Canon Ink type differences

TiaanM

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Hi

I have started reading up on refilling ink cartridges etc. The internet is full of tutorials on how to refill ink cartridges, but not much about what ink to use in which printer.
I get the thing about pigment ink and dye ink, but it seems like even within this scope there are differences. If you google canon inks you get "GI-490", "GI-40" , "GI-190" , "GI-790" etc. ink, all meant for different Canon "ink tank" printers. This is just looking at genuine Canon ink, not even considering generics or other brands. Is this just a marketing strategy from Canon or does these inks actually differ?

I have a Canon TR4540 printer, which uses PG-445 and CL-446 cartridges. Looking at all above mentioned inks, I can not seem to find an ink specifically meant for refilling PG-445 and CL-446 cartridges, which probably makes sense, I I would not presume that Canon actually want consumers to refill these cartridges.

My question is fairly simple, which ink I should use to refill PG-445 and CL-446 cartridge?

That said, I am also interested to learn about the reasoning and difference between the various inks and the consequences of refilling cartridges with the incorrect ink, if someone here has got a good answer. I have read about canon (and I think HP) using a printing method where they boil the ink and use the ink gas. This would explain why, say, canon dye ink and brother dye ink could differ. But I still haven't been able to find an answer why you would get different Canon dye inks, unless they use different printing methods within their printers, in which case I would still expect there to only be 2 different options and not as many as mentioned above.

Thanks
Tiaan
 

The Hat

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Hi @Taaanm, because of your location (Johannesburg) it’s not going to be easy to get refill inks for your printer, so if you intend to refill your own cart you’ll need to have the XL type carts and not the standard carts that came with the printer.

I do know that https://www.octoink.co.uk/ can supply you inks for your printer, and if you have any question you’d like to ask first then you can contact them here:-
support@octoinkjet.co.uk
 

TiaanM

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Thanks for the reply. The UK is still a long way off from South Africa. Think you will be surprised what we manage to get here.

I am currently using the XL cartridges. We have a local printing shop that sells refill kits labelled as "canon 445 and 446 refill kits", however, the 445 kit comes with 40ml black ink and the 446 kit with respectively 20ml of C/M/Y ink. These kits go for about 10 euro each, whereas I can buy genuine new canon cartridges for about 15-17 euro.
The same shop also sells 1000ml bottels of same ink at 18 euro each. If you compare the price difference between 40ml (€10) and 1000ml (€18), the price doesn't add up. The 40ml refill kit is too expensive and the 1000ml bottles are too much ink for a normal user.

My problem is that the shop can not (will not) tell me what type of ink it is that they are selling. It is labelled in their own packaging, marked as canon 445 and 446 ink.

I've also had other stores tell me that it would be fine to use any of the canon "GI" ink types mentioned above (GI-490 , GI-40 , GI-190 , GI-790). These inks are readily available in, more manageable, 70ml bottles, at about 5 pounds each.

There are three basic issues that I am hoping to resolve on this platform:
1) what type of ink goes into canon 445 and 446 cartridges
2) what is the difference between the various canon inks (GI-490 , GI-40 , GI-190 , GI-790)
3. what will happen if I attempt to fill my 445 and 446 cartridges with one of the above mentioned inks.

To add to this story. We have people here (they are probably everywhere) who makes a business of refilling printer cartridges. You phone them and they come by your house or business with their inks and syringes and they fill up your cartridges for a nominal fee. These guys, mostly, doesn't care what type of printer (cartridge) you have, surely they also doesn't have their own formulated bottle of ink for each possible cartridge. They come by with their bottles of ink, fill the cartridge and the printer works. This is why I always thought that you have 1 dye black and 1 pigment black and that you can refill any dye cartridge with said dye ink and the pigment cartridge with said pigment ink.

Same with youtube videos. Everyone second person has a video on "how to" fill a cartridge, but nobody has a video on "what to" fill a cartridge with. Hence my fundamental question, does it make a difference what ink I use to fill my cartridges and, if so, how does one know which ink goes with which cartridge.
 

