If you’ve ever looked at professional laminated materials, they are quite impressive. But the secret is that you can create your own laminated materials with just one simple tool. While there are many on the market, the best lamination machine is out there and readily available for both home and office work. With just a few pieces, you can quickly laminate all your important documents and make professional-quality resources.
We’ve found five of the best lamination machines and have reviewed them here. The pros and cons are all listed, as well as what their best features are. Our Editor’s Choice for best lamination machine is the Fellowes Laminator Jupiter 2 125. It is a high-quality machine with an impressive speed of 30 inches per minute. It’s also compact so won’t take up any precious desk space.
Top 5 Lamination Machines Review 2020
In addition to our product reviews, we have also created a buying guide for your reference. All the features you can find in a lamination machine are listed, including the maximum width, speed, dimensions, and pouch width. As you research more about lamination machines, you will inevitably have more questions. This is why we have also included a section to answer the most commonly asked questions. Finding the best lamination machine having the ability to produce quality resources that will last a lifetime.
Fellowes Laminator Jupiter 2 125 – Editor’s Choice
- Max. width: up to 12.5 in.
- Pouch thickness: up to 10mm
- Speed: 30 in/min
- Dimensions: 21.3 x 8.2 x 5 inches
- Warranty: 2-year limited
More features: 1-minute warm up; 6-roller system
Our pick for Editor’s Choice was pretty easy to find. The Fellowes Laminator Jupiter 2 125 is exactly what you would want in a premium lamination machine. It has all the bells and whistles to make a wide variety of projects.
You can use pouches with thicknesses up to 10mm, which means you can have both flexible and more durable laminating choices. And you don’t have to actually do anything to adjust the thickness. This device will automatically detect the thickness and self-adjust.
There is also a cold lamination mode for further options.
The speed is an impressive 30 inches/minute, which is almost lightning speed for this type of machine. To work the Fellowes Laminator Jupiter 2 125, simply turn it on and go. It has a rapid warming speed of just 60 seconds. The InstaHeat technology means never having to wait to start your next project.
If there are any mis-feeds, again, no worries. There is an Advanced Pouch Tracking System that will automatically detect any issues and quickly reverse the pouch.
As for the external features, the Fellowes Laminator Jupiter 2 125 has a nice, sleek design. It is a bit larger than other models but its modern design means it can be placed on a desk and fit right in.
The one downside is that there is no paper feed to keep your papers organized. For large jobs, this can become a bit of an annoyance.
- Modern, sleek design
- Laminates up to 10 mm thickness
- Heats up in just 60 seconds
- Does not have a paper feed tray
TLC 7000T – Premium Pick
- Max. width: 12-9/16 in.
- Pouch thickness: 3, 5, 7, and 10mm
- Speed: 33 in/min
- Dimensions: 16.6 x 4.8 x 8.8 inches
- Warranty: 5-year limited
More features: hot and cold laminating; made in the USA
There are many different types of lamination machines. Some are great for small projects, while others are ideal for high-end jobs. Our premium pick for the best quality lamination machine is the TLC 7000T. This is no ordinary lamination machine. It has a rather large footprint and is better suited in an office than in a home.
You can feed papers through that are almost 13 inches wide, which makes it one of the best lamination machines for graphics and charts. There are four pouch thicknesses to choose from, up to 10mm, which means great diversity.
The speed is a very impressive 33 inches/minute. Not only does the TLC 7000T provide quality laminations, but it can easily produce bulk jobs.
One other impressive feature is that you can use wither hot or cold laminating. This means if you have different project needs, you can really tailor the final result. Choice is almost always a great thing.
If all this sounds too good to be true, the price is reflected in this abundance of features. It very well be out of line with a home office. However, in a more formal office set up, the TLC 7000T will pay off in dividends.
If there are any issues, the five-year warranty will have you covered. The TLC 7000T has great customer service, so keep your eye open for any defects or issues. This company stands by their products and will do whatever they can to help.
- Incredible 5-year warranty
- Multiple high-end features
- Perfect for an office setting
- Rather expensive
AmazonBasics Thermal Laminator Machine – Best Basic Lamination Machine
- Max. width: 9 in.
- Pouch thickness: 3, 5mm
- Speed: not specified
- Dimensions: 13.4 x 4.8 x 2.4 inches
- Warranty: 1-year limited
More features: two 9.4″ x 11″ laminating pouches included
Ten years ago, Amazon Basics was announced, and since then more and more items have been added to its repertoire. The AmazonBasics Thermal Laminator Machine is a no-nonsense machine capable of meeting most of your laminating needs.
