With the right type of printer and equipment, making a printer wireless is a relatively simple task. This is true not only of newer HP printers, but of most printers that either come equipped with wireless capabilities or can accommodate additions like Bluetooth or a wireless print server. All three types of wireless printing have their pros and cons, depending on the wireless range you are looking for, how much money you are willing to spend, and what type of equipment you currently own.
Benefits of Wireless Printing
Wireless printing is a great way to have multiple computers print to a single printer, from anywhere in a house or office. Wireless printing eliminates extra wires and AC adapters from around your work space, frees up USB ports on your computer, and can be just as quick as printing through a wired connection.
HP Wireless Printers
Many HP printers come ready to be wireless printers. If you have a wireless network in your home or office, you can easily follow the networking instructions to add the printer to the network. After this is complete, any computer on the same wireless network will be able to print to that printer.
Some printers come with Bluetooth wireless hardware built into the printer itself. However, you can also purchase a Bluetooth adapter to make your printer wireless as an add on. If you do not have a Bluetooth-enabled computer to print from, you would also need to acquire and install a Bluetooth adapter to your computer as well. These can be found at any computer or electronics store.
Bluetooth doesn't work through a network as it does with wireless network printing, so the computer and printer do have to be a bit closer than a wireless network.
Adding a Wireless Print Service
If your printer does not come with built-in wireless capabilities, you can connect it to a wireless print server. These can also be found at a computer or electronics store for typically around $50-100. Essentially, you connect the printer to the print server, which is then connected to your wireless router. Though the printer itself is not wireless with this route, any computers on the network will now be able to print to that printer without being attached to it.
Pros and Cons
Sometimes new printers with wireless capabilities like Bluetooth or internal wireless print servers might be too expensive, or come with too many other features that add to the cost of the printer. If this is the case, an external solution like a Bluetooth adapter or printer server might be the best idea. This is especially true if your current printer is in fine working condition, and you are only interested in adding wireless capabilities.
Additionally, you may not currently have a wireless network established in your home or office. In this case, Bluetooth may be the best solution, as it does not require a wireless router and network, but only requires an adapter for both the printer and computer.
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