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.


Looking for a new printer?

May 28, 2010

If you are looking to buy a new printer or replace on you have, here is one to look at.

Canon Pixma MX860

I have found it for around 130 to 150 dollars.  It does everything you want, wifi, duplexing, wired, duplex scanning, photos, individual cartridges, fax, copy, and all the bells and whistles.

We also have the replacement cartridges available now.


Holiday Season Photos – How to get the most for your money

November 11, 2009

With the holiday season upon us now, this is one of the prime times to get the printer working into overdrive.  You have holiday letters, holiday photos, family photos, pet photos, etc . . . so the question becomes, how do you spend less money on your Holiday Printing?

  1. Preview, Preview, Preview – Sounds simple, but more often than not, people do not preview what they print prior to printing.  Reading over the letter or looking closely at the photo prior to printing can help avoid spelling your kid’s new pet’s name wrong.  With photos, make sure that you want it printed like it is.
  2. Test print first – Before you print the final copy of anything, print off one or two copies on regular paper on the lowest quality and then inspect them.  Does it fit right, do the colors look okay (remember draft mode of quick mode will look faded), do I want to make any changes?  These are the questions to as prior to printing the final copy.
  3. Select the right paper – Believe it or not if you tell your printer through it’s properties that you are using glossy photo paper instead of matte or copy paper, it makes a difference.  Try to chose the paper that is closest to what you have.  Also, make sure you buy the right paper, Laser Paper does not absorb the ink correctly, unlike Inkjet Paper does (for photos).
  4. Make sure you have enough ink – Holiday Season is one time I stress to our customers to have one extra set on hand for their printer.  Finding out at 10 o’clock at night that you do not have enough ink for the family photo that is for the Christmas party tomorrow is never a good thing.
  5. Print in spurts – Do you have 100 letters you send out or 100 photos you include with the letters?  Do not print them all at once.  Printing in spurts of 10-25 can save you a lot of hassle.  If you run out of ink and your printer still keeps printing (Certain HP and Lexmarks), it is much easier to reprint 5 pages instead of 50.  Also, the printers need to cool down.  Inkjet printers are not designed for heavy use, so leaving them set for 5-10 minutes between prints is good.
  6. Take your photos somewhere to print them off – During the holiday season certain places have specials on printing photos for you.  The magic size is 5 x 7, most of the time prints smaller than that size are cheaper to have someone print for you.  While prints larger than that are cheaper to do at home.  But this depends on your printer as well.  Certain printers just cost more than others to run.

I hope this helps you with your printing needs and if you need any ink for those printers, look us up at www.oinkinkstore.com