HP fails to dodge lawsuit over scanners that run out of ink

Originally published at: HP fails to dodge lawsuit over scanners that run out of ink | Boing Boing


From Dave Kellet’s Sheldon


Avoid ink jet printers altogether; get a laser printer from the likes of Brother or possibly Canon. Brother has an MFP color laser that Just Works, supports printing from apple devices, only complains that you’ve put in a non-OE toner but still runs, and doesn’t have drivers that phone home.

(I’ve heard good rumblings about the Epson Inktank style printers, but don’t have any experience with using or servicing them.)


I second the Brother. I have a ten year old color laser that was dropped and it still works. The lcd screen is cracked, but it prints fine. I’m pretty sure over the ten years I have only replaced each of the toner cartridges once.
It was a bit pricier than other options when I got it, it it is worth it to have a printer that will work every time you need it.



HP is dead to me.


HP manages the impossible feat: make ink literally more expensive than blood.

Human blood costs about $17.27 an ounce, silver about $34 an ounce. But both are bargains compared to the ink sold to the owners of inkjet printers, which can exceed $80 an ounce. Meanwhile, the ink used to print newspapers costs about 16 cents an ounce.


I have a Canon inkjet, and I’m waiting for the black extra-large cartridge to be used up so I can buy a laser. I don’t print a lot.

The “press and hold the Stop button” trick works to force the printer to work even with an empty colour cartridge, but it still tries to use the colour cartridge when printing a page with colour text, leading to some shitty results.

However, I did some digging, and buried deep, deep in the settings, behind a locked door marked “Beware of the Leopard”, I found a setting that tells the printer to use the black cartridge and only the black cartridge for everything. Now text prints just fine. The only downside is that for every print command a little message pops up on the task bar, warning me that I am inadvertently about to make a horrible mistake that will ruin my life. Clicking “I know what I said” allows the printing to go ahead.


See also:

Seconding the recommendation to get a Brother laser printer. I have a black & white one and I annoy it by buying off-brand toner cartridges but it still does its thing very reliably.


I had an HP inkjet about a decade ago, maybe a little less – long enough ago that ink subscriptions were not yet a thing, but recently enough to be very familiar with needing color ink just to print black-and-white. And somehow the color ink would disappear even though I almost never printed in color. I seem to recall discovering a “black-and-white only” setting somewhere in the driver that mostly solved that, as the color ink would still get used during cleaning cycles. At that time, I could still scan without ink. Weirdly, the printer worked fine with my Sony Vaio laptop running Linux, but refused to talk to my wife’s HP laptop running Windows.

Anyway, all of that was already enough for us to ditch a nominally functioning printer and replace it with a Brother laser (which I first learned about here on BoingBoing and is probably the single most valuable thing I ever took away from this site). I can’t think of one single problem or frustration we have ever had with that printer. If I ever ditch it, it will be because it is broken or I absolutely need to print in color at home. And in either case, it will be replaced with another Brother, provided they don’t join HP in their shenanigans.

I completely swore off HP after that, though I did accidentally buy an HP monitor without realizing until it was unboxed and set up. Fortunately there are no HP-controlled consumables involved, though I wouldn’t put it past HP to invent “pixel ink” or the like…


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