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Anyone used a colour laser printer for covers?

Postby Nickaberdeen » Jun Mon 24, 2019 1:06 am

Hi everyone. I am doing some research into upgrading my printer, my main aim in the past has been to have a printer that prints onto discs but I dont really do very much of that anymore (occasionally still do one or two for my backup discs). The last two printers I have had were the Epson R225 and currently the Epson XP-610. I really liked the R255 but havent been so pleased with the XP-610.

So I thought maybe I should do some research into colour laser printers in the hope that they would be better. I have only done a small amount of research but it seems to be heading towards it not being very good for colour printing and one that I found that was decent doesnt work with glossy paper (according to a random review). Just wondered if anyone has ever used/currently uses a laser printer for cover printing. Any info would be greatly appreciated. Cheers
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Re: Anyone used a colour laser printer for covers?

Postby chouette » Jun Mon 24, 2019 1:28 am

I only use inkjet printers. At the moment it's a Brother because it's less expensive to buy the cartridges than a Canon for example. Colors are probably not as nice as a laser printer, but it does the job.

:)
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Re: Anyone used a colour laser printer for covers?

Postby ctaulbee » Jun Mon 24, 2019 2:02 am

I have a Samsung and would never give it up, got it in Nov 2017 and been very happy with it. The colors are spot on and the blacks are black, never had any inkjet come close to it and I've had quite a few top end ones.

Before that I had a Xerox I don't recommend it, they cost more and are a pain in the ass with paper, they are very picky on what they will feed...


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Re: Anyone used a colour laser printer for covers?

Postby Nickaberdeen » Jun Mon 24, 2019 2:22 am

if i can ask: what model of samsung and does it take glossy paper?
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Re: Anyone used a colour laser printer for covers?

Postby ctaulbee » Jun Mon 24, 2019 2:26 am

I use matte laser paper, it's a Xpress C430W Wireless.

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Re: Anyone used a colour laser printer for covers?

Postby Nickaberdeen » Jun Mon 24, 2019 2:31 am

is that matte photo paper? how does it compare to glossy paper printing?
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Re: Anyone used a colour laser printer for covers?

Postby ctaulbee » Jun Mon 24, 2019 2:36 am

I don't print on glossy paper, never have, so I have no way of giving you input on that.

I don't see the point becasue once you put it behind the plastic you can't tell if it's glossy or not.

To me glossy is just a way to make ink prints look better, glossy gives better color with ink.

With a laser the print is sharp and crisp with a bit of shine to it, becasue it's dry transfer toner on the surface, not wet ink soaking in, so no need to try it on glossy from my point of view.
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Re: Anyone used a colour laser printer for covers?

Postby Wrench » Jun Mon 24, 2019 2:44 am

I use a Canon inkjet, when I do print a cover (rarely) I use presentation or matte paper, never glossy. Glossy paper is for pictures not covers IMO.
My laser jet is a brother, black only, use it for VFW flyers and such. Ink is cheap compared to my inkjet Canon.
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Re: Anyone used a colour laser printer for covers?

Postby Nickaberdeen » Jun Mon 24, 2019 2:45 am

cool. i only ask because glossy is the closest i could get to "official" looking covers. if you think the matte photo paper does the job thats good enough for me. just wouldnt want to shell out for one unless it looked good. :)
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Re: Anyone used a colour laser printer for covers?

Postby ctaulbee » Jun Mon 24, 2019 2:55 am

Years ago when I had a inkjet, I used Satin finished paper vs Gloss as I felt it gave a better trade off.

Plus Satin is recommended if the printed photo is to be behind glass, plastic is similar to glass so...

Inkjet prints on matte are very flat looking and they require more ink too, so Satin or Gloss is better on ink consumption as well.

With Laser it matters not, as the only place the Gloss would even show is in the white non-printed areas, becasue toner is dry transferred to the surface and not absorbed the Gloss is behind it you see.

Print houses are a entirely different process, first they use pigment based ink not dye based ink like home printers, then they use special coated paper and put a clear finish coat over the print to seal it, which you can't do at home, that is what gives it the Satin look.

