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Printer It's funny.  Laugh.

Ink More Expensive Than Champagne 587

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the silly-comparisons dept.
laing writes "According to this story, ink for home printers is now seven times more expensive than vintage champagne.Ink in a typical replacement cartridge costs about £1.70 per millilitre, compared with 1985 Dom Perignon at 23p per millilitre." Explains why I get daily spam about toner, but none at all for booze!
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Ink More Expensive Than Champagne

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  • Hardcore dupe action (Score:5, Informative)

    by mao che minh (611166) * on Thursday July 03, 2003 @03:55PM (#6362591) Journal

    This was all covered earlier. The story posted by Michael earlier today [slashdot.org] about Lexmark's DMCA suit contained a link to a BBC article [bbc.co.uk] showing the price of ink to be higher then that of vintage champagne. The 1.70 per millitre thing was even covered.

    You guys are editorial juggernaughts.

  • by Ignorant Aardvark (632408) * <cydeweys@noSpAM.gmail.com> on Thursday July 03, 2003 @03:55PM (#6362593) Homepage Journal
    Ink costs more than champagne? What?! That's not the natural order of things. To correct this problem, the French must immediately start drinking printer ink and printing with champagne. That should kill a few problems with one stone (sorry for the mixed metaphor). To clear up the resulting confusion we will call printer ink "Freedom Champagne" and champagne, "printer ink 2: full-speed".
    • what will really blow your mind is when you realize that gasoline is cheaper than bottled water...
      • what will really blow your mind is when you realize that gasoline is cheaper than bottled water...

        Good thing I don't buy bottled water, otherwise I'd consume "drinking gasoline" and pour "combustible bottled water" in my car in an attempt to save money.
      • by nr (27070)
        Yep, and weed growing in your garden is more worth than gold!
      • Price of bottling (Score:3, Informative)

        by Gorimek (61128)
        That tells you more about the price of bottling than anything else.

        Compare bottled water to bottled gasoline, or pumped water to pumped gasoline to get a fair comparision.
        • Re:Price of bottling (Score:5, Informative)

          by EnderWiggnz (39214) on Thursday July 03, 2003 @04:43PM (#6363077)
          no, it tells you that people are idiots to be paying $1 for a pint of water.

          its all profit. water is dirt cheap. plastic bottles are dirt cheap. distribution method is already in place for the big guys.

          Bottled water is almost pure profit.
          • by nathanh (1214) on Thursday July 03, 2003 @06:16PM (#6363691) Homepage
            It's only a ripoff if you don't consider the whole picture. Consider that soft drink for $1 a bottle is easily 10x the cost of the materials (mostly sugar and water). But what you're paying for is the FRIDGE at the store that keep it cold and the CONVENIENCE from not lugging around a bottle of water until you needed it. Convenience has a price. You can't simply look at the raw materials to determine value.

            Look at it this way, there is 2c worth of wheat and yeast and water in a loaf of bread. They charge $2 for it. Where did the other $1.98 go? Into the cost of preparing and cooking and packaging and marketting and transporting and storage and the sales clerks salary. So what if there is 0.01c worth of water in a $1 bottle? You've still gotta pay for all the other costs including a much more expensive storage cost (refrigerated).

            PS: I don't buy bottled water, I prefer juice :-)
        • by suwain_2 (260792) on Thursday July 03, 2003 @04:47PM (#6363124) Journal
          Mmmmm. Nothing like a good bottle of gasoline. ;)
        • Market Forces (Score:5, Insightful)

          by RatBastard (949) on Thursday July 03, 2003 @05:26PM (#6363417) Homepage
          I wirked for California Coolers for a while (anyone remember them?) and let me tell you, bottliing is cheap. After the initial capital investment is earned back, it's pretty much a minimum cost operation.

          What this fact tells us is that people will buy just about anything. We've gotten so condition to the $1.00-$1.25 bottle of soda (talk about a pure profit market!) that we willingly accept a $1.00 bottle of water. Add in the snob appeal of certain brands of bottled water and you've got yourself a massive money-maker.

          One thing you have to remember is that price is NOT a function of cost. Price is a function of market forces. It is whatever people are willing to pay.

          Consider: I used to wirk for a computer store eight years ago. A regular six-connector 50-pin SCSI1 internal ribbon cable was priced at $60.00. You know how much it cost the store to buy it? $5.00. Yep. $55.00 markup. Why? People beleived that SCSI was more expensive.
          • Re:Market Forces (Score:3, Informative)

            by Nogami_Saeko (466595)
            Hell, local stores are still doing this. A 6' firewire cable at a local chain electronics store is $35.

            Go to the distributer in town, and they sell the same cable in bulk for $6. The only difference? It's not packaged in a plastic windowed box with full-color labeling and "instructions for use" (ya, plug it in!).

            Of course, as soon as the store repackages the bulk product, they charge over 5x the price. For probably about $1.50 worth of additional packaging.

            Consumers are stupid and companies are there
            • Re:Market Forces (Score:3, Informative)

              by Nogami_Saeko (466595)
              Just as an aside, I use one of these, both at home and at work:

              Continuous Ink System [inksupply.com]

              Works great, and I bet it scares printer manufacturers like hell. I can print all day on these things and when the ink runs low, I just unscrew the top of the bottle and pour a little more in.

              I was printing 11x14s by the dozen without worrying about it. Great stuff!

              N.
          • Re:Market Forces (Score:3, Interesting)

            by Lumpy (12016)
            We've gotten so condition to the $1.00-$1.25 bottle of soda (talk about a pure profit market!) that we willingly accept a $1.00 bottle of water.

            Yup.. Sams Club... (a walmart for the rich and snooty.. you have to pay to shop there...) a CASE of 36 bottles of water.... $3.95

            bottling costs are NOTHING.. as well as distribution, marketing,everything....

            Hell I asked and I can get a pallet of 144 cases of 36 bottles for only $150.00.. nothing special for a business to buy a pallet of product.

            2 cents per BOT
      • by Enraged_jawa (641736) * on Thursday July 03, 2003 @05:20PM (#6363372)
        "Evian" spelled backwards is "Naive" .. the French knew all along
      • by deadsaijinx* (637410) <animemeken@hotmail.com> on Thursday July 03, 2003 @05:58PM (#6363597) Homepage
        once a bottle of water became more expensive than beer, I quit drinking water. Shortly there after I was rushed to the hospital after I collapsed of dehydration and alcohol poisoning. The moral of the story, cheap boozed is not your friend
      • by jridley (9305) on Thursday July 03, 2003 @11:58PM (#6365115)
        They did an episode on bottled water. It turns out that bottled water is NOT tested or regulated by any government agency unless it crosses state lines, but tap water is constantly tested. The federal government has over 100 people that test tap water, but less than one person to test bottled water.

        In an independent study that they quoted, more than half the brands of bottled water would not have passed tap water quality specs.

        The funny part of the ep was when they went to a NYC restaurant and had a "water steward" BS'ing people into paying $8 for a bottle of water from the hose in the alley with a phony label on it; people were making up all kinds of BS about how "sparkling" and "crisp" it was, and how they each had a different character even though we knew they all came from the same hose.

        Around here (Ann Arbor, MI), the tap water is VERY good tasting; I bought some bottled water in Chicago a couple of weekends ago and it tasted FAR worse than what comes out of the tap here. I actually think the tap water tastes better than the bottled stuff, but people still buy the bottles.

        Also, Aquafina/etc is NOT distilled, it's merely filtered. Taste distilled water sometime; it's nasty. Aquafina is just Pepsi with no carbonation or flavoring; really, it comes from the same lines, it's the water that they normally use to mix soda. So you can pay $1 for a bottle of Pepsi, or $1 for a bottle of Pepsi without the additives.
    • Funny thing is that this is a somewhat recent change. My old hp c400 inkjet (really slow and ugly) had print cartridges with refill holes built into them.
      • My old hp c400 inkjet (really slow and ugly) had print cartridges with refill holes built into them.

        But my champagne bottles never did! You couldn't even put the corks back in the darned thing! I'll bet you that's where they got the idea from!

    • by outsider007 (115534) on Thursday July 03, 2003 @06:27PM (#6363739)
      it's harder to acquire a taste for ink than for champagne, but once you do...
      you are one classy motherfucker.
  • by Lane.exe (672783) on Thursday July 03, 2003 @03:56PM (#6362596) Homepage
    Plus, the rad high you get from sipping ink completely blows away that bubbly kind of drunk you get when you pound the Christobal.

  • People are taking this so negatively; just revel in the fact that champaign is so cheap!
    • by EinarH (583836) on Thursday July 03, 2003 @04:25PM (#6362933) Journal
      Yeah, I know this was meant as a joke but you made me think.

      The other day HP introduced [com.com] their new DeskJet printers. Their prices start on something that would have been almost unbelievable a few years ago; *$39*. Isolated that's just freaking cheap for a printer capable of printing medium quality photos.

      However the only reason they go so low in pricing is because they have managed to trick the public into almost exclusively buying HP-ink. Ink is a substance that's *pretty* generic. And still people still buy HP cartridges even if they could get ink elsewhere at 1/3 of the HP price-tag. That's beyond me.

      AFAIK these printers don't contain chips that makes it impossible to use generic ink or third party cartridges.

      I guess that the price on HP-ink feels right to many consumers as long as they are still willing to pay the price.

      And BTW about the Champagne; the price on this former exclusive goods has been falling steadily after the Y2K buzz about the world running out of it. Basically the price curve on some brands like Dom Perignon looks like a stock chart for a dot-com.

      • how much ink (Score:5, Informative)

        by kardar (636122) on Thursday July 03, 2003 @05:56PM (#6363584)
        I was looking at the HP 3420 - it was on sale recently for something like $40 or so.

        I had always used second-hand DeskJet 500's, 560's etc... with the "26" cartridge - that cartridge holds 40 ml and prints out about 800+ or so pages. These "51626" cartridges are right around slightly less than $30 US. I have printed thousands of pages of material using these old HP DeskJets and have had no problems. I like those printers. They are kind of slow, but very reliable.

        The black cartridge for the HP 3420 holds 10ml and is expected to print about 200+ pages. It costs slightly less than $20 US. The color cartridge for this printer holds 8ml and produces slightly less than 200 pages.

        The higher quality (and more expensive) printers have larger page number counts for their refills, but many of the less expensive brands and printers had page counts of less than 500 pages per cartridge, and even though the cartridges have dropped in price, they hold a lot less ink and you can hardly get anything printed with one cartridge. These bargain printers are probably an excellent solution for those who just need to print out an occasional web page or order confirmation here or there. They probably are not designed for people who print a lot. And, paying 18 dollars for a cartridge just kind of feels better than paying 28 dollars for a cartridge, despite the fact that there is only 1/4 as much ink in there!!! The boxes are all the same size on the shelf, who would guess that one cartridge has 10ml and the other has 40ml?

        I have come to expect over 500 pages from one deskjet cartridge. Closer to 1000 would be better - some printer can do this. The HP DeskJet 1200 (which is an older model) - this black print cartridge was rated at 1100+ pages before it ran out (42ml). Same price as the others - about $30 US.

        I don't doubt that the quality of the printed pages is good - I love Hewlett Packard printers, it's just that if you print a lot of stuff, you really need to get a printer (even second-hand, if you can find one) that was originally designed to do some serious printing. I found a second-hand HP printer (I love HP printers) that is rated for 12,000 pages per month; not like I would ever print that many pages per month, but it is kind of cool to know that you could if you wanted to.

        Office Depot's site has page counts on all the refills - I found it helpful when shopping around for a printer. To some people, page counts per cartridge don't matter - they don't print enough stuff to have that matter. But to many of us, it does make a big difference, and it is surprising how expensive the ink is for the really inexpensive printers.

