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PostPosted: Wed Dec 27, 2006 2:46 am 
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FG Tissue Paper
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Joined: Tue Sep 14, 2004 10:08 pm
Posts: 3
Location: California
MOCR,

My friend had exactly the same experience with her "free" Dell printer. It also came with the half-empty "starter" cartridges. It seemed to do OK with the text stuff she printed on plain paper. I never tried card models and card stock on it.

It ran out of ink fairly quickly, and she found that new "starter" cartridges would cost almost $50US, which is about what this printer would cost to buy by itself. The full cartridges were considerably more. The cartridges have the print head attached, and the printer doesn't look like an HP, so it probably is a rebadged Lexmark, as others suggested.

On the other hand, my sister got a free Canon printer with a laptop she bought at Fry's. It was the cheapest PIXMA model at the time, and listed for $49. Unlike the Dell, it came with full ink cartridges. It also printed surprisingly good photos on photo paper. That printer was worth getting new cartridges for when they ran out.

Roger


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 27, 2006 6:37 am 
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Paper Model CINC
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Joined: Thu Oct 21, 2004 9:34 am
Posts: 955
Location: Pensacola
I think that pretty well is the way to go: find a printer that works for you--and hang onto it for as long as the manufacturer supplies cartridges. I 've screwed up a few times, trying to save money, with refill kits, and either made a mess, or the colors didn't print true. I use an old HP 932, that still serves me well and plan to keep it as long as it holds up. On the surface--the cartridges do seem expensive--but I only buy one or two per year, along with a ream or so of cardstock....so it's really not too bad--budget ahead. The best way to save your money is to only print what you truly need: For example--do you really need to print the instructions? Rather than using Acrobat Reader to open and print your files....get an inexpensive graphics program, like Photoshop Elements, or download GIMP, and use that to open your files. You can use the selection tools and eraser to remove all the extraneous crap, like pictures and useless verbiage before printing. If you screw up a part--you can likewise use the selection tools to print just that bit. Sure, it takes a few minutes--but the more you do it the more adept you become.

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