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The right paper for your printer can make a world of difference and save you tons of ink. Learn about the three primary types of paper you should be aware of as well as how finishes, weight, and opacity play into the end result.
Inkjet Printer Paper
Inkjet paper, as the name applies, is designed to be used with inkjet printers. The fibers in this paper are put together in such a way that, ideally, the printer’s dye-based ink has little bleed. If you want high-quality prints with fine detail and you have an inkjet printer at home, use this kind of paper. Inkjet paper will work fine with laser printers as well.
Laser Printer Paper
Laser printer paper isn’t specifically built for laser printers the way inkjet paper is for inkjets. It tends to be a basic, everyday printing paper with no coating that allows for high temperatures. The paper is not as absorbent as inkjet paper because laser printers use dry toner, which isn’t likely to bleed. The paper has a smooth surface and it can show sharp lines. Still, laser printer paper won’t result in a print job that’s quite as crisp as you’ll get from using inkjet paper.
Cardstock is usually used to make signs, cards, and durable covers. People often use it for their own greeting cards, and it’s a good choice if you’re making pamphlets with solid covers. It comes in 60, 80, and 92-pound weights. Cardstock usually works better in inkjet printers with a photo function, but check your user manual to be sure it will work in your printer.
Paper Finishes: Matte, Bright White and Glossy
Matte paper is used most frequently and is good for about any everyday job. Bright-white paper is very smooth and available as laser printer paper. Glossy paper is usually utilized for photographs, as it can produce very fine lines, detail, and colors. However, it’s also more expensive.
Paper Weight, Opacity and Cost
The weight of paper is defined by the production and size of 500 parent sheets at 17 x 22 inches. Both inkjet and laser printer paper come in 20, 24, and 28-pound weights with the heaviest being generally stronger. The most common paperweight is a 20-pound bond. It’s possible to get “discount” paper advertised for “everyday use” at 15-pound or less, but it is very thin and may even bleed through when you use it. It’s better to go with a heavier stock of at least 20-pounds to maintain opacity.
Anything thicker than a 92-pound, specifically 100-pounds or higher, is paperboard that will probably damage your home printer if used. Usually, heavier paper has a better quality of bond which results in a bigger price tag. Glossy cardstock, for example, costs quite a bit more than standard 20-pound bond inkjet paper.
For more information and help, contact Vegas Ink and Toner or give us a call today!