I spoke to a lot of people looking for the best printer for envelopes in the past six months.
And I noticed that most of them have very similar requirements. They need a machine that can print out envelopes fast (saves time), has a decent-sized envelope/document feeder (less effort in frequent refills) and doesn’t cost a lot off the shelf or in maintenance (less money).
The ability to print a decent quality photo or bang out a lot of documents is desirable. But not mandatory.
Based on these inputs, I set out to sift through the hundreds of specialized envelope printers in the market currently. I tested the ones that I could get my hands on, analyzed ‘unbiased’ customer reviews for the rest, spoke to salesmen and collated enough data to narrow down on what I believe are the best envelope printers this year.
Here are my picks.
IMAGE TOP PICKS DIMENSIONS WEIGHT PRICE
Canon PIXMA MX922 15.6 x 19.4 x 9.1 inches 25.7 pounds See It
Brother Printer MFC-L8850CDW 20.7 x 19.3 x 20.9 inches 67.4 pounds See It
Brother HL-L8350CDW 19.1 x 16.1 x 12.3 inches 47.5 pounds See It
HP OfficeJet Pro 8720 20.9 x 19.7 x 13.4 inches 33 pounds See It
Brother HL-L2340DW 14.2 x 14 x 7.2 inches 13 pounds See It
What to look for when buying an envelope printer?
The most important thing to consider is the frequency, volume and cost of your envelope print tasks. The printer that you choose has to provide good and fast output at desired quality without costing too much to run.
Inkjet vs. Laser
If it’s a small home business that prints a few envelopes only, then you can save some money upfront and opt for an inkjet printer. These are cheap, silent and usually have a manual feeder for envelopes. The caveat is that the costs of the cartridge replacements will be high. But since you will be using it less frequently, you won’t be spending too much on cartridges anyway.
On the other hand, for an office that prints hundreds of envelopes a day, look for a quality monochrome laserjet instead. It might be more expensive upfront. But will more than make up for it with low running costs.
Inket = Budget priced, silent, reasonably good print quality. But may be slow and expensive to maintain.
Laser = Faster. But noisy. Low operational costs and good quality prints for envelopes and documents.
Most printers these days offer Wi-Fi connectivity and sharing. But if you will be using your Apple devices, look for compatibility with AirPrint and Google Cloud. Wired Ethernet connections might sound obsolete. But guess what, a lot of people still use it.
For offices with walk-in print jobs, USB connectivity might be mandatory.
An LCD display, no matter how small makes it a lot easier to handle the printer and customize settings. If its touchscreen, then even better.
Document tray capacity
The bare minimum capacity for the document tray that I have considered is 250-sheets. That barely suffices for home use though. For offices, look for a tray capacity of at least 500 sheets. Even better if its upgradable further to 800 or more.
An MFP or a multifunctional Printer is certainly a desirable proposition, especially if you have an office with frequent needs for a quick scan or faxing. In this case, you must consider some of the other features, like the capacity of the ADF and the size of the scanner (Flatbed or legal sized).
Now that we have discussed most of the important factors that you should consider while selecting the envelope printers, here are my picks of the top 5 printers currently.
1. Canon Pixma MX922
All-in-one printers or MFPs that can print, fax and scan have become extremely popular due to the value that they offer, especially for home and small businesses.
The Canon Pixma MX922 is among the top rated models in this category. It is a wireless printer that can print envelopes at a decent speed. But that’s not the only highlight in its elaborate feature list.
It can print a fairly good quality photo, can also print on optical discs and has a voluminous paper loader which means that you will spend less time loading envelopes into the tray.
Compact, easy-to-use printer
I hate bulky, cumbersome machines as much as you do. The Canon MX922’s compact size (19.4” x 15.6” x 9.1”) makes it perfect for limited-space work desks, like the ones you typically find in micro offices.
It is extremely easy to set up and use. A three-inch LCD control panel lets you preview the document and keeps you informed of the setting that you have selected. You can easily toggle through the menu with a few button clicks. No guess work!
