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If you use an inkjet printer, what do you use?

by Lee Koo (ADMIN) CNET staff/forum admin / April 29, 2011 8:29 AM PDT
If you use an inkjet printer, what do you use?

- Original manufacturer ink cartridges. (Why you choose to do so?)
- Remanufactured inkjet cartridges. (How has it worked out? Any recommendations?)
- Aftermarket third-party ink cartridges. (How has it worked out? Any recommendations?)
- Do-it-yourself ink cartridge refill kits. (How has it worked out? Any recommendations?)
- I get my cartridges refilled by reputable retail stores. (How has it worked out? Any recommendations?)
- Others. (What is it?)
- I don't use inkjet, laser printers all the way!

Note: This post was edited by its original author. on 04/29/2011 on 3:31 PM PT
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(NT) refurbed laser refilled toner cartridges
by tfarney / April 29, 2011 11:05 AM PDT
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Original Manufacturers cartridges
by michaelpurslow / April 30, 2011 3:03 AM PDT

I have tried remanufactured cartridges but originals produce a far better results when printing photographs.

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the rest of my story
by tfarney / April 30, 2011 6:56 AM PDT

CNet had a glitch, I could not fill in text.
I have refurbed HP laserjet 4+. Online I got refill stuff, I get 1400 pages laser quality b/w prints for about $10 toner. initial outlay for cartridges, but I had them already, and for the cutter tool, but that was trivial.
A site will provide lesser cost cartridges for this "obsolete" printer.

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(NT) Lasers are the best & I refill them myself!
by Lordreignnme / April 29, 2011 11:06 AM PDT
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Inkjet printer
by allanhk / April 29, 2011 11:09 AM PDT

I have a new HP Deskjet F4480 that works great. I may find it a slightly more expensive to buy HP ink cartridges but the convenience makes the difference as I buy them on line and HP has them delivered to me the next day in my mailbox or mail service they use.

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Inkjet cartridges
by Tuba2004 / April 29, 2011 2:25 PM PDT
In reply to: Inkjet printer

I bought a new HP Photosmart Plus printer since the sales person said it had very low ink usage. Wrong!! It goes through ink much faster than my old HP 277. Even worse the cartridges cannot be refilled at the local Walgreens or other places. As others have mentioned, it also uses colored ink when just printing black text. A very nice printer whose strong points are greatly diminished by its use of ink.

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Aftermarket third-party ink cartridges
by mike53_1999 / April 29, 2011 11:41 AM PDT


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Original ones for my Printer
by FrankSanchez60 / April 29, 2011 12:45 PM PDT

I buy Original Ink Cartridges for my HP injet Printer since I don't use it much they last my very long time.I would,nt trust the other ones.

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Cartridge World!

Have you ever been to a reputable place to get your cartridges refilled? I've gone to Cartridge World to get new ink for the printer where I work-we haven't bought a new cartridge for the past 5 years (SUPER CHEAP)! Your lucky to have HP. Dell printers (my home printer is Dell) refuse to work with refilled cartridges.

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Original manufacturer ink cartridges
by ldinorci / April 29, 2011 12:46 PM PDT

2 reasons:

#1 - I once purchased a Staples brand re-manufactured cartridge, which then exploded and ruined my printer. My warranty was voided. I never had problem refilling used cartridges though.

#2 - I have a staples reward account that gives me $2 + 10% of the purchase price. Combine that with stocking up when there are periodic promotions (mind you- we're talking about buying $50 or more) offering additional Staples rewards, and I have yet to see any re manufactured cartridge or refill kit price beat that. I'm sure other office stores (like Office Max) would have similar savings.

Bonus info - Staples (and I'm sure Office Max) occasionally have rebates on HP paper where you can get 1 or 2 reams of HP paper and receive a rebate. Your net cost is either $1 per ream or occasionally free for Stapes rewards members. You still need to pay sales tax on the full retail value, though (at least in NY State). Get a staples reward card and sign up for their email alerts.

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by timhood / April 29, 2011 12:51 PM PDT

OEM cartridges are very expensive. One full set can cost as much as the printer! I bought some after-market cartridges for about 1/3 the price. No issues with print quality. The only minor inconvenience is that I can get a little ink on my finger when I pull the tape that covers the breathing hole. A worthwhile trade.

