Printers-A Dilemma

Written By: George W. Cannata

My recent article did not flatter computer manufacturers norm will this one.

I’m a capitalist, and believe in free enterprise but I think the business philosophy of the printer manufacturers has been outrageous and certainly not consumer friendly. The cost of ink is horrendous.

To an extent their practices have back fired on them. They’ve created a bootleg industry that they now have to compete with. The cost of OEM inkjet cartridges has sky-rocketed and the competitors have followed suit.

For example the price of a set of cartridges for a Lexmark Z51 Printer is $74.97 delivered from a leading online supplier. A set of refilled cartridges from eBay will cost $38.45. Refills are notoriously unreliable, and some printers just don’t work well with other than OEM ink.

This is a problem for me as I do a lot of printing. Besides the usual run of the mill printing I often print manuals and instructions that I can read somewhere other than on my screen.

One solution is to buy a printer that uses ink tanks instead of cartridges. They are much cheaper. The reason for this is the print head is built into the machine, not into the cartridge, so they not only are less expensive but if you get in to refilling, which I don’t recommend, it’s easier to do.

Here’s the dilemma: There are two leading brands that use this system, and I’ve owned more than one of each, for some reason or other, that type of printer doesn’t stand up well. Not that any of them do.

I’m talking about affordable printers in the under $150.00 range. I don’t know about those five or six hundred dollar jobs. For one thing the print heads frequently fail. You can’t replace them yourself and it’s too costly to have them repaired.

I just had one of the leading brands that cost $100.00 . It was replaced under warranty three times, the last time a week before my warranty expired. It’s less than three months old and it prints half a page and quits

My solution: I’m an inveterate shopper, visit my web site shopping guide: www.caveatemptorus.com. I buy bargain printers. The last three cost $!6.00, $21.00 and $29.00 brand new. When the ink runs out I’ll throw them away.

Watch out for the ones with sample cartridges the ink doesn’t last long. I bought one without knowing it. The seller didn’t say,he did give the cartridge numbers, whch I shuld have chcked. So check before you buy.

Another thing I do is print in draft mode, and I have cut down on printing entirely.

About the Author

Written by: George W. Cannata, Author and Publisher of the web site: http://www.caveatemptorus.com You may copy this article in it’s entirety so long as you include credit to the author and links to my web site.

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