  • by Squidgee (565373) <squidgeeOO1@@@hotmail...com> on Thursday July 03, 2003 @03:58PM (#6362625)
    Champagne.ink? Has someone been coding in Java too much recently...? =p
  • by gmajor (514414) on Thursday July 03, 2003 @03:59PM (#6362639) Journal
    You don't get any for booze because the ATF would go postal on spammers. They take their job very seriously.
  • by bdesham (533897) <bdeshamNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Thursday July 03, 2003 @04:00PM (#6362651) Journal
    But seriously -- anyone mind providing conversions to USD?
  • by jared_hanson (514797) on Thursday July 03, 2003 @04:00PM (#6362656) Homepage Journal
    I've long held the belief that ink for inkjet printers is way to expensive. I bought a cheap laser printer 4 years ago, for about twice that of a nice inkjet printer. However, I am still using the same toner cartiridge that came with it. I've probably saved myself 10 times the money by going with a laser printer. Yeah, I can't print in color but that does not bother me. I'm not sure how the price of toner compares to ink cartridges, but laser is the way to go.

    • by odyrithm (461343)
      one pretty nagling problem with companys using color printers is that when the black cart goes the color suffers and instantly the user thinks its the color cart thats gone.. so wanders to tech to get another.. end of the day Im sure you can see whats happened.. and how much money is wasted/lost.
    • by Wraithlyn (133796) on Thursday July 03, 2003 @04:24PM (#6362929)
      Agreed for B&W absolutely... I have had a laser printer for about 8 years or so, and the original toner cartridge just ran out last year. Sure the cartridge costs $150 (CDN), but it lasts forever, and the text is sharp enough to shave with, and blacker than hell.

      However, colour has its place, so when I finally bought an inkjet printer to print out photos from my digital camera, one of the primary factors was long term operating cost.

      Epson printers are the top of the line for visual quality, and a very cheap initial purchase, but they gouge you on replacement cartridges later... so I went for a Canon (s820 [steves-digicams.com]) instead, and am extremely pleased with both the print quality, and ink economy. It has SIX refillable cartridges (photo, or "light", magenta and cyan in addition to standard CMYB) as opposed to Epson's microchip crippled, non refillable 1 or 4 cartridge solutions.

      The Canon is also way faster and quieter to boot, and everytime I show someone a photo I've printed, they want to know what professional Photo Lab I went to. :)
      • by wideBlueSkies (618979) on Thursday July 03, 2003 @04:56PM (#6363196) Journal
        Personally I see no need to print in color. Most documents that I would actually print (word, visio etc) look fine in greyscale. And I've had the same experiences with toner, the cartridges are expensive, but they last forever.

        I just dumped a 10 year old Epson laser last year. Only because I needed more memory(the 1 meg printer was choking on large documents and flowcharts). Epson memory for my model was like $50 a meg And the printer had a 4 meg max. (Would have been $150 for 3 megs of memory) So instead I got a new HP for $450.(16 megs, 1200 dpi).

        Interestingly, the toner cartridge for the old Epson was 25% full. If I didn't have the memory requirement, i probably could have gotten another 2 years out of the toner.

        The only thing I can think of reasonably needing a color printer for is photographs. And I figure: why bother? If I need a print of digital photos, I just send them off the service. They come back on photographic paper, looking almost as good as prints from my SLR.
    • Some numbers (Score:5, Informative)

      by freeweed (309734) on Thursday July 03, 2003 @05:07PM (#6363283)
      I've been pricing out toner/ink comparisons lately, because I spend way too much on ink, and end up just printing stuff out at work anyway.

      In Canada, a $100 toner cartridge gets you around 5000 sheets on a low-end laser printer. The same price cartridge for a more expensive printer (same toner, but different cartridge shape for obvious reasons) gets you well over 10000 sheets.

      Most inkjet cartridges here are in the $40-$50 range (assuming all black printing). You get anywhere between 200 to 500 pages per cartridge.

      So basically:
      • a $300 laser printer + $100 toner = 5000 pages, or about 8 cents per page, with any extra pages costing 2 cents a pop.

      • a $600 printer + $100 toner = 10000 pages, or about 7 cents per page, extra pages around 1 cent each.

      • a $99 inkjet + $50 ink = 500 pages (I'll be optimistic here), or about 30(!!) cents a page. Extra pages are 10 cents each.

      Note that I'm ignoring any ink/toner that comes with the printer; usually these are extremely low-yield 'samples', and in any case the initial toner cartridge almost always outperforms what you get for free with an inkjet.

