Buy a color printer [inkjet] or black and white [laser] for light home use?

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Fat-Tailed Contagion
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Buy a color printer [inkjet] or black and white [laser] for light home use?

Post by Fat-Tailed Contagion » Mon Oct 05, 2015 12:38 pm

Hi Bogleheads,

My Canon color printer is getting older and Canon will not support scanning drivers for WIndows 10.

Should I buy a black and white economical printer for home use and outsource color printing to Walgreens, Costco, etc.
or should I buy a new Canon color printer?

And what models of printers are most highly recommended for light home usage?

[Would also like scanner feature for convenience]

Thank you!

-FTC
Last edited by Fat-Tailed Contagion on Thu Nov 26, 2015 11:18 am, edited 4 times in total.
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Jazzman
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Re: Should I buy a color printer or black and white for home use?

Post by Jazzman » Mon Oct 05, 2015 12:49 pm

I recently purchased the canon MX922 ( 4 in 1) for home use. It is more than adequate, IMO.

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Fat-Tailed Contagion
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Re: Should I buy a color printer or black and white for home use?

Post by Fat-Tailed Contagion » Mon Oct 05, 2015 12:52 pm

Jazzman wrote:I recently purchased the canon MX922 ( 4 in 1) for home use. It is more than adequate, IMO.
Do you do a lot of color printing ? Is it worth the extra costs in specialized color cartridges versus black laser printer?
Last edited by Fat-Tailed Contagion on Mon Oct 05, 2015 6:25 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Jack FFR1846
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Re: Should I buy a color printer or black and white for home use?

Post by Jack FFR1846 » Mon Oct 05, 2015 12:56 pm

Buy color. If you don't want to use color, go into the setup and set the color to black or grayscale.
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Re: Should I buy a color printer or black and white for home use?

Post by dubsem » Mon Oct 05, 2015 12:59 pm

How frequent you print and what you print will determine what type of printer you should buy. If anything, always go for a color printer because there's not much cost savings in outsourcing the color prints.
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Fat-Tailed Contagion
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Re: Should I buy a color printer or black and white for home use?

Post by Fat-Tailed Contagion » Mon Oct 05, 2015 1:02 pm

dubsem wrote:How frequent you print and what you print will determine what type of printer you should buy. If anything, always go for a color printer because there's not much cost savings in outsourcing the color prints.
The color printing has been very infrequent and we have used special photo paper to print 8'' x 11'' photos on the old printer.

These days its seems all the retailers are printing high quality color photos at low prices.

I would think there would be significant savings on buying black and white laser printer toner vs. the small canon individualized black and color cartridges.

Am I missing something here ?
Last edited by Fat-Tailed Contagion on Mon Oct 05, 2015 6:28 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Should I buy a color printer or black and white for home use?

Post by tigermilk » Mon Oct 05, 2015 1:16 pm

We went with a Brother compact laser printer, black/white only. We don't do much, if any, color printing, and those small ink cartridges are 1) expensive and 2) short-lived. The laser printer has been great. 1500+ pages out of the original cartridge and we haven't even installed the "higher capacity" cartridge yet. The replacement cartridges are relatively cheap. So cheap, in fact, you could probably afford to keep a cheap color printer in the closet for when you really need one. But for us, it was great to not be a slave to the ink cartridge replacement scam.

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Re: Should I buy a color printer or black and white for home use?

Post by Fat-Tailed Contagion » Mon Oct 05, 2015 1:19 pm

tigermilk wrote:We went with a Brother compact laser printer, black/white only. We don't do much, if any, color printing, and those small ink cartridges are 1) expensive and 2) short-lived. The laser printer has been great. 1500+ pages out of the original cartridge and we haven't even installed the "higher capacity" cartridge yet. The replacement cartridges are relatively cheap. So cheap, in fact, you could probably afford to keep a cheap color printer in the closet for when you really need one. But for us, it was great to not be a slave to the ink cartridge replacement scam.
Thanks tigermilk for the feedback.

Yes, I am most interested in getting out of the color ink cartridge "scam" line of business.

This seems to be very apparent to me but for some reason people seem to continue to buy them?
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Re: Should I buy a color printer or black and white for home use?

