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

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Circuit City, I bid you adios

January 18, 2009

Well the word came out on Friday.  Circuit City is closing the remaining USA stores by the end of March.  And now you are seeing blogs and articles regarding buying stuff from a company going out of business.  Is it really a deal, what happens if it breaks, what about my old extended warranty?  I am not going to get into that, look on MSN and Yahoo for that information.

I want to talk about their printers.  A while ago, I made a post regarding CC and Lexmark printers.  That their exclusive printers they sold from Lexmark were really Europe models, which means you needed to get your cartridges from CC, or Lexmark UK (and on some, Lexmark.com).  Now with them going out of business, what does that mean for the supplies.  (see my article here)

On some cartridges, O-ink does have the replacements, like the Lexmark #2 and #3.  Others like the #4 and #5 are available on Lexmark’s website.  Most of the people who did get them from Circuit City just might have to get a new printer.  I hope Lexmark smartens up a little and will offer the CC only cartridges on there website.

Even though I did not like this marketing practice that they did, I do feel sorry for the over 30,000 employees who will be out of a job by March 31st.


New Lower Prices on Canon CLI-8’s and PGI-5

August 11, 2008

Starting today you can now get the Canon CLI-8’s and PGI-5 cartridges cheaper.

We have dropped our prices by about a $1 each on those cartridges.  This makes us one of the lowest price seller anywhere with the best guarantee around.

If you need those cartridges, now is your chance.  Click here for prices and information.


First Sony installs spyware, now Lexmark does.

July 15, 2008

In one of our industry forums that I visit, there has been quite a buzz with the Lexmark Return Program cartridges, and how much a pain they are.  Recently one of the members posted a message about a file called lx_cats and that deleting it helped his customer.  So I did some digging and found a great article at http://www.theinternetpatrol.com.

Do you have a Lexmark printer? If so, you could also have Lexmark’s Lx_CATS spyware — which Lexmark euphemistically calls “tracking software” for “reporting printer and cartridge use back to the company for survey purposes” — living on your computer, without your knowledge.

A user calling himself “Commander” has posted to the printer-focused Usenet group, comp.periphs.printers, that:

“Just the other day I purchased a new Lexmark X5250 All-in-one printer. I installed it as per the instructions and monitored the install with Norton as I do with all new software.

On reviewing the install log I noticed a program called Lx_CATS had been placed in the c:program files directory. I investigated and found a data log and an initialisation file called Lx_CATS.ini. Further investigation of this file showed that Lexmark had, without my permission, loaded a Trojan backdoor on to my computer. Furthermore, it is embedded into the system registry, so average users would likely never know it was there and active.”

Commander noticed that the spyware was programmed to surreptitiously report back to a URL, http://www.lxkcc1.com, every thirty days. lxkcc1.com is registered to Lexmark International, Inc..

When Commander called Lexmark to demand an explanation, the company first denied that they had installed any spyware at all. Ultimately the person with whom he spoke conceded that Lexmark installs “tracking software” on their users’ computers “to report back on printer and cartridge use for survey purposes.” While the Lexmark representative avowed that they did not transmit any personal information, they also admitted that the program does transmit the printer’s serial number, which of course is registered to the user. No personal information my foot!

Rumours of the installation of spyware along with their printer software have swirled around Lexmark for several years, and posts to Usenet complaining of Lexmark spyware date from as early as 2001. Some users complain of their computer trying to connect to the Internet every time they print a document; others worry that the program is reporting not only their cartridge usage, but whether they are using non-Lexmark cartridges, or even refilling their own cartridges, thus possibly setting the stage for a denial of warranty service.

According to “Commander”, the offending files include a program file called lx_CATS, and a related .ini file, lx_CATS.ini, as well as 2 DLL files in the c:program fileslexmark500 folder.

In order to remove Lexmark’s spyware from your system, delete the file (probably in your c:program directory) called “lx_cats.exe”, and also search for and remove a file called “lx_cats.ini” (and, for that matter, any other file including the term “lx_cats”).”

It seems that Lexmark is taking Sony’s playbook for a ride.  If you delete these files and folders, do not worry, your printer will still work, however your ink level might remain at low, even when you exchange your cartridge.  We are recommending all of our customers to delete these files ASAP.

For the full article visit here