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by haf canadian / April 29, 2011 1:26 PM PDT

I've found the two cheapest replacement methods are to either order online from Costco, in which case I've had cartridges arrive the very next day in the mail (!), or drop empties off at Costco's photo desk at the start of a shopping trip, and pick the refills up before checkout. $8 @ is hard to beat.

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Two tries andout
by HFaust / April 29, 2011 1:41 PM PDT

I tried twice to refill a HP inkjet black cartridge and twice it would not work.
Now I buy the original, and even then ,the last one had to be sent in for a trade in,as it stopped 1/2 full.

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Same experience.
by TontoYoder / April 29, 2011 9:58 PM PDT
In reply to: Two tries andout

I tried Cartridge World (where I traded in my original HP cartridge for whatever refilled one they had already filled). Not one page printed.
Tried the refill station at Office Max (where they took my cartridge and
supposedly refilled it), but again not one page printed.
I DID get monetary refunds, but wasted too much time and gas and ended up buying new HP cartridge.

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3 year old printer died afterward.
by TontoYoder / April 29, 2011 10:07 PM PDT
In reply to: Same experience.

After reading the other posts about printer failure with refills, I realized
my own printer's demise MIGHT have been connected with using the refill?? I had assumed it was just "Old age", but there was abundant ink slime near cartridge idle position---exactly where the mechanical failure occurred.

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Dell Printer Suck as Well
by Awesomeguy123-22971387919307797703293656502350 / April 29, 2011 11:31 PM PDT
In reply to: Two tries andout

Dell printers will refuse to print with refilled ones because the page counter thing can't be reset. Have you ever read this?:
It has some foul language, but it really expresses why printers are one of the worst inventions of all times!

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I have my cartridges refilled at an office supply store
by ronc2 / April 29, 2011 3:00 PM PDT

...mostly because of the high cost of new cartridges. I can get a $40 inkjet cartridge refilled for $10, and the quality is as good as the original manufacturer's cartridge.
I do a lot of high-color graphics-intensive work and the print quality is very important, but I find no difference between the new and a refilled cartridge. Sadly though, I may have to move up to a new printer before long, mine is over 10 years old, it's still working great, and I really like it, but it's no longer supported by the manufacturer and I'm afraid supplies for it will soon become extinct.

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Cus I want to thx Printer manufacturer !
by hifly.liu / April 29, 2011 3:58 PM PDT

Thx them developing the printer for humans to conveniently print out documents. Third party do nothing and just take the advantage of printer manufacturers, don't you think that's an evil thing ?

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Remanufactured inkjet cartridges.
by GeoffDon81 / April 29, 2011 4:12 PM PDT

I have used remanufactured cartridges for several years in a Canon MP160 which is now 9 years old. There are two firms offering these in my town, either of which perform very well, except that the ink level reporting does not work as expected. The difference in cost of the ink makes the inconvenience well worth the hassle.

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If you're gonna use Inkjet - go with the vendors!!
by tnicassio / April 29, 2011 4:15 PM PDT

on several occasions I've tried used, refurbished, or cheaper ink supplies - always with dissappointment. First the quality of the inks just don't measure up. Second - I've found that without good quality ink the ink jets get clogged or damaged - causing additional $$$ for replacement - thus invalidating any possible savings.
So in conclusion - pay the few cents (per print) extra and go with a higher quality product. You'll save yourself money downstream and have a better quality printed document.

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Give aftermarket a go, printers are cheap to replace
by cheese and cordial / April 29, 2011 4:48 PM PDT

I had an Epson years ago and used aftermarket ink no problem.
Two lots of aftermarket and you have saved enough to replace the printer!
Current Brother (MFC-215 all in one) collapsed in a screaming heap within hours of first set of aftermarket ink.
Went back to original and it works fine again, but over $100 AU for a set of inks hurts, especially when they need replacing every year even if you don't do much printing- watch that daily self test.
I also have a HP Deskjet 460 where ink lasts forever because it doesn't self test and lets you print at draft.

