How Many Prints Per Ink Cartridge Epson

How Many Prints Per Ink Cartridge Epson – The editors select and review the products independently. If you make a purchase through affiliate links, we may receive commissions that help support our testing.

When color printer manufacturers chose the marketing strategy known as offering razors to sell blades, they probably didn’t expect customers to complain about the price per ounce compared to the best champagne. In response to these complaints, today you can buy a cheap printer that uses expensive cartridges, or pay for a printer with the same features and performance, but much less color. Here’s what you need to know about costs when choosing between the two and how to decide which one is better.

How Many Prints Per Ink Cartridge Epson

How Many Prints Per Ink Cartridge Epson

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How Much Is Printer Ink And Toner Costing You?

Blockbuster Printer in the early 1980s), refilling ink from bottles was messy enough that the convenience of cartridges made them much more popular. That changed in 2015 with Epson’s EcoTank line, which essentially reintroduced glass ink that can be poured into printer tanks or reservoirs. Canon followed with its MegaTank printers in 2016, and HP introduced its SuperTank printers in 2019.

These wholesale inkjet printers are all similar in concept and offer the same benefits to reduce running costs. And today’s bottles are designed to minimize or eliminate color bleed. Meanwhile, Brother took a slightly different tack with the INKvestment line, printers that use larger-than-normal cartridges to lower costs per page compared to tanks.

INKvestment cartridges effectively act as containers that you purchase, already filled with ink, and attached to the printer. For comparison, the Brother MFC-J4335DW costs 0.9 cents per page in black and 4.7 cents in color. The similarly priced Epson WorkForce Pro WF-3820, which uses traditional cartridges, has a current cost of 3.6 cents per monochrome page and 11.7 cents per color page.

For the purposes of this discussion, we will refer to all four of these printer designs, including the Brother design, as tank-based, and traditional inkjets as cartridge-based. Just remember that INKvestment printers actually use cartridges; it’s just that they have more in common with tank printers than traditional printers in terms of running costs.

How Many Pages Can An Ink Cartridge Print?

The first Epson EcoTank printers set a precedent that is still used regardless of manufacturer; Black printers are more expensive to purchase than comparable cartridge models, but offer lower operating costs.

This leads to a general rule that for almost any color printer, you can find a cartridge printer with similar performance and features for less, or a printer with better performance and additional features for the same price.

With either of these pairs, running costs with cartridges will be higher. So, at the same purchase price, your total cost of ownership (TCO) for both printers will be higher for each cartridge model than the day you purchased your first replacement cartridges. But for a cheap cartridge printer and an expensive tank printer, the TCO winner in the long run depends on how many pages you print. (We’ll cover this in more detail soon.)

How Many Prints Per Ink Cartridge Epson

Consider the two all-in-one (AIO) or multifunction printers we’ve already mentioned: the Epson WorkForce Pro WF-3820 and the Brother MFC-J4335DW INKVestment AIO. At first glance, the Epson model looks like a bargain. Both AIOs have the same $149.99 MSRP, but the WorkForce Pro delivered faster speeds in our tests and offers additional features, including an Ethernet port and higher paper capacity for printing and scanning. However, to call it a better deal ignores the difference in running costs.

Epson Surelab D1070 Printer, Standard Edition Lexjet

You can find the costs per page of our test printers discussed in the review, but you can calculate them yourself if you need to. Briefly, for black and white pages, divide the black value by the estimated yield of the ink cartridge or bottle. For color pages, divide the cost of each black by the yield, and since color prints also use some black, add the cost per page for each color and black. If more than one option is selected for the price of ink, use the most effective one, which is usually the largest and most expensive (for example, regular and XL ink cartridges).

Each monochrome page printed with the MFC-J4335DW costs 0.9 cents, compared to the Epson’s 3.6 cents, a savings of 2.7 cents per page. The corresponding cost per color page is 4.7 cents compared to 11.7 cents, a savings of 7 cents per page.

After using the initial cartridges that come with the WF-3820, its high operating costs will be $27 per 1,000 black pages and an additional $70 per 1,000 color pages. And that’s not even taking into account that when you have to replace the first set of Epson cartridges, Brother will still have plenty of ink left that ships with the printer. If you look at the lifetime costs of your printer, it turns out that the TCO of a cartridge model will be much higher, meaning that these similarly priced printers aren’t really competitive.

A more appropriate comparison is between printers with similar features rather than at similar prices. All of this brings us back to the observation that for every ink tank printer there is a cartridge printer with comparable capabilities and features that costs much less.

Buy Epson Ecotank L3110 3 In 1 Printer With Epson’s Integrated Ink Tank System For Cost Effective, Quality Colour Printing Online

Before you focus on comparing costs, remember that all previously calculated numbers will be estimates. Actual running costs depend on any number of variables, including the amount of ink used per page, which may or may not match the number of standard test pages. So don’t take small differences in comparison too seriously. These calculations are intended to give you a rough estimate only.

Also note that our estimates only apply to printing documents on plain paper. Photo printing involves other factors that we won’t cover here, especially the cost of the media, which varies greatly from printer to printer for photo paper. For standard documents, we assume that you use the same plain paper regardless of the printer, so the cost of the paper will be the same in all cases.

Let’s take a look at two printers you can actually choose from: the cartridge-based Epson WorkForce WF-2860, which sells for $139.99 on Amazon at the time of publication, and the $499.99 Epson EcoTank ET-4850. These two AIOs offer comparable performance and features, and even similar sizes and weights. Epson rates their monochrome and color print speeds just 1 ppm apart, and they’re statistically on par in our stopwatch tests.

How Many Prints Per Ink Cartridge Epson

The only significant difference between them is the ET-4850’s high paper capacity of 100 pages. Simply put, if you print enough to take advantage of the EcoTank model’s low ink costs, you’ll appreciate the higher capacity and less need to refill the tray.

Epson T46y Photo Black Ultrachrome Pro10 Ink Cartridge T46y100

Tank printers usually come with enough ink to print several thousand pages; Cartridge printers rarely come for more than a few hundred. What you need to know is how much you have to pay for the extra ink for the cartridge model to get the number of pages you can print with the ink that comes with the tank printer. This can easily be more than the original price difference. Next, you need to determine how many pages you will print over the life of the printer.

The first step is a bit complicated. You will need to find the approximate page yield for the color that the printers deliver. If you can’t get specific information about what’s in the box from the manufacturer’s website, look up the price and color yield for replacement inks, whether it’s cartridges or bottles. Cartridge printers often have more than one cartridge size, but printers usually ship with low-yield cartridges. Most tank printers only offer one option, but some come with a second bottle of black ink for free, so you might want to check that out as well.

Finding the right crop for tank printers can take a bit of detective work, and certainly requires some guesswork. Many use a large amount of ink for the initial setup, mainly to fill the print head, so the blocked ink will produce fewer pages than the same amount of replacement ink. For most inkjet printers, you can find a statement on the website or data sheet that calculates the duration in months or years and states that the claim is based on a certain number of pages per page.

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