Printers vary greatly is price, performance and durability. It is very important when purchasing a new printer that your requirements are taken into account.
Do you need colour?
Colour printers can cost over 10 times as much per page to run, even if not printing in colour. If you are printing high volume, but colour will be low volume, then it could be worth getting a high volume monochrome printer and a low volume colour printer. In the long run the savings on running costs could pay for the second printer.
Do you need duplex?
Duplex is double-sided printing. This is preferable to single-sided printing as it saves paper and costs less. It may not be suitable for printing forms, certificates and letters.
How much will you be printing?
In order to recommend the most cost-effective printer for your circumstances we need to know how much it will be used. The recommended monthly volume varies from around 500 - 1500 pages to 5000 - 20,000 pages on standard models.
The print speed also needs to be taken into account. The print speed is dictated by the first page out time, and the pages per minute. Which one is important to you is dependent on the volume you print. If you print small jobs regularly a lower first page out time will be important, if you print large jobs the warm up time will not be as important as the pages per minute.
If you are printing very large volumes, then a network photocopier may be the ideal solution rather than a printer.
Prices quoted for printers include hardware support (excluding consumable parts) for a 6-year life cycle.