The 8 Best Mobile Printers to Buy in 2018

These portable printers will help you create professional documents on-the-go

Whether you’re on the road, making a scrap book or just want a printer that’s small enough to move from room to room, there’s a compact printer for you. Grabbing a portable printer isn’t likely to be at the top of your list when packing up for a trip, but you never know when you’re going to need to print a contract, photo or invoice. When the moment calls, you want to be ready regardless if you are printing from a computer, laptop or smartphone. Our list rounds up the best portable printers that can fit into a backpack and squeeze onto a hotel or office desk.

Best Overall: Canon PIXMA iP110

Released in 2010, Canon’s PIXMA iP110 remains the industry standard for what a mobile printer should be. In fact, its age hardly holds it back and it has a feature set that’s still standard even in today’s printing world, all in a package that’s just 4.3 pounds and 7.3 x 12.7 x 2.5 inches. Capable of printing photos as well as 8.5 x 11-inch documents, the PIXMA is the perfect printing companion for life on the road. The optional battery makes it even more portable, allowing the PIXMA to go anywhere with enough battery life for 240 prints wirelessly or 290 sheets while connected to a PC.

Overall, the 50-sheet capacity is low for a standard desktop-sized printer, but for a printer that’s designed to be ultra-portable, it’s more than enough. The included cartridges are rated by Canon as capable of printing 191 black and white pages with color prints rated at 249 pages. However, if you’re printing in full color regularly that page count will drop quickly. Beyond printing itself, the PIXMA can connect wirelessly (802.11b/g) to Apple’s AirPrint for direct printing from all iOS devices, as well as on Android and a slew of online cloud services with a download of Canon’s PRINT application. Ultimately, Canon still hasn’t let age show with the PIXMA. It was built to be the ultimate portable printer and that’s a claim that’s still holding up.

Best Professional: Brother PocketJet PJ762

One look at this thin little printer and you're probably wondering why your at-home printer has to be so big and bulky. Brother — a brand known for high-quality printers and basically nothing else — has taken their specialty to portable levels with the PJ762.

The PocketJet PJ762 is great for professional purposes because, while it only offers monochrome thermal printing, you’re probably only looking to print in black-and-white when it comes to business documents anyway. Plus, its sleek design (the model is just  10 x 2.2. x 1.2-inches) means you can also slip it right into your briefcase for on-the-go use.

Connecting the printer to your computer involves a USB or Bluetooth, so there’s great I/O versatility, too. It offers a print speed of up to 8 pages per minute and you have the option of printing standard letter size or legal format. It’s compatible with Mac or PC and they’ve even folded in Android connectivity for a little bit of extra flexibility. It isn’t the most full-featured device (it does require thermal paper and lacks color printing options), but for its size and connectivity, it’s a great business trip companion.

Runner-Up, Best Overall: Epson WorkForce WF-100

Like the Canon, Epson’s WorkForce WF-100 was released a few years ago, but has continued to outshine the competition as an excellent wireless mobile printer. At just 12.2 x 6.1 x 2.4 inches and 3.5 pounds, it’s as lightweight as the Canon, though slightly larger overall. Size aside, the Epson is capable of printing directly from a PC, as well as iOS and Android devices through WiFi connectivity. Printing itself offers both black ink and color cartridges with a rating of 250 and 200 pages, respectively, which is more than enough for printing out the latest invoices, contracts or spreadsheets that might be required on-the-go.

When it comes to true portability, the 20-sheet capacity can handle life on the road by printing 100 black and white pages (and 50 color pages) while operating strictly on the battery. Prior to printing, the Epson requires a brief setup run-through via the small 1.4-inch color LCD display. It’s less than ideal sizing for a desktop printer, but, for a printer built for portability, the LCD display assists with all the necessary functionality.

Best Budget: HP ENVY 5540 All-in-One

It wasn’t all that long ago that all-in-one printers were expensive, often cumbersome devices. But today, you can get a fully functional printer that you can toss into a backpack for well under $100. If you're looking for major bang for your buck, you'll want to check out the HP ENVY 5540.

This all-in-one model allows you to scan, fax and print standard business documents, plus full-bleed 4x6-inch photos. HP offers their standard easy setup, a Wi-Fi-direct option for seamless printing and even a quiet mode should you be printing somewhere in public. It can hold up to 125 standard sheets, and it can print up to 12 pages per minute in black and white and 8 pages per minute in color. Simple HP Smart App connectivity allows you to adjust document layout on your phone, scan documents using your smartphone's camera and more. Plus, the versatile device is only 17.5 inches wide and 14.5 inches deep.

