A Comprehensive Printer Shopping Guide

Printers come in all shapes and sizes and can be simple one trick ponies or a smorgasbord of utilities rolled into an amazing all in one machine. Because users have hundreds of different needs there are just as many types of printers. We'll cover the best in printers for the home and office, the best portables, all in ones and photo printers. This Bright Hub compilation taps the best minds in the computer hardware community for their take on the printer's that make the most sense for you.

Take a bit of time to compare the various models discussed and then go see one in person. Let us guide you to a place you feel comfortable, maybe pick out one or two models that hold your interest, then take them for a test run. There are always a few intangibles that will sway your personal opinion whether it be the smooth print spooling or the crisp print quality, maybe just the sound (or lack thereof) that soothes you. If you find that this guide is lacking, let us know, but if it isn't and it helps you choose a printer let us know that, too.

Home Printers

Picking out the perfect printer for the home involves more than just grabbing the cheapest model on the rack. In fact, that cheap model may cost you quite a lot more than a premium model in the long run. Once you've read Bright Hub Figures Out the Real Cost of a Cheap Inkjet Printeryou'll be ready to make an informed decision concerning your choices for a home printing solution. Keep in mind, these printers are meant to be for home use (not home office use – the home office printers are found in the business section).

The Best Portable Printers for Notebook Computers

Epson Stylus Pro 3800 Photo Printer Review

Choosing the Best Windows 7 Compatible Printer for Your Needs

Top Three HP Printers Compatible with Windows 7 for Less Than $150

Brother MFC 465CN Printer Review

Review: HP Photosmart Plus Edition Model B209A

Business Printers

If you have a business that is heavy on the print need or you plan on printing high quality images it might be in your best interest to check out these laser printers for small to medium size businesses. These are also great for the home office, especially if you will be printing out color brochures or graphic inserts.

3 Great B/W Laser Printers For Medium Businesses

Top Budget Color Laser Printer and Scanner Combis

Best Color Laser Printers for Small Businesses

A Guide to the Best Rated Color Laser Printers for the Home Office

Review: HP LaserJet P1505n: Best Small Office Network Printers

Photo Printers

While there aren't many good, quality photo printers on the market today. For a serious photographer we have three exceptional choices, the Canon Selphy 750, the Sony Dpp-FP90 Photostation and the Canon PIXMA MP610.

Canon Selphy 750 vs. Sony DPP-FP90 Photostation: Portable Photo Printers

Canon PIXMA MP610 Review: Great All-In-One & Photo Printer

Wireless Printers

If your home or office is laid out in such a manner that multiple people will be printing from multiple places a wireless solution might be the best bet for you. There are some special considerations if you are using a Windows 7 operating system as it is not backwards compatible will many of the popular low end printer models (the 64x has even less options than the 32x).

Top Five Wireless Printers

The Top 5 Wireless All-in-One Printers

A Buyer’s Guide to the Best Wireless Printers for the Home and Home Office

The Best Wireless Printer for Windows 7

All-in-Ones

An all in one printer is one of the best solutions for either a home or business as it encompasses the functions of a printer, copier, scanner and often a fax machine – all of the essential print and communication tools. We start you off with a best of the best piece and then give you some more in depth, single model reviews.

The Best All-in-One Printers for the Home or Home Office

HP Photosmart Premium Fax C309a All-in-One: Wireless Versatility for the Home Office

Lexmark X5495 Review: A Best Budget All In One?

Reviewing the HP Officejet 6500 All-in-One Printer

Printer Review – HP Officejet 6500 All-in-One Printer

Review of the Brother MFC9460CDN and MFC9560CDW All-in-one Printers

Brother MFC 6490 CW All in One Wireless Printer

The Bright Hub printer shopping guide serves as a primer for anyone looking to replace a printer that is on its way out. Hopefully you have found it before your printer has died and you have time to digest the multitude of choices. Happy printer hunting.