#550 – Switched

The first time my printer ran out of ink I was shocked to discover that a new set of cartridges cost nearly as much as the printer did. It seems as though if you always watch for a super printer sale you could save money by just purchasing a brand new printer every few months. Now I just purchase the ink refill kits and the cost doesn’t seem so ridiculous any more.


36 thoughts on “#550 – Switched”

  1. PsychoDuck says:

    Damned ink. Always runs out way too fast. Those freaking octopus carcasses are really starting to pile up…

    The Duck Has Spoken.

  2. Rynon says:

    That’s what I do, almost monthly, purchase a new printer to use the ink cartridge that comes with it. As a side bonus, the old printer can be sold (for almost full price) on e-bay, so keep the box it came in.

  3. trevor says:

    I wonder what biff would do if he found an obstacle course…

  4. Dan says:

    Instant classic. It strikes an extra chord with me because I hate both my printer and squids in general.

  5. Chuck says:

    I hate printers that won’t print in black and white if you don’t have a usable color cartridge.

  6. Chris says:

    I know color laser printers cost a ton more but in the end they are way less hassle.

  7. Torg says:

    This wouldn’t happen to be the same squid Biff uses in his noodles, would it?

  8. Heinrich says:

    @torg, yes it would. biff recycles. he makes noodles whenever he runs out of ink. 🙂

  9. DracoZereul says:

    That’s actually the idea with printers, if I remember. They’re either cheap or complimentary; I got mine when I bought my new computer. However, you’ll end up spending more money on ink than you ever would the printer.

  10. GuyD says:

    They call this “lock-in system”. It’s the same with razors. A set including a handle and a blade is very cheap but the replacement blades aren’t.

    Refueling printer cartridges is a smart way to save money, but the manufactors works at systems to make this impossible. One method is to place a chip at the cartridge. When the ink is used, the printer writes empty at the chip. And of course the printer is programed to not work with an empty declared cartrigde – even when it is refueled!

  11. SGrahambo says:

    There are some companies (I forget which) that but an expiration date on their cartridges. so even if you refill them (or not even use all of the original ink I hear), the printer won’t even use them after a certain date.

  12. That’s why we use an old HP LaserJet 4M here. It’s black-and-white, but a $160 cartridge (as low as $80 refurbished) will last for roughly 8800 pages.

    Modern “cheap” lasers definitely have more expensive per-page costs for toner refills, but they’re still a lot cheaper than inkjets.

    If it weren’t for the difficulty finding a Linux-compatible color laser that doesn’t print tracking dots, that’s what we’d be using here. (The FBI asked printer manufacturers to have color lasers print tiny yellow dots that encode the printer’s unique serial number, the date and time of printing, and possibly other things)

    See this EFF project for details: http://www.seeingyellow.com/

  13. MaskedMan says:

    I love my old 24-pin dot-matrix printer. For text (mostly all I print), it was cheap, and my stash of spare ribbon will last until the end of he next decade.

  14. Maiximum says:

    I just bought a really expensive HP and the ink is uber cheap compared to the cheaper printers (Lexmark…)

  15. Chris says:

    ill stick wiv my old epson stylus photo 750, can get 3 black and 3 color cartridges for £30 😀 havnt found a prenter with cheaper cartridges yet 😀

  16. Jackson says:

    Hey, the mop he’s using looks like a squid!



  17. Misunderstandings of Office Supplies Week?

  18. Gato says:

    I got my cartriges refilled and now the printer won’t recognize them.

  19. taber_man says:

    Holy crap, I laughed SO hard when I read this!

    Keep up the great work, Chris!

  20. taber_man says:

    @ Gato: do you have an HP? I wouldn’t be surprised if they made it so you have to purchase new ones rather than refill them.

    HP is a terrible company nowadays.

  21. MaskedMan says:

    Back in the day, when I was Sysadmin for a Recruiting District, Natinonal HQ bought nothing but HP fax machines. Recruiters fax a LOT – it’s the nature of the job. Fully HALF my IT budget went to replacement ink, even when I *could* find reliable re-filled cartridges, which was hit-or-miss, at best.

    Try explaining that to a technophobe XO, though…

  22. random person says:

    – Is it just me, or is this the 4th or 5th Biff comic with a squid or octapus?

    – How does he get colored ink? All squid ink is black.

  23. Micah says:

    @random person: feed food coloring to different squids and repeat what he does in the comic, of course.

  24. Cpt.Ziggy says:

    that looks alot like my printer,mabye I should try that.Thanks Biff!!

  25. FSOneblin says:

    @ Dan Squids don’t make ink. Octopuses do. Sorry, just had to correct you there. But if Biff had a pet squid, it might squirt ink. Of course, Biff probley would have a pet Dr. Zoidbirg.

    Don’t Panic: FSOneblin

  26. Chris says:

    Squids have ink just like the octopus. Squid ink pasta is a popular dish made with it.

  27. Draq says:

    Printers tend to come with sample cartridges that are only about 1/3 full. Doesn’t stop ink from being ridiculously overpriced (I think it’s literally worth its weight in gold), but it’s really not cheaper to buy a whole new printer instead of a refill.

  28. Gato says:

    @taber_man- No, it’s a Lexmark, but it is 4 years old already.

  29. no name says:

    uh. “… Biff has to struggle… ” week?

  30. HayleyJ says:

    I hate printers, and yes chuck, mine does that all the time too it won’t print if I don’t have color even if I just want black and white~!!

  31. That Guy says:

    I used to work for HP, and they are correct. The cartridges that the machines ship with are not a FULL size cartridge, they are minis.
    Oh, and just as a side note the ink is only designed to last a couple years so if you print off family photos don’t expect them to stay pretty for much longer than, that even in an album.

  32. Radical Edward says:

    I’m tired of running out of ink when needed. My color cartridge was on the edge of empty.

    Still, I don’t want to be at the business end of a squid.

  33. YukiSnowflake says:

    They are HORRIBLE!
    I can’t print out ANYTHING because theres no magenta.
    although, im not sure how there came to be no magenta…
    …maybe my sister ran out of ink and used my printer…

    heh, anyway, i once had invisible ink pens.
    if you draw with the colour and don’t use the magic white pen, after a month or so, they change anyway…
    …and, my friend has a pen that has a magic marker type thing, but its a proper pen, and the white pen removes the writing.
    Which is stupid, because you can re-write over what you just erased…

  34. YukiSnowflake says:

    Oh, I just remembered!
    My mother has a friend who never buys ink cartridges, she buys the printers themselves…
    she has around 14 now |:D (<– monobrow smilie)

  35. -2! says:

    The printers do not come with full things of ink. Thats why the ink is relatively expensive compared to the printer.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *