1. Mercurial
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    Mercurial Contributing Member Contributor

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    Techie Problem

    Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by Mercurial, Jul 10, 2011.

    I cannot get my printer to work. It's an old printer (a Canon Pixma InkJet iP1600), but it has done the job for me for years. And I figure, if it hooks up to my computer and knows what to print, than why bother getting a new one until it breaks down?

    So here's the deal:

    I bought two new ink cartridges --one black and one color-- because it was out of ink. (Duh.) Apparently the new black one is fine, but the color one has "been used previously," even though I just now took it out of the box. So I took the color cartridge back and got a new one since it wasn't working. And it still says the color cartridge has been used before, and it wont let me print, not even in black and white.

    Someone pleeeeeeeease tell me how to fix this. :( I need my printer. I'm a student and write a lot of papers, and I also am TRYING to start this art project, but in order to do that, I need my printer to work, and I need a functioning color cartridge.

    Sigh.
     
  2. WriterDude
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    WriterDude Contributing Member Contributor

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    Ah, the printer. Easily some of the best and worst equipment you can get to a computer. It's great when it works, but it's notorious for being difficult to use sometimes. I've been around computers for many years, and I have yet to find a single printer than ever caused any problems. (although when I was working a few years ago, we had a printer that "gave up" causing problems when I entered the room. Seriously, the problem solved itself when I entered the room every time for at least six months.) :D

    Anyway, if it prints black, but not color, it seems it's the color cartridge that's faulty. I have never heard of a previously used cartridge being sold. Did you get it in a store? If so, I suggest you take it back and demand a brand new cartridge.

    Second, are you sure it's the correct cartridge? Look on the cartridge itself, not just the box. Make sure it's the exact type you need. I have an Epson DX4450. That means I need the cartridge for that particullar printer. The cartridge for a DX4050 (I think it was, it's been a while) looks 99% identical to the one I need. But there was a tiny little bit of plastic that wasn't supposed to be there, so I couldn't even install it. It took a long time before I figured it out, and that with the help of the store.

    Even if it looks like there are ink left in the cartridge, you should check through the computer. There should be a "check ink level" somewhere in the printer control panel. It will tell you how much ink there's left of each different color.

    Last, do you use seperate cartridges for red, blue and yellow colors? (at least those are the most common.) If so, how are the ink levels on the others? If so, the color cartridges are usually linked. If one is running low, you won't be able to print any color at all. You will be able to print black, though, as it doesn't use color at all and isn't linked to the color cartridges.
     
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  3. hiddennovelist
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    hiddennovelist Contributing Member Contributor

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    It's actually more common than you thinking, getting an ink cartridge that's previously been used. It does seem weird to have it happen with two separate cartridges like this, though...I would definitely try out a name brand instead of a store brand, see if that helps.
     
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  4. Mercurial
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    Mercurial Contributing Member Contributor

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    Hahah. I have a few friends like that --I wish I had that talent. It makes me feel like an idiot every time I holler for some help, and then magically it's just fine.

    I got it in an office-supplies store, in a box, and it had that little cap on the end under the inky part. So it was definitely new... But as someone else pointed out to me (I posted the same question on Facebook), this happens a lot with store-brand cartridges as opposed to name-brand --and I did get store-brand, because I thought it would be cool to save $3.

    It is definitely the correct cartridge. I looked it up online before I went and then checked with the sales people, just in case, again before I bought it.

    I will see if I can check the ink level, although I've never had to do it before. Something usually will just pop up and tell me that my ink levels are low. I finally sprung for new ones when I was printing documents and was just getting white paper. :p

    I just have two cartridge slots, one for black ink and one for color. I know they both have enough ink because when I took them out of the box and took the plastic protective covers off, ink got on me before I put them in the printer. The thing is, it wont even let me print in black and white unless I have a working color cartridge. I keep hitting the button "Yes, I wanna print anyway even though this cartridge is 'not new,' but it keeps just popping the same screen back up and never prints until I finally just hit "cancel print job."

    Gosh. I am going to take it back, again, and go for a brand-name cartridge this time. Maybe that will work. I'm pretty sure it's not my printer. It's a hardy thing. :p And Heather (hiddennovelist) worked for the company where I got mine a while back, and she said it's really common for the store-brand cartridges to not work. :(
     
  5. WriterDude
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    WriterDude Contributing Member Contributor

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    Ah, so it's not an original cartridge? (I mean it's a cheap copy?) That mightbe it. While the cartridge can look the same as a brand-name cartridge in every way to the nakes eye, it might be a slight difference that causes it to malfunction. There's a reason cheap copies are cheap. ;)
     
  6. Mercurial
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    Mercurial Contributing Member Contributor

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    It was called a replacement cartridge, which I took to mean a new cartridge to replace the cartridge that was in your printer that ran out of ink.