      So basically, unless you're planning on only printing a few hundred pages EVER, it makes no sense to buy an inkjet for B&W printing. Never mind the fact that if you rarely use an inkjet, the ink nozzles eventually stop working even if there's plenty of ink inside. At least, no amount of cleaning can fix the ones I use in my Epson Stylus 700, if I don't print for more than 3 months.

  • just buy a laserjet (Score:5, Informative)

    by SweetAndSourJesus (555410) <JesusAndTheRobot@@@yahoo...com> on Thursday July 03, 2003 @04:00PM (#6362664)
    My annual operating cost for an $800 HP LaserJet 2200 is about a $100 for toner.

    Sure, I paid a lot more up front, but having to spend $100 every two months to maintain an Epson Inkjet added up quickly.
  • Everyone buying ink in bottles keeping
    control of both quality and price should
    post their methods and experiences so
    we don't have to use this thread to whine
    about suspect business methods anymore.
  • Bootlegging (Score:5, Funny)

    by retto (668183) on Thursday July 03, 2003 @04:01PM (#6362671)
    Does this mean people are going to start bootlegging ink? Will the great crime families ditch the drug trade for the undergound ink market? I fear the day our great cities are brought under the heel of the ink barons.
  • Ink (Score:5, Funny)

    by nother_nix_hacker (596961) on Thursday July 03, 2003 @04:01PM (#6362672)
    I tend to find the 86' Lexmark ink has a fruity taste which can be complimeted only by a good mature cheese and a decent toner cartrige.
  • by abe_is_fun (320753) on Thursday July 03, 2003 @04:02PM (#6362674) Journal
    Even though ink is more expensive than fine champagne, and therefore is better than fine champagne (proof by induction), you shouldn't drink it.

    It would stain your teeth some ugly color like #006666, and you would never get a date and you would die cold and alone, a pitiful 30 year old virgin.

    Instead, drink beer -- it's been helping ugly people get laid for over 200 years!
    • Re:lucky drunks (Score:4, Interesting)

      by zerocool^ (112121) on Thursday July 03, 2003 @05:31PM (#6363447) Homepage Journal
      Instead, drink beer -- it's been helping ugly people get laid for over 200 years!

      Beer was invented by the babylonians or Sumarians at least 6,000 years ago (it is mentioned in the epic of gilgamesh, approx 3,000 years ago).

      It was also an important part of the diet of the european middle-ages peasant. Peasants would stockpile barley and wheat for the winter, but towards the end of the winter, the grains would start to go bad. The solution to this is beer, which could be made from slightly bad grains and still convey the nutritional value of the food. Beer is nothing if not a good energy source, rich in sugars and other more complex carbohydrates.

      So, you could say that beer may have saved Europe in the Middle Ages.

      Or, you could just say that it's been getting people laid for quite a lot longer than 200 years.

      (damn history degree)

      ~Will
  • also (Score:5, Informative)

    by abhisarda (638576) on Thursday July 03, 2003 @04:02PM (#6362682) Journal

    Explains why I get daily spam about toner, but none at all for booze!.

    Sending booze by mail across state lines is not legal in many places.
    • Explains why I get daily spam about toner, but none at all for booze!.
      Sending booze by mail across state lines is not legal in many places.


      Yes, but what does that have to do with spam?

      Are you implying that the people who send spam actually fullfill their orders?

      I thought they just took your money and then laughed at you for sending money to an anonymous jackass on the internet.
    • Sending booze by mail across state lines is not legal in many places.


      Neither is selling illicit copies of anti-virus software, yet I still get daily spam offerring me Norton for $2.95.

  • by L. VeGas (580015) on Thursday July 03, 2003 @04:02PM (#6362684) Homepage Journal
    Pound for pound...

    Poodles cost more than horses!

    Crack whores cost more than fatties!

    Eardrums cost more than eyeballs!

  • by nbarr (666157) on Thursday July 03, 2003 @04:02PM (#6362688)

    This happens with ink. How fortunate we are that other stuff for computers cant be sold the same way ink is.

    Its a good strategy selling cheap hardware, and than charging huge amounts in the stuff needed to make the hardware function. Should this be illegal?

