Best Monochrome Laser Printer for 2020 – Buyer’s Guide
A monochrome laser printer is your best option if you’re going to do a lot of monochrome text printing as it can be very cost-efficient under these circumstances.
Because printing in monochrome tremendously reduces the cost per page of a laser printer, you can make use of the money you’re guaranteed to save in other ways.
And if you’re not sure which one to get, you can check out this list of the best monochrome laser printers.
The 10 Best Monochrome Laser Printers 2020
1. Brother HL-L2350DW
The Brother HL-L2350DW is a great monochrome printer for anyone that’s looking for efficiency, compactness, and compatibility.
Indeed, it doesn’t have any other functions than printing –unlike many rivals. However, it does its one job beyond perfectly.
It prints at 15 PPM in duplex printing mode and can reach up to 32 PPM in simplex.
The first print out is produced in 8.5 seconds with a resolution of 2400 x 600 DPI that ensures your print is exceptionally rich in details.
As for paper handling, it has a wide-capacity paper tray that can accommodate 250 sheets at a time.
But the actual value is in the fact that it can handle various media types and sizes.
This includes bond paper, envelopes, and thick paper as well as A4, A5, A6, executive folio, legal, and letter-A size paper. This is a range between 4.13 x 5.83 inches and up to 8.5 x 14 inches.
On top of that, it can handle heavy cardstock of a weight up to 61 pounds (or 230 g/m2).
As for the connectivity options, the Brother HL-L2350DW offers you wireless connection through WiFi as well as a wired connection through the USB 2.0 port.
The connection gives you access to multiple printing protocols, including Brother iPrint & Scan, Google Cloud Print, WiFi Direct, and Apple AirPrint.
You can check the printing status on the one-line monochrome LCD screen.
The Brother HL-L2350DW ensures that you enjoy minimal running costs through the duplexing (2-sided printing) ability that cuts down paper use to a half.
On top of that, it has a toner saver mode which tremendously reduces toner costs –besides the genuine, high-yielding toner cartridge provided by Brother.
Like most Brother printers, the Brother HL-L2350DW’s monthly duty cycle is 15,000 pages with 2,000 pages as a recommended number.
When you set it up, it’ll occupy a space of 7.9x 14 x 16.9 inches, and it weighs only 15.9 pounds.
- Incredible print quality
- Fast performance for an entry-level printer
- Affordable in terms of both up-front cost and running costs
- Compact and lightweight design
- Doesn’t have an Ethernet port
- No support for external drives
If you’re looking for an entry-level mono laser printer that will keep your running costs as low as ever without compromising on quality, you’ll find none better than the Brother HL-L2350DW.
2. Brother DCP-L5500DN
Brother DCP-L5500DN combines between the diversified features, speed of performance, and networking.
It’s an excellent option for a small office or home use as it delivers multiple functions from one unit.
With an incredible speed of 42 PPM and a sharp resolution of 1200 x 1200 DPI, you’ll get high-quality prints instantaneously.
The letter-sized flatbed and the 40-sheet ADF makes scanning and copying possible at a resolution of 1200 x 1200 DPI –which can be interpolated up to 19200 x 19200 DPI and a speed of 24 IPM in black and 20 IPM in color.
Moreover, you can quickly swipe through the settings and speed up the use thanks to the 3.7-inch.
The USB host port enables direct printing and scanning.
As for paper handling, the Brother DCP-L5500DN has a standard 250-sheet input tray and a versatile 50-sheet multipurpose tray. With the optional trays, the total capacity can be expanded up to 1,340 sheets.
Also, the Brother DCP-L5500DN has both USB 2.0 and Ethernet connectivity for wired connection. However, you can’t get a wireless connection as it doesn’t have WiFi.
You can print using Apple AirPrint, Google Cloud Print 2.0, Brother iPrint & Scan, Cortado Workplace, or Mopria Web Connect through direct access to Google Drive, Evernote, OneDrive, OneNote, Dropbox, and more.
