What is a Laser Printer & How it Works?

A laser printer is a common type of computer printer that rapidly produces high quality text and graphics on plain paper. Like photocopiers, laser printers employ a xerographic printing process but differ from analog photocopiers in that the direct scanning of a laser beam across the printer’s photoreceptor produces the image.

A man named Gary Stark weather who was a researcher at the Xerox Corporation invented the first laser printer. The first machine was a modification of a laser cartridge derived from a Xerox machine. This was the beginning of a multibillion-dollar business expansion for Xerox.

The first commercial laser printer, which was outfitted with replaceable laser toner and its own laser toner cartridge, was a model for IBM called the IBM 3800. It first made its appearance in 1976 and was used for the bulk printing of such documents as mailing labels and invoices. Unlike today’s printers the IBM 3800 was huge and took up the whole room. Despite this many of these original “antique” laser printers are still in use.


The first contemporary looking laser printer was the Brother HL2040, which was designed for use with a personal computer.  However, it was an expensive system that also came with a Xerox machine and it cost $17,000. The first mass-market laser printer was the HP LaserJet 8ppm, which was released in 1984. This printer was quickly followed by the release of other printers from Brother and IBM.

Apple computer also revolutionized personal desk printing by distributing the Apple LaserWriter for the Apple Macintosh one year later in 1985.

These laser printers used to cost three to four thousand dollars each and be quite heavy. Nowadays they have evolved to be light and portable and some perfectly efficient black and white laser printer models even cost less than a hundred dollars.


What is a Laser Printer?

A laser printer is a very common type of computer printer. Its function is to rapidly produce high quality looking graphics and text on paper from images and texts on your computer.  Laser printers are very similar to photocopiers only the process that they use to print is slightly different. Most photocopiers are analog photocopiers, which means that the image is produced by a xerographic printing process. In the case of the laser printer the scanning of a laser beam across the printer’s photoreceptor immediately produces the image.

Laser printers are more flexible in the ways they can be employed then other types of printers, which are known as “impact printers.” Unlike impact printers, which are like typewriters, the laser printer can easily mix graphics with text. Another advantage to using a laser printer is that it can also print different fonts and character sizes as well as halftone images. Some models also have the capability of reprinting photographs but don’t do as well as a bubble inkjet printer, which are still the industry standard for printing photos.

Laser printers are also less messy to deal with as laser printer cartridges use a powdered toner rather than liquid toner. Depending on what laser printer toner cartridge you use you can print documents in black or white. This means that the image does not smear as it is being printed, as is the case with some thermal printers. The image can have a higher resolution, a lower cost per page and a quicker print speed. The rapidity of laser printing is due to the fact that it can print an entire page at a time while other types of printers are limited to printing a series of narrow strips.

Laser printers can also print fast or slow depending on what model that you buy. The slower models that are created for home use can print about four pages a minute and are quite cheap. Faster models that are used for commercial purposes can print 12,000 pages an hour. For more information about best printer model you can read this guide from here – http://www.bluechipstech.com.

How do Laser Printers Work?

The printing of a document on a laser printer page is a six–step process.

  1. Charging. A wire or a roller projects an electrostatic charge onto a photoreceptor. The photoreceptor is a revolving drum or belt that is photosensitive and can replicate an image.

  1. Writing. The next step in the process is the conversion of the image from code the computer understands to code the printer understands. This is called a raster image. Raster images are suitable for scanning onto the photoreceptor. The laser is aimed at a mirror inside the printer that directs the laser beam through a series of lenses. Wherever the laser hits the photoreceptor the electromagnetic charge is reversed and the image from the computer is replicated on the photoreceptor surface.

  1. Developing. The image is created once it is exposed to the toner in the laser cartridge. Toner for laser printers consists of a very fine dry plastic powder that is mixed with color.

  1. Transferring. The photoreceptor is put through rollers or a presser and this transfers the image to the paper.

  1. Fusing. The image is made permanent when it passes through a fuser mechanism. These are a set of rollers that apply heat and pressure (up to 200 degrees Celsius) and the plastic powdered toner is applied to the paper.

  1. Cleaning. Once the image is fused it is cleaned by a rubber blade that cleans any excess toner from the photoreceptor and deposits it into a reservoir. Another unit called a discharge lamp also gets rid of any remaining charge in the photoreceptor.

Many printers have a toner-conservation mode, which can be substantially more economical to use. Using a laser printer in low-contrast settings can also save you a considerable amount of the money that you spend on color laser cartridges. It can save you the expense of buying new laser cartridges and help make the one you have last longer.


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