Post by lthenderson » Mon Oct 05, 2015 1:23 pm

We ditched our color inkjet printer and went with a canon laser black and white printer and haven't regretted it. With the color inkjet printer, I was forever having to replace colored cartridges even when we weren't using them. I think they dried out in between times. Also the quality (at that time) just wasn't there and fading occurred pretty fast. With today's internet, I can upload pictures to our local drugstore and have them printed for $0.05 each and they will be ready in an hour for me to drive to the store and pick up. Walmart will even ship them to your door for that price. For the amount of pictures I print, this is MUCH cheaper than owning and maintaining a color printer. For reference, I am going on my third year of owning my laser black and white printer and have only replaced the cartridge once and for less cost than one set of refills for the color inkjet.

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Re: Should I buy a color printer or black and white for home use?

Post by Fat-Tailed Contagion » Mon Oct 05, 2015 1:30 pm

lthenderson wrote:We ditched our color inkjet printer and went with a canon laser black and white printer and haven't regretted it. With the color inkjet printer, I was forever having to replace colored cartridges even when we weren't using them. I think they dried out in between times. Also the quality (at that time) just wasn't there and fading occurred pretty fast. With today's internet, I can upload pictures to our local drugstore and have them printed for $0.05 each and they will be ready in an hour for me to drive to the store and pick up. Walmart will even ship them to your door for that price. For the amount of pictures I print, this is MUCH cheaper than owning and maintaining a color printer. For reference, I am going on my third year of owning my laser black and white printer and have only replaced the cartridge once and for less cost than one set of refills for the color inkjet.
Thanks, that makes much more sense to me.

Do you mind sharing the Canon model and if you compared it to a Brother model or other?

Thank you.

_FTC
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Re: Should I buy a color printer or black and white for home use?

Post by jfn111 » Mon Oct 05, 2015 1:31 pm

I have both a Brother laser jet printer and an Epson WorkForce color printer/fax/scanner combo. I do almost all my printing on the laser jet put I do need the Epson to scan documents into PDF files.
If you don't need a fax or scanner go with the laser jet.

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Re: Should I buy a color printer or black and white for home use?

Post by Itabe » Mon Oct 05, 2015 1:36 pm

I have had good experiences with Brother monochrome laserjet printers and would recommend going with a black and white laserjet unless you have a specific need for color prints. You can find cheap toner online from other companies if you don't want to pony up for toner from Brother, and the toner lasts a long time.

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Re: Should I buy a color printer or black and white for home use?

Post by lthenderson » Mon Oct 05, 2015 1:41 pm

Fat-Tailed Contagion wrote:Do you mind sharing the Canon model and if you compared it to a Brother model or other?

Thank you.

_FTC
I have a Canon Imageclass MF4890dw which Amazon has listed for $450 right now. I didn't compare it with a Brother since I have always had Canon products and have had good luck with them. This one could be set up for wifi so I could print anywhere in my house from any device to it and could act as a copier, fax and scanner all in one.

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Re: Should I buy a color printer or black and white for home use?

Post by heartwood » Mon Oct 05, 2015 1:54 pm

Fat-Tailed Contagion wrote:Hi Bogleheads,

My Canon color printer is getting older and Canon will not support scanning drivers for WIndows 10.

Should I buy a black and white economical printer for home use and outsource color printing to Walgreens, Costco, etc.
or should I buy a new Canon color printer?

And what models of printers are most highly recommended for light home usage?

Thank you!

-FTC
You mention replacement of an older printer. You should consider whether the printer will do wifi or cloud printing. We almost bought this B&W Canon Laser http://www.amazon.com/dp/B008YD1V08/ref ... B008YD1V08

until we noticed it was ethernet only, a problem for us with several laptops, etc. I also see it's probably not W-10 compatible.

YMMV but for us B&W is just fine. We've got a Canon at one location and an Epson at another; both are 4 in 1s. Both were specials at either Amazon or Newegg for maybe $60 S&H included. But the ink refills are more than half of that since each has multiple cartridges.

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Re: Should I buy a color printer or black and white for home use?

