Continuous Ink Printer Systems vs Individual Cartridges

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The availability of multiple printers in the market has stumped home users in choosing the best option. Here we have brought a battle of Continuous ink printer systems vs. individual ink cartridges: Which is more cost-effective? This quick comparison will certainly help you choose a more cost-effective option.

Continuous Ink Printer vs Cartridge: Which Is More Cost-Effective?

Let’s look at the details on the Continuous ink system vs. individual ink cartridges: Which is more cost-effective below to understand things better?

So, here we go:

Introduction To The Continuous Ink System

The continuous ink system doesn’t contain any built-in print head. Instead, these printers use different color tanks and a blank ink tank. These ink tanks are topped up when needed from an ink bottle. An integrated system allows the ink to be supplied directly to the printer.

Printers with continuous ink systems are more commonly familiar as ink tank printers.

Introduction To Individual Ink Cartridges

On the other hand, individual ink cartridges or simply ink cartridges are containers with built-in printing heads. The cartridges are typically small liquid ink boxes developed separately from the machine. However, these cartridges are placed within the printer to print.

Some ink cartridge printers require a single cartridge with magenta, cyan, black, and yellow ink. While others require different cartridges.

When an ink cartridge gets empty, you need to refill or replace that.

Why A Continuous Ink Printer System?

A continuous ink system is more cost-effective for printing than individual ink cartridges. When using an ink tank printer, an airtight tube will deliver the ink to the printhead. Therefore, it is harder for the ink in the tanks to dry even when it isn’t used.

  • Over time ink tanks for printing can get cheaper, but it takes a while to understand the cost-effectiveness of these printers.
  • It is mainly because the buying price of a continuous ink system is generally higher than the other option.
  • However, this printer can ultimately make you spend less on printing in the long run.

UPink CISS Ink Tank

The DIY compatible ink system is a great option for your printer. You can easily print multiple pictures without having to change the cartridges individually.

Downsides Of Continuous Ink Printer System

Ink tank refilling is a little tricky for newbies. However, you can master this art with practice.

The initial setup cost of the continuous ink system is higher.

Why Individual Ink Cartridges?

Individual ink cartridge is typically cheaper than ink tanks. The initial setup cost of these printers is way less than a continuous ink system.

Besides that, the ink cartridge replacement process is pretty straightforward.

Downsides Of Individual Ink Cartridges.

Even though the individual ink cartridge’s setup price is lower, these printers can cause a higher printing price. Over time, ink cartridge replacement can get expensive.

Even the ink in the cartridges can dry out easily when not in use.


The choice comes down to your needs and preferences when it’s about choosing between Continuous ink systems vs. individual ink cartridges. However, in terms of initial setup cost, ink cartridges are cost-effective.

On the other hand, a continuous ink system can let you save in the longer run.

Continuous Ink Printer vs Cartridge – FAQs

Is Refilling Ink Cartridges Cheaper Than Buying New Ones?

Refilling ink cartridges is way cheaper than replacing them. Therefore, you prefer refilling if you want cost-effective printing with ink cartridges.

Should You Buy High-Yield Ink Cartridges?

High-yield cartridges contain the extra capacity for additional ink and toner storage. These cartridges can make your printers go longer without replacing ink cartridges.

Is There Any Disadvantage To Refilling Ink Cartridges?

Ink cartridge refilling can increase overfilling risk. Additionally, choosing any third-parting cartridge refilling can even affect your print quality.