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Subject: Which printer should I buy? rss

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Kenneth Stuart
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I need some advice as to which printer I should buy.

I am looking to buy a printer that I will use almost exclusively for PnP materials. I like to do a lot of work making tuckboxes, player boards, and some fan expansions, but I need a reliable and high-quality method to print. And I'll surely be printing files other users have uploaded too. (Check my file contributions to get an idea.)

Laser printers have been more reliable in my experience, so I'm fairly certain that is what I'll want to buy, though I can be convinced to buy inkjet if that is better. The ability to print duplex without manually feeding paper would be nice to have but not required. An included scanner would be preferred but is not absolutely necessary.


I would appreciate if you could give me some recommendations with reasoning as to why that printer would best suit my needs.

Thank you very much!
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If you think you're going to be scanning long or unusual things, you may consider a document scanner. I have a ScanSnap, and love it. It will do jpgs, but also makes PDFs, making digitizing my file drawers relatively quick and painless. It's color and scans both sides at once. (It of course does regular sized paper, but I mentioned it as a perk if you needed more surface area than a standard flatbed scanner).

I have a color inkjet for the occasional color thing, but I have a Brother laser printer and love it. The toner lasts much longer, doesn't dry out, it's quick to warm up, it holds a lot of paper. I'm pretty sure it duplexes, but I've never done it.

I briefly had an Epson color inkjet between two HP printers; never again. Ink is about $60 to replace, and it won't accept generic ink. Even if you buy OEM ink it may not recognize it. HP ink is more reasonable and it has individual ink tanks, which was my reason for trying Epson in the first place.
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Kenneth Stuart
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I use a scanner to get graphics from game components and boxes. I'll need to be able to scan things that may not sit flat on the scanner. Obviously I can just purchase a scanner separately if the printer doesn't have one.


What model is your Brother printer and what do you use it for?
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lotus dweller
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indigopotter wrote:
...Ink is about $60 to replace, and it won't accept generic ink. Even if you buy OEM ink it may not recognize it. ...
Similar issues with a Brother inkjet printer I had.
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Andreas Krüger
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As far as I know, ink gives better colors and allows for special papers like glossy photo paper. Do not feed such paper into a laser printer, you may destroy it. Laser toner does not dry out if you use it rarely and is waterproof.
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wizcreations wrote:
I use a scanner to get graphics from game components and boxes. I'll need to be able to scan things that may not sit flat on the scanner. Obviously I can just purchase a scanner separately if the printer doesn't have one.


What model is your Brother printer and what do you use it for?


HL-2140. I use it for general printing, including letters, Sam work stuff, Google map directions, and general home things. Prints large documents quickly.
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Chris Schumann
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If you want to make your own boxes, and have wrap-around labels, you're going to need large format: 11x17 or 12x18. Inkjets that can do this are not outrageously priced, but large format color lasers usually are.

Lasers can do letter or legal sized, so you'll have to keep your boxes small, or do the labels in pieces, or just do that part at the copy shop.
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Avoid an HP product at all costs....yuk
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Walt
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11 x 17 is really useful if you want to print game boards the size of actual game boards. Inkjets used to have more vivid colors; since I'm not sure if this is still true...
Poll
Do Inkjets still have a color advantage over laser and LED printers?
Yes, a huge advantage.
Yes, a definite advantage for photos--not so much for graphic art.
Yes, a small advantage.
No, they're about the same now.
No, laser/LED printers are as good for _____. (Post manufacturer below.)
No, laser/LED printers are better for _____. (Post manufacturer below.)
      8 answers
Poll created by Tall_Walt
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Jake Staines
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Quote:
Inkjets used to have more vivid colors; since I'm not sure if this is still true..

My laser printer prints very vivid colours! I think the problem lasers have in general is actually that they tend to print colours a bit more vividly than they perhaps should, so they're still not really so suitable for photo printing (although they are, of course, getting better all the time). I don't find this a problem for printing bits of boardgame, though. If anything, it's often an advantage.

One poster above mentioned that you can't print on glossy photo paper with a laser - you can't print on inkjet photo papers, but there do exist glossy photo papers for laser printers as well. Pretty much all the specialist papers can be found for laser printers, but you more commonly have to mail order them as laser printers themselves are less common still.
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If you're planning to do lots of color printing you'd probably want an inkjet that can that can be converted to use a continuous ink system.
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Johan Haglert
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For sure don't get an inkjet printer and if you do get one which can use bottles of ink.

If you need high quality use a company who do prints/photos. Eventually only do it that way.
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Cincinnati Kid
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There is currently a very good deal on Amazon for a Brother laser HL 2230 on amazon for about $70. Is a good deal, and refurb toners are available on this.