Moreover, the Brother DCP-L5500DN has an incredible monthly duty cycle of 50,000 pages with a recommended volume of 3,500 pages per month.
Finally, when it’s set up, it measures 17.1 x 16.8 x 19.1 inches and weighs 36 pounds.
- Great monthly duty cycle
- Includes faxing function
- Compatible with various operating systems
- Doesn’t have WiFi connectivity
The Brother DCP-L5500DN is a great choice if you’re looking for a high-volume black and white printer to keep running costs low and get quality prints.
3. Brother MFC-L6800DW
If you’re looking for a machine that can take on any kind of job, the Brother MFC-L6800DW is a perfect option.
Whether you’re looking for printing, scanning, copying, or faxing -it’s all available.
Moreover, the duty cycle of 125,000 pages and 520-sheet input tray make it very suitable for heavy-duty and large-volume print jobs.
And not only is it able to handle a lot of work, but it also produces that work at an exceptional speed of 48 PPM (printing and copying) and a 1200 x 1200 DPI resolution.
The Brother MFC-L6800DW’s media handling is also great as it can work with sizes up to 8.5 x 14 inches and media weight up to 200 g/m2.
Thanks to the presence of an 80-sheet ADF and a legal-size flatbed, you can quickly scan documents with an optical resolution of 1200 x 1200 DPI.
In simplex mode, you get a speed of 50 IPM in black and 20 IPM in color. On top of that, single-pass duplexing is available at an incredible rate of 100 IPM in black and 34 IPM in color.
The 4.85-inch color touchscreen lets you check the printing status and control the settings.
As for the connectivity options, you get USB 2.0 and Ethernet connections as well as WiFi and NFC for wireless access.
Once you’re connected, you can print via a mobile device using Apple AirPrint, Google Cloud Print 2.0, Brother iPrint & Scan, Cortado Workplace, or Mopria.
Finally, the footprint of the Brother MFC-L6800DW is 19.5 x 16.8 x 20.4 inches and weighs 41.49 pounds.
- Good printing speed
- Satisfactory expandable paper capacity
- Multiple connectivity options
- Low cost per page
- Sub-par graphics
Another great option for high-volume printing is the Brother MFC-L6800DW as it can handle medium and large output demands.
4. Canon imageCLASS MF236n
You can easily and effectively maximize your productivity with the Canon imageCLASS MF236n as it can serve multiple functions: printing, scanning, copying, and faxing.
It prints at a speed up to 24 PPM with a 600 x 600 DPI resolution –which isn’t the highest but is suitable enough for black text printing.
With the flatbed glass or the 35-sheet automatic document feeder, you can copy and scan at a 600 x 600 DPI resolution and with 24-bit color depth.
Moreover, the 250-sheet input tray provides you with sufficient capacity to do medium-volume work, and the 1-sheet multipurpose tray is designed to work with specialty media.
On top of that, it can handle documents of sizes up to 8.5 x 14 inches.
The Canon imageCLASS MF236n’s monthly cycle is 15,000 pages with a recommended 200 – 5,000 pages.
To connect the Canon imageCLASS MF236n, you can use either the USB 2.0 or Ethernet port as it –disappointingly- doesn’t support WiFi connectivity.
You can still work with many printing applications and services, including Apple AirPrint, Mopria Print Service, and Canon’s mobile apps.
The user-friendly 6-line tiltable LCD touchscreen allows you to seamlessly navigate through all the features while the quiet mode helps reduce operational noise for maximum comfort.
When it’s set up, the Canon imageCLASS MF236n’s measurements are 15.4 x 14.7 x 14.2 inches, and it weighs 26.68 pounds.
- Affordable up-front price
- Compactly designed
- Good performance speed
- Great print quality
- Lacks auto duplexing
- Running costs are relatively high
- Doesn’t have WiFi, WiFi direct, or NFC connectivity
The Canon imageCLASS MF236n is a good budget-friendly printer for the occasional print, so it’s suitable for home use. However, it lacks duplexing and many connectivity options.
