Reasons for the growing popularity of monochrome inkjet printers and for whom Epson MONOCHROME inkjet printers are generally created

It just so happened that the definition of “monochrome printer”, for many users of printing technology has become “synonymous” with laser. It is not surprising: due to the nature of the technology colored lasers are still expensive and cumbersome. However, as devices for printing black and white documents, they have long remained popular among various categories of users who either did not need color printing, or: “Well, please, well, you don’t need to“.

Already 10 years have passed since the release of the first device in the Epson Printing Factory line, of which more than 50 million have been sold worldwide, and we still live with the stereotype that a laser device is the only true version of an office “monochromatic”.

Considering that how often we receive questions on this topic through the form “Expert advice”And in calls to technical support, it was decided to collect in one post all the available information on the topic, in order to once again draw attention to the fact that monochrome laser printing has a real alternative.

There is something to tell and compare:

  • cost of a print;
  • power usage;
  • service.

Under the cut, all this in the most condensed form, as well as a brief overview of models and a few cases from users.

“I don’t need a color printer”

To begin with, I will briefly tell you why such devices appeared in the Epson catalog.

Monochrome laser printers have long occupied their niche and do quite well where b / w printing is required. Everything seems to be clear with “inkjet”: they are more profitable where color printing is required, they have more opportunities to work with different formats, types of media and types of ink. Inkjet printing is a virtually uncontested option for printing signage, banners, CAD, GIS, textile printing, etc.

However, it is no secret that color printing in the office is not very popular. Therefore, many customers look at our inkjet solutions and say: “Very cool and a lot of ink. Is there the same, but only black and white, so as not to overpay for the possibility of color printing?

Considering that we have already “traveled around the ears” enough around the world with our cartridgeless printers and MFPs, and still there are users who simply do not notice color devices, some time ago Epson management decided to release a line monochrome printers and MFPs… And suddenly they were noticed and even began to actively buy.

And now – to the specifics.

Cost per page is lower

I remember that seven years ago, our PR specialists bombed the press with releases, where they showed data from IDC reports with a comparison cost of ownership… There was a picture like this:

Now the inkjet operators have gone even further. As an example, I will give links to the price list, where models are sorted by cost per page… There is a little confusing interface, so I will give links to monochrome laser and monochrome inkjet with CISS

However, even if we take the “average temperature in the hospital,” the difference is obvious. By our own calculations, Epson monochrome inkjet devices print A4 sheet in about 22 kopecks (calculated as of 12.2020). At the same time, for laser printers, the cost per printed sheet will be on average three times more expensive.

But don’t believe me, be sure to check! And the next time you plan to buy a “monochromatic”, perhaps this information will be useful to you.

Energy consumption – less

Monochrome inkjet printers use Epson’s patented piezoelectric printing technology Heat-Free: Ink is transferred to the paper without heating the ink or the head by a point effect of an electric pulse on the piezoelectric element. Compared to a laser print path that uses a fuser (“oven”) and drum (s), it is easy to assume that the difference in power consumption will be significant.

And there is: inkjet printer consumes up to 96% less energy during printing, when compared with similar laser devices (conventionally it is 18 W versus 400+ W).

And it can make a difference in certain cases. For example, when several inkjets can be powered from an ordinary uninterruptible power supply together with a computer… And if there are many devices installed in the office, then even the savings on E / E bills can be significant. We in Russia and some CIS countries are accustomed to the fact that electricity is relatively inexpensive, and in European countries E / E prices are such that be healthy

Ready to print – always

Our inkjet printer produces the first sheet after about 5-7 seconds after receiving the print job (video proof, see from 0:25): it does not need to warm up the “stove”, which will then “bake” the toner on the paper. Accordingly, for those who print frequently, but 4-5 sheets at a time, inkjet printing is better suited.

Below in the video is a comparison of Epson with laser. In the first 4-5 pages, the inkjet printer outperforms the competitor, although the laser prints all 16 pages of the test faster.

You can also pay attention to the cost of devices in the video, this is curious.

Consumables – less

Fuser (“stove”), transfer unit and drum – the minimum set of resource elements of a laser printer. In addition, a drum is needed for each color, if the device is color. Due to the constant changes in temperature and other physical and electrostatic conditions, all these parts have a very specific limited resource. And in case of failure, they will cost a lot. Especially the oven. Those who have previously encountered a fuser failure and found out in the SC the cost of a new + replacement understand very well what is at stake.

Compared to laser printers, piezoelectric inkjet technology has fewer additional expendable, resource components that need to be changed periodically. These are ink, paper pick-up rollers (although their resource is tens of thousands of sheets) and a container for waste ink. Moreover, the latter in office printing machines can be changed independently. But the print head and all other internal mechanisms of the printer are designed for the entire life of the printing device.