The large 250-sheet paper capacity reduces efforts spent in frequent refills. Also, there’s an additional photo paper tray that can hold up to 20 sheets of 4-by-6-inch photo paper. You can switch from envelope to photo instantly.
For scanning, the Automatic Document Feeder tops at 35 pages.
Crammed with features
Coming to the features, the MX922 is crammed to the brim with them. It is Wi-Fi compatible. This means that you can connect the printer to your home or office Wi-Fi and share it with all computers and laptops across the network.
Support for AirPrint allows Apple users to print directly from their mobile devices or from the cloud. You can also connect a USB stick and scan and print directly from it if need be.
It features duplex printing and scanning. So, you can scan a document on both sides and seamlessly print the same on either sides of the paper.
The Canon MX922 is one of the best envelope printer in this list. It is feature-rich, doesn’t cost too much and can do just about everything that a printer can do. The only thing it cant possibly do for you is cook food.
2. Brother Printer MFC-L8850CDW
The MFC-L8850CDW is the mid-level model from Brother’s recently launched range of multifunctional printers. Yet, it offers enough features to impress even the seasoned professional looking for every day, voluminous print jobs.
For specialized envelope printing tasks, the MFC-L8850CDW is fast, cost-effective and comes with a large capacity document feeder. Pretty much everything that we were looking for.
Brute of a machine
The MFC-L8850CDW is a big, bulky machine. It weighs a monstrous 67 lbs. So, if your idea of an ideal printer involves moving it around desks in office, then this is not the printer for you. But with Wi-Fi connectivity and easy document sharing, there’s no need to move it really.
On the upside, it can easily take the wear and tear that comes with every day, frequent use.
The large footprint means that everything on the printer is bigger and better. That includes the 4.8-inch color touch screen, a 50-sheet automatic document feeder (ADF) and a 300 sheet paper tray.
You can buy an optional 500-sheet tray upgrade from Brother to increase the capacity to 800 sheets.
Impressive duty cycle
The MFC-L8850CDW is rated for an impressive 60000 sheet duty cycle. That more than suffices for small offices and for home users.
Being a multipurpose unit, it can duplex scan (double sides), copy, fax and print.
Connectivity options include Ethernet, Wi-Fi and Wi-Fi direct. This means that compatible devices with Wi-Fi direct do not need to use the access point from your router. You can connect them directly and execute a print or scan job.
Mobile device connectivity includes AirPrint and Google Cloud among others.
At 7.6ppm, the Brother MFC-L8850CDW is way faster than the MX922. It still isn’t as fast as some of the professional envelope printers. But hey, it costs way lesser. So no complaints really.
Packed with features and costing almost half of what a similar high end printer does, the Brother MFC-L8850CDW is one of the best choices for home users and small to medium sized businesses. It is fast, cheap and built like a rock for tackling every day print tasks.
3. Brother HL-L8350CDW
Excellent paper handling and low-cost toner cartridges highlight the Brother HL-L8350CDW, a smaller, budget-priced multipurpose, laser printer.
It is the fastest printer in this list and at 32 pages per minute, this should be your go-to printer if you print hundreds of envelopes a day.
Apart from the speed, the Brother HL-L8350CDW also boasts of features like duplexer, a large touchscreen menu and an upgradable 300-sheet paper tray.
Upgradable 800-sheet paper tray
The HL-L8350CDW is smaller than our previous pick, the MFC-L8850CDW. However, the dimensions 12.3 x 16.1 x 19.1 inches are still bigger than the Canon MX922. Also, this weighs 47 lbs. So, moving it around will take some effort.
It features a reasonable 250-sheet paper tray with a 50-sheet additional multipurpose tray for scan, copy, fax jobs. That’s more than sufficient for small business use. More importantly, there are no paper jams or overheating issues.
Like its bigger brother, the Brother MFC-L8850CDW, you can upgrade the capacity to 800 sheets by buying the 500-sheet tray upgrade.
Wireless connectivity and mobile printing through the cloud, round off what is a thoughtful and practical feature list.
Excellent print quality
Being a laser printer, the MFC-L8850CDW offers excellent, cost-effective prints irrespective of the print job.
