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 user 2005-05-09 at 10:18:00 am Views: 78
  • #9340

    While printer prices drop, cartridge prices remain steep

    While finding a
    desktop printer for around $100 has become relatively easy, ink cartridges still
    end up costing more in the first year than the printer itself–and prices are
    rising. The UK Consumer Association reported that, in 2003, printer ink cost,
    ounce per ounce, seven times as much as French champagne. The cost has since

    There are ways to cut down on the amount of ink your printer uses to ensure
    you get as much time as possible from each cartridge, including networking more
    than one computer for each printer, minimizing the number of new ink cartridges
    needed per year.

  • While steep discounting makes it possible to pick up a functional inkjet
    printer for less than $100, replacing the ink cartridges, especially colour ones
    for printing family photos, can easily set you back between one-third and
    one-half of that amount.
  • Given that a typical printer cartridge can comfortably fit in the palm of
    your hand, such prices seem more than a little steep to many buyers.
  • A study by the UK Consumers Association calculated that, millilitre for
    millilitre, printer ink cost seven times as much as vintage French champagne.
  • ‘Ink has to be exactly correct in terms of its colour composition and
    purity,’ says Stuart Poignand, marketing manager for consumer imaging products
    at Canon Australia.
  • Big-name manufacturers are willingly admit they have a policy of offering
    low prices on hardware and taking their profits from consumables.
  • As an example, he points out that home printing of photos on specialised
    paper costs about 55c a print, a similar charge to commercial photo outlets.
  • ‘Unreliable, faulty cartridges result in more reprints, streaky and smeared
    printouts, more wasted paper, and use up more cartridges,’ she says.
  • As well as expensive marketing campaigns designed to hammer home that
    message, some companies use chip technology that makes it difficult for rivals
    to produce cartridges for their machines.
  • A number of vendors are pushing combo packs featuring ink and photo paper in
    discount bundles to attract price-conscious consumers.
  • Most of the complaints about quality levelled at inkjet printers are caused
    not by the hardware, but by incorrect software settings.
  • There are two main printer technologies for home users: inkjet and dye
  • Laser is a third option, but is only suited to document printing, with
    colour laser models still expensive.