Spray a factory insert with water and it won't bleed, spray a inkjet print on gloss photo paper with water and see what happens.


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Re: Anyone used a colour laser printer for covers?

Postby Nickaberdeen » Jun Mon 24, 2019 2:58 am

excellent. samsung here i come :D
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Re: Anyone used a colour laser printer for covers?

Postby ctaulbee » Jun Mon 24, 2019 3:07 am

Now I have no experience with other brands, they may be quite good too.

I will say one thing toner does matter and the cheaper toner does not give the good results like Samsung toner does and it's a lot higher.

Like one Samsung Cartridge costs as much as a full set of cheap toner cartridges in many cases.

Some say they can't tell any difference, but I can... they might be using different paper or something who knows, I just get the ones I know work the best, as results to me outweigh the cost.
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Re: Anyone used a colour laser printer for covers?

Postby Nickaberdeen » Jun Mon 24, 2019 3:17 am

i am just looking at some just now. was noticing the samsung toner was mor than the printer. i assume it doesnt run out quite as frequently as ink? i was just about to ask you if there was a cheap knockoff one you found that was good but i guess not.

any chance you could send me the full size image of your john wick image? the forum size image makes it hard to check quality.
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Re: Anyone used a colour laser printer for covers?

Postby ctaulbee » Jun Mon 24, 2019 3:22 am

You can't tell quality from a picture, it's a picture of a print out, so it sucks, there is simply no way to take a picture that will show the level of quality on a print or of a cover in a case they always look bad.

It's like taking a picture of a picture no way the picture taken will ever be as good as the original, it's not possible.
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Re: Anyone used a colour laser printer for covers?

Postby ctaulbee » Jun Mon 24, 2019 3:27 am

By changing the angle just slightly here, you can see the issue with glare, becasue the toner has shine to it, much like a actual insert.



Little closer.

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Re: Anyone used a colour laser printer for covers?

Postby Nickaberdeen » Jun Mon 24, 2019 3:40 am

dont suppose you know about printer specs? figured there might be a chance as you will know more than me from being on this site.
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Re: Anyone used a colour laser printer for covers?

Postby ctaulbee » Jun Mon 24, 2019 3:45 am

No idea.

Like those last pictures the colors are off quite a bit from the original, a lot of detail is lost, the textures barely show, the text looks blurry.

But in my hand even the tiny red text on black is sharp crisp clean and easy to read.
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Re: Anyone used a colour laser printer for covers?

Postby Nickaberdeen » Jun Mon 24, 2019 4:17 am

that last post was a little confusing (couldnt tell if you were slagging of your printer or praising it) i would imagine if you had had any issues with it you wouldnt have had it so long.

the reason i am looking at laser printers (other than typical inkjet issues - streaks, ink and the likes) is mainly because the epson i have darkens images and so doesnt look like is does on the pc. i usually have to put a 30% screen layer over my cover to compensate. as long as it prints how you would expect it to look then that'll do the job nicely.
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Re: Anyone used a colour laser printer for covers?

Postby Jazzy » Jun Mon 24, 2019 10:11 am

I still have a Epson Workforce 310 inkjet printer.
I print my covers on photo paper... let dry and use a spray coat for photo and it does the job for me.
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Re: Anyone used a colour laser printer for covers?

Postby tmscrapbook » Jun Mon 24, 2019 12:10 pm

I have the Samsung CLP-325W color laser printer in AZ and a Brother HL-3170CDW color laser printer in WA along with the Epson Artisan 50 inkjet printer in both places. I prefer the Brother for printing covers. The Samsung seems to be a little dark and colors don't print the same way as my monitor shows them. I use the Epson Artisan 50 for printing directly to DVDs.
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Re: Anyone used a colour laser printer for covers?

Postby ctaulbee » Jun Mon 24, 2019 12:38 pm

Nickaberdeen wrote:that last post was a little confusing (couldnt tell if you were slagging of your printer or praising it) i would imagine if you had had any issues with it you wouldnt have had it so long.


Wasn't referring to the printer, was speaking about the "taken" pictures I posted and how taking pictures of things does not show the "real" details or how things really are.

