The ubiquity of computers and their accessories has necessitated the production of different printer cartridges, such as inkjet and toner cartridges.
Ink cartridges: Ink cartridges contain ink which is dispersed through holes in the cartridge. Cartridges can have one or more ink wells and pressure is affected by (an electronic chip in) the printer to apply the ink on the paper. The ink can be oil or water-based.
Toner cartridges: Toner is a dust-like, carbon-based powder used in laser printers. The heat of the laser ray melts the particles of the toner and attaches them to the printing paper. It is static electricity that allows the toner to attach itself to the paper in particular patterns, creating texts and graphics. The smaller and more uniform the toner particles; the clearer is the resolution and color of the image.
- Ink and Toner Cartridges: Comparison You can recognize whether a printer uses an ink or toner cartridge from the quality, type and speed of print.
- Toner cartridges produce high-quality, crisp letters and decent images, whereas inkjet printers produce accurate, long-lasting images but not very clear text.
- A toner cartridge can print about 5,000 pages. Thus, they have a much longer printing life than inkjet cartridges.
- Toner cartridges print very fast.
- Inkjet printers are problematic. They start printing endless loops unmethodically. They sometimes show cartridge error messages for no reason. Toner printers use paper drawers which reduce user intervention and minimize printing errors.
- It is difficult to regulate the ink flow at times. Toner cartridges are an answer to this problem, since they use only powder. The printed paper is dry to touch as soon as it comes out of the printer.
- Although laser printers may seem to be an expensive investment as compared to inkjet printers, the longer printing life, accuracy and speed bring down the overall costs.
- Toner is generally used for office purposes, since they produce quality documents speedily. They can also be used to print brochures and pamphlets because they support back-to-back prints. Inkjet printers, on the other hand, are mostly used in homes where printing is not carried out in bulk.