Cheers
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Joe Zimmerman
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The HL2230 is a monochrome printer.
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Kenneth Stuart
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My problem with the inkjets I've used in the past is that for really high-ink printing, one or two of the cartridges will empty way faster than the others. That results in having to buy replacements all too often. Additionally, I both of my 2 previous ink-jet printers were way too finicky with the cartridges. Basically, if one went out, I had to replace all of them or the printer wouldn't recognize that one had been replaced.

I used to have access to free color printing on laser printers (I provided my own paper). I had no problem printing full color and good details on heavy cardstock.
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wizcreations wrote:
My problem with the inkjets I've used in the past is that for really high-ink printing, one or two of the cartridges will empty way faster than the others. That results in having to buy replacements all too often. Additionally, I both of my 2 previous ink-jet printers were way too finicky with the cartridges. Basically, if one went out, I had to replace all of them or the printer wouldn't recognize that one had been replaced.

I used to have access to free color printing on laser printers (I provided my own paper). I had no problem printing full color and good details on heavy cardstock.


This would be the whole point of a continuous ink system. Basically you replace the ink cartridges with special print heads that have tubes running to large ink reservoirs sitting outside the printer. Instead of replacing cartridges you just keep adding more ink.
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Kenneth Stuart
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I'm not setting up shop to do huge print runs. I just need some quality work. It seems a little silly to have ink reservoirs for my home printer. Even so, do you have any examples of printers that can use ink tanks so that I can look them up for more info?
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lotus dweller
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wizcreations wrote:
I'm not setting up shop to do huge print runs. I just need some quality work. It seems a little silly to have ink reservoirs for my home printer. Even so, do you have any examples of printers that can use ink tanks so that I can look them up for more info?

Has anyone here got actual figures for ink coverage
eg full colour, full cover foolscap = 50 pages per ounce of ink (made up figures - do not use)

I know I used a fair bit of ink printing off a large Dune board. (I got very lucky - the glue I used warped the board so it ended up as a section of a globe, perfect for the north polar region of Arrakis)
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wizcreations wrote:
I'm not setting up shop to do huge print runs. I just need some quality work. It seems a little silly to have ink reservoirs for my home printer. Even so, do you have any examples of printers that can use ink tanks so that I can look them up for more info?


Not sure the exact model but my grandmother has a wide format Epson that's been converted that she is rather happy with. She uses it for scrap booking and crafts, saves a fortune even over buying generic ink cartridges so I've been told.
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Alysa
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wizcreations wrote:
I'm not setting up shop to do huge print runs. I just need some quality work. It seems a little silly to have ink reservoirs for my home printer. Even so, do you have any examples of printers that can use ink tanks so that I can look them up for more info?


It is a bit ridiculous I think to use ink reservoirs.

I have 2 inkjet printers, one is a Canon Pixma MP600 (all in one, includes scanner) which is just an A4/letter format printer and the other is a Canon Pixma iX4000 which is an A3+ printer and with the tweaks to the printer driver settings you can get it to print upto 13x22" sheets.

Both printers use the exact same ink cartridges and I buy compatible ones for €2 a piece (if I buy more at once I get a discount too) while the official Canon ones go for €13.

I buy them without a chip and just removed the chip from the older one and put them onto the new. These Canon printers can be instructed to not care about the ink levels anymore and they won't bother you about it.

I print a lot and I don't have to change cartridges all that often and certainly not all of them at the same time.

Also when printing out games going higher than 600 dpi is not worth the extra ink since you won't notice it at all...

I am quite happy with my printers!

And if you want to see results of what I made with them: PnP Games crafted by Aenea

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Kenneth Stuart
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Alysa, how did you modify the printers to not care about ink levels? Can that be done regardless of computer operating system? I had a Canon Pixma printer at one point and I found it to be the most upsetting piece of computer technology I've ever owned.
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Alysa
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wizcreations wrote:
Alysa, how did you modify the printers to not care about ink levels? Can that be done regardless of computer operating system? I had a Canon Pixma printer at one point and I found it to be the most upsetting piece of computer technology I've ever owned.


Yes, that can be done regardless of OS, you can press and hold some keys on the printer or use one of the small devices you can buy to turn a switch in the chips...

I have never had problems with my printers, have to say though that I prefer to use TurboPrint as a printerdriver, both on Linux and on OSX (is also avail for Win) since it allows to tweak more settings (incl. the papersize) and 'cos the results are better...
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Alysa
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Ohh, you basically tell the printer to ignore ink levels on the cartridges, it just changes a setting in the chip on the cartridge. Since I re-use the chips over and over I no longer have t care about it...
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Jacek Wieszaczewski
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I'm also looking for a printer for various PnP/unofficial expansions for games I play. I need color and I need to be able to print on sticker paper and on those cards: http://www.spielematerial.de/en/game-components/playing-card.... What do you think would be good for me?
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