Nov 4, 2014

Inkjet printers are a big rip-off !

Bharti m
India
Ques. Is it true that the cartridge of inkjet printers dries after few days of not using the printer? which is better to buy- inkjet or laser for home use? is drying of ink a problem in the Epson tank printer too??

Ans. Yes, you are absolutely correct, ink jets are the biggest scams on the face of this earth. You buy an expensive printer with your hard earned money, you get free cartridges with the printer, you use the printer for about a month and then you find that the cartridges are empty. You go to the market to buy new cartridges only to find that the total cost of the color and black cartridges is more than the cost of your printer and moreover a single cartridge lasts only 150 to 300 pages to the max.

Another scenario: You use the printer regularly when it was new, you made creative posters, your kids used it for their school project work. You took one or two print outs a week but later on your usage decreased to only one or two prints a month. And one fateful day you start the printer only to find the prints with white streaks. Oops! the print heads are clogged with dried ink. Now to get back the original print quality you would have to buy a new set of ink cartridges. (spend another chunk of your hard earned money)

All this amounts to approx Rs.5 Per black page and about Rs.10 for a single color page.

Refilling cartridges is an option but a single cartridge can be refilled only about 3-4 times till the print quality is absolutely unreadable. Although you will never get a streak free print like the original cartridge.

But things have changed a bit in the recent times with the introduction of the HP's ink advantage printers and the Epson's ink tank printers. The ink tank printers are a revolution in itself giving cheaper prints than even a laser printer. Laser printers have a higher maintenance cost than these and are suited for businesses.  A single Epson ink bottle costing around 400-500 can last you up to 4000 prints. This cost is much less than the hp ink advantage printer which has a cost of Rs. 1 per page. But the thing to consider is the number of pages you are going to print in a month. The Epson printer although faster is more expensive than the hp and has less features. On 1/3 the price of the Epson you can get the hp multifunction with Wi-Fi. If you have heavy printing needs then you can go for the Epson as it will save you lots of money in the long run. But if your printing needs are less with only occasional printing you can go for the hp one.

Epson ink advantage has a lower failure rate per 10000 prints than the hp one. Although both are susceptible to ink drying. Here too Epson beats the hp as it's ink is less prone to drying . Just be sure to print a page once a week whichever printer you may choose to be on a safer side.

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