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 user 2007-07-31 at 1:15:00 pm Views: 98
  • #18495

    Imagine… Paying Less For Printer Ink
    2007 Gasoline is expensive but it’s nothing compared to the cost of
    printer ink. If you do the math, you’ll discover that the liquid ink
    inside those cartridges you buy for your ink jet printer can cost more
    than $13,000 a gallon.

    not a typo. A Hewlett Packard 22 Tricolor Ink Cartridge holds only 5
    milliliter of ink – one 757th of a gallon. Multiply that $17.99 price
    tag by 757 and you’re paying $13,619.91 a gallon for ink.That
    particular cartridge, according to HP, yields 140 color graphic pages
    at a cost of nearly 13 cents a page, which actually isn’t that bad by
    printer industry standards. Some cartridges from HP and other companies
    cost less per page and some more, but the cartridge you get to buy and
    the cost per page depends on what printer you own.For years, printer
    manufacturers have been offering low cost printers only to make it up
    on ink but that’s starting to change now that consumers are becoming a
    bit savvier about how much printers actually cost to use. Finally, the
    industry is starting to listen.

    Kodak has recently introduced a
    line of multi-function printers that they claim “save up to 50% on
    everything you print compared to similar consumer ink jet printers.”
    For example, a black ink cartridge for its new 5000 series of
    multi-function printers costs $9.99 and, according to Kodak, yields 490
    pages at a cost of just over 2 cents a page.Kodak says that its $14.95
    color cartridges will print 145 high quality 4 by 6 photos which comes
    to about 10 cents per photo plus the cost of paper. Kodak also has a
    pretty good deal on paper – starting at $9.49 for 100 sheets (9.5 cents
    a page) for its least expensive 4 by 6 glossy paper.So, when you add
    the cost of ink and paper, it costs about 20 cents to print a 4 by 6
    photo, which is generally less than or comparable to what you’d pay at
    major chain drugstores and other retailers with photo printing
    kiosks.Just like miles per gallon figures for cars, estimates of ink
    cartridge yields are also approximate and subject to all sorts of
    variables including the density of your documents and photos, the type
    of paper you use and the quality settings for your printer.

    example, with almost any printer, you can save ink by using the “draft”
    or “fast/economical” setting in your printer driver dialog box. That’s
    a good idea if you’re just printing documents for yourself. For text
    documents draft mode is usually quite readable.Kodak’s new line of
    “all-in-one” printers start with the $149 EasyShare 5100 that prints,
    copies and scans. Next comes the $199.99 5300 that offers the same
    features, including a 3-inch color display and the capacity to print
    directly from memory cards.The machine Kodak loaned me to test is the
    $299.99 model 5500, which also handles faxes and comes with a 35 page
    automatic document feeder. Each printer prints black text at up to 32
    pages a minute and 4 by 6 color photos in about 30 seconds. As with ink
    use, speeds can vary depending on conditions and settings.Kodak isn’t
    the only printer company with economical ink. I recently tested one of
    Hewlett Packard’s Officejet Pro 7000 line of multi-function devices,
    which start at $299.99 and yield 2,350 black pages on one $35 ink
    cartridge.That’s about 1.5 cents a page which is actually cheaper than
    most laser printers. These HP printers are incredibly good for both
    black and color business documents. They can print glossy photos, but
    this line of printers aren’t optimized for this purpose and don’t have
    a special tray for 4 by 6 photo paper.As you’d expect from Kodak, which
    is trying to survive the transition from film to digital, the printers
    do a great job with photos. I was very impressed with the quality of
    the 4 by 6 prints I made and the black text documents were comparable
    to other high-end ink jets I’ve tested.

    I was also impressed
    with the device’s ease of use and the user interface on Kodak’s
    drivers. For example, the printers have a 100 sheet main paper tray for
    8 ½ by 11 or legal sized paper plus a special for 4 by 6 photo stock.
    To print a photo, you put the paper in the tray and push it in. That’s
    pretty typical but unlike other photo printers I’ve used, the process
    worked every time and I never had a paper jam when printing photos.The
    other thing I liked is the user interface on the printer driver
    software. When you select printer “properties” as you’re about to
    print, your options are presented to you in large easy to understand
    graphics and text, making it quick and easy to select draft, normal or
    high quality mode or to take advantage of other features like automatic
    two sided printing (on the high-end model) or switching between
    portrait and landscape mode. Of course all printers have these options
    but Kodak makes them easy to findThe scanner functions pretty much like
    all scanners with one extra feature – the ability to put a bunch of
    photos on the tray at once and have the software automatically create
    separate files for each photo.Thanks to printers like the ones I tested
    from Kodak and Hewlett Packard, it’s possible to use an ink jet printer
    for about the same cost per black page as a laser printer and still
    have the advantage of being able to print in color.