Braille printers, also known as braille embossers, can make it much easier for you to print out readable documents if you have a vision impairment. From important documents to backup copies of letters and forms, a braille printer can be a useful addition to your everyday life.
What is a braille printer?
A braille embosser doesn’t apply ink to paper like a standard ink printer does, it uses a series of dull pins or hammers to emboss, a series of braille dots onto the page. It uses paper that’s much thicker than the paper used when printing with an ink-based printer. Because braille takes up more space on a page than the printed word, you’ll tend to use more paper than you would using an ink printer. While braille embossers are simple to use and relatively straightforward, they can be louder and slower than ink printers.
Braille printer cost
The cost varies from brand to brand and model to model. Cheaper printers may not have all the features of the more expensive models, but depending on your needs you might find they do the job just as well. Second-hand printers are also available and can provide you with a quality embosser at a lower price.
Alternatively, if you don’t plan to use your embosser often, you can use an external service to emboss braille documents for you. These services can be found by searching online, including in the RNIB shop.
Why are embossers so expensive?
Braille embossers are more expensive than ink printers. This tends to be because they are mechanically more complicated than ink printers. The smaller market share also means fewer are made, plus demand is high.
Best braille printers and embossers
Before you explore the best option for you, focus on why you want a printer in the first place. Are you printing materials for work or personal reasons? How often will you use your embosser and what do you plan on printing? What’s your budget?
Once you have a clear idea of what you need, explore some of our recommendations below.
Braille printer paper
Braille printer paper is noticeably thicker than standard paper to produce better quality dots that hold their shape for longer. It’s always recommended to use braille paper as while some printers claim to be able to print on regular paper, it can sometimes be ineffective and more difficult to read. You can purchase braille embosser paper online from websites including the RNIB shop and Sight and Sound. Prices vary depending on size and quality but expect to pay around £25.
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