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Is laser toner really cheaper than ink?

Discussion in 'Laser Printers -Everything-' started by juntjoo, Oct 9, 2017.

  1. Oct 9, 2017
    juntjoo

    juntjoo Printing Apprentice

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    In the last 10 days I've printed maybe 200 postcards of opaque artwork on one side and am down to 2 x 70% and 2 x 80% for the four toner levels. At this rate with the price of toner, it's going to get expensive.

    So I'm wondering if either there is a refilling method or comparable cheaper generic replacement available for toner otherwise how much cheaper would refilling ink be if at all. Any ideas?
     
  2. Oct 9, 2017
    Ink stained Fingers

    Ink stained Fingers Printer Master

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    It's not clear what you are comparing here - the per page cost of consumables of your particular printers - laser or inkjet ? Are you familiar with the refill practice ? Did you ever looked for 3rd party compatible cartridges for your inkjet printer ? Which printers are you comparing ? Did you look for compatible toner cartridges for your laser printer ? There are so many variables in the game that a simple answer is just not possible .
     
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  3. Oct 9, 2017
    The Hat

    The Hat Printer VIP Moderator

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    The simple answer is no, home printing is very expensive if you use OEM inks, laser printers with 3rd party toners work quiet well but the maintenance on a laser printer is far higher than on an inkjet.

    The best value for money is a good pigment inkjet printer, it can make home printing prices reasonable and is way cheaper than the high street copy shops, but which ever one you choose it’s going to cost you, there’s no such thing as a free lunch...
     
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  4. Oct 9, 2017
    juntjoo

    juntjoo Printing Apprentice

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    Thanks. I don't have an inkjet anymore. I now have an HP laser jet M452nw and have not looked into compatible cartridges.

    I still have time tho to return it and opt for an inkjet if I determine it to be more economical. And I think it was mentioned in this forum recently there is a great deal, $150 on a canon pro 10 maybe? Or something like that, a printer with the preferable "pigment" ink. And from what I've gathered replacement ink is really cheap, maybe even cheaper than toner, so that's what I'm trying to determine
     
  5. Oct 9, 2017
    Ink stained Fingers

    Ink stained Fingers Printer Master

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    you probably had some reason to buy that laser printer e.g. considering the overall printing volume or the type of documents you typically print, and the media choice may be another reason - e.g. plain paper vs. inkjet paper. Yes, the Canon Pro 10 is a very good printer, and a good deal at this time, and if you are willing to do refill you can print quite economically. But whether such a printer can meet all your printing needs is another question.
     
  6. Oct 9, 2017
    juntjoo

    juntjoo Printing Apprentice

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    Yes, I found the thread in this forum. Still trying to figure out how it gets down to $100 + shipping, if it's still available.

    https://www.printerknowledge.com/th...tm_campaign=ed24&utm_content=iss4#post-102431

    And yes, I got this laser jet for one because it can print onto this cheap and always locally available super thick poster board, where inkjets cannot. But that isn't a requirement. Although I believe these Canon pro machines, from my research can print to thick cardstock. I'd just have to find the right paper, thick and glossy one side, suitable for inkjets.

    But if it's cheaper with the Canon I may have to go with that option as it's proven to be expensive with this laser jet. And that was the first I've read that they are more troublesome to maintain than inkjets. I read in different places that overall laser printers are easier. Maybe it depends on your knowledge of maintaining a good (like this Canon pro 10??) inkjet printer.

    Oh boy, this hasn't turned out so easy to figure out lol. Gotta go double check that purchase date on my receipt...
     
    Last edited: Oct 9, 2017
  7. Oct 10, 2017
    juntjoo

    juntjoo Printing Apprentice

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    So far I'm finding compatible replacements for around $45. Can it be cheaper, per page, refilling pigment ink cartridges?

    So apparently you can refill these things:

    http://www.ebay.com/itm/4KG-4-000g-GLOSSY-Toner-Refill-for-HP-LaserJet-Pro-M452nw-M477fdw-M477fdn-/322326838177?hash=item4b0c2d3ba1:g:y1sAAOSwddhZx4iC&_trkparms=pageci%3Ab9530ed2-ad4b-11e7-978f-74dbd18029ac%7Cparentrq%3A0386166c15f0aa42dcd91c45fffed130%7Ciid%3A1&redirect=mobile

    $240 for four times the toner that comes with original cartridges. So:

    (rough estimate)
    OEM cartridges : $80/replacement
    After market : $40/replacement
    Bulk refill : $15/refill

    So the best choice is obvious, tho I should research any of these alternatives first but economically-wise, how would these numbers compare to the $ of pigment of equivalent yield? Well this laser refill method certainly looks manageable and worth looking into further. Any opinions?
     
