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Old 02-08-2011, 12:59   #1
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Best Printer for Boat ?

Hey,

I'm a fulltime liveaboard, working for internet media firms as a network engineer. I usually only need my laptop to get by, but every now and again there's a need to print something out. As long as I'm in "civilization", that's an easy bikeride up to Kinkos or something, but that's not really the plan moving forward.

Given the unique needs of the cruising livestyle, does anyone have a recommendation on a multifunction printer for onboard use?

Ideal characteristics:

- sturdy, well built, reliable
- small/compact
- easy to find (or refill) cartridges
- multi-function (scanner/fax?)

I'm purposely leaving out "affordable" and "makes breakfast" from the list.
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Old 02-08-2011, 13:32   #2
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Re: odd one: best printer for a boat??

Round where I live you can get a multi-purpose printer for less than $50 - that's almost disposable, I guess, so sturdy isn't so much an issue.... although mine has survived Kindergarten classrooms, so perhaps they're sturdy enough!! And at $20 a refill, Bob's your Uncle.

I would suggest HP tho. HWMO hates them, but the cartridges are absolutely everywhere.

Don't forget though, you can also get hand held scanners, so if you're after compact then it might be worth getting your scanner and printer separately.
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Old 02-08-2011, 13:36   #3
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Re: Best Printer for Boat?

I had a Canon MP250 scanner/printer on board for a year and had no problems with it. For the short time it runs I ran it off the inverter no problem.
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Old 02-08-2011, 14:04   #4
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Re: Best Printer for Boat?

If you'd be powering it with a generator then laser would be best for printing while on the water - it won't run like an inkjet if the page gets wet. I know laser draws more power than an inkjet so I'm not sure it would work off an inverter.

Whichever way you go, I'd definitely get an HP. One thing to pay attention to though is the page count on the cartridges. Cheaper printers may have cheaper cartridges but those cartridges also often do not have the page counts of the more expensive catridges.
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Old 02-08-2011, 14:19   #5
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Re: Best Printer for Boat?

Hmmmm -you might want to look at the newer Kodak multi function printers. . . the ink will not bankrupt you and it is good for its use - cost per is very low and it's a workhorse.
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Old 02-08-2011, 14:20   #6
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Re: Best Printer for Boat?

go with HP .. i just tossed out a lexmark. i have an officejet H470 mobile printer and it works great.
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Old 02-08-2011, 14:29   #7
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Re: Best Printer for Boat?

I'm looking too and want small, but also 12-volt. I have my eye on this one but I am too cheap to pay this much (so far).
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Old 02-08-2011, 14:56   #8
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Re: Best Printer for Boat?

It somewhat depends on how good of an environment you can give to your printer, and how often you will use it. It is definitely better to keep it on all the time in a marine environment to keep the moisture out. Same with computers. Multi-function copier/scanner/printer is good, that way you can scan some stuff and reduce clutter. In any case they don't live long .. a few years maybe. So I have usually choosen a multi-function, wireless ink-jet printer that will not break the bank if it goes kaputt.
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Old 02-08-2011, 15:05   #9
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Re: Best Printer for Boat?

I forgot the link to the 12 volt O’Neil’s VMP
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Old 02-08-2011, 15:52   #10
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Re: Best Printer for Boat?

Any printer will work fine off an inverter. They pretty much give the printer away and get you on the ink, so check refill prices. Color can cost.
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Old 02-08-2011, 17:13   #11
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Re: Best Printer for Boat?

HP Envy. Wireless printing. Slim. Scanner. Copier. Can print from I phone. Fits nicely on a shelf.
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Old 04-08-2011, 16:25   #12
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Re: Best Printer for Boat?

Laser is no good for the water. It works (tansfers the toner) based on static charge and high moisture content in the air screws that up and clumps the toner powder.

So inkjet is the better way to go in a moist environment. HP printers used to be easily refilled, with each ink cart being a new printhead so if the refill ink clogged it,no big loss, toss it. Not so with all their new multifunctions, some of them have separate heads now and clogging them will be pricey.

Check your local WalGreens, if they list the model as refillable (and they're pretty good about refills and making customers happy) you can DIY as well. If they don't list it--that model probably will be impossible to refill. Either "smart" chips in the cartridges, or other problems.
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Old 04-08-2011, 18:12   #13
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Re: Best Printer for Boat?

Unless you've got too much space, buy the cheapest, smallest multifunction printer that you can find. The salt air in and around the boat will screw it up in short order and you can buy a new one. Might want to store the paper in a zip lock as damp pamper really messes up the feed mechanisms. Buy an inverter that's big enough to handle the loads but not too big as they have static current drain over and above the AC produced.

I've looked at the DC capable
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Old 04-08-2011, 18:39   #14
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Re: Best Printer for Boat ?

I have heaps of trouble with HP inkjets. They all end up giving me "ink cartridge errors" and keep at that no matter how many new ones you try. It's all junk, priced as junk with ink cartridges that are junk but priced as if made from gold.

I think I'm gonna try Canon next...

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Old 04-08-2011, 19:05   #15
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Re: Best Printer for Boat ?

I'm afraid I agree with Nick on the HP Inkjets. Not enamored with them at all and I just spent more than half the price of the printer on cartridges.
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