  • by robogun (466062) on Thursday July 03, 2003 @04:04PM (#6362710)
    I usually get the generic cartridges for my pre-chip Epson. When they ran out of those, I had to buy the "economical" two-pack of genuine Epson.

    Aside from the $40 cost (deep-discount, as I understand), just getting the cartridges out from all the packaging was a chore. It was like peeling an onion. It was time- consuming. I needed a knife to get past the hard shell. There were slick-coated 4-color ads in and on the packaging.

    The resulting stack of garbage took up half the wastebasket -- not including the spent cartridges, which I am starting to save for refilling.

    Knowing I paid for all that glossy, 4-color trash makes me highly reluctant to buy those genuine cartridges again.
  • Get Smart (Score:5, Funny)

    by Shadow Wrought (586631) <shadow.wrought@gmai[ ]om ['l.c' in gap]> on Thursday July 03, 2003 @04:04PM (#6362712) Homepage Journal
    Chief: This desk runs entirely on ink.

    Max: But chief, that's incredible. Do you realize what this could mean to our energy supply?

    Chief: Unfortunately its an extremely rare type of ink that can only be found in the Middle East.

    Yes I'm paraphrasing, but that's the first thing that came to mind;-)

  • by Cali Thalen (627449) on Thursday July 03, 2003 @04:04PM (#6362713) Homepage
    This has been going on for a while, it shouldn't surprise anyone. Manufacturers are getting cheaper (not all their own faults, but it's a fact of life for most consumer grade items). The make crap and hope to keep selling it, because other manufacturers are finding cheaper ways to produce the same goods (usuallt with offshore labor, but not always).

    So...in the end, they produce crap and try to make up profits elsewhere. In the printer business, that's either paper or ink. And not a lot of printer manufacturers are selling much expensive paper. And, they're not liekly to beat the paper industry at inexpensive paper either.

    Me, I cut printer costs by saving everything on $0.50/GB hard drives instead of printing, always cheaper in the end.
    • Me, I cut printer costs by saving everything on $0.50/GB hard drives instead of printing, always cheaper in the end.

      You could save a lot of money by saving everything on $0.10/GB DVD-Rs instead.

      Besides, it's not the same. Nobody has yet made a monitor that is as easy to read as a piece of paper (though they could, but that's another rant). Also, computers are notorious for being noisy, large, and requiring electricity no matter where you want to take them, or what you want to do on them.

  • ...there will appear a printer company that doesn't do nasty tricks about its cartridges and sells printers and materials at reasonable prices. I'm sure there is a large market for this.

    Like: Cartridges with "refill valve", authorised "refill sets" and "cleaning units" (so dried cartridges could be reused), the cartridge capacity used in 100% and not lowered, new cartridges that come with the printer full, not just with enough ink for 5 pages, and nothing that would try to make your cartridge useless soone
    • I'm afraid that's wishful thinking. Most consumers don't look at the long-term costs of anything. If they did they wouldn't buy inkjets or SUVs. They'd buy LaserJets and more fuel eficient automobiles. People either buy the item that has the lowest off-the-showrrom price or what they've let Amdison Avenue convince them they want.

      The costs-more-but-will-save-you-money-later printer will wither and die next to the costs-less-but-will-eat-you-alive-later printer. Once people buy something they'll pay thr
  • I guess this means I'm going to be giving my English instructor a bottle of champagne instead of a research paper this Fall.
  • by NotQuiteReal (608241) on Thursday July 03, 2003 @04:10PM (#6362763) Journal
    Is this one of those tests?

    Champagne is to printer ink as:

    a) Automobiles are to shoes.
    b) Doorknobs are to bedpans.
    c) Beach sand is to integrated circuits.

    The answer is c because integrated circuits are computer related and this is slashdot...

  • by the_pooh_experience (596177) on Thursday July 03, 2003 @04:10PM (#6362773)
    Well according to this [cockeyed.com], ink costs about the same as Chanel No. 5 Eau Du Parfum, but when was the last time you tried to print porn with parfume or champagne?
  • by divide overflow (599608) on Thursday July 03, 2003 @04:12PM (#6362789)
    Explains why I get daily spam about toner, but none at all for booze!

