In an effort to help you understand the sometimes confusing terminology surrounding printing and printer cartridges, we’ve put together a handy guide reference guide to explain what all the jargon means. In part one of our Printer Cartridge Terminology Guide we covered specific types of printer cartridges and consumables. Today, we’ll look at some more specific terminology.
OEM or Original
OEM stands for Original Equipment Manufacturer. A printer cartridge that is marked as OEM or Original has been manufactured by the printer manufacturer and carries their branding.
Remanufactured toner and ink cartridges have been rebuilt with mostly new parts after they have been used once. They are usually sold at a cheaper price that original printer cartridges. Using remanufactured cartridges has environmental benefits as well, as they reduce greenhouse gas emissions created in the production of new raw materials and prevent original cartridges from ending up in landfills.
Compatible toner and ink cartridges are manufactured by third-party manufacturers. They have been reverse engineered to match the same features, specifications and print quality as original cartridges. These cartridges are built brand new. They are sometimes referred to as generic printer cartridges as well.
Page yield or page coverage
Page yield is the approximate number of pages an ink cartridge or toner cartridge can print before it is empty. Page yield is calculated at 5% coverage, so you may get less than the quoted number of pages. Page yield serves as an estimate of how many pages you could get out of a given cartridge, but the actual number of page you will get is determined by how and what you print.
We explain this in more depth in our post What Does 5% Coverage Mean?.
Cost per page
Usually given in cents, the cost per page is the approximate amount of money each printed page costs you. To calculate the cost per page for black, take the cost of the ink cartridge or toner cartridge and divide it by the page yield. To calculate the cost per page for colour, divide the price by the page yield. Add each one together with the cost per page for black and you’ll get the estimated cost per page for a colour print.