1. The best color printing quality.
2. Cheap/average cost for cartridge.
3. Should print in black and white even if anyone of the color cartridge is empty (provided black ink is still present).
4. Fax, copier, scanner (All-in-One).
5. Two side printing (both the sides of the paper).
6. Wifi enabled
Above all printing quality for colored prints should be atleast of a digital quality.. if not the best, but atleast acceptablebly good.
Due diligence.. Read printer reviews. There are plenty of them out there. All you get from forum replies generally are personal opinions. Personal opinions of themselves are not bad, but one persons point of view may minimize or not care about a feature that is important to you. Other things it take into account; how big is the device? How many different cartridges.
I chose a later model Epson a couple of years ago. It has one feature I wanted that no other printer adopted; it can print on printable CD's. I learned I can print on a regular CD if I am careful to let the ink dry throughly before touching it.
if your buying an INKJET printer get either Canon or Epson upper range models. Everything else is rubbish. I fix printers all day and these are the only 2 consumer inkjet brands worth buying. All-in-ones are a pain in the ass, if you can get a separate scanner and printer it would be better, that way when one breaks, you throw it away and get a new one. Do you really need a fax?? Cost per cartridge is a misleading way to measure running costs, as all brands dont have the same amount of ink, nor do they use the same amount of ink when printing. Avoid using generic brand cartridges as they will root your printer and you will be forever doing head cleans and wasting ink and filling up the waste ink pads. If you use the printer less than once a month the ink in the print head will eventually dry up , in which case, get a laser printer, they dont have that problem. Hope all that info from an actual printer tech helps you.
Oh yes i did lots of peer review on various forums and tech sites, also checked reivews on newegg.. etc. This was just another nail in the coffin by posting on toms hardware to add upto my investigation.
Finally i brought Canon Pixma MP870 AIO.
My first thoughts.. AWESOME PRINTER. Too good for a Laser printer to beam digital prints, scan, fax just pure perfection.
@Iam2thecrowe - This is exactly what some genuine reviewers said as what you pointed out on other forums. But i brought this AIO with a 3 year replacement warranty from Fry's for 40 bucks. So anything that goes bad with the printer Frys electronics will replace the printer.
I did exactly the same as bringing the high end of canon. I liked MP990 as well, but that does not have fax, MP870 was the next best.