If you want to make printing as easy and effortless as possible, using a wireless print server will definitely help. A print server will connect your printers and computers using wireless connections from anywhere inside your network. Print servers are also great devices to use if you are using older printing equipment.
You can use your computer as a print server, which requires that it’s always turned on. And running a dedicated computer just for printing is a massive waste of energy. Instead, you can buy an inexpensive device that wirelessly runs your printers. Utilizing a print server works wonders in a business or office setting where numerous computers connect to the same printer.
We have found seven of the best print servers currently available, all of which will help you streamline your print jobs. So, let’s take a closer look and find the perfect one for you…
- 1 Top 7 Best Print Server In 2021 Review
- 1.1 1 TP-LINK TL-PS110U Print Server – Best USB Print Server
- 1.2 2 HP JetDirect 620n Print Server – Best Internal Print Server for HP Printers
- 1.3 3 D-Link DP-300U Print Server – Best Multi Port Print Server
- 1.4 4 NETGEAR Universal N300 – Best Wi-Fi Adapter to Add Wireless Functionality to Printers
- 1.5 5 StarTech PM1115P2 Parallel Port Print Server – Best Centronics Print Server
- 1.6 6 NETGEAR PS101 Mini Print Server – Best Parallel Port Print Server
- 1.7 7 IOGEAR GPSU21 Print Server – Best Print Server with USB 3.0 Support
- 2 Best Print Server Buying Guide
- 3 Looking For More Superb Printing Options…
- 4 So, What Is The Best Print Server?
Top 7 Best Print Server In 2021 Review
1 TP-LINK TL-PS110U Print Server – Best USB Print Server
The first print server on our list is a USB-compatible server with a single USB port for connection to a single printer. The port uses USB 2.0 technology, so it’s capable of relatively quick communication between the device and the target printer. The server’s body has several indicator lights, telling you if the USB connection is active and whenever the server’s status has changed.
Full of handy features…
It can assign IP addresses, both static or dynamic, to the print server. You can also set passwords to protect the configurations and settings. It’s capable of remotely rebooting, which is convenient if you find yourself away from the server and need to reset it. You can also control the print server via WEB-interface by using the included special utility.
It supports NetWare and AppleTalk protocols, as well as SNMP v1 and V2c support.
Sharing is caring…
The SNMP trap sends SNMP notifications about the printer server status to all assigned IP addresses. And the Samba protocol support enables printer sharing for Microsoft Windows networks.
But a few features that stand out are the ability to print over the internet using the Internet Printing Protocol (IPP) standard. IPP enables you to send printouts to your office, even if you are away. It can also track print jobs from a specific device.
Overall, the TP-LINK TL-PS110U has an outstanding level of functionality for those that use USB-connected printers. It’s compact, has indicator LEDs, so you know that it’s working, and is very easy to set up and use. The support off IPP also adds a lot of functionality and is very convenient.
- Print remotely using IPP.
- It’s compact, so it fits anywhere.
- Utilizes USB 2.0 for faster connectivity.
- Doesn’t support parallel connected printers.
- Can disconnect from the server, which requires a restart.
2 HP JetDirect 620n Print Server – Best Internal Print Server for HP Printers
This print server is unique compared to several others in this review because it’s explicitly designed to work as an internal print server. Meaning you can install it directly into any compatible HP device. It uses the EIO slot that’s available on many HP devices. As a result. You’ll be able to seamlessly convert devices that only use parallel connections to more modern formats.
It only supports HP printers…
One downside is that the JetDirect 620n only supports HP printers. So if you have a printer from another manufacturer, you can’t connect it to the print server. Another downside is that you can’t access the JetDirect 620n wirelessly; It’s constructed to hardwire non-internet enabled printers to a pre-existing network, so you need to connect it through a cable.
One plus side of the JetDirect 620n is how low-profile it is; you can connect it to a current HP product and wire it into your network, which is quick and effortless. It’s compatible with Windows 10 and all previous operating systems, and it supports a wide variety of existing HP products.
The JetDirect 620n is an excellent choice if you have one or more existing products from HP. It’s a capable print server that serves your daily printing needs. But it requires a cable connection to access the print server since it hardwires the printer. Overall, the JetDirect 620n delivers stable and secure network functionalities.
- Installs seamlessly into existing HP products.
- Quickly handles print jobs.
- Compatible with most operating systems.
- Needs some configuring.
- Doesn’t support wireless networks.
- Only works with HP products.
