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  1. #1
    Platinum Lounger
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    Paper: inkjet vs laser

    I notice in my local office supplies chain(s) a bewildering variety of stuff that can now be fed through desktop printers.
    Most of it is paper stock - paper, card, business cards etc
    Some of it is glossy (as in Photograph paper)
    Some of it is weird (as in decals for the windows)

    I notice that some packets specify "InkJet", while others specify "Laser".
    I would imagine that "inkjet" stock has some better-porosoity or ability to absorb wet ink, while "laser" stock is better able to cope with heat-treated chemicals.

    Has anyone found instances where stock destined for InkJet can NOT be used in a laser printer?
    Is it just manufacturer's covering their own behinds (no jokes about toilet paper please!)?

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    4 Star Lounger
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    Re: Paper: inkjet vs laser

    <img src=/S/hmmn.gif border=0 alt=hmmn width=15 height=15> Age old question.

    Here is a Google search on that VERY Subject of inkjet vs laser

    Personally, I think it boils down to identifying the type of printing you want to do and look at the printer specs of the printer you are interested in (inkjet or laser). Some stock is geared towards a specific type, most will work on both. Black and white speed printing favors Laser, while color and relatively low ink cost favor inkjet.
    Scott

  3. #3
    Plutonium Lounger Leif's Avatar
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    Re: Paper: inkjet vs laser

    I certainly wouldn't want to use gloss inkjet paper on a laser - the idea of that gloss melting and gumming up the works doesn't bear thinking about. Personally, I would follow the limitations/recommendations of the manufacturer.

  4. #4
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    Re: Paper: inkjet vs laser

    It is much more complex that just having porous paper for inkjets, see this patent for an example.

    StuartR

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    Plutonium Lounger Leif's Avatar
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    Re: Paper: inkjet vs laser

    Just to slightly hijack Chris's thread...

    I don't know how much experience you have with laser printers themselves, but we have a continual problem at work which I will try to describe briefly:

    We produce artwork from our pcb design CAD software which can be used to produce circuit boards using suitably coated photo-sensitive material. The artwork must be translucent, opaque where we don't want the UV light to get through, and to scale.

    We use laser-grade polyester film which has a slightly matt finish. Until a couple of years ago, an aging HP LJ4 gave the best results, although the 'black' was a bit grey and streaky. Exposure times had to be carefully monitored, but the scale was constant. (I don't think it was perfect scale, but adjustments prior to printing allowed for this.) Other HP LJ's, like the 2100, gave varying scales, depending on the amount of black to be printed. For example, a 200mm square may come out 197mm long if it was solid black, or 198mm if 50% black etc.

    Then I acquired a Magicolor 2300W. Perfect scaling, and a black that resembled Letraset - almost 100% opacity. However, it lasted literally a year and a day before the paper feed started playing up, and now only likes to print 1 sheet every five minutes. To cover our colour needs, I recently bought a HP CP3505 which has terrific colour and speed, but it too fails miserably on both polyester transparent film, and plain white polyester "Durable Laser Printable Labels For All Laser Printers".

    In your view, is this down to the different imaging technology used by the manufacturers? I fear I may have to buy another Magicolor just for printing on polyester!

  6. #6
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    Re: Paper: inkjet vs laser

    Paper or mylar all will wear down the nibs. Before retirement and early in the CAD world, we had ink plotters. We also used "Mylar" film for the drawing material. We found that the ink plotter points would last about 20 minutes, then we needed to change them. This 20 minutes would give us time for about a C size drawing (17 x 22 inches), but when were plotting a J size drawing (36 x 138 inches) we would need to replace the points about 6 times.

    Later as the "Electro Static" plotters come out we had the similar problem, the nibs would were down and the nib bar had to be replaced every month. Even today's printers have these nibs or ink jets which just may be to close (do the the thickness of the paper) to the paper and the paper is wearing off the surface of these nibs or jets.
    Another problem we had was that the treated surface of mylar would also wear down the hard rubber on the rollers and the paper would start to slip.

    Yes, the different type of paper does make a difference, but to MOST people we can not see the difference. If you are a pro photographer you would see differences in the ink and paper being used on different printers.

    Now running HP Pavilion a6528p, with Win7 64 Bit OS.

  7. #7
    Plutonium Lounger Leif's Avatar
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    Re: Paper: inkjet vs laser

    Not really applicable here - I haven't used a plotter for about 10 years!

    The issue I have is with laser printers - when I tried the CP3505 it had a print count of about 50 so I don't think roller wear has anything to do with it.

  8. #8
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    Re: Paper: inkjet vs laser

    Sorry Leif, I have run into similar problems myself. If I create something to an exact size in a drawing program and then print it I often find small differences. I have no idea what components are responsible.

    StuartR

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    Re: Paper: inkjet vs laser

    > Here is a Google search on that VERY Subject of inkjet vs laser
    Thanks. I have the merits down pat, but I am especially interested in the extent to which paper stocks are interchangeable.

  10. #10
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    Re: Paper: inkjet vs laser

    > the idea of that gloss melting and gumming up the works
    I agree. I'm not certain that the gloss on laser stock is different from the gloss on Inkjet stock.
    >I would follow the limitations/recommendations of the manufacturer.
    Always good advice. I don't mind doing that, either.
    My problem arises when I see stock for inkjet when the stock is not apparrent for laser. many clerks are clueless about their products. If i want to experiment with postcard stock, is it safe to take this packet of 25 sheets (for inkjet) and hope thay work for laser? Down the road I don't mind tracking down a bulk supply of the right stuff, but sometimes time doesn't permit that option when a client would like an answer in 24 hours.

    You know me, and to date I have been conservative......

  11. #11
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    Re: Paper: inkjet vs laser

    > Yes, the different type of paper does make a difference, but to MOST people we can not see the difference.
    Thanks. I could live with this. At my age the ears don't care that the two speaker enclosures are stacked one on top of the other, and while I'd like my postcards (sales/marketing gimmick) to look professional, they aren't going to be used to stock racks at the local art gallery, so quality ne4eds be only so good.

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