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The best printers for small businesses in 2021

One of the most important pieces of equipment for any small business is a printer. But many small businesses don’t have the space or budget for certain printers. Luckily, there are plenty of models available. Whether you need a laser printer or one that fits in a small office, you’re in luck.

We took a look at some of the best printers for small businesses. Is our top choice a perfect match for your needs?

The best all-round small business printer: Canon Maxify MB5420

Canon Maxify MB5420 review
Les Shu/Digital Trends

With a near-perfect review, we were already impressed with this incredible Maxify model, but it gets even better when you consider it for a small business with printing needs. It has great resolution, very efficient ink cartridges, strong color accuracy, and speedy printing — and the 4-in-1 features mean that it can print, scan, copy and fax as needed (although we did find that copying was a little slow). Two-sided automatic printing is supported, and the printer paper tray can hold up to 500 sheets.

Speeds for this Maxify model can reach 24ppm (pages per minute) for monochrome and 15.5ppm for color, quite fast for an inkjet model. It also has built-in Wi-Fi, compatibility with Wi-Fi Direct services like Google Cloud Print and AirPrint, and options for a direct Ethernet connection. For businesses interested in more oversight, there are also settings restrictions to prevent tampering, and a record of use to see how the printer is being used.

From a broad perspective, the Maxify MB5420 is the best choice for a growing business. However, if you prefer more speed or laser printer instead, be sure to check out our other options, too.

The best laser printer for small businesses: HP LaserJet Pro M42fdw

HP can make a mean office printer, and this LaserJet Pro mode is an excellent example. It’s a 4-in-1 laser printer, scanner, copier, and fax machine with a 50-sheet auto feed tray and a massive paper tray that can hold up to 350 sheets. As you might expect, it’s fast too, sporting a 40 ppm (black and white) speed and snappy startup, with all different kinds of paper sizes supported for various projects. Two-sided printing is also supported, and like other modes, it’s notably fast compared to competitors.

The printer also comes with all the latest connection technology no matter what you prefer: It can connect via your Wi-Fi network, NFC connections, and Wi-Fi Direct connections, and USB. It’s great at powering down into hibernation to save energy when not in use, and that small LCD touchscreen is perfectly capable of controlling any mode that you prefer.

Ultimately, if you’re looking for a laser printer for your business, the LaserJet Pro M42fdw should be one of your first stops. The biggest downside is that the design isn’t exactly compact—it’s tough to fit this printer on a shelf or desk, so you may need to make some changes when making room.

The best printer for high-speed business printing: Brother HL-L5100DN

This Brother printer also offers speedy laser printing with options for two-sided print jobs, but one of its greatest advantages is the price: It’s hard to find a cheaper printer that sports this much power, and Brother is a very reliable brand to choose for businesses. It’s also very quick: Printing goes up to 42ppm with black-and-white printing.

While the paper tray is smaller than HP’s model with a 250-sheet capacity, there’s also a 50-sheet multi-purpose tray for printing envelopes and other smaller side projects that have special requirements (you can also upgrade to a larger tray if you really need to). Connectivity options include Wi-Fi and Ethernet, as well as compatibility with Wi-Fi direct services like AirPrint, Google Cloud Print, and others.

Additional business-friendly features include a function lock that allows administers to limit what specific user groups can do or change, and secure printing via a PIN for particularly sensitive documents. However, note that the HL-L5100DN is one model that doesn’t come with scanning or copying functionality.

The best printer for saving ink and printing color pages: Epson WorkForce ET-4750

Epson’s 4-in-1 printer is another strong option if you prefer ink printing to laser printing but still want a model that’s business-ready for everything from photos to document signing sessions. It offers a 250-sheet paper tray and a 30-sheet automatic feeder, with an option for two-sided printing. Connectivity options include Wi-Fi Direct, USB, and Ethernet.

This is an excellent choice if you are worried about color resolution, and ideal for saving money, too: It’s an “EcoTank” model, which means it is designed to use ink very efficiently and its cartridges will last for a very long time within needing replacement — up to 11,200 pages for color printing and 14,000 pages for black-and-white printing!

The WorkForce ET-4750 model is efficient and accurate, but that leaves it a bit on the sluggish side. It’s not ideal for excessively bulky printing jobs, but it can handle up to 8ppm for color and 15ppm for black-and-white.

The best printer for small but busy offices: Oki C532dn

Oki’s “workgroup” printer provides plenty of benefits for growing business and office environments. This versatile printer can handle media up to 52 inches wide and heavy stock with a paper tray that holds as many as 1,410 sheets, without any additional capabilities. It reaches impressive speeds of up to 31ppm with color and even faster with black-and-white. Connectivity includes Gigabit Ethernet and Wi-Fi Direct services (there is a Wi-Fi adapter available if you want network connections).

The Oki C532dn comes with sleep modes and auto-functions to save energy, toner saving modes when printing draft documents, and standard dual-side printing to save on paper. A privacy mode also makes it easier to print sensitive documents. This is an excellent printer for businesses that still rely heavily on paper, even in this digital age.

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