We’ve looked for the best inkjet printers for about $100 to review and narrowed it down to these three. Our reviews tend to focus on reliability, quality, and cost. Not that size, speed, or noise levels don’t matter, we just feel those are secondary considerations when selecting a printer. A printer that performs as expected is the most relevant characteristic. These are multi function printers. It’s great they can scan & copy but we are primarily concerned with printing. If there are notable features we will mention them.
In no particular order they are the HP Envy 6255, the Canon TS6120, and the Epson XP-830. All have wifi, copy, scan, and auto duplex. *After this article was written the cost of these printers went up a littleand are no longer under $100. We will make some changes to this article soon.*
HP Envy 6255
One of the newest models in the HP Envy line of printers. The HP Envy 6255 offers Wi-Fi for printing from mobile devices, auto duplexing to save paper, and instant ink eligibility. Some of the notable features we liked about the HP 6255 are the direct Wi-Fi and smart phone apps. Direct Wi-Fi means this printer provides its own Wi-Fi access. It can also connect to a Wi-Fi router and accept print jobs from there if necessary. However, connecting directly to the printer’s Wi-Fi is handy.
With HP’s app sharing pictures from a smartphone is a breeze. The ePrint app also supports remote printing. Send your printer an e-mail while away and it will print the attachment. We’ve used many manufacturer’s apps and find the HP app’s easy and intuitive to use.
Instant ink is a program where HP will send ink as your printer needs it so you never run out of ink. Starting as low as $3 per month you can subscribe for 50, 100, or 300 pages per month. When the printer detects a low cartridge it sends a message to HP who sends a new cartridge. This is great for those who find keeping track of printer supplies or running out of ink a nuisance. The only drawback I see is a few extra steps with the network setup and HP does gather generic info from the printer. No personal info, just tracking how often, page count, coverage %, etc. By my math this is cheaper than buying cartridges individually.
- 13 ppm B & W, 8 color
- HP 64 ink cartridges 200 pages B & W, 165 pages color
- HP 64 XL ink cartridges 600 pages B & W, 415 pages color
- Instant ink program
- Auto Duplex, Wi-Fi, Copy & Scan
Part of the Pixma series, the Canon TS6120 offers a 5 color ink system, separate ink cartridges, and 2 sources for feeding paper. The 5 color ink system adds photo black to the standard cyan, magenta, yellow, and black cartridges. Adding to the halftone range will improve the quality of any print. Photo black is most noticeable when the overall photo is dark. Separate ink cartridges save money because only the individual cartridge that is out needs replaced. There is a paper tray in the front and one in the rear. Having an extra paper input tray is a nice feature when printing labels or other types of media.
TS6120 can connect to an available wi-fi network. Canon also offers a free Print Inkjet/Selphy app for printing from the could or smart phones. With the TS6120 comes access to Canon’s Creative Park website for downloading printing projects and materials.
In the menu is an auto color registration feature. This is worth mentioning because it is one of the easiest color registration functions available. We kinda love that feature here at the Printer Jam. This feature prints an alignment sheet which is placed on the platen glass and scanned. That’s it, no getting out the magnifying glass or guessing which lines line up. The color registration is aligned by the printer. Our hat’s are off to Canon for implementing such a feature.
- 15 ppm B & W, 10 color
- Canon CLI-281 standard yield cartridges ~250 pages
- Canon CLI-281XL extra life cartridges ~500 pages
- 2 paper input sources, Auto color registration
- Auto Duplex, Wi-Fi, Copy & Scan
The Epson XP-830 offers 5 color ink system, borderless printing, and an auto duplexing document feeder. The XP-830 has direct Wi-Fi, similar to the HP mentioned in this review. Easily print from a smartphone or tablet directly to the XP-830. The Creative Print is Epson’s app for printing.
The XP-830 has separate ink cartridges for each color. Separate cartridges for each color is the most cost effective. This is minor but worth noting, the Epson cartridges seemed a few dollars more than the Canon or HP with similar yields. Considering the extra features such as faxing and auto duplexing document feeder, something as minor as a few tenths of a penny more per page can be easily overlooked.
Notable features of this printer is the document feeder and the CD tray. Not many printers in this price range offer a document feeder or faxing. The ability to fax makes this a true an all-in-one but we included it in this review due to its great quality photo prints. The CD tray is a nice bonus as well. Epson includes software for creating and printing on CD’s.
- 14 pages per minute B & W, 11 ppm color
- 410 Standard yield cartridges ~250 pages
- 410 XL High capacity cartridges~500 pages
- Document feeder with auto duplex
- CD tray and software
- Auto duplex, Copy, Scan, & Fax
Summary of the Best Inkjet Printers
This is a review of best wireless inkjet printers we could find for around $100. All make great quality photos, auto duplex, and offer wireless printing. All have apps for printing from smartphones or tablets. The HP and Epson have direct Wi-Fi while the Canon needs a wireless router.
The Epson and Canon have separate ink cartridges for each color whereas the HP combines the colors in one ink cartridge. The Epson and Canon have 5 color system while the HP has the standard 4 color system.
Only HP offers the instant ink program which sends ink when its low for a reasonable monthly cost. The Canon has an extra tray, auto color registration, and access to their Creative Park website. The Epson has an auto duplex document feeder, fax, CD tray, and software for creating CD’s. You will have to choose which features are the best fit for what you’re looking for, but you can’t go wrong with any of these printers.