Laser printer

Updated: 05/19/2017 by Computer Hope

HP laserjet printerThe laser printer was first developed at Xerox PARC by Gary Starkweather and released in 1971 that utilizes laser technology to print images on the paper. Laser printers are often used for corporate, school, and other environments that require print jobs to be completed quickly and in large quantities. In the picture, is a Lexmark C782n laser printer and a good example of a laser printer. As can be seen a laser printer is usually larger than an inkjet printer found in most homes.

Note: Because of the amount of power a laser printer can draw it is not recommend that a laser printer be connected to a UPS. Instead, connect the laser printer to a surge protector only.

How a laser printer works and its printing steps

Below is a chart of the steps a laser printer takes to print.


Removes prior image information and toner from the drum.


Applies a uniform negative charge to the drum.


A light source such as lasers, LED, or LCS (Liquid Crystal Shutter) writes to areas on the drum discharging the negative potential where it hits.


The toner is ionized with a negative charge and is attracted to the areas previously written (discharged) on the drum.


The toner of the drum is transferred to the paper by either a positively ionized field (created by a transfer corona wire) or by a transfer roller in newer printers. The toner is not yet permanently set on the paper and requires the last stage.


Heat and pressure are applied to the paper and toner. The toner melts and is pressed into the paper like doing an iron-on transfer to a T-shirt.

Laser, LaserJet, LaserWriter, Page printer, Printer, Printing terms, Toner