THERE IS plenty of choice in the marketplace for low-cost lasers. Except where noted, all hold letter-to legal-sized paper; run at four pages per minute; cost roughly $4,500; offer 300-dpi resolution; have a one-year warranty; come with a base memory of half a megabyte; and do not support PostScript but work with Windows on IBM-compatible PCs. The Hewlett-Packard LaserJet 4L helped lead the charge into inexpensive laser printers and is the latest incarnation of the famous line of lasers. But while the base memory is a full megabyte, it is slower and accommodates less memory (a maximum of two MB) than the competition. It is LaserJet-compatible, naturally, at PCL 5, but there is no PostScript option. It holds 100 pages coming in, letter-to legal-size, but only 50 out. It has a 'sleep' mode to save energy and a 'economode' to conserve toner, but the print quality is average. You can pay extra for a three-year warranty with 24-hour replacement guarantee. The Canon LBP-430 is a better deal. Mechanically it is a near-twin to the 4L, though it will take up to five MB of memory. (After all, Canon makes the engine HP uses in the 4L.) But the prints are much prettier, the warranty two years. The Texas Instruments microWriter does not have resolution enhancement, but its five-ppm engine puts it slightly ahead of the LaserJet competition, and its two MB of base memory, expandable to four MB, is also a 4L-beater. Better yet, it holds 250 sheets in, 230 out, and has an option to hold more. It is only PCL-4 compatible, and costs about $4,500. The NEC Silentwriter SuperScript 610 is a six-ppm Windows printer that mostly uses your PC's memory, not its own. It can hold only 50 sheets in and only 50 out. There's a 200-sheet option. Also, you may add PostScript to it for about $1,000. Built-in you will find PCL-4 compatibility. The big plus of the Silentwriter is its Windows utility software, which handles print jobs more efficiently than Windows' Print Manager. The big negative is the expensive cartridges, at about $1,000 each. The two-year warranty is twice as long as the competition's. The graphics it produces are better than others I have seen. The Brother HL-630 is rated at six ppm. An upgrade for about $1,000 will quadruple its memory from half a megabyte to two MB and will add a Macintosh port. Or you can buy the 655M model with the memory and Mac interface for about $6,000. Inside the base HL-630 model you will find PCL-4 compatibility. The Windows software is easy to use. The WinWriter 200 comes from Lexmark, which used to be IBM's printer division. It is designed specifically for use with Windows. It costs about $5,500 and runs at four ppm, holding 150 sheets in and 50 out. PCL-4 compatibility is built-in, and memory runs from half a megabyte to 4.5 MB. The Okidata OL400e takes up to 4.5 MB of memory. It holds 100 pages going in and 100 coming out. It is distinguished by fast printing and has an option to hold 450 pages. It offers both serial and parallel interfaces, with automatic switching between them.