Computer printers are categorized in a variety of different ways, sometimes causing confusion to those considered novices. Nevertheless, the primary division currently on the market speaks of 2 groups; copiers that print by impact mechanisms and copiers that print by non-impact mechanisms.

Impact Printers vs. Non-impact Distinction

Impact printers employ the system where print heads create physical contact with the paper, as illustrated by line copiers, dot-matrix and daisy wheel. They are not considered practical for home or personal use. The contrary is true with non-impact copiers where print heads do not make physical contact with the paper as in laser copiers, thermal and ink-jet copiers. Impact are noisier and normally operate with a printer ribbon. Non-impact are faster, quieter, and make use of ink cartridges. Laser copiers which fall under the non-impact category are seen mainly in office surroundings due to their high workload capability. Using a laser beam for image creation, they produce neat images with fast output; notwithstanding the higher cost of maintenance when compared to the inkjet copier.

Knowing about Printheads and Ink Cartridges

You would note here that there are other subcategories of copiers which arise due to special features. For instance, the inkjet, photo, and multifunction copiers are usually put in the same grouping given the similar method used in placing ink on paper. As stated earlier, they use ink cartridges and the user should be aware of the advantage of having a copier where the ink cartridges and print heads are separate. When this is the case, you would not have the expense of getting another print head when you change the ink cartridge. If printouts are okay and your only problem is running out of ink, then you will just want to get the ink cartridge. You will change the printheads only when they are worn out.
When your printouts emerge badly while there is still ink in the ink cartridges, you will suspect your printheads to have become damaged or defective. So remember that when printheads get congested or clogged, your image quality will always suffer. They play an important part in the care and maintenance of your equipment.