This sleek, white-styled lamination machine will look nice in just about any setting. It has a rectangular shape which means it can be tucked away easily to make way for more space if needed.
While the maximum width is only nine inches, this is still fine for standard-sized paper and other necessities such as business cards and photos. The pouch thickness is also only 3mm or 5mm which, while a bit limiting, will still work for most projects.
The AmazonBasics Thermal Laminator Machine is not an advanced machine, and that is just fine. After all, if you don’t need advanced features, why pay for them? If all you require is a lamination machine for small projects every now and again, then this is definitely a product to consider.
One overall flaw of the AmazonBasics Thermal Laminator Machine to be aware of is that papers can jam inside. While there is a jam release lever to easily clear out any papers, it would be nice if you didn’t have to worry about jams in the first place. However, at its price and construction, this is still a worthy lamination machine. If you need something compact for your home or classroom, the AmazonBasics Thermal Laminator Machine should be on your list.
- Nice, affordable price
- Compact design makes it easy to store
- Perfect for home or classroom use
- Has a tendency to jam
Apache AL18P – Best Value
- Max. width: up to 17.5 in.
- Pouch thickness: up to 10mm
- Speed: 27.5 in/min
- Dimensions: 21.3 x 8.2 x 5 inches
- Warranty: 1-year limited
More features: cold laminating mode; includes a 20 pack of 5 and 3mm laminator pouches
Apache AL18P may not look stylish, but it works really well and is affordable. These two features don’t always come together, so you should take advantage while you can. In fact, the Apache AL18P has so many great features and yet fits most people’s budgets, it is one of the best lamination machines for teachers and office workers alike.
Apache AL18P features heavy-duty steel construction. It is not lightweight so it’s best to find a dedicated shelf or table for this machine. The motor and heating element work really well and will get most jobs done.
You can select either hot or cold lamination, depending on your needs. There is also a 17.5-inch laminating width, which is perfect for graphics and novel designs.
As for pouch thickness, you can choose up to 10mm. And as a bonus, with your purchase you will receive twenty 3 and 5mm laminator pouches.
While operating, you can rest easy if anything goes amiss. There is a forward and reverse switch if anything becomes jammed. There is also a precise temperature control function, so you don’t have to worry about any malfunctions.
The Apache AL18P is a really good find but beware of both its size and loudness. This is not a quiet machine. It is best kept in a designated spot, ideally away from people who are trying to concentrate.
- Cold lamination available
- Includes a 20 laminating pouches
- Rather loud and large
Scotch TL906 – Best Home Lamination Machine
- Max. width: 9 in.
- Pouch thickness: 3, 5mm
- Speed: 15 in/min
- Dimensions: 15.8 x 4 x 3.9 inches
- Warranty: 30-day limited
More features: 5-minute warm up; auto shut-off
As more and more people work from home, it’s important to have all the necessary tools for a successful career. One of those just might be a lamination machine. This small device won’t take up much space, which is a key factor in any home office.
The Scotch TL906 works well, and while it doesn’t have all the bells and whistles that other, more professional-quality machines on our list have, it is still great for home use.
The maximum input width is only nine inches, so keep that in mind before purchasing. However, standard paper sizes are only 8.5 inches, so this will still be able to work for most items.
The speed is 15 inches/minute, which will be just fine, especially if you just need a few pieces laminated at a time. It does take five minutes to warm up, but really that’s not a deal-breaker in the grand scheme of things once nice function is that auto shut-off which gives you peace of mind if you need to suddenly move onto a different task.
One really nice feature is the never jam technology. You can feed pieces of paper through the machine and rest easy knowing that it won’t ever jam.
As for how it works, the steps are quite simple. Just set your preferences on the easy to use controls. Place your paper in either a 3mm or 5mm pouch, then feed it through the machine. All in all, this is a great lamination machine for home use or even for teachers inside the classroom.
- Small in size and portable
- Very easy to use
- Lacking more advanced features
- Slow operation
Features to consider when choosing a laminating machine
There are a lot of features to consider with a lamination machine. Some smaller devices are best in the home while larger ones are meant for the office. To make the most out of your lamination machine, first think about what you will use it for. Then you can find the right group of features for the best laminating machine for you.
Maximum input width
The maximum input width refers to how wide the paper can be when inserted into a lamination machine. Standard paper sizes are 8 ½ inches wide, and most lamination machines have a maximum input width of 9 inches to accommodate standard paper.
