Relating my user experience here ... (I am not related to in any way to any of the brand mentioned below).
I brought a Epson CX5900 (scan/copy/print) sometime in 2007 during Comex for the price of about $170+. The usage of the printer is not exactly heavy, mostly for the usual documents scanning, photocopying, printing of words docu and information download from internet, like about 20 pages of prints average in every 2 months.
However, my realise that the ink cartridges will slowly dry up, even if you do not use it. The ink head will also clogged and you would need to clean the head if you use it after a while of inactivity. The head cleaning will suck another problem 5 to 10% of the ink capacity per cartridges everytime you do the cleaning process. My last straw with it came when I could not even by-pass the 'low ink' fault message just to use the scanner.
Here are some figure: 1 ink cartridge is $14.00 (during exhibition), 3 colour + 1 black will cost almost $60. The frequency of cartridge replacement due to my usage is about 2 to 3 month (sadly, i had under-utilise the printer) and so in one year, my ink cartridge cost already exceed the initial printer cost.
Eventually I ditched the inkjet printer and looks around for colour laser printer and purchased a FujiXerox C1110B this March. My usage pattern continues and till now I have not spend a single cent to replace the laser cartridges (rated 1000 pages for the bundle). The price of this printer can now get around $259 during show.
I reuse a Canon scanner that was about 10 yrs old but still working flawlessly.
To date, my per page cost so far is much much lower than using ink. Not to mention the colour reproduction, resolution and speed of the laser printer.
To the TS, it boils down to how much you will use the printer. Your mileage may different to mine. Good luck to your decision.
The print quality is using superior quality A4 paper will not disappoint. The colour on a 80gm normal A4 white paper looks very natural in the sample colour print I gotten for comparison.
A limitation with laser printer is that you cannot use those photographic paper by Epson, Canon and Sepom ... etc. Probably due to the temperature of the process and the paper path. But i hope that I am really been misinformed about this.
One thing I forgot to mention for the laser printer i aquired was that it is still possible to print even if one of the colour toner is empty. I am very sure Epson inkjet cannot do this and I remember neither will Canon allow to continue working too. Correct me if I am wrong about this.
Other comparable laser printer can look at Oki (which I find the colour too grossy), Canon (Colour so-so to me), Brother (Colour also a little grossy, but less than Oki) and Samsung (review and the sample print show it was the worst of them all).
IMO, laser printer in this aspect is more versatile for general printing and cost effectiveness.
Inkjet printer for quality and colour laser for economical "for fun" kinda prints. If you leave your printer on, even though you're not using it will conserve you some ink. I leave my inkjet on 24/7, it doesn't take up much power. Everytime you power up your inkjet, the printer goes into a head cleaning startup and that uses quite a bit of ink.