Post by DSInvestor » Mon Oct 05, 2015 2:02 pm

heartwood wrote:We almost bought this B&W Canon Laser http://www.amazon.com/dp/B008YD1V08/ref ... B008YD1V08

until we noticed it was ethernet only, a problem for us with several laptops, etc. I also see it's probably not W-10 compatible.
Printers that are ethernet only will work with laptops as long as the printer is connected via ethernet to your router. Once the printer is connected to the router it is on the network, any device on the same network, wired or wireless, should be able to print to it. We have a brother HL-5250DN printer that is ethernet only and all our desktops, laptops, iPhone, iPads, iPod touch can print to it. Our router is in our computer room so this worked great for us.

A printer that has ethernet and WiFi capability would give you the flexibility to place the printer away from the router as long as the WiFi signal is good.
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Re: Should I buy a color printer or black and white for home use?

Post by granpa » Mon Oct 05, 2015 2:21 pm

Been refilling the Canon black ink cartridges. Buy ink by the pint or quart and it lasts a long time. (Also the refilled cartridges seem to last longer than the factory ones. Perhaps when refilling I put more ink in that original.)

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Re: Should I buy a color printer or black and white for home use?

Post by livesoft » Mon Oct 05, 2015 2:23 pm

My Canon printer has 5 ink cartridges: Big Black, and 4 smaller Black, Yellow, Magenta, and Cyan. I like to be able to print quality photos and calendars with photos, so color it is for me.
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Re: Should I buy a color printer or black and white for home use?

Post by likegarden » Mon Oct 05, 2015 2:33 pm

We had a color printer and finally got tired of needing to change expensive color cartridges often. Since most of our printing was black and white we bought an HP laser printer and like that setup.

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Re: Should I buy a color printer or black and white for home use?

Post by magicj » Mon Oct 05, 2015 2:44 pm

jfn111 wrote:I have both a Brother laser jet printer and an Epson WorkForce color printer/fax/scanner combo. I do almost all my printing on the laser jet put I do need the Epson to scan documents into PDF files.
If you don't need a fax or scanner go with the laser jet.
Bizarre..I have an Epson WorkForce combo for color and Brother for Black as well. It's mostly for my wife that prints out stuff for teaching, but having them both is a pretty efficient combo.

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Re: Should I buy a color printer or black and white for home use?

Post by telemark » Mon Oct 05, 2015 2:48 pm

Jack FFR1846 wrote:Buy color. If you don't want to use color, go into the setup and set the color to black or grayscale.
You will eventually run out of ink in the color cartridge, even though you don't think you are using it, and then the printer will refuse to print even in black until you buy another expensive color cartridge. Most inkjet printers will use a little ink from every cartridge on every print, to keep the heads from clogging.

I will never buy another inkjet printer.

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Re: Should I buy a color printer or black and white for home use?

Post by MDfive21 » Mon Oct 05, 2015 2:53 pm

tigermilk wrote:We went with a Brother compact laser printer, black/white only. We don't do much, if any, color printing, and those small ink cartridges are 1) expensive and 2) short-lived. The laser printer has been great. 1500+ pages out of the original cartridge and we haven't even installed the "higher capacity" cartridge yet. The replacement cartridges are relatively cheap. So cheap, in fact, you could probably afford to keep a cheap color printer in the closet for when you really need one. But for us, it was great to not be a slave to the ink cartridge replacement scam.
echo this. we just bought DCP-L2540DW to replace our hp injet and couldn't be happier. if you need photos printed there are plenty of online services that you can use, or go to a drug store with a photo kiosk. it's worth the upfront cost to buy the laser printer and not worry about replacing cartridges.

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Re: Should I buy a color printer or black and white for home use?

Post by lthenderson » Mon Oct 05, 2015 2:55 pm

telemark wrote:
Jack FFR1846 wrote:Buy color. If you don't want to use color, go into the setup and set the color to black or grayscale.
You will eventually run out of ink in the color cartridge, even though you don't think you are using it, and then the printer will refuse to print even in black until you buy another expensive color cartridge. Most inkjet printers will use a little ink from every cartridge on every print, to keep the heads from clogging.

I will never buy another inkjet printer.
This was probably why I was always replacing them. I just thought they dried up and the printer wouldn't let me print until I replaced them.

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Re: Should I buy a color printer or black and white for home use?

Post by crg11 » Mon Oct 05, 2015 5:13 pm

Next time my inkjet dies, I probably won't buy a replacement. If I need color, I'll order prints locally or online.

Love my black and white laser. It just works.