3 D-Link DP-300U Print Server – Best Multi Port Print Server
D-Link is famous for its top-tier Ethernet and network connection hardware. And the DP-300U is an excellent example of how D-Link is bringing its network expertise into printing. The print server is a relatively stable box that connects to legacy parallel port printers. Even though these printers have fallen out of regular use, it will convert your print jobs and bring them into the modern era.
In addition to the two parallel ports, it’s equipped with a single USB port enabling printers that use USB connections. It doesn’t have a factory reset button, so if you need to change the settings, you have to download software from D-Link, which can be quite a hassle. You will also need to know the previous IP address information from earlier configurations, so if you buy this printer server second hand, it can be hard to track down.
If you have multiple printers from various manufacturers, it supports two parallel printers and a single USB making multiple printer sharing easy. The DP-300U is also well known for its ability to print thousands of jobs without any issues. In fact, you’ll be amazed at how well this print server performs, considering the cost. It works well in any home or office printing environment and an excellent product if you require a quick and easy setup process.
- Connectors for up to three printers.
- Extensive support for printers with parallel ports.
- Durable and high-quality.
- Not compatible with every operating system
- It needs IP address information if you’re changing settings.
- Quite large and takes a lot of space.
4 NETGEAR Universal N300 – Best Wi-Fi Adapter to Add Wireless Functionality to Printers
The Universal N300 isn’t made exclusively for printers; in fact, this print server is specifically designed to bring non-wifi-enabled devices into the world of wireless. So, your wired internet-ready printer will act like it’s hardwired to the internet without the need for extra cables.
It has a crisp transmission speed of 300Mbps and has a relatively broad range making it possible to connect your printer anywhere in your home or office.
Safe and secure…
It even has a WPS security setting that protects your devices from intruders. But this can be hard to set up and doesn’t always work. For some reason, it doesn’t connect or find Wi-Fi signals that aren’t transmitting an SSID, making it useless for some systems. The setup process is somewhat tricky, and therefore it can be hard to provide a DHCP assignment to the print server – at least without configuring it through a router first.
Even though it can be hard to configure, it has a reasonably one-size-fits-all styling that supports multiple devices, not only printers. The range is good, and the LED lights provide enough at-a-glance information, so you know if the connection is working correctly.
It also provides a reasonably fast connection. It works well, bringing your legacy internet-enabled printers into the modern era. Still, if you have a product or printer that doesn’t connect to the internet with a wired connection, the Universal N300 could well be the solution you are looking for.
- Compact and light.
- LEDs are easy to read.
- Fast data connection.
- Sometimes it faults.
- Can be hard to setup.
- It only supports Windows 8.
5 StarTech PM1115P2 Parallel Port Print Server – Best Centronics Print Server
You no longer have to through away your old printer. The StarTech PM1115P2s only purpose is to quickly connect legacy parallel port printers to a home or office network. It has a reliable wired connection, so you can’t connect via Wi-Fi, and the print server provides a 10/100Mbps transfer rate that guarantees quick prints.
The PM1115P2 doesn’t support USB printers, so you needn’t bother about this device if you have a USB printer. The documentation isn’t the best, so it will take a bit of trial and error to figure out the functionalities if you’re not used to how printer servers work. And it doesn’t support Windows 10.
The best part?
One of the main features is the web-based management tools, which allow you to monitor the functionalities of the print server and shows you what is being printed at any given time. The software will enable you to remotely queue print jobs, which is handy if you’re out of the office. The provided Bonjour Print Service makes it easy to manage multiple printers.
The StarTech PM1115P2 will bring your old legacy printers back to life, so you don’t have to buy new ones. So even though it’s not the best print server available, it can still be of value to some home or business owners. And while it lacks wireless capability, it always makes it easy to connect remotely to your printers using a parallel port.
- Supports parallel port printers.
- It has a fast data transfer rate.
- It’s small.
- Not wireless.
- It doesn’t have USB support
- The documentation can be hard to understand.
6 NETGEAR PS101 Mini Print Server – Best Parallel Port Print Server
What makes the Netgear PS101 unique is its on-board memory. On-board memory helps a print server because it will keep the incoming print jobs organized, which significantly speeds up the printing process.
The PS101 also provides a stable data transfer rate of 10Mbps, which transfers through a wired connection. Because it features a built-in parallel port, you can connect it directly to your printer, and it will behave just like a wired connection.
Unfortunately, it isn’t compatible with Windows 10. It’s was exclusively built for Windows Vista, but it also works on Windows 7 and 8. It tends to become unresponsive if you’re queuing multiple print jobs, which means you often have to resubmit the print request. If you turn off the power, it can result in the print server resetting to factory defaults.
