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Inkjet vs. Laser Printer


Inkjet vs. Laser Printer

The journey to quality and efficient printing starts with the right printer and cartridges. This guide aims to help you understand the basics of printing 101. Aside from deciding on the printer to purchase, we will tackle the necessary tools you need, such as ink cartridges and toners. Let us start with understanding the types of printers.

When deciding what printer to buy, you should consider several factors. Other than the cost, you should also think about the purpose of your printer. Do you need a printer for family use, such as printing documents and worksheets, or are you looking for something you can use for your small business? This is where the type of printer comes into play. The two kinds of printers, which are laser and inkjet, have different capabilities.

What is the difference between laser and inkjet printers

The first thing to do is deciding between inkjet or laser. To give you an idea, inkjet printers are for those looking for high-quality prints, while laser printers are for those who need high or large quantities of prints. Read ahead to know more about the difference and its pros and cons.

What is an inkjet printer?

Inkjet is the most common type of printer and the more affordable one. Inkjet printers use ink cartridges that create droplets of ink transferred on the paper to create texts and images. The printing technique of an inkjet printer is simpler and easier. It is popular for home office needs, especially for those who usually print images.


  • Less expensive printers
  • Quality image printing
  • Cartridges are widely available
  • Prints on a variety of paper types
  • Easier to maintain


  • Original cartridges can be pricey
  • Prints can be prone to smudge and fading
  • Slower printing speed
  • Low capacity paper tray

What is a laser printer?

Laser printers use toner cartridges with powdered colorants to create prints. As with its name, this type of printer uses laser beams to print out texts or images. It is widely popular for office use since it prints documents fast and can accommodate heavy loads.


  • Fast printing speed
  • Perfect prints for texts
  • High quantity printing
  • Cheaper toner cartridges


  • Pricey printers
  • Not suitable for printing on other paper types such as glossy
  • Not suitable for printing photos
  • Heavy and challenging to maintain

What are the Types of Printer Cartridges?

Since there are two types of printers, they also use different printing cartridges. An inkjet printer uses ink cartridges or ink bottles, while a laserjet printer uses toner cartridges for printing.

What is a printer ink cartridge?

Ink cartridges are used for inkjet printers. Liquid inks are filled into containers called cartridges that enable your printer to print out texts or images. The cartridges are either refillable, or you buy a new one to install and use. You can not just install any type of ink cartridge because each cartridge is designed to work only for a specific printer. Though some cartridges look the same in physical attributes, each cartridge actually has chips in them that are designed only to let them work for printers compatible with it. You can see different kinds of ink cartridges below.

Compatible Canon ink cartridge

replacement ink cartridges

What is an inkjet printer refills/ink refill bottle?

Ink bottles/ink refill bottles are needed if your printer has an ink tank. An ink tank is a built-in part of the printer that holds the ink. To refill the ink tanks, you need to purchase printer ink bottles. Epson EcoTank series was the first company to manufacture printers with ink tanks. Thus, they also produced the first ink bottles for Epson eco tank ink refill.

Compatible Epson Expression

Dye-based ink vs. pigment-based ink

Dye-based ink and pigment-based ink are the two types of ink. Another factor to consider before even buying your printer is the kind of ink it uses. Ask yourself what do you usually print; is it photos or more on documents? Do you need prints that can last for a long time? Some printers use both pigment and dye-based ink cartridges. One example is Canon Pixma TS and TR series with Canon Ink Cartridges 280 and 281. PG-280XXL black is pigment-based, while CLI-281XXL black, cyan, magenta, and yellow are dye-based

To know the type of ink your printer uses, you can find this information in the printer manual. For CompAndSave products, the ink type is listed on the Product Specifications.


Dye-based inks use coloring agents dissolved in liquid to produce prints. This type of ink is usually used for documents and sharper prints as it gives off more vibrant colors. Dye ink is best used for indoor documents since it may fade quicker when under sunlight.

Pigment-based inks use powdered coloring agents to print. The colored powder is mixed with water, and therefore, it becomes a suspension. Pigment ink may give off lighter colors, but it is best for prints exposed to light since it does not fade away easily.

If your printing needs evolve on short-term use, you will save more by using dye-based inks. However, if you run a small business and need long-term prints, it is best to use pigment ink.

What are toner cartridges and a drum unit?

Toner cartridges are used for laser printers. It holds the powdered color agents that the drum unit in your laser printer melts to produce texts or images. The toner cartridge can basically print up to 2,000 pages before it needs replacement. Your drum unit can accommodate up to 4,000 pages before you need to replace it.

These two tools work together so your printer can work. Some printers like HP incorporate the drum unit into the toner. For most of the Brother printers, the toner cartridge and drum unit are separated. You can see a sample below of a drum unit, toner cartridge, and the toner installed into the drum unit.


