Toner Cartridges vs Inkjet Cartridges

Toner Cartridges vs Inkjet Cartridges: Which is Better?

There are two main types of printers in the market today, the inkjet type and the laser printers. As their names suggests, one of the main differences is the way they print. Inkjet printers spray ink on the paper to generate the printing pattern while laser printers use powder toner. In this post we are going to compare the two to help you pick the better option.

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Speed and Print Capacity

The most notable difference between toner cartridges and inkjets is that the former is pretty fast in printing. If you take a closer look at the process of printing in a laser printer, it might look complex because the image or text goes through several separate stages before it can be printed on paper. However, in reality, the process is very fast, and you can print hundreds of pages within a couple of minutes.

In the inkjet, the ink is introduced into the paper using microscopic nozzles to make the image or text you want. This process moves at a slow pace because every paper has to wait for some moment to dry. This fact has made more people to prefer laser printers for bulk office work and inkjets for personal/ home printing.

Image Quality

When it comes to image quality, the laser printers also outdo the inkjets. Although it is true there are some models of inkjets that make really good images, the development of color toners has made laser printers become the new kings of printing. When using inkjets, it is also challenging to create images without smudges. If you are looking forward to making sharp and more attractive images, maybe for your magazine or marketing brochures, the best option is to use toner cartridges.


When using inkjets, the risk of the printer head getting clogged is very high. This is why you are advised to avoid leaving the printer unused over a long time. If you will be away for some time, the best thing to do is removing the toner cartridges and storing them separately. Make sure to keep them upside down to avoid spillage.

In the case of toner cartridges, the problem of the printer head getting clogged is not a serious one. However, it is still important to regularly clean the printer head for quality printouts. When you need to store the toner cartridges, recommends that you keep it horizontally so that toner does not settle on one side. You should also keep the toner cartridge away from direct sunshine or high temperatures.

Replacement Costs

If you check out the price tag of a toner cartridge and compare with an inkjet cartridge, the former is no doubt more expensive. However, it is better to check at the cost of print per page to get a clearer picture about costs. While the initial cost of the toner cartridges might be high, they print more pages compared to inkjets, meaning that they are far cheaper when you look at them from a long-term perspective. So, if you want to make 5000 printouts, a single toner cartridge might be enough but another person using inkjet cartridges might be required to replace them several times.

Printing Process

  • Inkjet Ink

Inkjet cartridges use liquid ink, which is prepared using pigments that give it the color. When manufacturing the ink, different ingredients, including resins, solvents, pigments, varnish, and additives, are used.

The pigments used during preparation are combined to make different colors. White ink is prepared from titanium dioxide while black is made using carbon pigments. These two colors can either be used alone to create black and white images or added to others to alter their appearance.

Traditionally, most inkjet printers relied on the four main colors, including black, yellow, magenta, and cyan. Then these colors were mixed to provide a wide spectrum of other colors depending on the text or image to be printed.

  • Color Toner Cartridges

Although the laser printers were developed in the 70s, it took about 20 years more to come-up with color laser printers. However, they have become very popular because they create better images and text quality. Like inkjets, color toner cartridges use four colors, black, yellow, cyan, and magenta, and can combine them to create a larger color spectrum.

To print an image or text using a laser toner cartridge, the image is first created using a beam of light on the drum of the toner. Then, it is transferred to the paper, and the toner pigments burnt immediately to create image or text.

How to Cut Printing Cost with Your Toner Cartridge 

From the above comparison, laser printers and toner cartridges come out as the better options compared to inkjets. Even though the toner cartridge comes with a high page yield, and the print quality is high, most users still wonder, “How can I cut the cost of printing? Here are some few tips to consider:

  • Do not replace the toner cartridge when it starts giving the message, “toner cartridge is running low.” Researchers have found that most of the toner cartridges have about 20% of the toner remaining when the message starts appearing. Therefore, ignore the message and look for actual signs of low toner, such as fading printouts.
  • Use different toner cartridges to print documents based on quality. Most offices and individuals usually print two types of documents, the initial draft and the final documents. For example, publishers usually publish draft books for review by editors while the final copies are meant for sale in the bookshops. Therefore, you can cut of printing by using remanufactured toner cartridges, which have low cost per paper to print drafts, and OEM cartridges for the final documents.
  • Save documents instead of printing them. Many are the times when we make a lot of unnecessary printing in the office when there are cheaper alternatives, such as saving in drives. For example, instead of printing long documents for board members in your organization, everyone can access the details on a laptop or tablet. This method not only helps to cut the cost of printing, but it also makes sharing and editing documents easy.

If you have an office, run an organization, or want to be printing at home, a laser printer with good toner cartridge will come in handy. We have also demonstrated that you can keep the cost of your printing using a toner cartridge with the above three tips.

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