    Last edited: Oct 10, 2017
  8. Oct 10, 2017
    The Hat

    The Hat Printer VIP Moderator

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    Refilling inkjet cartridges can if you’re not careful, be very messy, we know and that’s why we tell every user to take their time with the procedure, BUT laser cartridges are a completely different kettle of fish.

    Toner power is shocking stuff to lose control of, it goes everywhere and you have to do that four times without any hiccups, I reckon you might want to think again, O’ you forgot about the cost of resetting the cartridge chips.

    The best and only opten open to you if you wish to continue to use the laser is to buy ready filled compatible toner cartridges, but then your savings will not be as much as you originally planned, and your budget would have to be increased considerably...

    Addendum: - Buying any sort of ink or toner from any EBay site is fraught with danger, you never really know what you’re getting till you open the package, then it can be too late, not a good recommendation at all...
     
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  9. Oct 10, 2017
    juntjoo

    juntjoo Printing Apprentice

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    Cost to reset a chip? Is this a one time thing or every time and what IS this cost? And if you can't trust something from ebay surely people who buy toner replacement buy from some place they trust. Do you have experience with this or are there many users in here experienced with laser printers? If seems there is an inkjet bias in here.

    And again, I'm not looking forward to having to return yet another printer. This isnt fun. I've got work to do. I'll go the inkjet route but then I've got to hunt down the right paper which looks like it will double in price with inkjet(11pt + thick and glossy one side) compared to this posterboard I get locally that my laser jet prints to but with this overheating issue I'm having. It's really turned out to be a lot more complicated than I had hoped
     
  10. Nov 30, 2017
    davec

    davec Newbie to Printing

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    For me Laser printer Toner isn't exactly cheaper than ink, but it's not as simple as that. I had a Canon MP500, print, scan fax... for some 10 years. Id got hold of the service manual, so I was able to keep resetting the ink absorber and I used to fill the cartridges once every 3-5 weeks. To be honest it never felt like we were printing that much perhaps 80-100 pages per month. This was in the days when the canon cartridges held a bit more ink. In fact I used the original cartridges the printer came with for the entire 10 years. I did have to fit 1 head which the chap at Octoink kindle sent me for free because it was blocked so I cleaned it up and it worked fine. filling was slightly messy and a bit of a pain, took around 15 minutes to fill them all. Print quality was OK, not astounding, but it was a pretty old printer. I think the refilling cost around 80p, so for 1500 it was about £20 in ink ages. The printer cost be about £150 delivered when I first bought it.

    In the end I got fed up, it was 10 years old and I needed another printer. When I was working we used all sorts of lasers in the office and I was managing the IT. I remembered OKI was quite good and looked them up. I liked the fact there was an LED printer and the print drums were NOT separate drums in the toner cartridges for the model I chose. It was an OKI MC342, colour laser multifunction. One of the big parts of the decision was whether after-market toner cartridges were available at a good price and the fact that after market cartridges would work without doing anything funny with a chip resetter and having to use chips from OEM cartridges stuck to after-market ones.

    I have had it some years now and am really happy with it. No longer do I have to fill ink tanks every month, but change toner cartridges occasionally. An entire set of after-market toner is about £32, this is 2 large black and 3 colours. From this I can print many many thousands of pages. In fairness, it probably costs just a little more per page as my old inkjet (based on an 80p refill cost), but the print quality is absolutely superb and it's much faster. Changing cartridges takes a few minutes to take the old one out and slot the new one in, no mess at all.

    The key thing is choosing the printer based on the cost and hassle of after-market refills. It got terrible marks in reviews, because genuine OKI toner cartridges were around £360 for a set and it only came with starter cartridges. With the MC342DN only costing me £139 delivered it didn't make sense and would almost have been cheaper to buy a new printer with starter cartridges each time. I also checked out refilling OEM catridges (because you can't refill the starter ones) and I think the refill toner actually worked out more expensive than buying a new after-market catridge!

    So is it cheaper not really, it's only a little bit more than an inkjet....but it's a whole lot better and I would never ever go back to an Inkjet again. I used to say to the kids not too much printing...now I don't care.
     

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