When it comes to knowing the different between compatible and genuine toner cartridges, most people’s cartridge knowledge is restricted to ‘original/genuine toner cartridges are expensive’. There’s obviously far more to it than this. Let’s have a look:

Manufacturers – 

The same company that manufactured the printers manufactures original cartridges. Compatible cartridges, on the other hand, are manufactured by a third party other than the one that made the printer. As long as you buy them from a reputable outlet, compatible cartridges are just as reliable as the original cartridges. They are also cheaper, affordable and don’t impact the functionality of the machine in any way, no matter whether you are using a low-cost laser printer with scanner or any other.

Cartridge brands and names –

Original cartridges tend to be genuine and promise better functionality than the compatible cartridges. This doesn’t mean that the functionality offered by compatible cartridges is compromised. Though manufactured by a third party, they still offer high-quality functionality. When an original cartridge is used/returned and cleaned, it is known as refilled while a compatible cartridge that has been used/cleaned and filled is known as re-manufactured.

Price difference – 

Original cartridges are developed post thorough research, time, and costs incurred. Therefore, it’s nothing but natural for the supplier to charge higher costs to recoup their capital and make a profit. Since the production of compatible cartridges doesn’t include any such overheads, they are likely to be sold at lower prices. You still need to watch out for sub-standard compatible cartridges available in the market.

Printer warranty –

Most of the best color printers in India come with a 12 months warranty or more. In the event of an original cartridge messing up with your printer, the manufacturer is obliged to honor the warranty. Conversely, when a compatible cartridge messes up your printer, the supplier warranty will only cover the damage accrued from their ink. Negotiated warranties that extend more than 12 months do not cover the damage accrued by using third-party cartridges.

Print quality – 

The ink formulation of both the compatible as well as the original cartridges is so close so as to blur any difference in image quality.  However, it’s still advisable to use one original cartridge for every 3-4 compatible cartridges used.

So Should You Buy an Original or Compatible Ink Cartridge?

If you have never tried a compatible ink cartridge, it’s worth giving it a go. With advancements in technology, it’s possible now to avail a good quality print using a compatible cartridge. However, if you want assured print quality every time, it’s recommended to buy an original consumable. Designed by the manufacturer himself, they are best compatible with your printer and developed to help you achieve the best from your printer. They are capable of producing superior text and image quality, higher page yields, more accurate coloring and carry no risk of malfunctioning. Moreover, if you wish to obtain optimum performance from your printers, original cartridges serve the purpose.

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