    Actually, it says nothing about toner and everything about the high price of ink. Note that:

    1. Ink is for inkjet printers.
    2. Toner is for laser printers.
    3. Toner is usually MUCH cheaper per page than ink.

    I've been waiting to find a color printing option that approaches the cost per page of a laser printer with the color quality and resolution of a good inkjet printer. So, has anyone here on Slashdot found an optimal solution that offers reasonably quick printing? Extra points for built-in network support.
  • by donutz (195717) on Thursday July 03, 2003 @04:13PM (#6362802) Homepage Journal
    I mean, you drink some champaigne, take a piss an hour later, and it's gone.

    You print out your term paper...and behold! It's still there! Way to go ink manufacturers!

    Of course, you could always try your luck with pissing on a piece of paper...but I don't think your instructor would like to read your essay that you printed that way....
  • by mnemonic_ (164550) <jamec.umich@edu> on Thursday July 03, 2003 @04:15PM (#6362830) Homepage Journal
    It was reported several months ago that many prescription drug cost more than their weight in gold [naplesnews.com]. An excerpt (emphasis mine):
    Lipitor, the anti-cholesterol medicine, costs about
    20 times as much as gold, based on late-2002 prices from www.drugstore.com. Prilosec, used to treat ulcers and gastric reflux, costs 35 times as much. Prevacid, used for the same purposes, costs 25 times more.

    Zocor, an anti-cholesterol medicine, is worth 33 times its weight in gold.
  • by sherpajohn (113531) on Thursday July 03, 2003 @04:16PM (#6362832) Homepage
    1. Develope color printing technology that is cheaper than ink-jet.
    2. Make scads of money
    3. Buy one of the really prestigious Champagne "Houses" - they are so funny...they do not call them estates, but houses!
    4. Hire the best chef in France to make lots of Hot Grits
    5. Invite Natalie Portman over
    6. Enjoy 3 course meal of Fine Champagne, hot grits and Natalie
    7. Print out pictures of #6 on cheap color printer
    8. Sell copies of pictures
    9 Profit!!!!!
  • by OS24Ever (245667) <trekkie@nomorestars.com> on Thursday July 03, 2003 @04:18PM (#6362862) Homepage Journal
    ...when you buy Champagne, the bottle is actually full. Plus there is no crime against refilling the bottle and using it for your own stuff.
  • by Jon Abbott (723) on Thursday July 03, 2003 @04:20PM (#6362892) Homepage
    This whole champagne and ink thing reminds me of one of the weirder stories in the fortune files:

    The General disliked trying to explain the highly technical inner workings of the U.S. Air Force.

    "$7,662 for a ten cup coffee maker, General?" the Senator asked.

    In his head he ran through his standard explanations. "It's not so," he thought. "It's a deterrent." Soon he came up with, "It's computerized, Senator. Tiny computer chips make coffee that's smooth and full-bodied. Try a cup."

    The Senator did. "Pfffttt! Tastes like jet fuel!"

    "It's not so," the General thought. "It's a deterrent."

    Then he remembered something. "We bought a lot of untested computer chips," the General answered. "They got into everything. Just a little mix-up. Nothing serious."

    Then he remembered something else. It was at the site of the mysterious B-1 crash. A strange smell in the fuel lines. It smelled like coffee. Smooth and full bodied...

    -- Another Episode of General's Hospital

  • $17 for 24 refills (Score:5, Informative)

    by Futurepower(R) (558542) <MJennings.USA@NOT_any_of_THISgmail.com> on Thursday July 03, 2003 @04:21PM (#6362900) Homepage
    Refill your Canon i320 printer that you bought for $40 (U.S. price) with this refill system: http://www.ims-ink.com/ [ims-ink.com]. It costs $17 at Costco and refills the black cartridge an estimated 24 times. The system also comes with bottles of colored ink; haven't calculated the color refills yet.
  • by John Jorsett (171560) on Thursday July 03, 2003 @04:25PM (#6362942)
    I buy a drink mix that, added to water, yields a liquid that's more expensive than gasoline. Does that say anything about the high cost of the mix, or the low cost of gasoline? NO! They're two different things and thus have two different prices. Telling me that a little tub of ink costs more than champagne on a per-unit basis is similarly useless information, unless I can substitute champagne for the ink.
  • by Red Rocket (473003) on Thursday July 03, 2003 @04:36PM (#6363019)
    ...I bet it can't touch Bull Semen [sekgenetics.com].
  • by Bill, Shooter of Bul (629286) on Thursday July 03, 2003 @04:59PM (#6363219) Journal
    I need to stop printing and start drinking. Its "cheaper". Yeah honney. I was thinking about printing out the manual for your new stairmaster, but I wanted to save money so I drank a case of cris and then put it together.
  • Printers (Score:5, Informative)

