Laser Copiers & Printers

Laser photocopiers and printers are advanced devices that produce high-quality text and images on paper. They utilise laser technology, which has played a significant role in modern printing. Here's a brief overview of their technology, historical importance, widespread usage, and a comparison with inkjet photocopiers and printers.

Technology and Operation

Laser photocopiers and printers use a laser beam to create a precise image on a photosensitive drum. The drum is then coated with toner, a fine powder-like ink. The toner adheres to the image on the drum and is subsequently transferred onto paper, where heat is employed to fuse it permanently. This process ensures accurate and sharp printing.

Historical Significance: Laser printing emerged in the 1970s, revolutionising the printing industry. The first commercial laser printer, the Xerox 9700, introduced high-speed and high-quality printing, marking a departure from traditional dot matrix and impact printers.

The Xerox 9700

Widespread Adoption: Laser printers and photocopiers quickly gained popularity in offices, schools, and homes due to their fast printing speeds, precision, and durability. They're commonly used for text-heavy documents, reports, presentations, and professional materials.


  1. Speed: Laser printers excel at fast printing, making them ideal for large-volume jobs.
  2. Precision: Laser technology ensures sharp text and fine details, making it great for text-heavy documents.
  3. Durability: Laser prints are resistant to smudging and water damage.
  4. Economical: While initial costs might be higher, toner cartridges tend to last longer than inkjet cartridges, resulting in lower long-term costs for high-volume printing.

Comparative Analysis against Inkjet

Inkjet printers, the other common printing technology, operate by propelling tiny droplets of ink onto paper. While both have their strengths, there are distinct differences:

  1. Quality: Laser excels at sharp text, while inkjet offers better colour accuracy and is suitable for photo printing.
  2. Speed: Laser printers are generally faster, especially for large text documents. Hence they are best for general office use.
  3. Cost: While laser printers have lower long-term costs for high-volume printing, inkjet printers can be more economical for occasional printing.
  4. Size: Laser printers are often larger and more suitable for offices, while inkjets are more compact and can fit well in homes.

In summary, laser photocopiers and printers are essential tools for producing high-quality prints quickly and precisely, making them a staple in offices and professional settings. Their historical significance, widespread usage, and distinct advantages over inkjet printers make them the most reliable option for most office printing needs.