’s a hassle-free printer for those who don’t want to think about their printer.
Best Monochrome Laser Printer
HP Neverstop Laser Printer 1001NW
What if you don’t need an all-in-one device? What if you don’t even need color? The HP Neverstop Laser Printer 1001NW is a versatile champ of a monochrome laser printer. It has onboard Wi-Fi, letting you connect to it directly. Its 21ppm print speed is considerably better than a comparable inkjet printer.
With a footprint that’s not much larger than a sheet of 8.5×11 paper, you’ll be hard pressed to find a printer that does more in such a small space. The best part? Instead of toner cartridge refills that cost hundreds of dollars, the 1001NW uses a refillable toner tank that gives you 2,500 pages per refill (the device ships with 5,000 pages worth of toner in the tank) and costs under $30 for a 2-pack.
Fastest Color Laser
Canon Color imageCLASS MF644Cdw
If you want the fastest printing possible for your home, you need to upgrade to this color laser printer. The large 5-inch touchscreen of the Canon Color imageCLASS MF644Cdw sets this device apart. It prints at a blistering fast 22ppm in full color and yet is somehow cheaper than some inkjet printers. The MF644Cdw also has one pass scanning, duplex printing, and fax capability.
You don’t even have to hook it up to a network to be able to print. The MF644Cdw can create its own Wi-Fi hotspot and print from mobile devices via AirPrint. Yes, toner cartridges are definitely more expensive than ink, but each one yields around 1,500 pages. That, plus the speed, quiet operation, and long-term reliability of a laser printer, can make the increased premium more than worth it.
Best Photo-Only Printer
Canon Selphy CP1300
The Canon SELPHY (get it?) CP1300 is custom built for one thing and one thing only — to deliver image printouts that are crisp and consistent. With the optional battery pack, it’s portable, so you can take it with you to photo shoots. You can print directly from your phone or tablet or plug in a USB stick or your camera’s memory card. While the SELPHY can give you instantly dry, archival quality prints via its dye sublimation printing on Canon paper (rated for up to 100 years), you can also switch out the standard 4×6 prints with square photo label paper that lets you print instant stickers. It’s a great way to get your prints off your phone or camera and into the real world.