Toner is one of the most important products you need to ensure good-quality laser printouts. Despite this, toners cartridges remain largely a mystery to many people. Therefore, when you are looking to buy the best printer toners for your personal needs, it is easy to make mistakes. In order to avoid doing this, and to understand which toners are best for you, we have prepared this helpful guide.

In the paragraphs below, we will provide you with useful information about the best printer toners on the market today. In addition, we offer some useful shopping criteria so you can find the toner you need and not end up just buying any old toner. No more mediocre printouts that fall short of your expectations, and no more spending more than you need to on toner cartridges!

Key Facts

  • There are original brand-name toners, but also “compatible” toners. The originals usually offer a higher performance and have a longer service life. However, so-called “compatible” toners are generally less expensive and their quality is not so inferior to that of the originals.
  • When you buy compatible toners you should still assess their compatibility yourself. Not all options will work with your printer. It is a good idea to check what model printer you have and determine whether the product you are considering is compatible with this model. If not, you could end up wasting your money.
  • If you are going to clean your toner cartridge, you should do so with caution. Do not shake or open the cartridge, as it can stain your clothes, furniture, or carpet and toner is very difficult remove from fabrics and materials. Keeping the toner cartridge in good condition extends its life, and also affects the quality of your prints.

Our Selection: The Best Printer Toner Cartridges on the U.S. Market

Brand-name HP, Brother or Canon printer toners, are an excellent choice. However, there are many other options available. In addition, different printer and toner cartridge models are offered within each brand. Before jumping into all this, below we have listed those printer toners that are, in our opinion, some of the best printer toners on the current market. Have a look:

Best Overall Printer Toner

This Amazon Best seller rates 4.3 out of 5 and has almost 2500 verified purchaser reviews. It is a genuine Brother product and also ranks #1 in ‘Laser Printer Toners and Drums’ on Amazon. This toner can provide up to 2600 pages, and works with 16 different Laser Printers.  There is no risk that this product will be rejected by one of those printers, so it is little wonder this product ranks #1.

Best “Compatible” Printer Toner

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This toner cartridge is specifically designed for Samsung Laser Printers and is compatible with 10 different models. This 2-pack of toner cartridges provides up to 2000 total pages and is only $27.99. It is also built to ISO9001 and ISO14001 factory standards, and comes with a 4.5 out of 5 star rating from over 900 verified purchaser reviews.

Best “Green” Printer Toner

This printer toner company helps preserve the environment and reduce waste by refilling used toner cartridges.  At just $19.99 per cartridge, this toner works with 10 different HP models and can produce up to 1000 pages. Verified purchasers rate this product 4.7 out of 5 stars and reviews consistently mention high-quality printouts. Here is a way to do your part for the environment while saving money.

Buyer’s Guide: Everything You Should Know About Printer Toner

The best printer toners on the market can be purchased for a reduced price. The original brand-name models are more expensive, but they have the advantage of being designed specifically for the printer for which they are intended, which can affect its performance, and are often offered at a discount in multi-pack. However, price is not all you should consider. If you want to know more about printer toners, read on!

For the ink cartridge to work, the first thing you need to do is load it into the print head of your printer.
(Source: Andriy Popov: 51450088/ 123rf.com).

What is printer toner and what does it do?

Toner is a fundamental part of a printer. It is a cartridge that transfers toner powder onto paper through electric charges. The powder consists of two elements. The first is pigment. The second is a plastic powder. The pigments serve to color the surface upon which you print. The plastic is responsible for mixing and adhering said pigments to the paper.

What is the difference between printer toner and traditional printer ink?

The difference between toner and ink is very simple. For starters, ink is used with injection or “ink-jet” printers. On the other hand is toner, which is typically used in laser printers. Broadly speaking, these materials are what makes them dissimilar. Ink is a liquid, while toner is a powder.

Both products serve to print text and images, however, each one does so through a different method. Regarding toner, we have already explained how it works in the previous section. Ink cartridges place the liquid directly onto the paper to transfer the images and text you want to print.

Toner is one of the most important elements that you will need to ensure a good quality print-out.
(Source: Adamowicz: 38210973/ 123rf.com)

For an ink-jet cartridge to work, the first thing you should do is load it into the printer head of your printer. The pigment needed for printing is stored in an airtight aluminum container. This is covered with tiny ink nozzles. The print head starts an oscillating movement from back to front to execute the printing process.

What advantages does printer toner have over traditional printer ink?

Now that you know what a toner is and the difference between ink and toner, you might ask yourself: Is buying toner really worth it? We believe so. But like any other product, toner also has its disadvantages. However, the advantages of toner far outweigh its negative points. Here we show you why toner is a great option for printing.

Advantages
  • Much more precise than ink-jet cartridges
  • Does not present the problems of spots
  • Capacity superior to ink-jet cartridges
  • Durability is superior
  • Offers faster printing speed
  • Quality of toner printing is usually better and more accurate than that of ink-jet printing
Disadvantages
  • More expensive than ink-jet cartridges
  • Designed for almost daily rather than sporadic printing

What are the different components of printer toner cartridges?

