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Old 01-16-2010, 09:15 PM
Northern Piper Northern Piper is offline
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Printer Paper: any difference between laser printer (24lb) and multiuse (20 lb)?

Other than the cost (about $2.50 more for laserjet at OfficeDepot)? I've got a laser printer and an inkjet, so I bought the multiuse, but I wonder if it really makes much difference? (I do like the lighter weight, but that's just a personal preference).
Old 01-16-2010, 10:21 PM
Polycarp Polycarp is offline
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Well, the obvious one is weight -- 20# paper weighs 5# per ream (20# for a ream of 17x22" sheets from which the 8.5x11" are cut, hence the name; 24# would be 6# per ream of 8.5x11" paper).

As I recall, the principal difference is when printing double-sided; the 24# paper has significantly less bleedthrough than the 20#. But that's from vague memory, so consider it a lead towards the right answer, not the answer itself.

Last edited by Polycarp; 01-16-2010 at 10:22 PM.
Old 01-16-2010, 10:28 PM
Aestivalis Aestivalis is offline
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Is bleedthrough a big problem with laser printers? I never notice any on my ancient LaserJet 4P. Wouldn't it be more of a problem with Inkjets?
Old 01-16-2010, 10:42 PM
astro astro is offline
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The high heat of the laser printer fuser tends to put a curl "set" into papers, and when you try to do double sided printing with lighter weight papers it will wrinkle and jam when run through the fuser the second time. For single sided printing lighter weight papers are usually fine.

Last edited by astro; 01-16-2010 at 10:42 PM.
Old 01-16-2010, 11:17 PM
running coach running coach is online now
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At least on the printer I was using at the time, trying to feed too light a paper(<18lb) resulted in two or three sheets going through at the same time.
Old 01-17-2010, 03:13 AM
Green Bean Green Bean is offline
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I find that it makes a huge difference in the quality of the finished product. For most stuff it doesn't matter, but for materials you're giving to clients or something, using 24 lb. paper makes stuff look and feel way better.
Old 01-17-2010, 07:24 AM
Harmonious Discord Harmonious Discord is offline
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Laser paper is made specially for taking the toner and withstanding heat. They are not made to absorb ink.

Inkjet papers are made to absorb ink. They are not made to withstand the heat of a laser printer.

Multipurpose papers are made to take heat and ink. I believe they are also a brighter white in general.

The weight of the paper is just that. Each sheet is a little thicker for the heavier weight paper. Thicker means for the same type of paper it is less transparent and stiffer. This doesn't mean it holds true for different types of paper as the different additives may affect transparency, stiffness and weight for equivalent thicknesses.

Last edited by Harmonious Discord; 01-17-2010 at 07:25 AM.
Old 01-17-2010, 08:14 AM
Northern Piper Northern Piper is offline
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Thanks for the replies everyone. Since this if for home printers, I don't have to worry about impressing clients. And, I don't do double-sided printing. I just like the feel of the 20 lb.

So now I can be cheap and buy the 20 lb stuff without worrying.
Old 01-17-2010, 02:30 PM
KlondikeGeoff KlondikeGeoff is offline
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If the 20# paper works, go ahead.

On my home b&w laser printer, the lower weight definitely curls pretty badly. The 24# does a little, but quickly flattens out. I can also print both sides with no problem, but with the 20#, besides the curl, huge amount of static buildup.

Same problem when I tried to use inkjet paper...very bad curling.

Last edited by KlondikeGeoff; 01-17-2010 at 02:31 PM.


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