Whether you need a new printer for your small business, an office setting, or at home, a multifunction printer (MFP) can help you complete a number of different tasks. By definition, an MFPs is a great way to handle a variety of projects that would normally take several devices.
And thanks to HP®, they’re affordable for almost everyone. With so many models available, it’s best to do your research to find the best option for you and the type of work you need to complete. Let’s get into it.
What is a multifunction printer?
A multifunction printer is a device that performs a number of tasks such as printing, copying, scanning, and faxing that would normally require multiple devices. They are most often used by businesses looking to reduce costs and improve workflows.
Work projects can require a number of different functions, which means you need a printer that can handle these different tasks. Not only does this give small businesses and home offices the opportunity to save on money and space, but it also allows them to offer new services.
How to choose the right multifunction printer
Much of deciding which MFP is right for you comes down to your workflow and your budget. You may also consider how much training your employees will need to learn the new functions, and if your new MFP will be compatible with your existing devices.
In other words, your needs as a business or individual will be the main factor in your decision. If you plan to do commercial printing, you’ll need a completely different type of device than one that will just handle standard documents.
On the other hand, if you will only perform print and scan functions, then a more basic model will do the job. Consider which tasks you currently handle and which you may take on in the future.
Consider additional costs
Choosing a multifunction printer comes down not only to how much the printer itself costs, but the operational expenses as well.
If you need to print photos for brochures or advertisements, then it will, of course, cost you more to operate your printer than if you were just printing standard documents. Those more complicated jobs often require card stock, photo paper, or glossy paper, so you’ll need a device that can switch between projects effortlessly. This will save you time in addition to the cost of buying multiple devices to complete the required print jobs.
How much ink and toner you use and the type can also add up, especially if you print large projects or ones that need to use a specific kind of ink or toner. The type can also affect how much your printer costs. Most businesses choose laser printers because they generally offer a better price for the amount of ink in cartridges. Again, this can depend on the type of print jobs and how many you need to complete on average, but for the purposes of this article, we’ve focused on laser printers.
How often will you use your printer?
How often you print and perform related jobs will play a big role in your decision to buy an MFP. As noted, these devices are laser printers at their heart, which means they use toner. Toner is much more efficient for heavy printing routines and is ultimately more cost-effective than ink for these purposes.
You should also think about the potential cost of repairs and whether issues with your printer can slow down your workflow. Consider pairing your MFP with an HP Care Pack
to enjoy benefits such as onsite hardware support and complete product replacement.
Do you need additional features?
Newer printers have a host of useful new features related to sensitive data or multiple files types. Security-enabled printers
allow you to set up unique passwords for use, while others come with features for secure PDFs and tracking. This can be helpful if you’re a business owner who handles sensitive information from your customers.
Some models also offer touch screens and mobile printing. If you think these features will save your business time and effort - and they likely will - then it’s worth making sure your MFP includes them.
7 best HP multifunction printers
HP® is a longtime leader in high-quality printers at affordable prices for all types of users. From business owners to home office heroes, there are plenty of great options in your search for the best multifunction printer.
1. HP LaserJet Pro MFP M29w printer
As the smallest laser printer in its class, you can place the HP LaserJet Pro MFP M29w printer
in any area in your home or office. This device includes Google Print 2.0 and the HP Smart App, which allows you to connect to it via your mobile phone and print from anywhere.
It boasts a print speed of up to 19 pages per minute (ppm) in black and allows you to quickly switch from print jobs to copying and scanning. Covering up to 1,000 pages a month, this little printer can get a lot done for both individuals and small business owners.
- Security-enabled printer
- Automatic paper sensor
- Password-protected network
2. HP LaserJet Pro MFP M148fdw printer
The HP LaserJet Pro MFP M148fdw printer
offers fast print times and auto-duplex printing. You also don’t have to worry about adding paper constantly thanks to the 250-sheet input tray. Easy setup allows you to get this MFP up and running within an hour.
The compact design provides you with a surprising number of features, including 256MB of built-in storage. And with a monthly duty cycle of up to 20,000 pages, your printer will take on all the documents your company needs.
- 30 ppm output
- Energy-saving features including auto-on/auto-off technology
- Voice-activated printing from Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, and Microsoft Cortana
3. HP LaserJet Pro MFP M130fn printer
Among other jobs, you can easily scan to your desktop or straight to your email with the HP LaserJet Pro M130fn printer
. It uses HP JetIntelligence to provide high-quality prints, and you can check your print queue and send orders directly from your mobile devices.
It’s also designed to save energy and help you get the most bang for your buck by printing up to 10,000 pages per month. Plus, you can set up password protection to keep unverified users from accessing your printer.
- HP Smart App for mobile printing
- 256MB of storage
- 150-sheet input tray
4. HP LaserJet Pro MFP M227fdn printer
Printing, copying, and scanning becomes like second nature with the HP LaserJet Pro MFP M227fdn printer
. The 250-sheet input tray allows you to print two-sided documents easily, and the inclusion of auto-on/auto-off technology saves energy. You also have complete control over your print queue straight from the 2-line LCD display. To round out this printer’s features, it has write-protected memory to help prevent malware from taking over your business’s network.
- Simple setup has you printing in moments
- NFC touch-to-print technology
- Increased security and notifications of breaches
5. HP Color LaserJet MFP 179fnw printer
Dual-band WiFi makes it easy to print from anywhere with the HP Color LaserJet MFP 179fnw printer
. At 19 ppm in black and 4 ppm in color, you can create brochures and flyers that help you stand out from the crowd in no time. The HP App helps you to get the job done from your mobile device, either on your smartphone or your tablet. You’ll also enjoy 128MB of storage, which means you can place a number of print projects in your queue at once.
- Exceptionally sharp text
- Voice-activated printing with Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, or Microsoft Cortana
- Ethernet and wireless connections
6. HP Color LaserJet Pro MFP M180nw printer
The HP Color LaserJet Pro MFP M180nw printer
has exceptionally fast speeds and turns out 17 ppm in both black and color. And with the included extra security features, you won’t have to worry about accidentally releasing important information during all your print jobs.
The 150-sheet capacity paper tray keeps you printing without worrying about refills, which you’ll love considering how easy mobile printing is with this MFP. You can even order new HP toner from the included app, which also lets you print without accessing a WiFi network.
- Dual-band WiFi
- Security-enabled and password-protected
- Up to 30,000 pages in the monthly duty cycle
7. HP Color LaserJet Pro MFP M477fnw printer
At 28 ppm in both black and color, the HP Color LaserJet Pro MFP M477fnw printer
has all the speed you need for top-of-the-line printing. More than a printer, it also includes a great scan-to-email feature that makes it simple to send important documents to colleagues or to another device.
With the fastest first-page-out speed in its class, two-sided printing is quick and easy. The 4.3-inch touch screen offers an intuitive way to manage your printing, scanning, copying, and faxing. Plus, you have a monthly duty cycle of 50,000 pages. Add all these qualities up, and you’re looking at our pick for the best multifunction color laser printer.
- Two standard paper trays
- 50-sheet auto feeder
- 150-sheet output bin
Very few companies offer the variety and quality of MFPs like HP®. Whatever your needs are, you can find a device that fits your exact specifications and that can help you achieve the best-looking prints available.
About the Author: Daniel Horowitz is a contributing writer for HP® Tech Takes. Daniel is a New York-based author and has written for publications such as USA Today, Digital Trends, Unwinnable Magazine, and many other media outlets.