The PS101 is small and can easily fit behind your printer, so it goes unnoticed and won’t be in the way. It’s easy to install on the OS versions it supports, including several of Apple’s OS. The Netgear PS101 is worth the money if you need a compact print server to handle several print jobs simultaneously.
- Fast Ethernet connection.
- It connects easily to most parallel port printers.
- It’s equipped with a web-based status monitor.
- Print jobs can fail without explanation.
- It doesn’t support Windows 10.
- Powering down can reset to default settings.
7 IOGEAR GPSU21 Print Server – Best Print Server with USB 3.0 Support
The IOGEAR GPSU21 is a USB-connectable device that is both compact and easy to setup. A standard AC is used to power the print server, while USB 2.0 connects to your printers. The USBs provide plenty of speed, so print jobs are fast, and the connection is stable.
The GPSU21 allows for remote printing as well as printing from any computer in your network. The auto-sensing technology enables the printer to appear automatically on the system.
Even though the print server has USB 2.0, it doesn’t support parallel ports, and it has USB 3.0 support, which means it could provide faster printing than the device can handle. But unfortunately, it doesn’t. It’s limited to the speeds of USB 2.0. It doesn’t support Windows 10 but works amazingly on all Windows OS up to 8.1. The support of DHCP grants a high level of security, and it works on most MAC products.
Providing a suitable USB connector and good network speeds, the Netgear GPSU21 is an excellent option for everyone with a USB-printer, provided that you don’t use Windows 10.
- USB connection.
- Easy to setup.
- Has a handful of useful features.
- Not Windows 10 compatible.
- Requires connection via a USB cable.
Best Print Server Buying Guide
Internet-enabled printers are still relatively new, and not too long ago, you needed a wired connection to print from your desktop. Print servers use local home and work networks to deliver print jobs to your printer. Print servers are manually connected to the printers, while the other “end” is entirely wireless and receives the print jobs as data transfers from your device.
As a result, you can have all the computers in an office printing from the same machine. The print servers tend to use either a wired connection, Wi-Fi, or Bluetooth to communicate with the computers, and most of them work instantaneously without complicated setups or configurations. They are also often quite small in size since they perform a relatively simple task, but the value to your office can be quite substantial.
What Should You Consider When Buying A Print Server?
Not every computer in your network will have access to Wi-Fi or Bluetooth. Therefore, it’s a good idea to buy a print server that has a USB connection. The USB supported devices usually include a drive-sized USB dongle that attaches to your computer through a standard USB port. Once connected, the dongles allow quick, two-way communication between the computer and print server.
Some of the top print servers include auto-sensing, allowing you to start printing immediately without installing any software.
Multi-device support and small footprints
Nowadays, the most sought after printers for offices are the All-In-One printers. These printers allow you to print, scan, fax, and copy. But if you don’t own one of these printers, a print server provides similar features. By supporting multiple devices with various functionalities, you can connect to scanners, fax machines, and copiers as well as printers.
When working from a home or office, the last thing you want is to have devices cluttering your space, which is why modern print servers are designed with a small footprint. Some print servers aren’t much more extensive than smartphones, so you can fit them neatly into spaces where they are practically unnoticeable.
Compatibility with older printers
One of the main features of a good print server is making older printers usable in a modern office environment. The server should have the capability to handle legacy devices and connect to parallel printer ports and USB ports on printers that aren’t Wi-Fi- or Bluetooth-ready.
Having a print server that supports internet printing not only means that you’re able to print locally, but you can also start print jobs from remote locations. This feature is managed by the Line Printer Remote (LPR) protocol or IPP.
Internal vs. External
When you are shopping for print servers, you will have two choices: an internal or an external print server. Internal printers install into the back of your computer, connecting it directly to the motherboard. The advantage here is that they are visually unnoticeable, and the print server can run on any of your standard computers. But keep in mind that you’ll have to keep your computer switch on at all times.
The external devices are easy to set up and require next to no installation, so you’ll be up and running a lot faster. However, they can be in the way if you don’t store them in a secure place. Which product you choose depends on your home or office needs, but both streamline your printing process’s efficiency.
Looking For More Superb Printing Options…
So, What Is The Best Print Server?
A good print server can save your older printer from being thrown out, saving you a bit of money. Each of the print servers in this guide provides the ability to keep your printers working for years to come. Even if you have an All-in-one printer, there is still a lot of value in buying a dedicated print server. The print server that proved best in our tests is the…TP-LINK TL-PS110U Print Server
It supports IPP, has many excellent features, and is small, so it fits almost anywhere. It also has a USB port for faster connectivity. Even though it doesn’t support parallel port printers, it’s still the best choice!