Ask any given expert in the consumer printer industry about what printer to buy when you’re on a budget and they’ll tell you that beauty is only MSRP-deep. That’s because in the long-run, you also need to account for ink and toner costs over the life of your printer. As a result, seasoned consumers calculate cost per page for consumables to supplement a simple MSRP comparison among different printers. Here’s how you can calculate it for yourself, using the Okidata C5650dn Color Laser Printer as an example:
1. Getting the figures you need: When it comes to color printers, remember that you’re calculating cost per page in Color and in Black and White. First, you need to find out which cartridges the printer uses, their prices, and their Page Yields (i.e. how many pages each cartridge can help print before it runs out). According to the product page, the Okidata C5650dn Color Laser Printer uses 4 toner cartridges: Black, Cyan, Magenta, and Yellow. In this case, each toner cartridge has a Page Yield of 5000 pages. The black cartridge costs $59.99 while each of the 3 color cartridges costs $98.99.
2. Calculating Cost Per Page:
- Black and White Pages: To calculate cost per black and white page (i.e. text documents), you take the price of the black cartridge and divide it by the black cartridge’s page yield. A compatible Okidata C5650dn Color Laser Printer High-Yield Black Toner Cartridge costs $59.99 and has a page yield of 5000 pages. $59.99 divided by 5000 pages comes out to a cost per page of 1.2 cents.
- Color Pages: To print a color page, the printer typically uses all its cartridges, including the black one. So we calculate cost per page for each of the color cartridges, add them all together, then combine that number with the black and white cost per page to get the final cost per color page. Compatible High Yield Cyan, Magenta, and Yellow Toner Cartridges for the Okidata C5650dn Color Laser Printer cost $98.99 each and last for about 5000 pages each. Based on those figures, here’s the final cost per color page calculation:
(98.99/5000) + (98.99/5000) + (98.99/5000) + (59.99/5000) = 0.071392 = 7.1 cents per page
And that’s really all there is to it. Try calculating cost per page for your current printer and compare it to other machines and cartridges on the market. It may take a little extra calculator work, but the end results can help you save big in the long run.
(Photo via FreePhotosBank)