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Re: Should I buy a color printer or black and white for home use?

Post by fidobogo » Mon Oct 05, 2015 5:20 pm

A cheap black&white laser is normally cheap to run, and gives excellent quality prints.

Before you buy a laser printer, check on Amazon that the toner cartridges are cheap and easily available.

You can also often pick up a nice business workgroup laser printer for free, as a company/school upgrades. Many HP LaserJets will run for decades. They'll tend to have Ethernet interfaces, rather than USB or WiFi.

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Re: Should I buy a color printer or black and white for home use?

Post by Toons » Mon Oct 05, 2015 5:26 pm

Needs are different for everyone.
Small cartridges came with printer when I bought it.
I never replaced the color. :happy
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Re: Should I buy a color printer or black and white for home use?

Post by lightheir » Mon Oct 05, 2015 5:29 pm

BW laser is the way to go unless you really anticipate printing in color more than once a week.

With a full toner cartridge (not the small ones that are usually shipped with the printer), you'll get over 2,000 pages of printing. I've gone 6 years on my laser cartridge and it still won't die! An inkjet cartridge would have dried out or suffered nozzle failure/clogging well before now.

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Re: Should I buy a color printer or black and white for home use?

Post by unclescrooge » Mon Oct 05, 2015 5:36 pm

Costco currently has a deal on the Brother all in one b/w laser printer wireless with duplex

http://www.costco.com/Brother-MFC-L2740 ... 59619.html

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Re: Should I buy a color printer or black and white for home use?

Post by Peter Foley » Mon Oct 05, 2015 5:37 pm

telemark wrote:
You will eventually run out of ink in the color cartridge, even though you don't think you are using it, and then the printer will refuse to print even in black until you buy another expensive color cartridge. Most inkjet printers will use a little ink from every cartridge on every print, to keep the heads from clogging.
So true with some color inkjets.

You absolutely need to check the specs and reviews. We bought a HP Officejet 6600 a few years ago. It is a printer, scanner, copier. We have paid far more for the color cartridges that we DID NOT USE than we did for the printer itself. The fact that it would not print black and white when one of the color cartridges was dried up was not known to us when we purchased the printer. I will never buy another HP product. Fool me once . . .

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Re: Should I buy a color printer or black and white for home use?

Post by dognose » Mon Oct 05, 2015 5:46 pm

Spend a couple of hundred dollars for a color printer. Go wild.

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Re: Should I buy a color printer or black and white for home use?

Post by Fat-Tailed Contagion » Mon Oct 05, 2015 5:57 pm

Nirav wrote:Costco currently has a deal on the Brother all in one b/w laser printer wireless with duplex

http://www.costco.com/Brother-MFC-L2740 ... 59619.html
Thanks, do you have this model?

How much is toner refill and how often does it need replacing with very light use?
Last edited by Fat-Tailed Contagion on Mon Oct 05, 2015 6:12 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: Should I buy a color printer or black and white for home use?

Post by Fat-Tailed Contagion » Mon Oct 05, 2015 5:58 pm

MDfive21 wrote:
tigermilk wrote:We went with a Brother compact laser printer, black/white only. We don't do much, if any, color printing, and those small ink cartridges are 1) expensive and 2) short-lived. The laser printer has been great. 1500+ pages out of the original cartridge and we haven't even installed the "higher capacity" cartridge yet. The replacement cartridges are relatively cheap. So cheap, in fact, you could probably afford to keep a cheap color printer in the closet for when you really need one. But for us, it was great to not be a slave to the ink cartridge replacement scam.
echo this. we just bought DCP-L2540DW to replace our hp injet and couldn't be happier. if you need photos printed there are plenty of online services that you can use, or go to a drug store with a photo kiosk. it's worth the upfront cost to buy the laser printer and not worry about replacing cartridges.
What are your toner costs like for this machine?
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Re: Should I buy a color printer or black and white for home use?

Post by Fat-Tailed Contagion » Mon Oct 05, 2015 6:03 pm

Went to local Staples store.

They recommended the HP OfficeJet Pro 6830 e-All-in-one (on sale for $99.99)

http://www.staples.com/HP-Officejet-Pro ... ct_1180386

HP has a new ink program ($2.99+ per month for refills)

https://instantink.hpconnected.com/us/en

What do guys think ?
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Re: Should I buy a color printer or black and white for home use?