5. Brother HLL2390DW
Being compact doesn’t mean that the Brother HLL2390DW is lacking when it comes to features and performance.
In a single unit, you can find printing, scanning, and copying.
With a maximum print resolution of 2400 x 600 DPI at a 32 PPM speed and the ability to work with variously-sized media starting from 3 x 5 inches and reaching up to 8.5 x 14 inches, the Brother HLL2390DW will surpass your expectations.
You can work with media that weighs as little as 16 pounds (or 60 g/m2) and as large as 61 pounds (or 230 g/m2).
As for paper handling, the input tray can accommodate 250 sheets while the one-sheet manual feed slot allows you to work with specialty media.
Thanks to the 8.5 x 11.7-inch bed, you can copy and scan at an optical resolution of 1200 x 1200 DPI for sharply detailed scans.
You can control the Brother HLL2390DW’s operations through the two-line monochrome LCD screen.
Moreover, the Brother HLL2390DW feature WiFi connectivity as well as USB 2.0 but no Ethernet. You can directly print from mobile devices and printing protocols, including Google Cloud Print, Brother iPrint & Scan, WiFi Direct, and Apple AirPrint.
Finally, the printer’s size is 16 x 15.7 x 10.7 inches, it weighs 22.71 pounds and has a monthly duty cycle of 15,000 pages –although the recommended one is 2,000 pages.
- Low up-front price
- Small and lightweight
- Superb text quality
- Low running costs
- Fast printing speed
- Lacks an automatic document feeder
- Doesn’t support Ethernet connectivity
The Brother HLL2390DW is a reliable printer whose compact design makes it suitable to fit easily on any desktop. If you work in a home office, this printer will suit you well.
6. Brother HL-L5100DN
The Brother HL-L5100DN has excellent speed and networking options.
At an incredible speed of 42 PPM and a resolution of 1200 x 1200 DPI, the Brother HL-L5100DN produced high-quality output in a short time.
The 250-sheet paper tray can handle paper sizes as large as 8.5 x 14 inches and produce prints at a rate of less than 7.2 seconds.
The automatic duplex printing feature works on maximizing productivity and minimizes paper use thanks to the 2-sided output.
Moreover, the 50-sheet multipurpose tray is designed to work with specialized media to increase the versatility of the Brother HL-L5100DN.
You can connect the Brother HL-L5100DN through USB 2.0 or Ethernet ports. However, it doesn’t have WiFi.
You can enjoy mobile printing via Apple AirPrint, Google Cloud Print, Mopria, Brother iPrint & Scan, and Cortado Workplace.
With a 50,000-page monthly duty cycle, the Brother HL-L5100DN should meet all your printing needs.
The Brother HL-L5100DN’s dimensions are 14.7 x 15.3 x 10 inches, and it weighs 23.59 pounds.
- Good text quality
- Incredible operation speed
- Satisfactory paper capacity
- The running costs are low
- Substandard graphics quality
- No WiFi connectivity
Any micro office or workgroup will undoubtedly make use of this fast monochrome that produced high-quality text prints at very budget-friendly costs.
7. Brother HL-L2300D
A reliable printer for personal use is the Brother HL-L2300D.
Its print speed is an ample 27 PPM while its print resolution is a good 2400 x 600 DPI and its first print out time is 8.5 seconds.
Its paper handling is more than sufficient as the paper tray can accommodate 250 sheets at a time and can handle documents up to 8.5 x 14 inches in size.
It also has a straight-through paper path that allows the user to work with specialty media.
Moreover, the integration of an automatic duplex printing feature helps the user minimize the cost of paper.
On top of that, toner saver mode minimizes the cost of replacements. Combining these two things and you get an overall low running cost.
The Brother HL-L2300D gives you only USB 2.0 for connectivity as it lacks both Ethernet and WiFi connectivity. This is pretty disappointing but good enough for a personal use printer.
With a monthly duty cycle of 10,000 pages (250 – 2,000 recommended), you’ll be able to be as productive as you want.
