Best Ink Saving Printers of 2016
April 7, 2016
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Saving money on ink is like a paradox – You purchase the printer to print what you want, only to spend more money on the ink to continue printing. If you’re finding yourself changing cartridges almost as often as you use the printer, your printer may be a money sink rather than a money saver.

So what can be done? Even PCMag‘s first suggestion is to find a printer that saves more ink! This can be measured by comparing the printer’s cartridge yield in pages to the price. Our findings should help keep your ink flowing freely – and keep your money flowing elsewhere. We’ve analyzed some of the most popular printers on the market now across the best brands, including last year’s winner, to find the printer that saves the most ink.


Printer M.S.R.P. Cartridge Model Cartridge Capacity Cartridge Price (set) Cost Per Page (cents)
HP
Envy 5540
$129.99 62XL 510 pgs $40.98 8
Canon
MB 2320
$199.99 1200XL 1200 pgs $51.96 4.33
HP
Officejet Pro 251dw
$229.99 950XL/951XL 1700 pgs $60.96 3.58
Canon
MG6820
$149.99 250XL/251XL 633 pgs $40.95 6.4
Brother
MFC J5720DW
$249.99 LC-207/LC-205 1500 pgs $42.96 2.86
Epson
WF 3620
$169.99 252XL 1100 pgs $57.96 5.27
Lexmark
OfficeEdge Pro 5500
$499.99 200XL A/B 1100 pgs $80.91 3.24
Epson
EcoTank ET-2500
$279.99 T664 (Bottle) 5875 pgs $49.99 0.85

Comparing the results, we see the printer that saves the most ink is…


Epson Eco-Tank ET-2500 with a stunning CPP of 0.85 cents – costing less than a penny per page. The ET-2500 can also copy and scan documents, although you’d need to upgrade to the ET-4550 for fax and duplexing features.

Epson’s Ecotank models skip cartridges entirely, instead using bottles of refill ink outside of the typical inkjet cartridge. Epson promises a hefty 4,000 pages per 70ml refill – though each manufacturer has their own methodology for determining page yield based off of things known as ISO standards (you can find the one for page yields here). But the general consensus is that ink covers about five percent of the page – keep this in mind if your prints are denser or if you print photos, as your estimated yield will vary.

But are laser jet printers more efficient than inkjet printers? Will an ink-saving printer really save me the most money? We’ve only just scratched the surface of our findings - and we haven’t considered how laser jet printers compare. Discover more in our follow up article, where we’ll look at finding answers – while finding more ways to save.

  4 Comments

Demis    8.14.16

I loved the pros/cons and photo-quality column on the 2015 comparison table. Thanks for this useful analysis, would love to see those columns added too.

I'm surprised that all the models on this table at >$100 - apparently much more expensive than last year's top models. Maybe manufacturers are catching on (or ink sales are ping) and offloading some of the price back onto the printers?

Demis    8.14.16

The cartridge capacity column here is really great info.

khamyle    11.12.16

i just want free ink

Cdavis64    7.12.17

Great read, always looking for extra ways to save money. I just wanted to share something I've been doing recently. I run an office and have noticed that unused toner was piling up in storage. Looked into returning but that was no good. Tried out the site http://www.tonerconnect.net/ and was impressed. They had quick service and that payout was nice.

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