What are the Different Yields of Cartridges?

Each cartridge has a different page yield. Choosing the right printer ink is based not only on how it fits your printer but also on how many pages you usually print. Page yield refers to the number of pages per cartridge that can print. To maximize its use and save more money, you have to know the differences in your cartridges’ page yield.

What is standard ink or toner cartridge?

It is best to purchase a standard ink or toner when you only use your printer for family needs. If you do not regularly print or in large quantities, this is the perfect one for you. Avoid getting inks with a higher page yield if you do not print regularly. Your ink may dry up since you are not using it frequently.

What is an XL ink or toner cartridge?

The XL letters on the packaging or cartridge indicate that it is a high-yield ink or toner. The size of the cartridge is the same as standard ones, but XL ink/toner contains more ink. What does high yield mean? It means that it can print more pages than the standard ink and has nothing to do with its size. Thus, the cost per page is lower. High-yield ink can print twice as much as the standard ink. For home offices or small businesses that need regular printing, use a higher yield to save on costs. Aside from that, you can avoid changing the cartridge often when using an XL ink.

What is the difference between XL and XXL ink cartridges or toner cartridges?

XXL ink cartridges have more ink compared to the XL ones. It may also mean a higher price, but it is definitely worth it if you do a lot of printing. The more a cartridge can print, the lower the cost per page will be. To give you a concrete idea, you can check our sample table below for the page yield difference of the standard ink vs. XL ink vs. XXL ink.

Take note that it can be different for other brands or other types of cartridges. The important thing to remember is that the higher the yield, the more pages it can print. On the table below, you will see standard (non-XL), XL (high yield), and XXL (super high yield) ink cartridges. The cartridges may have different ink model numbers, but all of the cartridges below are the same in size and only vary in yield version. Also, all three printer inks can be used for the following printers:

Brother Ink Cartridges

What are the Different Types of Ink Cartridges (condition)?

Did you know that there are different types of ink cartridges you can purchase for your printer? That is right. You have the option to choose what ink type you can use. Printer inks can be expensive, but CompAndSave aims to give you quality alternatives that will not break your budget. We have compiled the different types of printers to can choose the best ink for your printing needs.

What are OEM ink and toner cartridges?

OEM is an abbreviation for ‘Original Equipment Manufacturer.’ When you see a product on our site that says OEM, it is one of the “name-brand” cartridges from Canon, Hewlett Packard, Lexmark, etc. These are original or genuine ink/toner cartridges or bottles made by the major companies for their printers.


What are remanufactured ink and toner cartridges?

Remanufactured ink and toner cartridges are simply not refilled cartridges as they have been recycled to meet or exceed OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) specifications. The recycling process involves disassembling, inspecting, cleaning, reassembling, filling the product with ink. Then it will undergo a thorough test to make sure that it will work the same way as the original ones, including print quality. Enjoy the benefits of purchasing printer cartridges from CompAndSave that gives nothing but the best remanufactured ink cartridges online! For more information, you can watch this FAQ about remanufactured ink cartridges. You can get the same quality prints for a much lower price.

CompAndSave offers the best remanufactured ink cartridges and toners at an affordable cost. You can see below samples of our various products.


What are compatible ink and toner cartridges?

Compatible ink and toner cartridges are brand new non-OEM new cartridges - not recycled nor refilled. Compatible ink cartridges are manufactured by a third-party factory to the OEM specifications. Each printer cartridge is carefully researched, manufactured, and tested. New compatible cartridges are added regularly.

CompAndSave manufactures high-quality compatible inks and printer toner cartridges that are cost-efficient. You can see some of our compatible ink and toner cartridges below.

compatible ink and toner cartridges

What is a printer ink refill kit?

Another great option that does not only save you money but is environmentally friendly as well is refilling your ink cartridges. This is not applicable for toners. You can check our refill ink/bulk ink products. First, you need to make sure if it is compatible with your printer. It is simply refilling your ink. The kit already includes all the necessary items for refilling, such as needles, screwdriver, and drill tool, among others. For an easier refilling process, you can follow our universal ink refill kit guide.

printer ink refill kit


Why is ink expensive?

Major brands mostly get their profit by selling printer inks at a higher cost. The printer may not be that expensive, but since they require you to purchase their OEM inks, you may need to spend more if you prefer genuine inks.

Why are remanufactured and compatible inks cheaper?

Remanufactured inks use recycled cartridges. This makes the ink and toner cartridges less expensive but with the same quality. Compatible inks have new cartridges manufactured by a third-party company. It is similar to buying generic products rather than the branded ones. The third-party manufacturer does not have to keep up with the costs of processing as major brands do.