Finally, the Brother HL-L2300D’s footprint is as small as 14 x 14.2 x 7.2 inches, and it weighs 15 pounds.
- Small footprint
- Great paper-handling for personal use
- Available duplexing
- Lacks both Ethernet and WiFi connectivity
The Brother HL-L2300D can easily be considered the ideal printer for personal use. Compact and lightweight, this little machine can maximize your productivity while minimizing your running costs.
8. Brother MFC-L2710DW
The Brother MFC-L2710DW gives you satisfactory versatility in a compactly designed machine.
This all-in-one printer features printing, scanning, copying, and faxing.
It prints at a resolution of 2400 x 600 DPI to give you rich details and a speed of 32 PPM to maximize productivity.
Moreover, when it comes to printing, its paper tray can handle 250 sheets at a time, and the manual feed slot gives you the ability to print media up to 8.5 x 14 inches in size.
As for the other functions, the Brother MFC-L2710DW comes with a 50-sheet automatic document feeder and an 8.5 x 11.7-inch flatbed that allows you to scan and copy at an optical resolution of 1200 x 1200 DPI.
Thanks to the two-line monochrome LCD screen, you can check your printing status whenever you need it.
The built-in WiFi supports direct mobile printing and various printing protocols such as Apple AirPrint, Google Cloud Print, WiFi Direct, and iPrint & Scan.
On the other hand, a wired connection is made possible thanks to the USB 2.0 and Ethernet connections.
The Brother MFC-L2710DW has a monthly duty cycle of 15,000 pages –although the recommended is 2,000 pages.
It measures 16.1 x 15.7 x 12.5 inches and weighs 26 pounds.
- Superb text quality
- Fast performance
- Lightweight and compact
- Low up-front price
- The automatic document feeder isn’t auto-duplexing
- Doesn’t support USB thumb drives or memory cards
The Brother MFC-L2710DW is an excellent choice for an all-in-one monochrome printer as it combines all functions in one machine. It also has ample features for each of the available functions.
9. Samsung Xpress M2020W
The Samsung Xpress M2020W is compatible with macOS, Linux, and Windows, so it’s compatible with whatever operating system you may be working with.
It’s capable of printing documents at a 1200 x 1200 DPI resolution and at a speed of up to 20 PPM for 8.25 x 11.7-inch documents and 21 PPM for 8.5 x 11-inch documents.
The Samsung Xpress M2020W’s paper tray has an ample capacity of 150 sheets. This is one of the lower numbers on the list –and on the market- but it means that the M2020W can handle light to medium-duty tasks.
Moreover, it can handle paper of weights up to 43 pounds (163 g/m2) –which is better than a lot of rivals.
A drawback to the Samsung Xpress M2020W, however, is that it doesn’t come with a display screen so you can’t check your printing status.
On the bright side, the connectivity options are plenty. If you’re looking for a wired set up, you can use the USB port, and if you’re looking for a wireless one, you can connect through WiFi.
With this printer, you get a monthly duty cycle of 10,000 pages.
When it’s up and running, the Samsung Xpress M2020W’s dimensions are only 13 x 8.5 x 7 inches, and it weighs 8.82 pounds.
- Compact design
- Can handle heavy cardstock
- Solid connectivity options
- High running cost in the long run
- Lacks a duplexing feature
- Doesn’t have an Ethernet port
If you’re going to do light or medium-duty jobs, the Samsung Xpress M2020W should suit you well. However, its high running may be an obstacle if you want high-volume printing.
10. Brother MFC-L2750DW
Not only does the Brother MFC-L2750DW have all the functions that could be found on an all-in-one printer, but it also has duplexing for all of them!
Printing at a 2400 x 600 DPI resolution and a speed that reaches 36 PPM, the Brother MFC-L2750DW is a fantastic office machine.
Its paper capacity is the average 250 sheets and can accommodate documents of a size up to 8.5 x 14 inches.