When I print on the Samsung it looks exactly the same on paper as it does on my screen, which is what you want.

Pam has a different experience with Samsung but she has a different model printer than me and she uses a Mac I use a PC.

That the rub in all, everyone has different hardware, settings and most importantly "tastes", your setup is of course different form both of us, your desired result might not be the same either, so your experience might be different yet.

And one more little thing for anyone reading this as a point of education while we are at it.

Printers are opposite from monitors and use totally different color gamuts, so it's all interpretative anyway.

See screens start out black and add light to get to white, printers start out at nothing or white (blank paper) then add ink to get to black.

Light and pigment are very different color range wise, so no way to ever make them match exactly 100% even best case.

That's what print drivers do they convert the colors 100% on every print, they have to.

Same with Monitors & Video Cards plus the video drivers are different too, so what you see will vary from screen to screen depending on the system and level of calibration, not to mention capabilities.

Things in Photoshop on my brothers gaming system, look very different than they do on my system which is setup for Design, he prefers mine to his for Photoshop but he mostly games, so he lives with it.
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Re: Anyone used a colour laser printer for covers?

Postby Nickaberdeen » Jun Mon 24, 2019 12:59 pm

ctaulbee wrote:Wasn't referring to the printer, was speaking about the "taken" pictures


ah okay. i am a big fan of samsung, i have also done a decent amount of research now, it was down to a canon, brother and the samsung. it looks like the samsung is going to be the one i go for, it seems to be the best for images. i am a little worried about the price of toners as the samsung seems to be slightly more but hopefully its not a frequent thing.

one bit of information i couldnt find though was whether it still prints in black if the colour toners run out (seems like some do) dont suppose you know?
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Re: Anyone used a colour laser printer for covers?

Postby ctaulbee » Jun Mon 24, 2019 1:05 pm

I've never tested that, seems like it might be a setting in the print driver, I never let them run out and they last me a long time becasue I don't print huge amounts.

My sister has one as well and she prints tons of stuff, she used to complain about buying ink all the time, she complains about the cost of toner now but not nearly as often as she says "well at least it prints a lot before they run out" you can take that for what it is, as I don't know what she means by "a lot" lol.
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Re: Anyone used a colour laser printer for covers?

Postby stampe » Jun Tue 25, 2019 12:00 pm

no you cant print anymore if one of the toner is empty. actually, you probably wont be able to print anymore if the printer tells you the toner is empty even if the last print was still perfect.

i used to have an oki color laser printer, but went to a canon ts8051 and never looked back. why? cos its way cheaper and the quality is equal. its also a lot easier to find ink than the right toner, there
are more sales on the ink and lets not forget the paper. you can't use anything but laser paper because normal photo-paper would melt lol.

my canon inkjet uses 6 inks (cyan, magenta, yellow, black, grey and pigment black) they all cost like 20 bucks each for the xl version.
my oki has 4 toners. the 3 colors were 120.- and the black was 100.-

the printer itself was 5 times more expensive and don't forget that any laser you buy, you get starter toner which is about half full at best.

then there is wear on the laser, at some point you need new drums and sh*t (don't know all the parts in english tbh).

bottom line. laser is nice if you don't care about the cost. the biggest advantage the laser has is that the toner wont dry up when you arent using the machine :)
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Re: Anyone used a colour laser printer for covers?

Postby Nickaberdeen » Jun Tue 25, 2019 11:53 pm

i do go a while between prints and am fed up of the amount of paper and ink i waste with dodgy prints (either due to streaky ink, certain colours drying which throws off the colour or having to clean the heads, using up all the ink before i get to print anything) so i think the laser printer will work for me.

it does seem quite a bit more expensive but if all of the money is going on perfect prints every time its better than it being trown away. also i saw with full toners you get like 5000 prints of colour and 6000 of black (not sure that was specific to the samsung, couldve been a different model) which will last me ages, i hope.

CT do you know if there is a thickness limit on the paper you use? was looking into laser photo paper, there were a couple i found with 200 gsm and 230 gsm but i read somewhere its best to go with a max of 160 gsm - might have been an amazon comment. just wondered if you have run ino any issues beyond a certain thickness.
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