Environmental friendliness – higher

… due to the absence of ozone emission (in the domestic classification – substances of the highest hazard class).

By the way, in China, any printing equipment must be certified and receive an environmental label that the emission of ozone does not exceed certain values ​​and complies with the standards adopted in the country. Our Chinese colleagues have already received the corresponding certificate for all models of the EcoTank series of cartridgeless printers.

Such you definitely have not seen advertising on this topic:

Service is easier

Those who at least once tried to refill a laser printer cartridge with toner on their own will hardly forget this entertaining procedure. Replacing an entire toner cartridge is much easier, but also more expensive. At the same time, to refuel, say, a cartridgeless inkjet, special skills are not required: open the ink container, insert it into the printer vertically (for “sippy”) and you’re done.

See at 00:23:

Epson monochrome product lines at a glance

It would be wrong not to talk about the monochrome Epson devices that I just praised so diligently.

Epson EcoTank (or “Printing Factory” in our opinion)

The most popular cartridgeless monochrome models are, of course, “Printing Factory“. Refueling from containers, designed for home or work in small groups – 5-15 people. Print speed in draft mode – 38 pages per minute, ISO – 20. In this case, the first page will appear after 5-7 seconds. There is a limit on the load – it should not exceed 20 thousand pages per month.

A fairly detailed review of one monochrome EcoTank model was made even by the editors of Igromania (see from the 9th minute, because first we talk about the color model):

There is also a “simpler” video – with experience after 8 months of use.

Epson WorkForce

Two monochrome models are still available in the “middle” speed class: printer Epson M5299 and IFIs Epson M5799

Even though they are not refueled directly, like Fabrika, they still use very high-capacity ink packs, so to speak, “overgrown cartridges”. They come in 5, 10 and 40 thousand pages. These machines can handle printing up to 45,000 pages per month. Print speed – up to 34 pages per minute in draft mode, 24 pages ISO. The first page comes out in five seconds.

Epson WorkForce Enterprise – “the best” in all respects. I talked about devices of this class in detail in the post about a level 80 printer.

Epson WorkForce Enterprise WF-M20590D4TW – a new model for performing monochrome printing tasks. Super-durable linear print head, up to 100 pages per minute, five seconds per first sheet and up to 100,000 pages per month.

Summary table with main differences:

Pages per minute, ISOMaximum per month, pages
WorkForce Enterpriseone hundred100,000

And some cases

Finally – some interesting examples of the introduction of monochrome devices with a “cold” head in different industries. Let’s start with WorkForce Enterprise. A year ago, we already talked about the first installations of this equipment, and now fresh projects have appeared.

To the printing house of the Higher School of Economics (Higher School of Economics) monochrome model Epson WF-M20590D4TW stood to replace two laser MFPs at a copy and duplicating area on the street. Staraya Basmannaya: saved usable area, won in speed.

IN Irkutsk State Transport University (IrGUPS) color Epson WorkForce Enterprise WF-installed in the publishing and printing center. The apparatus helped to reduce the costs of producing educational literature. Users note that when printing “short” runs, the cost competes with risography.

In the Stockholm office of Bonver Logistics, one of the largest logistics operators in Sweden, annually print about 1.5 million waybills, waybills and other documents. After the laser printer spoiled a thousand of the required 5000 pages (the toner ran out, but they did not notice it right away), we purchased Epson Workforce Enterprise. Now one filling is enough for them for 150 thousand documents.

Let’s move on to the desktop models. IN doctors’ offices of Minsk polyclinic №30 printers recently appeared Epson M1170… Previously, they used laser, but they often failed due to a small printable area – for example, when printing recipes. The doctors also appreciated the fact that inkjet monochroms do not emit a specific smell when printing, which is typical for laser devices. This is important in small rooms.

The Department of Healthcare and Social Protection of the Population of the Belgorod Region tested our devices for a year and a half, according to the results they took more thousands of monochrome EcoTanks. Epson М2170 works in doctors’ offices, the load is about 500 pages per month per device. Among other things, doctors appreciated the fast-drying pigment ink that does not smudge when highlighted with a marker or water ingress. In addition, over time, they do not crumble, as is the case with prints from laser printers.

At the Arkhangelsk Clinical Hospital in doctors’ offices they put desktop cartridgeless models: 18 Epson M3170 MFPs and 54 Epson M1170 printers. When choosing, the quality and speed of printing were evaluated, and the total cost of ownership was calculated for several years in advance. Liked that it was easy to pour ink.


Monochrome inkjet models are becoming more and more, now they appear at other major equipment manufacturers. There is indeed a demand for them, and we see it.

Finally, we have a post about “monochromics”, in which all the main “chips” are collected and arranged on the shelves. I hope you found it useful too!

Thank you for attention.

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