Post by mindboggling » Mon Oct 05, 2015 6:12 pm

I have an HP Deskjet 3050A. I bought a color cartridge and a black cartridge. I can put in the color cartridge when I want to print color. Most of my printing is B&W.

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Re: Should I buy a color printer or black and white for home use?

Post by Fat-Tailed Contagion » Mon Oct 05, 2015 6:23 pm

lightheir wrote:BW laser is the way to go unless you really anticipate printing in color more than once a week.

With a full toner cartridge (not the small ones that are usually shipped with the printer), you'll get over 2,000 pages of printing. I've gone 6 years on my laser cartridge and it still won't die! An inkjet cartridge would have dried out or suffered nozzle failure/clogging well before now.
Thanks light!

What type of Laser printer do you have?
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Re: Should I buy a color printer or black and white for home use?

Post by Miriam2 » Mon Oct 05, 2015 6:31 pm


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Re: Should I buy a color printer or black and white for home use?

Post by virgingorda » Mon Oct 05, 2015 6:32 pm

lightheir wrote:BW laser is the way to go unless you really anticipate printing in color more than once a week.

With a full toner cartridge (not the small ones that are usually shipped with the printer), you'll get over 2,000 pages of printing. I've gone 6 years on my laser cartridge and it still won't die! An inkjet cartridge would have dried out or suffered nozzle failure/clogging well before now.
I agree! I thought I would miss color, but actually, it is rare that I need it and the laser printer is so much faster and so much less likely to run out of ink or malfunction. We have a Brother model laserprinter.

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Re: Should I buy a color printer or black and white for home use?

Post by theunknowntech » Mon Oct 05, 2015 6:33 pm

Fat-Tailed Contagion wrote:My Canon color printer is getting older and Canon will not support scanning drivers for WIndows 10.

Should I buy a black and white economical printer for home use and outsource color printing to Walgreens, Costco, etc.
or should I buy a new Canon color printer?

And what models of printers are most highly recommended for light home usage?
Canon is TERRIBLE for obsoleting printers. I have a really great large-format Canon printer that I use, and I have a lot invested in it, it still works well, and I'm stuck at Win7 for one of my graphics boxes because of it. Good luck finding drivers for the next OS if you stick with that company. Never again. They also suck at OS X support.

For light home-use all-in-ones, I've had good luck with the better Epsons.

The old pre-Fiorina battleship HP units are really cheap, can be made to work well, and you can still get parts for them.

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Re: Should I buy a color printer or black and white for home use?

Post by ustf » Mon Oct 05, 2015 6:41 pm

We have done the B&W printer for home and Kinkos for the occasional color prints for the past several years and it has worked very well.
Kinkos expenses haven't been more than about $7-$10 per year when you keep color prints down to the absolutely needed.
But it totally depends on how much you need that color printout.

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Re: Should I buy a color printer or black and white for home use?

Post by lightheir » Mon Oct 05, 2015 6:42 pm

Fat-Tailed Contagion wrote:
lightheir wrote:BW laser is the way to go unless you really anticipate printing in color more than once a week.

With a full toner cartridge (not the small ones that are usually shipped with the printer), you'll get over 2,000 pages of printing. I've gone 6 years on my laser cartridge and it still won't die! An inkjet cartridge would have dried out or suffered nozzle failure/clogging well before now.
Thanks light!

What type of Laser printer do you have?
I have a now-antiquated 8-year old Brother laser printer. I believe it was the predecessor to this one:

http://www.amazon.com/Brother-HL-L2340D ... B00LZS5EEI

Remember that the original toner cartridge that comes with it is a 'mini' cartridge, that is like 1/10th (or less) the capacity of the real 'high-yield toner cartridge which you can order for about $50 on the same page.

I used to run inkjets before the laser, but even aside from the annoyingly short lifespan of even the larger capacity ink cartridges, I ran into too many annoying nozzle jams after 2 years. My laser printer has been mechanically flawless in function, can't say anything bad about it!

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Re: Should I buy a color printer or black and white for home use?

