Today’s technology has truly improved our lives. Almost every need can get a solution with technology. And one such device that helps a lot while remaining in the shadows is the printer. When you want to buy a printer, you can get lost amidst the different options available. Out of the many options available, laser and thermal printers are quite popular.

The differences between these 2 types of printers will help you to make an informed decision.

Laser Printers

Laser printers

Laser printers are non-impact printers which give high-quality print at high speed. The graphics and text can be easily printed at very high resolution, which ranges from 1,200 to 2,400 dpi. Though laser printers are expensive than the inkjet printers, it can pay for itself in the long run. They are suitable for both home and office use. The speed for printing a black and white page in a laser printer is around 15 to 62 ppm. For colour printing, the range is 8 to 40 ppm. Laser printers can print at the speed of more than 150 ppm for large businesses.

The cost of the laser printer is dependant on the speed, quality, and the type. For example, a home-use laser printer costs less if you compare the prince with a printer intended for a large business.

The working of the laser printer is similar to that of a copy machine. The image gets printed with the help of powdered ink and a laser beam. This combination is known as toner. Generally, the toner cartridges last longer than the ink cartridges.


  1. Efficient and accessible
  2. Quality of the print is high.
  • Cons
  1. For printing labels and wristbands, the adhesives tend to ooze from the fuser, which can cause jamming.
  2. It can consume more ink if you print barcodes.
  3. The printed paper needs laminate overlay. If it’s not maintained properly, bacteria can build up.

Thermal printers

The thermal printer creates an image in a heat-sensitive paper using electrically heated pins. Normal thermal printers are inexpensive but give low quality print that tends to fade with time. Many retail stores issue their receipts on thermal paper.

Some models use advanced printing technology which can print at a faster rate than inkjet and laser printers.

  • Pros
  1. Good for wristband and label printing.
  2. The printed media has resistance to soaps, temperature, moisture, chemicals, and bacteria.
  3. It produces zero waste because it can print on demand.
  4. Easy to use.
  5. Low maintenance
  6. High durability
  7. No toner costs
  • Cons
  1. They are available for every type of printing.
  2. They only accept roll media
  3. It cannot print large-sized page documents.

The bottom line

The technology and the purpose of both the printer types are different. Laser printers are good for home and offices while thermal printers are mostly suited for retails stores. The best thing you can do is to assess your needs and preferences before you invest in a printer.