The High Cost of Wasted Printer InkAugust 20, 2018
In the end, our testers concluded that you don’t have to sacrifice performance to save on ink. So don’t dismiss such factors as print quality, speed, and convenience when choosing your next printer.
Once you’ve narrowed the list of printers you’re considering to a few contenders, though, check the ink-cost estimates on CR’s model pages for all-in-one printers and regular printers, especially if you plan to put your new purchase to heavy use.
That cost of ownership figure reflects not only how much ink a printer uses for maintenance but also the amount it actually puts on the page, and, of course, what the manufacturer charges for that ink in the first place.
That price can vary significantly even within a specific brand. For example, HP’s 64XL cartridge, used in models such as the Envy Photo 6255, contains 0.45 ounce of black ink and costs $ 42, which works out to $ 93 per ounce. But the same manufacturer’s 952XL cartridge, used in models such as the Officejet Pro 8730, contains 2.86 ounces and costs $ 44, which comes to $ 15.38 per ounce, less than one-sixth the price.
If you, too, tend to use the printer only intermittently, consult the maintenance ink use column in our ratings. It will steer you away from models that are exceptionally wasteful.
By choosing a model that’s relatively frugal in ink costs and maintenance use, you’ll save in the long run. "A Tale of Two Printers" shows just how valuable that strategy can be.
“Some of the reservoir models are not frugal with ink, but the ink is so cheap the ownership cost is still low," Sulin says.