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Aftermarket third-party ink cartridges
by e3954 / April 29, 2011 4:59 PM PDT

I have used a succession of inkjet printers from several manufacturers over the past ten years or so and found that third-party cartridges have been, and continue to be, just fine in terms of cost (about a third or less of the OEM equivalent) and the quality is indistinguishable from the originals, as well as capacity. There was a time when it was necessary to strip the chip off the old cartridge and apply to the new, which disabled the ink level readings, but that seems to be a thing of the past. In addition, I have bought these cartridges from different retails (all of them online) and they all gave the same excellent results. In most cases, delivery was next day at no extra charge. If you haven't tried to use these yet, let me reassure you that any risk must be minimal in return for the incredible savings over a relatively short time. Although this never happened to me yet, even if a cartidge damaged the printer beyond repair (100% in the case of out-of-warranty situations), the cost of replacing the printer would not be significant if you use normal consumer home printers from virtually any manufacturer. I have used both Epsom and Canon printers, and have no issues with these cartridges when used with the printers.

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Using Original manufacturer ink cartridges
by lcw746 / April 29, 2011 5:10 PM PDT

I've had trouble finding remanufactured cartridges, especially if I need them right away. The reman's that I've bought on-line have worked fine. However, I've found it difficult to compare them, and there's also a shipping charge. I don't waste ink(using draft etc.), so I don't need to replace them often.

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I use the OEM inks
by DennisPrimm / April 29, 2011 6:35 PM PDT

The reason I use OEM inks is because my father-in-law had a Canon BJC-600 (yes, that was a long time ago) and I had one too. He chose to go the cheap route and use aftermarket 3rd party inks and his printer got all messed up and Canon told him that using those inks would cause problems. I never had a problem with my BJC-600, so I stuck with the OEM inks. Luckily Canon was very gracious and refurbished his printer. I just don't want to go through the aggravation (and my luck would probably not be as good as my father-in-laws as far as getting my printer fixed for free).

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CIS is the Solution
by valentine39 / April 29, 2011 9:53 PM PDT

I/we use 5 Epson IJ printers and 1 HP all in one. All the Epsons have Continuous Ink Supplies and I purchase ink in bulk. It's relatively cheap. The HP doesn't have a CIS and it is expensive. Printer breaks, buy a new one, they are cheap. The Epson C88+ costs around $80.00 on sale and a new set of inks almost that much from Epson, so buy a new printer when the inks in the new one runs out.

BTW, the printer tells you the ink is gone long before it really is in order to encourage you to purchase more. Thought Epson was sued and lost over that Marketing ploy. Naughty naughty Epson. Buy someone elses ink!!

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My CIS works great.
by bassman123 / April 30, 2011 10:10 AM PDT
In reply to: CIS is the Solution

I get great quality photo printing on my Epson. Save time and money too!

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HP Inkjet Printers
by / April 29, 2011 10:37 PM PDT

Previously had a Cannon & tried a DIY refil kit and the print head blocked up - no ammount of flushing owuld clear it & eventually had to scrap the printer - hence the switch to HP

I have used HP printers for the past 10 years, now on my 3rd "all in one". I use remanufactured ink cartridges as Hp are so expensive and seem to be half empty!

I'm happy to do this as the print head is in the ink cartridge and if it gets blocked I just replace it.
Beware as not all remanufactured units are the same - I've had instances of units not working or pertially blocked.

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Why I use original
by Bageech / April 29, 2011 10:59 PM PDT

I use the original mfr cartridges because they are what I can find. I did use a refill kit on a previous printer but it doesn't work on my current cartridges and I had an ink leakage problem once too. So any way using the original mfr cartridges always works.

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Have a Lexmark All in one printer
by crwrjw / April 29, 2011 11:05 PM PDT

I have been using 4inkjets online now for 3 years. They have never once let me down. I receive my print cartridges in a few days along with a prepaid envelope to drop my old ones in the mail. I get the remanufactured lexmark catridges (high yield) and they last me just about as long as the originals did. I don't normally review online companies, but this one has earned my loyalty. I actually switched to another online company (TFP International) just to try because their cartridges were a little cheaper. BIG mistake. See the thread on TFP International on CNET. Anyway, that's my personal consumer story and I have been very happy with the remanufactured cartridges. The trick is finding the right company. I ruined a previous printer I had trying to refill my own cartridges. All was well for about 4 months and then the cartridge leaked all over my printer and ruined it.
PS; Love my Lexmark Printer and will never buy another brand again.

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Choice of Ink
by Lexmark50 / May 10, 2011 11:53 AM PDT

There are lots of ink choices, and though, originals can produce better results, remanufactured inks and toners can save you a lot on printing costs as well as help save the environment. Sites like can provide some of the best options for printing needs whether you are using inkjet or laser.

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