Post by tim1999 » Mon Oct 05, 2015 6:44 pm

I have a cheapo HP color printer/scanner/copier but only have a black cartridge in it. Black is fine for 99% of my printing, if I need something in color like a photo, I want it at a better quality than this printer can output anyway. The color cartridges ($35+ each) would dry up after a year or so from low usage.

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Re: Should I buy a color printer or black and white for home use?

Post by random_walker_77 » Tue Oct 06, 2015 8:09 am

The problem with inkjets and light use is that the ink dries out before you get a chance to use it. Laser printers don't have that problem, but color laser's don't have photo-level quality.

Look into getting a networked laser printer. Here's one that's $25, shipped.

http://slickdeals.net/f/8145586-pantum- ... newegg-com

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Re: Should I buy a color printer or black and white for home use?

Post by Fat-Tailed Contagion » Tue Oct 06, 2015 8:11 am

random_walker_77 wrote:The problem with inkjets and light use is that the ink dries out before you get a chance to use it. Laser printers don't have that problem, but color laser's don't have photo-level quality.

Look into getting a networked laser printer. Here's one that's $25, shipped.

http://slickdeals.net/f/8145586-pantum- ... newegg-com
Wow, thanks random walker.

What's the replacement toner cost like for this inexpensive laserjet printer?
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Re: Should I buy a color printer or black and white for home use?

Post by takeshi » Tue Oct 06, 2015 9:01 am

Fat-Tailed Contagion wrote:This seems to be very apparent to me but for some reason people seem to continue to buy them?
People tend look at the sticker price and don't consider the long term operating costs. Some inkjets are cheap but ink is not. People also think that they need to print in color and therefore need a color printer when in many cases they don't do much color printing. As others have stated, you need to consider your specific requirements and the associated costs of the different options.

The printer I have is a black and white laser. It had a much higher sticker price (not what I actually paid) but per page costs are very low. There are no expensive inkheads or tanks that dry out/clog. Some inkjets do have functionality to help mitigate that but the process ends up using even more ink. My printer can be repaired unlike most inkjets which are considered disposable items. I've been using this printer for nearly a decade so far. I think I've replaced the cartridge once. I wouldn't just recommend what I have or its current equivalent but I would recommend considering whether or not a B&W laser makes sense for you.

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Fat-Tailed Contagion
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Re: Should I buy a color printer or black and white for home use?

Post by Fat-Tailed Contagion » Tue Oct 06, 2015 9:13 am

takeshi wrote:
Fat-Tailed Contagion wrote:This seems to be very apparent to me but for some reason people seem to continue to buy them?
People tend look at the sticker price and don't consider the long term operating costs. Some inkjets are cheap but ink is not. People also think that they need to print in color and therefore need a color printer when in many cases they don't do much color printing. As others have stated, you need to consider your specific requirements and the associated costs of the different options.

The printer I have is a black and white laser. It had a much higher sticker price (not what I actually paid) but per page costs are very low. There are no expensive inkheads or tanks that dry out/clog. Some inkjets do have functionality to help mitigate that but the process ends up using even more ink. My printer can be repaired unlike most inkjets which are considered disposable items. I've been using this printer for nearly a decade so far. I think I've replaced the cartridge once. I wouldn't just recommend what I have or its current equivalent but I would recommend considering whether or not a B&W laser makes sense for you.
What do you guys think of this new HP ink program?

https://instantink.hpconnected.com/us/en
“The intelligent investor is a realist who sells to optimists and buys from pessimists.” | ― Benjamin Graham, The Intelligent Investor

coop
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Re: Should I buy a color printer or black and white for home use?

Post by coop » Tue Oct 06, 2015 9:16 am

About 3-4 years ago I ditched my color printer due to the high cost of ink tanks. I bought a Brother HL2270-DW laser jet for around $100 and I could not be more pleased. The original toner cartridge lasted well over 1,000 pages. I'm now on my first replacement toner cartridge, which was less than 20 bucks, if I recall. It's an easy printer to set up and operate, and is virtually maintenance-free. I don't miss having color capabilities--if I want color photos I go to any number of commercial photo printers, who can do them cheaper than I could at home.

Note that this model printer is not iPad-compatible. If I were buying a new printer now, I would pick up the Brother HL-L2340DW, which is about $100, and is compatible with an iPad. It's very similar to the model I have now.

ustf
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Re: Should I buy a color printer or black and white for light home use?