Best for Photos: Canon Selphy CP1300

In terms of small format photo-centric printers (that aren’t those novelty Polaroid-style rigs), Canon’s Selphy line is top-notch. It basically serves as the younger brother to their Pixma printer line, offering high-quality photo printing without the high price tag or the massive device footprint. The CP1300 is the latest version, and it improves upon the brand's previous build, the CP1200, in a variety of ways.

First off there’s a full 3.2-inch, tilt-up display to preview your jobs and control the printer — and they’ve upgraded it to a touchscreen for more intuitive controls. They’ve also added a cool automatic collage-making function for creating memorable prints without the need for additional software. Of course, it still uses Dye-Sub Technology for striking photos and you can still print a full-bleed 4x6-inch photo in well under a minute. But the addition of the touchscreen and the updated software on-board make this sub-two-pound printer an amazing choice for on-the-go photographers.

Check out our other reviews of the best photo printers available on the market today.

Best Multifunction: HP OfficeJet 250

If you’re looking for the most feature-rich portable printer money can buy, the HP OfficeJet 250 is your best bet. While its price tag might cause you to do a double take, the OfficeJet 250 is portable printing whenever you need it. Just stick it into a backpack or suitcase and you’re ready for on-the-go prints. Beyond printing, the OfficeJet 250 takes the portable printer feature set to another level with all-in-one features such as scanning and faxing in package that’s just 6.5 pounds and 7.8 x 15 x 3.6 inches. Even with a small size, the OfficeJet 250 delivers added portability with a battery for up to 500 prints when disconnected from a power outlet and a two-inch high-resolution display for selecting the appropriate-sized print.

The HP has a 10-page automatic document feeder and 50-sheet capacity that produces both letter and legal-sized prints up to 8.5 x 14 inches. The included black cartridge is capable of 200 pages and the tri-color cartridge lasts for around 165 pages before requiring new ink. HP also sells a separately purchased XL version of the OfficeJet 250 ink cartridges bumping the page results to 600 and 415 pages, respectively. With added features such as WiFi and Bluetooth, printing from a smartphone or laptop is easy courtesy of HP’s native ePrint app available for both Android and iOS.

Take a look at other product reviews and shop for the best all-in-one printers available online.

Best for Home Office: HP DeskJet 3755

At 5.1-pounds and measuring 15.86 x 6.97 x 5.55 inches, the HP DeskJet 3755 won’t feel as mobile as our overall winners, but its positioning by HP as an ultra-compact all-in-one is worth noting. Far smaller than most traditional desktop printers, the HP won’t fit comfortably into a backpack, but if you’re on a road trip and want something powerful without compromise, the 3755 is perfect for sticking into your car, setting up at a hotel or coffee shop and printing before that big meeting. Additionally, printing using a smartphone or tablet is offered through a variety of methods, including WiFi, HP’s reprint app and Wireless Direct, which offers a direct connection to the printer in the absence of any WiFi signal.

If its size doesn’t win you over, it’s 50 percent savings on traditional ink costs just might. An optional subscription even allows your printer to detect when it’s low on ink and place a new order before you run out altogether. Setup out of the box is a snap, too. Just pull the printer out, power it on, connect to a device and print away. As for prints itself, the 3755 offers a respectable eight pages per minute for black and white prints, as well as 5.5 pages per minute for color copies.

Interested in reading more reviews? Take a look at our selection of the best office multifunction printers.

Best for Portability: Primera Trio

At just 2.6-pounds and 11.4 x 1.8 x 6.5-inches, Primera’s Trio portable scanner tours itself as being the “world’s smallest and lightest portable all-in-one.” It’s capable of printing, scanning and copying documents all while on-the-go in a size that’s compact enough to fit into a messenger bag. The separately purchased battery makes it even more ideal for on-the-go use (the fully charged battery provides up to 350 prints before requiring a recharge). Additionally, the Primera will hold up to 10 pages of standard printer paper at one time, shooting out 3.1 black and white and 2.4 color print pages per minute. As for additional features, the Primera’s ability to copy black and white images at 1.7 and 1.1 color pages per minute won’t make it a speed demon, but that's a tradeoff for portability. Unfortunately, for the price of the Primera, there’s a bit of a disappointment not to see WiFi or Bluetooth support for wireless printing (you'll need a USB connection).

Disclosure

At Lifewire, our Expert writers are committed to researching and writing thoughtful and editorially independent reviews of the best products for your life and your family. If you like what we do, you can support us through our chosen links, which earn us a commission. Learn more about our review process.