Resolution describes the level of detail in printing and is measured in DPI, or dots per inch. DPI is the number of dots per square inch that a printer is capable of producing.
In general, the higher the resolution and the higher the DPI, the sharper and more detailed the image or printed document. Most printers are measured in maximum DPI, but can print at varying resolution. At the highest resolution, printing will take considerably more time and use more ink (due to the increased level of detail). If you favor speed, you can print at a lower DPI, but may receive a lesser quality print.
This term is not to be confused with PPI (pixels per inch
), which describes the number of pixels per inch in the digital image itself. Pixels—like "dots"—are a form of measurement in images on screen, rather than on paper. If you have a low PPI (low resolution) in an image, then each pixel will be too big and the image will print pixelated and fuzzy. However, when considering what kind of printer to buy, you will be assessing the resolution in DPI, which indicates quality of printing output.