Replacing ink cartridges in a printer can sometimes cost as much as the printer itself. It’s no surprise then that many printer users opt for the more affordable compatible cartridges when replacing the ink. But, are compatible cartridges as good as original cartridges, or could they actually damage printers? Here are some of the pros and cons:


Original printer ink cartridges are formulated to the specifications of the printer manufacturers. They are designed to produce sharp, realistic, high-quality photo prints. However, users who mostly print documents (rather than photographs) are unlikely to notice much difference.


Original cartridges are designed to prolong the life of printers and guarantee their reliability. Some low-quality compatible cartridges could clog prints heads, leak or cause damage to the printer mechanism. However, this is unlikely in reality. Compatible cartridges from reputable manufactures are likely to have been thoroughly tested to ensure that they won’t cause damage to a printer.


A major benefit of compatible cartridges is that they cost considerably less than original cartridges. Not only that, but they often also contain much more ink, so will need replacing less often. This not only benefits printer uses but also the environment.

The choice over whether to use original or compatible cartridges is entirely down to the printer user, but compatible cartridges are continually improving. Manufacturers of compatible cartridges are constantly striving to match the quality and reliability of genuine cartridges. Nowadays, many compatibles are almost indistinguishable from the real thing.