Stack printer by
Mugi Yamamoto


Graduate designer Mugi Yamamoto has designed an inkjet printer that sits on top of a stack of paper and eats its way down through the pile (+ slideshow).

The compact Stack printer by industrial designer Mugi Yamamoto is simply placed on top of a pile of A4 paper, rather than loading paper into the device in batches. The sheets are fed through rollers underneath the machine and exit on the top.

Stack by Mugi Yamamoto

Yamamoto told Dezeen that his intention was to reduce the space taken up by a printer. "Thanks to this new way of printing it is possible to remove the paper tray, the bulkiest element in common printers," said Yamamoto. "This concept allows a very light appearance and avoids frequent reloading."

Stack by Mugi Yamamoto

The designer looked at commercial printers and modified existing mechanisms to create the working prototype.

Stack by Mugi Yamamoto

The printed paper creates a new pile on top of the machine. "It's not endless - it might go up to maybe 200 sheets of paper," Yamamoto told Dezeen.

Stack by Mugi Yamamoto

Yamamoto completed the project while studying industrial and product design at Ecole Cantonale d'Art de Lausanne (ECAL) in Switzerland. He was also selected as one of ten young designers to exhibit at this year's Design Parade 8 at Villa Hoailles in Hyeres, France.

The designer was born in Tokyo and is currently undertaking a design internship in Nürnberg, Germany.

Stack by Mugi Yamamoto

Other interesting printers we've featured include an inkjet printer that prints patterns to contort pieces of paper into specific 3D forms and an old inkjet printer that had its ink cartridge replace with felt pens.

See more technology »
See more gadgets »

Stack by Mugi Yamamoto

Photography is by the designer.

  • amsam

    Wowza. If this thing works, I want to own it ASAP.

  • Brilliant! This is a great example of industrial design we see fewer and fewer of. The result of observation and problem solving resulting in an understated and elegant solution with a touch of poetry.

  • The perfect project to have a video for.

    • Hi Michael,

      We couldn't agree more. We've made the suggestion to Mugi.


    • trom

      I think it has asked a bit much to build a full working prototype of such a complex product like a printer for a graduation project. The problem I have with this design is that it just doesn’t look good. It looks a bit cheap in my opinion.

  • Taylor

    Better close the window.

  • Gavin

    I struggle to get a ream of paper into the printer, where there are guides for it to sit in. How long would it take to stack paper like that? I see paper jams. Love the idea but not sure I buy into the practicalities of it…and printers aren’t something I could forgive for looking pretty.

    • James

      Seeing as that’s the whole point of the product, I’m assuming there are guides and he has designed it to be practical. Plus paper comes in packs, you just sit the printer on top, there’s no need to spend time stacking it.

      As a side note, say there were paper jams, I’m guessing it’ll be easier to unjam compared to a normal printer where you have to pull half of it apart to get inside.

      • Gavin

        Have you ever unwrapped a ream of paper? They twist as you take them out of the packaging. I just don’t think this looks practical as much as I’d like to. It’s a good looking printer and a nice idea, but I can’t see from these pictures that it would work in reality.

        I don’t want to have to line paper to vertical guides every time I knock it or add paper. I’m sure it looks beautiful in its end of year show, and would work nicely in that context. In an office or at home, I think it would be a nightmare.

  • Really?


  • It trembled here in Mexico city this morning…so NO.

  • Martin

    I don’t care how long it takes to set up some paper to be straight, or how wind could blow over a stack of paper that is a bigger stack then in most normal printers. This is a superb idea and I, for the first time ever, now want a printer. All printers are a nightmare; they never work properly and look ugly as ever. This would probably work better than all printers and look great at the same time. Ceal Floyer, look out :)

  • luis

    I think Gavin touched the “user-problem” button. There is no way you can have such a pile of paper at your home, and at the office it doesn’t hold the paper properly.

    The problem with stacking is that if you open a ream of paper and expose it to air and humidity it will deform beyond usability in less than a week.

    It’s a nice side view approach to a false problem, since the biggest problem people feel with printers seems to be paper jams.

    • Floong

      Spot on. Some major usability options here (but we wouldn’t want those to get in the way of an ‘elegant solution’) – but they do.

      1. The size of the printer is actually huge (if you factor in the paper stack). I have a printer beside me that’s twice the thickness of the printer shown here – with paper inside. (It’s tiny).

      2. Who stacks paper like that? (I agree with the humidity problem mentioned above). Is this a printer for anal stacking-retentives?

      3. If used at home: kids, pets etc bumping into your Empire State Building of paper. Oops. Keep the windows and doors closed too. And no dancing on rickety floors either, nor slightly drunken office parties.

      Not usable in the real world, sorry.

  • George A.

    And what if I need to use bigger paper size, let’s say A3 size for example?

  • No(r)way

    Haha, no way. This would get tipped over in no time and I would be furious about the mess.