Post by ustf » Tue Oct 06, 2015 11:31 am

Aside from the cost-savings, I have to agree with the relatively hassle free operation of a laser printer. Purchased a Brother BW laser printer about 8 years ago and the only thing I have done is replace the toner cartridge twice for about $40 each. No messing with jammed inkjet cartridges no matter how infrequent the use.

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Re: Should I buy a color printer or black and white for light home use?

Post by drawpoker » Tue Oct 06, 2015 1:12 pm

B&W laser here also. A HP Laser6L model purchased circa 1997. HP brand Toner cartridge came with 10,000 copy estimate use, and it did just that. Brand-name replacement cartridges are pricey ($160) but I bought generic last time (around $75) and it is doing just fine. Have no idea if they still make those with the 10,000 copies technology (?) Only thing I have to watch out for with such ancient model is not to overload the memory cable by sending a very large file to print order. At times, I have to unplug, then re-plug to allow the cable to "clear memory" before proceeding. No big deal, I can put up with that.

Print quality is important to me, especially when doing business letters or printing out files like spreadsheets and emails. Inkjet to me always looked blurry. Maybe the black has improved since then ? Over the years I would get a freebie inkjet combo printer/scanner/fax from Dell and discovered just what everyone did - constantly having to re-order cartridges because of either heavy use, or the opposite, light use causing the ink to dry up and become un-usable. Either way, it was an endless money drain.

Last time I upgraded (to Windows7) the color inkjet printer died of unnatural causes - Dell did not make any drivers to support Windows 7 (Dell and Canon are both good at that racket, making people buy new printers). My I.T. guy even searched generics for a driver, no luck. Oddly, the scanner function still works, so on rare occasions when I need to make a copy of something that isn't one of my own files I can scan document, save it to disc, then print it out using my 1997 Work Horse. :D

MDfive21
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Re: Should I buy a color printer or black and white for home use?

Post by MDfive21 » Tue Oct 06, 2015 2:30 pm

Fat-Tailed Contagion wrote:
MDfive21 wrote:
tigermilk wrote:We went with a Brother compact laser printer, black/white only. We don't do much, if any, color printing, and those small ink cartridges are 1) expensive and 2) short-lived. The laser printer has been great. 1500+ pages out of the original cartridge and we haven't even installed the "higher capacity" cartridge yet. The replacement cartridges are relatively cheap. So cheap, in fact, you could probably afford to keep a cheap color printer in the closet for when you really need one. But for us, it was great to not be a slave to the ink cartridge replacement scam.
echo this. we just bought DCP-L2540DW to replace our hp injet and couldn't be happier. if you need photos printed there are plenty of online services that you can use, or go to a drug store with a photo kiosk. it's worth the upfront cost to buy the laser printer and not worry about replacing cartridges.
What are your toner costs like for this machine?
just bought it so it's only been in use for a week. bought on amazon for $130. it comes with a starter toner rated for 700ish pages. i bought the high yield toner rated for 2600 pages for $50.

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Re: Should I buy a color printer or black and white for home use?

Post by lthenderson » Tue Oct 06, 2015 3:27 pm

Fat-Tailed Contagion wrote:What do you guys think of this new HP ink program?

https://instantink.hpconnected.com/us/en
It sounded like a good deal but when I dug into it, they base it off of the number of pages you print per month and not how much ink you use. If you use more pages than you pay for, they sock it to you. If you use less, you can roll over some pages but not more than the originally agreed on per month allotment.

Assuming you could get by with the cheapest plan of less than 50 pages a month for $3, you would pay $36 per year for ink whether you needed too or not. That is 600 pages per year. If you assume a laser cartridge will last you 10,000 pages which many do, by the time you print out that many pages it will have cost you almost $600 in ink. I've never heard of a laser cartridge costing you anywhere near that amount. HP is making money even if their monthly price seems cheap to you.

rs899
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Re: Should I buy a color printer or black and white for light home use?

Post by rs899 » Tue Oct 06, 2015 3:40 pm

If all you do is crank out copy, a B&W laser printer is for you.

For color printing at a reasonable cost the new Brother all-in-ones work just dandy and generic refills are less than $2 each on ebay. As long as you waste a print now and then to keep the cheap ink flowing, they can't be beat.

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