    I guess so! :rolleyes: I figured it would be the same quality... kind of like when I buy store-brand milk; it tastes the same to me! Guess I should have known better when it comes to technology though. Sigh!
     
  7. WriterDude
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    WriterDude Contributing Member Contributor

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    The problem with printers is that they try their best to cause problems. :D Nah, they are quite useful, most of the time. But there are a lot of small electric bits and all that in a printer, and while a cartridge can seem identical to us, it can be very different for a printer. A 'perfect copy' cartridge might not be so perfect after all. As I said, there's a reason they are cheap.

    Cheap milk is still milk, though. It's not likely it will malfunction if you buy the cheap version. ;)
     
  8. hiddennovelist
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    hiddennovelist Contributing Member Contributor

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    With store brand cartridges, they take old, empty recycled cartridges and refill them. The problem with that, though, is that a lot of the time printers still read it as the old cartridge because there's no foolproof way to reset the serial code thingie in the electrical part of the cartridge. I hate refilled cartridges, they're way more of a hassle than they're worth...
     
  9. Pallas
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    Pallas Contributing Member Contributor

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    If not the cartridge, it could be a glitch in the sensor I suppose. My printer fascinates me; it has two blinking intensities for the cartridges when they are low on ink and when it is critical, technology nowadays, though I am easily impressed by blinking lights...:D
     
  10. Mercurial
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    Mercurial Contributing Member Contributor

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    Me too! :D Hahah.

    I really cant wait several weeks to get this fixed --I bought the faulty cartridge while I was home this weekend visiting family-- so I'm going to go buy yet another new cartridge tomorrow or Tuesday and get my money back on the old one whenever I can; hopefully a real, brand-new, super-awesome, brand-name cartridge will alleviate the problem. I'll be sure to keep you all updated if it's not... ;)
     
  11. WriterDude
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    How old is the printer? With the prices of ink cartridges these days, it's often worth getting a new printer instead of just a cartridge. Especially if the printer is a bit faulty. I live in Norway, though. No idea how it's over there. Wherever 'there' is. :)
     
  12. hiddennovelist
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    Do you have a store near your campus? If so, you can always return it at a different store...but if not, yeah, you've got a month to return it, so there's really no hurry.

    You know, I used to always hear people say that when I worked at an office supply store, but it doesn't make sense to me...if you're going to buy a new printer instead of replacing the cartridges, at least be smart and find a printer that will work for your needs and has cheaper cartridges. The cartridges for my printer cost 10/15 dollars. Holla, affordable printer ink.
     
  13. WriterDude
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    If you only think of the price in dollars, yen, cent, kroner or whatever currency you use, then yeah, a new printer is of course more expensive than just a new cartridge. But if you also include things like better print-out quality, less noise, easier to use, printing speed, ease of use and so on and on, a new printer might be just as cheap as using the old one. ;) Not to mention a new printer comes with new cartridges anyway, so you could subtract the cartridges from the price anyway to see how much more you would have to pay.
     
  14. hiddennovelist
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    In terms of better quality, sure, I guess I'll give you that. But the cartridges they come with are often not even full cartridges, so a lot of the time they don't even last very long. Especially since she's mostly using it to print papers she's written for school, I don't think the improved quality of newer printers is going to be a big enough benefit to justify buying a whole new printer...
     
  15. WriterDude
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    True, but newer printers use better technology and wastes less ink, so we can in theory save money over time by using less ink. ;) Not to mention multifunction printers are very cheap. That way you can get a printer, copy machine and scanner all in one. That's what I use. ;)
     
  16. hiddennovelist
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    hiddennovelist Contributing Member Contributor

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    Oy vey...there are pros and cons to upgrading to a new printer, but since I've already talked to Merc about her printing issues and it appears her problems are taken care of, I don't think we really need to get into them.
     
  17. WriterDude
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    Glad we agree I was right. Haha! :D Nah, just kidding. I'm glad the issues are solved. We might leave this thread free of off-topic in case she needs more help later.
     
  18. Steerpike
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    I use a small laser printer that I got a few years ago. The toner runs about $60 bucks, but it lasts me two years or more :)
     
  19. Mercurial
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    Mercurial Contributing Member Contributor

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    Thanks, Heather! :) That was the problem. I bought a brand-name cartridge today. I had to realign it, but out came all my documents that I've been needing! :)

    I don't know how old my printer is --at least five years, but the ink isn't that bad. I pay about $30 for brand-name for color and black ink, which was a steal in comparison to some others that were going for $60 and $70. I don't know what toner is, so I guess mine doesn't need that.
     
  20. hiddennovelist
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    ^Yeah, toner is for laser printers, you've got an inkjet. Glad to hear it worked out with the new ink! :D
     

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