Toner cartridges are complex elements, hence they have a higher price than ink-jet cartridges. However, as we have already noted, toner cartridges are more durable. Also, the print quality is better. This makes them an ideal product for photographic prints. Printer toner cartridges consist of:

  • Powder. A metering blade that regulates the amount of powder that is transferred from the tank to the magnetized cylinder. When this blade loses its ability to work, the prints begin to show lines or scratches–time to change the toner cartridge.
  • Container that holds the toner powder to be deposited onto the paper. The mechanism used for this is magnetism. .
  • The cleaning blade. This part picks up the toner that is not transferred to the paper and returns it to the waste toner container. It should be installed properly, because otherwise the prints may include spots.
  • Toner chips, used to manage toner performance.These provide data on the number of pages that have been printed to date, as well as the remaining toner. As we mentioned when talking about the cleaning blade, the waste toner container collects the unused toner that is left over after each printout.
  • PCR (primary charge roller). This part allows the laser to print the information it receives.
  • Magnetized cylinder. This is a tube responsible for carrying the toner from the container onto the paper.

How do you clean a printer toner cartridge?

Whether you have one of the best Brother or HP printer toner cartridges, or one of the best cheaper, compatible printer toner cartridges, you should take care good of it. This is essential for achieving quality prints. Therefore, from time to time it may be useful to clean the cartridge. Of course, remember: when you clean the cartridge, you should never open it.

You shouldn’t shake the cartridge either. This movement can damage the inside of the cartridge. Also, you risk powder leaking and staining the clothes you are wearing or the carpet and office furniture. And it is not just any stain–it is nearly impossible to remove.

On the other hand, you should control the temperature and humidity of the printer, since it affects the performance of the toner. In fact, it is advisable to keep this equipment, as well as toner cartridges, in environments whose temperature is mild, and in rooms where there is not too much direct light. In addition, you should prevent the toner cartridges from being hit, dropped or scratched.

Are so-called “compatible” printer toner cartridges good quality?

The best printer toners on the market are not only from brands that distribute and market the printers themselves. There are other companies that manufacture toner cartridges that are compatible with different printers. Therefore, if you have an HP or Brother printer, you don’t have to buy a toner from the same company.

Although the original companies can offer superior performance, since they know their product better, this does not mean that “compatible” toners are a bad investment. Moreover, with respect to the originals they present a series of advantages that you should not dismiss. And we are not talking just about price:

Advantages
  • Cheaper than the originals
  • Greener, since they do not need the investment of resources required by the originals
  • Same quality or very similar to that of the original toners
Disadvantages
  • May have shorter lifespan
  • May fail advertised compatibility

Shopping Criteria

Next, we will talk about five essential points to consider when buying a toner. Because not all users need the same type of printer toner. It all depends on your printing habits, as well as the type of work you do.  Here are some things to consider:

Budget

For many people this is the most important criterion. Not everyone has the same budget, and this is understandable. In case your budget is tight, you may have to give up original, brand-name toners. These tend to be around $65-$100. Of course, they have an advantage: they usually last longer. You will need to look at all aspects and determine what choice is best for you at the time of your purchase.

Original or “Compatible” Brand

As we have already mentioned, an original toner is different from a compatible one. However, if you know how to search, it doesn’t have to make a difference in terms of quality. Of course, at the level of optimization and performance, it is easier to opt for an original one. Compatible toners usually come in packs of two, providing an average of more than 2000 printed pages.

Capacity

If you need to print in large quantities, you may prefer a compatible toner. When coming in packs of more than one unit, they allow a greater number of printed pages. If you don’t want to replace the toner frequently, you can search for some of the best printer toners available with a capacity of 3000 pages.

Compatibility

If you are not going to buy an original toner, this section will be of interest to you. Compatible toners have different degrees of compatibility. This type of toner is made for a specific set of printers. Generally they are compatible with different models or series. Before investing in one you must make sure that it will work well with your particular printer.

Image Quality

Not all toners offer the same image quality, especially when dealing with the compatible toner market. In this sense, it is advisable to do some preliminary investigating. It is helpful to compare the different options you are considering and read other peoples’ opinions about that product. If you do not wish to take any risk, it is best to purchase an original toner.

Summary

Toner is essential to obtaining high-quality prints. It is an indispensable element of any laser printer. Therefore, care should be taken when using laser printers. When it comes to finding one of the best toners on the market, not every toner will do. First, you must decide if you are going to buy an original toner or a compatible toner.

Toner has a number of important advantages over ink-jet cartridges. Mainly, this shows up in the image quality. Toner is ideal for serial or photographic printing, but buying the right toner cartridge is not easy. Therefore, we are happy to have provided you with this shopping guide to the best printer toners on the market.

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(Source of Featured Image: Fug4s: 72288179/ 123rf.com)

Why you can trust me?

Brett is a keen observer of the latest technology trends and knows his way around the industry because he runs an electronics store. He writes about it in his spare time and wants to help others learn more about the technology industry.