How much money will I save by buying a compatible or remanufactured cartridge?

Typically buying a compatible or remanufactured cartridge saves you about 50-75% over the cost of a new OEM cartridge. This usually amounts to $15-$30 every time you use our product. Check out the savings for your printer. Make sure to explore different quantities to find the price break that suits you best. You can check our top 5 best cheap printer ink cartridges in 2021 to have a concrete idea of how much you can save.


Will I get the same quality printing with a compatible or remanufactured cartridge?

We guarantee you will get the same quality printing with our kinds of ink. Many of our best customers are graphic designers and photographers who demand the highest quality printing and the strictest color matching.

Not only that, our factory is ISO-9001 Certified. ISO-9000 is a set of five universal standards for a Quality Assurance System that is accepted around the world. Currently, 90 countries have adopted ISO-9000 as national standards. When you purchase a product or service from a company that is registered to the appropriate ISO-9000 standard, you have important assurances that the quality of what you receive will be as you expect.

The most comprehensive of the standards is ISO-9001. This means you can expect only the highest and the most consistent level of Quality for our printer inks!

Will using a compatible or remanufactured cartridge void my warranty?

No, using a compatible or remanufactured cartridge WILL NOT VOID YOUR WARRANTY. Major printer manufacturers sell printers at or below cost. They make their profits from selling the cartridges. Formerly, once you bought your expensive new printer, you had no choice but to buy one of their cartridges after yours ran dry. By using compatible inks, you are cutting into their primary source of profit. Because of this, they will threaten to void your warranty if you use compatible or remanufactured cartridges. They are simply trying to protect their interests in any way they can. It is, however, strictly ILLEGAL for them to do so. Using remanufactured or compatible cartridges do not void your warranty MAGNUSON-MOSS WARRANTY IMPROVEMENT ACT, United States Code Annotated Title 15 Commerce Trade Chapter 50, Consumer Product Warranties 15 Sections 2302.

There is no reason that you should not use compatible inks or remanufactured cartridges. They work and will save your money. We have sold many cartridges and never had an incident where a customer’s warranty was “voided” from using our products.

How easy is the compatible or remanufactured cartridge to install?

Each cartridge is installed the same way that you would install the original OEM cartridge. They are individually wrapped in foil or plastic bags and have the tab on (which you remove when installing the cartridge - just like the original OEM cartridge.) We recommend that you use the head cleaning or nozzle cleaning utility that comes with your printer to clean the printheads (you should do this EVERY time you replace any cartridge - OEM or Compatible). Go to Control Panel - Printers - Properties - Utility.

How much money will I save by buying a compatible or remanufactured cartridge?

Each cartridge is installed the same way that you would install the original OEM cartridge. They are individually wrapped in foil or plastic bags and have the tab on (which you remove when installing the cartridge - just like the original OEM cartridge.) We recommend that you use the head cleaning or nozzle cleaning utility that comes with your printer to clean the printheads (you should do this EVERY time you replace any cartridge - OEM or Compatible). Go to Control Panel - Printers - Properties - Utility.

How long will they last on the shelf?

Our cartridges are fresh from the factory every month and have a tested shelf life of at least 20 months.

Is this cartridge name-brand or generic?

Our complete line of printing products includes both name-brand (OEM) and generic cartridges and toners.

OEM cartridges and toners come with the quality and reliability you have come to expect from the manufacturers of these products.

We only offer the highest quality generic brands of cartridges and toners and guarantee that they perform with the same quality as the OEM’s while costing just a fraction of the price. If for any reason you are unhappy with any of the products you received, please contact our customer service center for a refund.

Why should I buy a compatible or remanufactured cartridge?

When you buy compatible or remanufactured cartridges, you do not just save money, but you also help save the environment. You can read about how our environmentally friendly ink cartridges help save the planet.

What to do with old ink cartridges/toner cartridges?

CompAndSave does not accept empty cartridges for credit, but you still have many options on what to do with them. You can go to your local office supply stores such as Staples and Office Depot. They will give you credit for qualified original cartridges that can be recycled.

To know more about recycling old cartridges per brand, check our recycling guide for basic information. Major printer brands are now accepting old ink and toner cartridges. Schools and offices in your area may also accept empty cartridges for recycling.

Another great option is to refill the empty cartridges by yourself. Check our refill kit that comes with all the tools you need for the refilling process.

CompAndSave is committed to helping you get the best options for high-quality printing at a much affordable price. You can control your printing costs depending on what kind of ink you will use. Our friendly customer service staff is also committed to providing you with the information you need. You may contact our toll-free no. 1-833-465-6888 from Mondays to Fridays, 6am-4pm PT if you have further inquiries. We are always ready to help!

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