The Hat

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You have got yourself caught up with which type of ink to use in your Canon carts, well it’s very simple, any ink that’s formulated for Canon printers will do, your using carts that have the print head on them so if they get damaged then, you just get another one.

You can even use dye ink in your pigment black cart, it doesn’t matter it won’t harm the carts and when you’re ready to switch back to using pigment you can, nothing is wrote in stone for your type of carts, so the 1 litre bottles of shop ink would be an good investment.. It saves on P&P..

The only difference in these inks are that they will all fade much faster than OEM inks will..
 

TiaanM

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Thanks, that makes sense. This is about the answer I was hoping for. Think I will stick with the pigment black though and not mix the 2 inks. I will never use 1lt of ink and I am sure that these have a shelf life also. So think I will give the 70ml bottles a go. Sounds like worst case scenario is that I mess up my cartridges.

Also not that fussed about about the inks fading, as most of my printing will just be throw-away office stuff.

Thank you for the input.
 

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Sounds like worst case scenario is that I mess up my cartridges.
The secret to success with your carts is to have the refill clip where you can suck ink out through the print head after refilling and to print often..
 

TiaanM

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I probably need to do some more reading up to ensure that I have all the required equipment. Not even sure what a refill clip is. Perhaps you have some threads on that also.
 

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refill clip
Recall the clip that was attached to the cartridge when you first opened the box the cartridge came in. The clip is typically orange. Typically people throw the orange clip away when they install the new OEM cartridge.

A refill clip can mean a couple different things, but the common thing is it is a clip that attaches to the bottom of the cartridge. This refill clip's purpose is to either block ink from dripping out the ink exit port while you refill the cartridge OR the refill clip has been modified to allow you to refill a cartridge through the clip.

I believe your multi-colored ink cartridge requires you to "top fill", either by tapping holes into the areas holding each color of ink and then injecting ink through those holes OR to take the top cover off the cartridge and then refill. Which ever method you use, the refill clip is used to prevent ink from dripping out when you open the holes or take the top off the cartridge.

Do you have instructions on how to refill your cartridges? Please link so we can see.
 

stratman

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We have people here (they are probably everywhere) who makes a business of refilling printer cartridges. You phone them and they come by your house or business with their inks and syringes and they fill up your cartridges for a nominal fee.
We have the same thing here. It's me for my family or friends, but I don't charge. :D

The only info I found on your FINE cartridges in my quick Google search is that FINE stands for Full Photolithographic Inkjet Nozzle Engineering. I guess the marketing geniuses at Canon didn't like PINE and decided to add the word Full and completely ignore Photolithographic. :idunno

Regardless, Canon own ink is always preferred as it has the best archival characteristics over aftermarket inks and gives good color fidelity, generally speaking, without need to make a custom ICC printer profile. Canon ink may also be best to prevent nozzle warping due to overheating and to prevent clogs in the nozzle.

Since the print head and nozzles are built into the FINE cartridges, if there is a problem with clogs or malfunction then you just throw it away and get a new one for not much money, unlike buying a new print head required in printers that use separate cartridges for each color.

Rule of thumb on the forum is that Canon inks best, followed by aftermarket inks believed formulated for that specific cartridge model, followed by Universal ink. There are variations within each class of aftermarket inks that affect their color fidelity and archiving properties.

Given your location and tolerance for spending money, your local bulk ink offerings may be the best/only choice you have for the model printer you have.

If you are satisfied with the output and performance of your aftermarket inks then there is no need to look elsewhere.

Happy printing!
 

PeterBJ

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The Canon TR4540 is a two cartridge printer using the PG-445 and CL-446 cartridges. These are identical to for instance the PG-245 and CL246 cartridges used in North America, except for regional coding. The cartridges are also very similar to older generations of combined sponge/printhead cartridges.

I have tried refilling a PG-510 cartridge that is similar to the PG-445 with Canon bottled black pigment ink GI-490<BK>. This was no success, see this post. The coloured dye bottled Canon inks might also have chemical tricks added to prevent their use in printers they are not intended for. What has worked well for me is Image Specialists refill inks from Octoink UK , see this post, but that is sadly an expensive solution due to shipping. So I agree with stratman's recommendation of trying the locally available inks.
 
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