With so many people now working from home, picking the best cheap printer is essential. You may find that now you're not at the office so much, you're in need of a printer, but you don't want to spend a lot of money on one.
This is where our best cheap printers of 2020 buying guide comes in. On this page you'll find honest and straightforward buying advice about buying a budget printer.
After all, while you don't want to spend a lot of money on a printer, you won't want to buy a low-cost printer that lets you down with poor quality printouts and slow speeds.
That means that buying a budget printer can be tough, as there's a lot of choice out there, and you don't want to end up buying a cheap printer that doesn't do the job well. It'll just mean you've wasted your money.
Not only have we listed the very best cheap printers of 2020, we've also got a built-in price comparison tool that ensures you get the very best cheap printer deals no matter where you're shopping from.
So, we've compiled this list of the best cheap printers and made sure that every device on this page manages to offer both excellent print quality while keeping the price as low as possible. It's a tricky balance to strike, but by buying any of the devices on this best cheap laptop deals guide, you can be sure you won't be sacrificing image quality just to get a bargain.
One important thing to keep in mind when buying a cheap printer is that some manufacturers lower the price of the printer to entice people to buy, but keep the price of its consumables (such as ink cartridges) high, making their money back that way. This means some apparently cheap printers end up being quite expensive over the course of their lifetimes. We've kept this in mind while compiling this list of the best cheap printers of 2020.
One other thing to note is that due to more people than ever working from home, some of these printers are out of stock, so check out our constantly-updated stock checker below for some great alternatives that you can buy today.
Epson’s entry-level all-in-one looks as smart as the rest of its stylishly simple Expression Home printers and it shares almost all the same features. It can print in colour using individual ink cartridges, scan A4 pages at high resolution and photocopy. Wi-Fi is built in for a network connection, or a Wi-Fi Direct link with your smartphone. It can print envelopes, glossy photo paper and hold a hundred sheets of A4 in its main paper tray. The only feature missing is auto duplex, which is a pity, but with Epson’s aggressive discounting, we think this model is well worth the money.
When we tested it, this was the smallest laser printer around and likely to remain so. Being as small and inexpensive as an inkjet, yet with all the speed, economy and consistency of a laser, the LaserJet Pro M15w is in many ways the ideal cheap printer. It manages to hold one hundred sheets of paper and print on them at the respectable rate of 19ppm. There’s no duplex mode, sadly, and no display, but at this price it’s hard to argue.
Read the full review: HP LaserJet Pro M15w
HP offers plenty of choice when it comes to all-in-one printers at this budget end of the market and this glossy white model is one of the cheapest. Nonetheless, it can print, scan and copy and offers both Wi-Fi and USB connectivity. There’s no auto duplex mode and printing is rather slow, but the design is quite compact and practical. Like some other low-cost inkjets, the three coloured inks are combined in the same cartridge, which is a slight disadvantage, but the black is a pigment ink which means more durable black and white printed pages.
The Deskjet 3630 is a fantastic printer that shows how the best cheap printers can offer print quality that can rival more expensive devices. Like some budget printers, the standard ink cartridges can be quite expensive, but if you use it a lot, HP's Instant Ink subscription service ends up being much better value for money, meaning this is a brilliant cheap printer that actually remains cheap throughout its life.
Read the full review: HP Deskjet 3630
HP’s oddly shaped all-in-one includes every feature from a fax facility, to an SD card slot, while giving you easy access to them via a colourful touchscreen interface. The coloured inks are combined in one cartridge and if you subscribe to HP’s Instant Ink service, it will be automatically replaced just before you run out. It feels a little flimsy, but photos prints in particular, look vibrant.
The HP Deskjet 2130 All-in-One printer is another great example of a cheap all-in-one printer. It's cheaper than the HP Envy 5540 (above), but the lower price does mean you don't get quite as good a print quality as HP's other printer. It's also a bit slower, and feels a little cheap at times. However, if you only want a cheap printer for occasional use (rather than heavy-duty printing), and also need a scanner and photocopier, then the HP Deskjet 2130 All-in-One printer is probably the best cheap printer for you.
The M2070W is our pick for the best cheap printer for business users. It offers some brilliant features considering its low price, such as NFC printing from compatible smartphones, online document sharing, and a clever Eco system that supplements the usual toner saving mode with a feature to remove images from documents by replacing bitmaps with sketches. It has print speeds of 20ppm, a clever scan to mobile feature and an effective print resolution of up to 1200dpi. It only prints in monochrome, but for most businesses that will be fine, and the low price makes this a brilliant budget choice for the office.
The Brother HL-3140CW is another brilliant cheap laser printer, and in fact is one of Amazon's best-selling laser printers, and with good reason – for very little cash you're getting a superb wireless color laser. Sure, some compromises have been made to keep the price of this printer as low as possible, so it doesn't have automatic duplexing or an Ethernet port, but the HL-3140CW delivers superb print quality, reasonable mono running costs and good wireless features for a very low price. If you're looking for a business printer and you're on a tight budget, then the Brother HL-3140CW will prove to be a worthwhile addition to your office.
The Canon Pixma range has always been rated especially well for photo printing, and the Canon Pixma MG3650S doesn't let the team down. Even better is that it's the budget model in this range, so you won't have to break the bank to get high-quality photos and other images printed. Another big plus is that it's a wireless printer, so no having to mess about with leads and cords. With a print resolution of 4800 x 1200dpi, and color print speed of almost 10 pages a minute, this is a model that can surprise and impress, especially at this price range. IT also has a scanner and copier option to boot.
The Epson Expression Home XP-255 is another wireless printer that under-promises and over-delivers. Not only can it print color images with a resolution of up to 5760 x 1440 dpi, it can also print up to 15 color images per minute. However, the good news doesn't stop there, as the XP-255 is a multifunction machine that offers print, scan, and copy functionality, making it one of the most versatile options on this list. The ink cartridges aren't too expensive either, with companies such as OfficeWorld offering full replacements of the entire set for under $10.
- Check out our list of the best overall printers