If you’re a bit nervous about limiting yourself to this width, don’t despair as there are larger lamination machines to choose from. The TLC 7000T has a maximum width of 12 inches, the Fellowes Laminator Jupiter 2 125 has a maximum width of 12 ½ inches, and the Apache AL18P has a grandiose maximum width of 17 ½ inches.
Pouch thickness it’s compatible with
Pouch thickness refers to how thick the plastic laminating pouch is. Thinner pouches are more brittle and can break more easily. Thicker pouches are stronger and will be more rigid.
The two most standard pouch thicknesses are 3mm and 5mm. These are perfectly fine for home use or everyday office use.
If you know you need more rigid lamination choices, it’s best to find a machine that offers this upfront. The TLC 7000T, the Fellowes Laminator Jupiter 2 125, and the Apache AL18P are more heavy-duty machines and can accommodate pouches with 10mm of thickness.
Speed of laminating
If you just have one or two pages to laminate, speed isn’t much of a factor. But when you have a stack of papers to get done, speed is of the essence.
Laminating speeds are actually measured in inches per minutes. To know what that means in pages, you have to do a bit of math. For example, the Scotch TL906 has a speed of 15 inches/ minute. Standard pieces of paper are 11 inches in length. This means the Scotch TL906 can laminate just over one piece of paper per minute.
If you plan on needing to laminate large groups of papers, be sure to find a larger speed for a more productive day.
Warm up time
With the current advancements in technology, it sure is frustrating when you need to wait for a device to warm up. Lamination machines require heat to melt the plastic, and this can result in a longer wait time for your machine to be ready to use.
Lamination machines are great, but they also require storage. Whether it’s on top of your desk or in a cupboard, make sure you have adequate space for your new device. Smaller lamination machines, such as the Scotch TL906 can be tucked away on the corner of a desk. Larger lamination machines, such as the Apache AL18P will probably need its own shelf. The Apache AL18P has dimensions of 21.3 x 8.2 x 5 inches while the Scotch TL906 is almost half the size.
There are a lot of technical components in a lamination machine, so a warranty is really useful. Standard warranties are for one year although they vary greatly. The TLC 7000T has an incredibly impressive five-year while the Scotch TL906 only has a 30-day limited warranty.
In addition to standard features, you might find some more exciting features as well. Some machines will include lamination pouches in your purchase, which means a lot less hassle and a bit more value. Others will have a cold lamination mode, which uses an adhesive rather than heat. Remember that the more features you find in a product, the more dollars you end up spending.
Lamination machines use very hot heat to melt the plastic to cover paper. Even if you are in a rush, leave the newly laminated paper in the machine for at least a few seconds. The hardened plastic will cool quickly, but save your fingertips a bit of agony and practice some patience.
Also, use caution and try not to overheat the machine. Some smaller lamination machines take minutes to produce one paper. If you’re in a rush this can seem like agony but don’t try to force the lamination machine to work harder than it can. If you feel like speed will be an issue, purchase a faster lamination machine, to begin with to avoid overheating and breaking your new product.
A standard lamination machine will laminate about two pages per minute. Speed is measured in inches per minute and ranges between 15 and 30 inches per minute. The average piece of paper is 11 inches in length, which translates to about 1.5 to 3 pages per minute.
Yes, the more rollers, the smoother the lamination process will be. More rollers mean more pressure and less opportunity for air blisters to form. Two rollers is standard, but if you plan on creating larger projects, look for a lamination machine that has more.
Air pockets in lamination can be a real problem. If you need to hand out laminated sheets for a project or presentation, you will want them to look as good as possible. Blisters are formed when there isn’t enough tension or if the paper moves too fast through the machine. Better quality lamination machines should put an end to this. If you notice a pattern of blisters, be sure to contact customer support as there may be internal motor issues that can be fixed.
The best lamination machine really depends on your needs. Our overall Editor’s Choice is the Fellowes Laminator Jupiter 2 125 because it is versatile and has a plethora of features to choose from. However, despite its great construction, it still comes in at a fairly affordable price.
If you want to make sure you have everything you need for your laminating projects, then go for our Premium Pick, the TLC 7000T. While it does have a steep price, the limits on pouch thickness and maximum width are impressive. It is also speedy, which is great for bulk projects.
Finally, if you want a simple but effective device, check out our pick for the Best Basic Lamination Machine – the AmazonBasics Thermal Laminator Machine. Its features are perfect for home use, and it won’t cost an arm and a leg. No matter what your lamination needs are, it is possible to find the best lamination machine.