    by pokka (557695) on Thursday July 03, 2003 @05:10PM (#6363305)
    One interesting fact about ink cartridges:

    As you all probably know: ink prices average around $30 US per cartridge.

    Did you know that most of the $50 printers use 10mL ink cartridges, while the more expensive ones use 40+ mL cartridges?

    The strange thing is that when it's time to refill the ink, the 10mL cartridges cost almost the same price as the 30 mL that are used in more expensive models. So while you saved a little money by getting the dirt-cheap printer, you're now paying 3 times as much for the ink!

    This is (in my opinion) a very unethical way to trick consumers into thinking that they are saving money by buying a cheaper printer. I've heard many people say that "it's cheaper to buy a new printer than to buy the refill cartridges". But it turns out that this is not true.

    Don't believe me? Check out the HP deskjet 3300 series [hp.com] ($40 printer). It uses 10mL cartridges that cost $17.00, which is $1.70 per milliliter.

    Now check the Deskjet 6127 [hp.com], a $299 printer. It uses 42mL cartridges @ $29.00, which is only $0.69/mL! The ink for the $40 printer is 2.4 times as expensive.

    By the way, this does not apply to Canon printers, but does apply to most others.
  • Ink != Toner (Score:4, Informative)

    by dark-br (473115) on Thursday July 03, 2003 @05:27PM (#6363422) Homepage
    Explains why I get daily spam about toner, but none at all for booze!

    Toner is an powder mixture used to develop images in photocopy machines and laser printers working as follow:

    * A copier drum is given a positive charge.
    * The image from the original copy illuminates the charged drum and a latent image is formed.
    * Static electricity attracts toner to the drum surface and a visible image is formed.
    * Toner on the drum is transferred to paper by positive charging.
    * After the image transfer process is completed, the paper is separated from the drum surface.
    * Toner on the copy paper is firmly fixed when the paper runs between heat and pressure rollers.
    * A cleaning blade wipes off excess toner.
    * The drum is exposed by a neon lamp to erase remaining static charge.

  • Ink piracy (Score:5, Funny)

    by Decimal Dave (411182) on Thursday July 03, 2003 @07:01PM (#6363899)
    These high prices are just a result of rampant piracy in the ink industry. College students are especially guilty of downloading ink from Kazaa and sharing it with their friends.
  • by cyclist1200 (513080) on Thursday July 03, 2003 @07:46PM (#6364108) Homepage
    that your printer doesn't require a magnum of ink!
  • by Cinematique (167333) on Friday July 04, 2003 @01:23AM (#6365419)
    I got tired of paying $30 per cart for my Epson Color Stylus 777, so I checked out Google [google.com] and discovered that there are a handful of (Chinese?) manufacturers producing generic ink WITH microchips included. This is important because several Epson printers have chips on their replacement ink specifically made to thwart generic ink manufacturers... my model included.

    The old way of refilling these carts was to buy a chip flasher and a bunch of ink, refill the original carts, flash the chip, then reseal the carts... major pain in the ass.

    That's no longer necessary.

    So I ordered a few carts at around $7 each from eink4u.com and paid $40 for 3 black and 2 color carts with shipping. No problems to report thus far.

    Fuck Epson.

    Oh, and there are MANY places other than eink4u selling cheap ink. Look around on Foogle [google.com], or better yet, go to BizRate [bizrate.com].

A method of solution is perfect if we can forsee from the start, and even prove, that following that method we shall attain our aim. -- Leibnitz

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