Cost Per Page and Free Cartridges? Not really.

September 2, 2011

The latest trend for offices is to sign up for MPS or Manage Print Services.  The claim is that MPS will lower the cost for printing for that office, because it is based on a cost per page basis instead of a cost by cartridge basis.  Usually, the service runs like this.  Instead of paying for a cartridge, you are paying on the number of pages printed.  It usually also includes a service agreement, monitoring service, and another fee.

Here is an example:

Printer 1 – Black only, uses the HP Q2612A cartridge.  Monthly service fee $5, monitoring fee $9 (this includes making sure you have the cartridge and noticing any problems your printer has), misc fee (they usually have a name for this, but I don’t) $6.  Per page you pay (using an OEM Cartridge) 5.5 cents for example. But the Cartridge is free.

Now the HP 12A cartridge is rated for 2000 pages at 5% coverage, however, real life, no one prints at 5% coverage.  It is closer to 7-10% average.

Now let’s say it takes the customer 3 months to use that cartridge, and they printed 1200 pages during those 3 months.  So they have $15 in service, $27 in monitoring, $18 in the misc, and $66 in pages, for a grand total of $126 or $42 a month.  But remember the cartridge is free.

HP currently sells the HP 12A for $77.99.  So the question is that cartridge free?  Not really.  Any charge for monitoring is stupid in my mind.  They charge you to let you know your out of a cartridge and get one ordered, shouldn’t you already know that?  And they let you know if there is a problem with your printer, once again, shouldn’t you know if there is a problem.  You still pay for the cartridge, but you are paying for it in the pages you print as well as the fees that are added on.

While some MPS’s are good for businesses, the key is to watch for the nickle and dimes.  I prefer our method of an inventory control program partnered with a service agreement.


Cartridge prices going up again?

March 9, 2011

Oil, gas, and food prices in the last few months have been going up and for the short term at least the question remains, how high will they go?  The one thing rising prices have in common is the rising price in oil.  With rising oil you have rising transportation and manufacturing prices.  The question remains how will this effect cartridge prices for printers?

If you look back at the last time oil and gas shot up like they are now, that summer, prices for cartridge raised on average about 15-20%.  The prices that people see today when they buy an HP, Lexmark, or other brand name cartridge are the prices that were an effect of oil prices hitting $140 a barrel.  People may ask why, but here are the factors to remember.

  1. Cartridges are made out of plastic, plastic is made out of oil.  And while the brand name companies may lock in their component prices for a while, dramatic increases like we saw can not be avoided.
  2. Transportation cost rose up.  Since there are very few cartridges made in North America (there are a few plants in Mexico), all the cartridges must be transported in from Asia.
  3. Brand name cartridge companies like HP, Lexmark, Canon and the others are greedy.  Remember that the price of oil did drop down, and for a few years was below $70 a barrel, but prices for OEM cartridges did not go down.

So the question remains, what will happen with cartridge prices this year with oil going up?  I would be almost willing to bet that if oil stays at current prices or even increases to say $120 a barrel, OEM cartridge prices could see an increase in prices of an average of 10-15%.  This means that a HP 56 cartridge that cost $23.99 today could end up costing around $27-28 and an HP 42X toner cartridge could go from $249 up to $260-285.  I am sure we will find out by the end of June if the prices are going up or not.  To be honest I would be shocked if prices did not go up.

Now as for myself and for O-ink, we almost hope for a price increase from the OEM’s.  If they raise prices by say a flat $2-4 per inkjet and $10-25 per laser cartridge, that would mean that our prices would be $1.50-3.50 cheaper for inkjets in addition to the savings we already offer.  For lasers it would be around $9-$22 cheaper.  The reason I am not saying the 2-4 range or 10-25 range is I would expect our shipping cost to go up.

Please keep in mind, I hate high gas prices.  However, the last time this happened, I actually guessed about 5% lower on the price increases that happened.  I do hope I am wrong.


New Brother TN-315 Laser Cartridges – Now Available

October 26, 2010

O-ink is proud to announce the TN-315 line of Brother Color Laser Cartridges.  These cartridges are designed to work in the HL-4150, 4570, MFC-9460, 9560, 9970 printers from Brother.

Black is priced at 109.99 and the colors are priced at 117.99 each.  Ground shipping is free.  To place an order call 800-989-6465 or visit us here.


Kodak Printers and Printhead Problems

October 2, 2010

When Kodak came out with their printers 2-3 years ago, the major talk was about the cost of ink.  Granted, Kodak does have some low priced ink at around $27 for both a black and color.  So the question becomes, where did they scrimp on the cost to make money.  In talking to our customers, we think we have found it.

In reference to the blog post about kodak printers that  I made, most review placed don’t think the highest of them.  However, this is becoming more evident in talking to our customers who have them or have had them.  I would say about 40% of our customers experience a problem in the first 6 months of owning it.  Granted Kodak, usually makes it right, but still.  And the problem always seems to revolve around the printheads.  I have even had one customer who had his printer replaced 3 times, and the 4th time, they refused saying he broke it and that voided the warranty.  Of course this is a non-replaceable part, so if it breaks, you need Kodak to fix it.

I would think this has more to do with the ink that they use instead of the actual head.  If I remember right, they use pigment colors and black, which while good for colors and life, the ink can thicken and plug up easily (look up Epson R800 and R1800 printers on cnet.com, they talk about them their.)

Need to get a printer, look at a Brother model or a Canon model, those would be a safe bet.


Fire Sale on Replacement Brother LC41 Cartridges

September 17, 2010

Due to an overstock of Replacement Brother LC41 cartridges, we are setting the prices on fire to move them out.

These are high quality remanufactured Brother LC41 cartridges, all colors. 1 year satisfaction guarantee (see website for all details).

Get all four colors for $16.00. That is a savings of over $9.
Black for $5.99
Each Color for $4.25

Sale ends Oct. 31st.  No Coupon Required


New to O-ink – MICR Laser Cartridges

August 26, 2010

While we are still adding them to our website, we at O-ink are happy to announce that we are offering MICR laser cartridges.

We are offering both the Troy branded cartridges as well as some replacement MICR Cartridges.

Here is the Link

Why use Troy branded MICR Cartridges?

As a Gold Solutions Partner to HP, TROY is the only company in the world authorized by HP to enhance HP printers and consumables for use in secure printing workflows. Only TROY MICR and Security printers and HP compatible MICR Toner cartridges are certified by HP for quality and reliability.  TROY is the largest independent manufacturer of MICR toner in North America and has been a leading provider of MICR (magnetic ink character recognition) check printing solutions since 1971.  TROY specialty toners are uniquely formulated for peak performance. TROY’s meticulous quality control and continuous testing processes ensure unparalleled toner adhesion and image quality. TROY Develops and manufactures and complete line of Desktop MICR toner and HP-based security toners for both MICR and Standard printing applications (patented).

So if you are printing checks in house and use MICR Cartridges, you can now get them at O-ink.


New Products Available

April 1, 2010

We at O-ink are happy to announce that we have added 11 new replacement cartridges to growing list of inkjet and laser cartridges we offer.

  1. HP 60 Series Replacements: We now have both the standard and XL versions of both the cartridges available.
  2. HP 901 Series Replacements: We now have both the standard and XL black cartridges along with the color cartridge available.
  3. Brother LC61 Replacements:  All four colors are available.  These are not generic/third party cartridges, these are empty Brother cartridges that have been cleaned, inspected, and filled.

All of our cartridges are filled the the full weight of the OEM’s cartridges and carry our one year guarantee.  If you have any questions or need to place an order just look us up at www.oinkinkstore.com