The Most Affordable Mini Mobile Printers

So you want a mini mobile printer but you’re on a budget.  That’s fine because there are plenty of affordable mobile printers out there on the market for you.  However, there are a few important things you need to recognize – the first of which is obvious and I can answer that right now – sacrifice.  If you want a budget portable printer then you’re going to obviously have to make some sacrifices in functionality, with the cheapest devices having some major set backs.  On the other hand by the time you’ve finished this article you may realize that actually it’s better to buy a normal printer instead of a cheaper one.  The cheap one may actually end up costing you more over time.  Also I’m a pirate.

Affordable mobile printers means… second hand or refurbished!


Ok so you want an affordable portable printer which isn’t going to break the bank.  The two leading portable printers, the iP100 by Canon and the OJ100 by HP cost 200 and 250 dollars respectively from  This means the raw device without any battery or wireless capabilities.  Well let’s assume you chiefs want a battery and at least one wireless adapter (either WiFi or Bluetooth) that’ll cost you 100 dollars and 50 dollars respectively once more.  An average wireless mobile battery printer will cost you around 350-400 dollars which is not including ink cartridges.  Once we add those in you’re basically looking at 400-450 dollars, which is definitely a lot.

Therefore if you want a cheaper and more affordable product you’re going to have to go back in time and pick out older printer models.  That means printers by HP and Canon which for most people are all you should care about anyway because aside from Brother’s portable printers every other manufacturer is pretty much trash.  This isn’t me being rude by the way but since I’ve owned and operated a website purely surrounding the topic of portable printers for around 3 years now I’ve come to understand a lot about what’s good and what’s not.

Buying a cheap portable printer means either sacrificing a modern portable printers battery and wireless capabilities which obviously diminishes its prime function, or buying a printer which is around 4-12 years old.  That may sound old but when you consider that both HP and Canon only release a new product every 4 years (on average) then you’re only talking about going back 2-3 products.

Two Cheap Mini Mobile Printers:

Firstly there’s the Canon BubbleJet Canon 85 Color Printer.  If you buy a used BJC 85 that’ll set you back around 110 dollars which is reasonable for you budget pirates.

Canon BJC-85 Portable Color Bubble Jet Printer

The second is the Canon BubbleJet Canon 80 model, which is also a mobile color printer.  Both of these devices are actually very similar apart from that this costs 200 dollars.  You can find out more about both devices by clicking the images above and below this text.

Canon BJC-80 Portable Printer

In my opinion as the expert on the enthralling topic of mini printers I can see only one reason why you’d want to proceed down this route.  That is that you desperately need mobile printing capabilities but you only need it for a short amount of time and you don’t mind inferior printing quality and slow printing speeds.  They’re both actually decent printers it’s just their lack of wireless connectivity which lets them down.  If you’re not fussed about quick printing, about a pretty looking printer, wireless printing, photo printing and a few other less important things then this could actually be a great choice.

With regards to their reliability both of them actually do quite well and one of my friends still uses his BJC 80 to this day on occasion.  He does need to make sure to keep the inkjet heads moist to stop them from drying out and causing potential problems but by and large everything works as it should.  They’re also slightly smaller and lightweight than most of their modern contemporaries which is useful if you’re planning on physically carrying it around with you for long periods of time.

Buying mini portable printers can cost more than you’d save


There are a couple of big problems with buying these mini portable printers which are outdated but still carry out printing tasks reasonably well.  The first is that because you can only either buy used or refurbished printers they’re far more prone to breaking down.  The knock-on effects of an important mini battery printer breaking down could be disastrous if it’s required for in-the-field use which it very will might be.  Secondly there’s also the large costs associated with repairing or replacing certain parts – and that is if you can find them at all.  Just remember that these models are no longer in production and therefore there’s not many of them available.

If your mini printer breaks down it could cost as much to replace the entire device as it would to repair the computer so you could potentially end up losing one or two hundred dollars.  Finally there’s the hassle involved – which may not be an issue for a printer nerd like me with too much time on his hands – but for a businessman or engineer or any other professional person who desperately needs the product for work it can really put a dent in their schedule.  I was emailed by a manager worked in remote oil field locations who needed a printer to take with him from oil rig to oil rig.  These oil rigs were in Alaska and could you imagine the immense hassle it would take to replace this type of unique printer in such a remote location in the remotest state in the United States.  Big hassle.

Ultimately I actually think that you should aim for a bog standard new or perhaps refurbished mini printer which is the latest model by HP, Canon or Brother.  You can find out about the main printers they manufacture on the homepage of this website.  Getting a refurbished printer of the latest model might actually be the best option because

Is it worth getting the cheapest printer possible?


One question which you certainly need to ask yourself is whether it’s worth getting one of these cheaper printers, and whether it’s not actually going to be much cheaper to get a more expensive product with your savings made not at the start but over a period of time.  This doesn’t mean that if you purchase a refurbished or secondhand printer that it’s going to break right away, but the cheapest devices do tend to be the most likely to break.  On the plus side you can use a website such as Amazon to check the user ratings and reviews to make sure that your mini wireless printer for laptop model is not going to break down after 5 minutes.  In fact some of the cheapest mobile printers can be the longest lasting if you do a little research into the specific model plus read the reviews for the refurbished or second hand products.

One final thought which you printer pirates need to ask yourself is whether your current printing needs are what you’ll expect them to be in the future.  Perhaps you want to print color in the future, perhaps the devastatingly slow5 pages per minute prining speeds aren’t cutting it and you need an upgrade.  Who knows.  Good luck my printer comrades.

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