It really shines with texts and documents. Excellent saturation and crisp prints. So, if you are considering a cost effective envelope printer, you have a serious contender here.
Photos and graphics are not too bad either. But we wouldn’t use it for professional photographic print jobs. That’s not what it is intended for in the first place.
The Brother MFC-L8850CDW is a good quality envelope printer. It offers crisp and saturated prints with minimum smudging or paper jams. It has a few minor design flaws. But none of those are deal breakers.
4. HP OfficeJet Pro 8720
HP has been on an expansion spree, particularly with its range of budget-priced multifunctional printers (MFPs). The OfficeJet Pro 8720 is an impressive addition to this range.
This is an inkjet printer that can rival the best laserjets in terms of print speed and quality. The paper handling is top notch and it can churn out both documents and photo prints equally well.
Something that other inkjets lack.
When it comes to the best envelope printers, most people rarely consider the scanner as an important feature. But with a 50-sheet ADF for legal-sized (A4) paper, the Officejet Pro 8720 makes scan jobs easy, no matter how infrequently you use it.
It is the only MFP in this list that offers true duplex functions. In other words, you don’t have to manually flip the paper over for the scanner to scan the other side of the document.
Another neat feature is the ability to print and scan to and from USB sticks. Makes walk-in print jobs effortless.
Accessing controls and features is made simple thanks to the 4.3-inch color, touchscreen on the front of the casing.
The Officejet Pro 8720 has an output tray positioned on the rear of the printer. Not only does this ensure that the printed paper doesn’t get pushed off the edge of the tray, the large capacity (150-sheets) of the tray also allows you to print multiple documents without babysitting.
There are no streaks, smudges or bleeds anywhere in the prints. I also tested the printer for envelopes of varying thickness and there were no paper jams or heating issues.
The Officejet Pro connects wirelessly and offers mobile support for cloud printing. HP claims a 24 ppm speed for black and white documents and 20 PPM for color, which is pretty close to what you’d get.
A few minor grumbles apart, the HP Officejet Pro 8720 is a fully-loaded MFP that offers excellent and fast prints at reasonable ink costs.
5. Brother HL-L2340DW
Last but not the least, I have the Brother HL-L2340DW, which was aimed at personal users looking for a reasonably-priced laserjet.
But its fast printing, Wireless connectivity and voluminous paper tray make it a great choice for a micro office. It prints fast too. That’s always a bonus.
After all the bulky machines that I have reviewed so far, the Brother HL-L2340DW with its compact dimensions (7.2 x 14 x 14.2 inches) comes across as a refreshing change. It weighs just 15 lbs. and is as portable as they get.
It features a 250-sheet capacity tray and a manual feed tray for envelope printing.
The 16-character LCD display might seem a little outdated. But hey, it works just fine. Makes toggling through the settings so easy.
The HL-L2340DW features duplexing and the print quality is decent. Once again, it’s not the best of choices for photo printing and graphic-heavy print jobs.
There are ample connectivity options for mobile and wireless users. It is compatible with AirPrint, Google Cloud Print and Wi-Fi direct.
But it lacks Ethernet connectivity. That’s a letdown for sure. But a minor one at that.
With top speeds of up to 27 PPM and low-priced, high yield replacement cartridges, the Brother HL-L2340DW is a fast, reliable, laser printer that’s perfect for small to medium sized offices.
The Brother HL-L2340DW is a good choice for home and office users looking for a low cost printer that offers reasonable quality prints. Despite the lack of a wired Ethernet connection, it has a lot of useful features and is a treat to use. No complaints!
There you have it. I have made selecting the best envelope printer a ‘no-brainer’ task. For an all-inclusive laserjet, there’s no better pick than the Canon MX922.
Both the Brother Printers, the MFC-L8850CDW and the smaller HLL8350CDW offer excellent paper handling, large paper trays and a bunch of connectivity options.
The HP OfficeJet Pro 8720 is an inkjet MFP that offers great performance at a shoe-string budget.
Lastly, I have mentioned the monochrome, Brother HL-L2340DW with its high yield output and very attractive price tag.
What’s your favorite one?