It can also handle paper weights ranging from 16 pounds (60 g/m2) and up to 61 pounds (230 g/m2).
The 8.5 x 11-inch flatbed and legal-size 50-sheet automatic document feeder are what makes scanning, copying, and faxing possible.
To allow you to control your printing operations, the Brother MFC-L2750DW comes with a 2.7-inch LCD color touchscreen.
As for the connectivity options, you get plenty of them.
The Brother MFC-L2750DW supports WiFi and NFC connectivity alongside the standard USB 2.0 and Ethernet connectivity.
This makes way for wireless operation and support for direct printing from mobile devices.
Of course, printing protocols such as Apple AirPrint, Google Cloud Print, WiFi Direct, and Brother iPrint & Scan are available, and the Brother Cloud apps support Office Print.
Moreover, the Brother MFC-L2750DW’s monthly duty cycle is 15,000 pages –however, the recommended is only 2,000 pages.
Its dimensions are 16.1 x 15.7 x 12.5 inches, and it weighs 26.46 pounds.
- Stellar text quality
- Lightweight and small
- Duplexing available for all features
- Generous connectivity options
- Running costs are relatively high after the initial toner runs out
- Paper capacity and monthly duty cycle are too little for the price
The Brother MFC L2750DW is ready to take on whatever kind of job you have for it. Printing, scanning, copying, and faxing with papers of various types and sizes while supporting multiple connectivity options, this machine is truly versatile.
Having decided on a laser printer instead of an inkjet, one cuts the confusion in the decision process to a half.
What you’re left with is just a couple of simple questions.
How Diversified Are Networking and Connectivity?
This aspect is essential in any printer –especially if it’s going to be used by multiple persons.
In that case, make sure your printer has wireless connectivity options.
Wired Ethernet and USB connections are also important in case you prefer connecting directly to the printer or in case any networking problems should arise.
How Large Are the Paper Capacity and Monthly Duty Cycle?
These two things will have an impact over the way you manage your printing and output.
Settling for less than a 200-sheet capacity would be a compromise and so would having a monthly duty cycle of fewer than 2,000 pages.
What Type, Size, And Weight of Paper Do You Want to Print?
Depending on the type (envelope, plain paper, photo paper, glossy paper), the size (3 x 5 inches and up to 8.5 x 11.7 inches), and the weight (16 pounds to 61 pounds), you’ll be able to decide whether or not the printer you’re considering is suitable for you.
The numbers above are satisfactory averages. But you might need to work with bigger-sized or heavier weights of paper, so make sure your printer would be capable of handling it.
How Much Will the Running Costs Be?
Running costs involve many aspects such as the cost per page, the cartridge price, the cartridge yield, the paper, etc.
There aren’t standards for the running costs, but comparing your options and choosing the one with the lower price, in the long run, is guaranteed to make a difference regarding your printing budget.
Printing Speed and Resolution
The speed (in pages or impressions per minute) and the resolution (in dots per inch) are easy to understand. Naturally, the bigger the number, the better the quality of your prints.
The speed makes a more significant difference if you’re in a busy office or a workgroup.
Does the Printer Have Duplexing?
Duplexing is an excellent feature if found on a printer as it can cut down the cost of paper to a half.
And finally, let’s pick out the winners, shall we?
As you can see, a lot of the options on the list are from the Brother company as they do an impressive job in terms of low running costs and have some of the best monochrome laser printers.
If you have money on the brain, the Brother HL-L2350DW and the Brother HL-L2300D would be good options for saving money in the long run. The Brother MFC-L6800DW and the Canon imageCLASS MF236n will give you good value for your money.
On the other hand, if you’re looking for the quick performance, the Brother HL-L5100DN, is a great candidate, while the Brother MFCL2710DW combines between speed and quality.
For the versatility, both the Brother DCP-L5500DN and the Brother MFCL2750DW will meet your standards.
Finally, if you’re a bit tight on space, then you can go for the compact Brother HLL2390DW or the Samsung Xpress M2020W.