Epson pushes single-ink cartridges.
Three and five-colour ink cartridges 'wasteful', according to research

Written by Andrea-Marie Vassou, Computeractive

Multi-ink cartridges waste more ink than single ink cartridges, according to research commissioned by printer manufacturer Epson.
Reseach carried out by TUV Rhineland found a difference of 43 per cent between the two types of cartridge.
Single ink cartridges waste just under 19 per cent of ink as opposed to the 64 per cent wasted by some multi-ink cartridges.
The research involved testing printers with one, three and five colour ink cartridges from companies including HP, Canon and Kodak by printing a range of photographs until the “out of ink” warning appeared. The weight of the cartridge was taken before and after the tests to see how much ink each was left.
Kodak’s Easyhare 5300 printer, which uses a five-colour cartridge system, was accused by Hartmut Muller-Gerbes, spokesman for TUV, as being the “worst performer of the test for ecological ink efficiency” wasting three-quarters (74 per cent) of its ink.
Epson's R360 single inkjet cartridge model and HP's Photosmart D7160, however, were only found to waste nine per cent and 17 per cent of ink respectively.
Muller-Gerbes said three and five colour models were wasteful because if one colour runs out then the whole cartridge must be changed even if the other colours are untouched.
“Single ink cartridges have economical advantages in comparison to tri and five colour ones as the separate inks can be changed accordingly,” he said at an Epson press conference in Spain.
He also pointed out that multi-ink cartridges could have a significant impact on the environment. “More and more multi-ink cartridges are being discarded as consumers listen to 'low ink' warnings and throw them away,” he said.
“Sustainability is important now with environmental concerns, TUV [therefore] expects manufactures to consider this and make their printers more economically friendly.”
Although Epson - who only supplies printers with single inkjet capabilities - has claimed this research was the “first of its kind” it is certainly not the first time the single versus multi inkjet cartridges debate has arisen.
This year the Office of Fair Trading put in place a new international standard for cartridge performance which aimed to save consumers money by giving information about the amount of pages a cartridge would print.
This has to be labelled on cartridge or printer packaging so consumers can estimate costs they may have to pay for printing over the lifetime of the printer.
However, despite these new rules TUV’s research failed to consider these factors when carrying out its tests with no mention of the number of pages printed before the warning flashed up or outline the money lost by the consumer.
It was also questioned by those attending the conference who said it did not consider the amount of ink used up by the cleaning cycle that printers routinely perform.
Muller-Gerbes defended this by brushing over the techical issues and claiming the test was "only commissioned for economical purposes".

Epson has taken the extraordinary step of naming and shaming manufacturers...
Three and five-colour ink cartridges 'wasteful', according to research...
According to a recent study, inkjet printers are woefully wrong when ...
Printer & CISS