One of the things which is important to remember with the PocketJet range is their use of thermal print mechanisms which for some people are a complete contrast with the usual type of inkjet/laser printing that they’re used to. Find out more below.
Remember that with regular inkjet/laser printing the paper is far cheaper and only has slight adjustments made. When it comes to thermal printing, thermal paper is paper with chemicals woven into the matrix of the paper. Thermal printers work be heating or ‘burning’ specific parts of the paper using very fine heated diodes. The chemicals woven into the paper melt after their boiling point is rapidly reached, and after they’ve melted the color of the chemicals shifts from white to usually black but obviously it depends on which chemicals are woven into the paper. Once the chemicals have undergone their appropriate color change (it’s usually black for receipt printing but in this instance a full range of color changes occur) the chemicals which are in liquid form re-solidify back to a solid state whilst retaining their color change.
The Brother PocketJet 6 is no different from most thermal printers in that sense that it must use thermal paper. Using normal paper won’t just not work but it could potentially have rather severe consequences such as being set on fire. It’s important to understand when you buy this kind of a printer that you recognize the added costs involved. Thermal paper is definitely much more expensive than inkjet/laser printer paper. It can be two to three times cheaper, and from several reviews I’ve read there appears to be occasional shortages by Brother although I can’t verify these claims at the moment.
Another cost you have to consider when buying thermal printers are the inherent price step up from regular printing methods. They simply just cost more, perhaps one third to half as much as they can be a real put off for some people who don’t need its portability versatility. If you need a genuinely portable printer then I suggest that you do opt for one of the Brother PocketJet range. But if you just want a cool gadget, or you want a portable printer that’s more likely to be left in your car then it’s not for you.
When it comes to buying the paper you need to make sure you buy a type that works specifically with the printer. Different types of paper may or may not have chemicals which can change color upon heating and most manufacturers tend to have their own brand so you know what to buy anyway.
Although the paper is definitely much more expensive than their competitor printing types I think one important final remark to make is that you do save in other areas. I’m the first to admit that these wireless portable printer devices are more expensive and so is the paper which they need to run.
However this isn’t the full story when it comes to the costs involved because what many people don’t realize is that you don’t actually need any ink cartridges whatsoever. Just remember that you’re going to be saving quite a lot of money because there’s no ink to replace but you’re also saving yourself a hassle and the mess which is inevitable with changing ink cartridges. If you’re printing on the road then lets face it you don’t want a sticky hassle, you just want clean easy printing and that’s what you get.