Since the discovery of laser printers in the 1970s, many businesses, individuals and institutions have switched to them because they are faster and the print quality better to that from inkjets. Although it is true that printing mainly relies on the printer, the toner cartridge that you use will also significantly affect the quality of the print. So, how do you select a good toner cartridge to use in your laser printer?
While the process might sound easy, many people find it challenging because of the large number of vendors and many toner cartridges. To be sure of buying the right toner cartridge and enjoying high-quality prints, here are some useful tips to guide you.
Decide whether You Need a Color or Black Toner Cartridge
The first, and perhaps the most crucial step, is determining whether you want to purchase a color or black toner cartridge. So, do you regularly make colored or black prints? If you mainly deal with black printing, a black toner cartridge will be your better option, and you will love to hear that it is also cheaper compared to the color toner cartridge.
However, in many businesses, institutions, and individuals such as students, there are specific tasks that require color printing. For example, even if most of the texts and diagrams in organizations’ documents are done in black, the logo and letterhead might require color printing. For students, most presentations and images require color printing.
It is also important to point out that although color toner cartridges are more expensive compared to the black toner cartridges, they also include the black color. So, you might not need to buy a black toner cartridge when you order a colored one. This is one of the reasons why the high price of color toner cartridges is considered reasonable.
Check the Size of the Toner Cartridge
When designing toner cartridges, they are sized depending on the model of the printer they are made to work in. Therefore, it is very important to ensure that you only buy the right cartridge model. You can know the right model of your toner cartridge by checking the sticker that is located on the side of its body. It the sticker is not legible or is missing, the printer manual will have the information.
If you are still unsure of the toner cartridge model and number to select, you can talk to the manufacturer, and he will be more than happy to give all the details that you might need. You will find this number very important, especially if you are looking for compatible toner cartridges.
Decide to Buy Compatible, OEM, or Remanufactured Toner Cartridges
Today, unlike at any other time in history, we have a lot of choices when it comes to laser toner cartridges. The main types of laser toner cartridges in the market are compatible, OEM, and remanufactured models. Which one should you order?
- Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM)
These are the toner cartridges designed by the printer manufacturers, and are the most suitable when looking forward to making high-quality prints. Furthermore, they are easy to install and deliver higher page yields compared to the compatible and remanufactured models. However, the toner cartridges are sold at a high price.
- Compatible / Generic Toner Cartridges
Unlike OEM cartridges that are designed by the same printer manufacturer, the compatible models are made by third-party companies. They are designed from new parts but follow the same technology used to make OEM toner cartridges. The main difference between OEM and compatible toner cartridge models is the patents.
The compatible toner cartridges are priced slightly lower than OEM models. However, mrdepot.ca suggests that you can only be sure of enjoying high-quality prints by purchasing compatible toner cartridges from trustworthy manufacturers.
- Remanufactured Toner Cartridges
When toner cartridges are used up, some of them are recycled to make remanufactured cartridges. The process involves collecting the toner cartridges, inspecting them to ensure they are okay, reconstructing the damaged sections, and refilling them for reuse.
One of the advantages of using remanufactured toner cartridges is that you reduce the negative impact on the environment because they do not end-up in the refills.
If you opt to buy remanufactured toner cartridges, it is important to appreciate that the level of quality you can get is significantly lower than that of the OEM and compatible models. Therefore, it is advisable to use these cartridges in areas where you do need very high quality. For example, you might consider using a remanufactured toner cartridge to print drafts and an OEM cartridge for the final copy.
Go for the Toner Cartridges with Warranties
Like other electronic accessories, toner cartridges are designed by different companies, and you can tell the brand’s commitment to quality by checking at the warranty. A good manufacturer who focuses on quality will not hesitate to offer a long warranty because the risk of toner cartridge failure is very low. So, look for the toner cartridges that come with long and binding warranties. For example, most OEM toner cartridges come with a one year warranty while remanufactured models have a 30-90 days guarantee.
Do You Buy Individual or Bulk Toner Cartridges?
The last thing you need to decide when buying toner cartridges is whether to purchase a single toner cartridge or in bulk. While it is true that buying in bulk makes economic sense, you should only consider it if you do a lot of printing. Otherwise, if you only print occasionally, consider buying a few toner cartridges.
If you opt to buy in bulk, make sure also to store them properly. This means keeping the toner cartridges in an area that is not hot, with humidity not exceeding 80% or going below 20%, and away from direct sunlight.
To get the best quality prints for your personal projects, business, or institutions using a toner cartridge, you must have the right toner cartridge. Use the above five tips to identify the best toner cartridge and enjoy high-value for money.