In the past few years, the ink and toner industry has grown dramatically. When industry expands, so does its "shop speak" and all around vocabulary. If you are in the market to buy or sell ink and toner but your research has yielded some terms you don't understand; take a look at the list below. Although these are not according to Webster definitions, there should be something to help you out.
Cartridge: The device that contains ink or toner
Empty Core: An empty ink or toner cartridge
Virgin Core: An empty ink or toner cartridge that has never been refilled or remanufactured.
OEM: Original Equipment Manufacture (This refers to any name brand cartridge manufactured under a company's brand for their own brand of printer. Some companies that manufacture their own line of printers also make compatibles for their competitor's line. It is important to note that even though you may be buying a name you recognize, you may not be buying an OEM)
Tricolor: An Ink jet cartridge that contains three ink chambers distributed through one print head. The colors are yellow, cyan (blue), and magenta (red). These three colors are used to make all other colors.
Compatible: this is a cartridge that is manufactured to similar specifications as an OEM. In other words a "generic" brand cartridge.
Remanufactured (aka reman): This is when an empty core is used to completely rebuild the cartridge.
Print head: Part of an inkjet system that applies ink to the paper
Sponge: type of inkjet cartridge that contains ink in one or more sponges. Print heads are usually included on sponge type cartridges.
Tank: Type of inkjet cartridge that only contains ink inside a bag. The bag is punctured when placed inside the printer. Print heads are installed separately with tank type cartridges.
Refill: The process of replacing ink or toner in an empty cartridge. It is not necessarily the same as a remanufacture.
Monochrome: A printer that gives copies of only one color, usually black.
Ink: Liquid marking substance based on dyes or pigments.
Toner: A dry, powdery, magnetic marking substance.
Standard: Type of ink or toner cartridge that is expected to yield a normal number of pages.
High yield: Type of toner or ink cartridge that is expected to yield an extended number of pages.
Page: An 8 1/2" x 11" piece of paper at 5% coverage.
Laser Jet: A printer system that uses a laser to write an image on a drum. Laser Jets use toner.
Ink Jet: A printer system that marks by applying ink.
There are a few more terms, but these should be the ones you run into most often. Good luck in your research!
Jason Jones reminds you that one thing that is essential for choosing the right printer for you or your business is knowing the page yield of its cartridge. This is knowledge you need to determine cost and performance. Visit http://www.inkandtonerinfo.com for a Free Ink and Toner Page Yield Guide. Youll be glad you did! Jason is also happy to answer any questions you have about the ink and toner remanufacturing business in general.