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What inkjet printers have the cheapest ink May 09, 2013 10:00 by Matt Bird


This post has been superseded by our up-to-date guide to the best cheap printers available. We frequently update it and it’s your #1 place to find cheap printing.



Looking for a cheap printer with equally cheap ink? Excellent. We’ve taken information from over 8,000+ products we sell, calculated their running costs to give you some definitive recommendations of the cheapest printers to buy.

If you’re after anything else, as always just leave a comment and we’ll get back to you :)


The best inkjet printer with the cheapest ink…

You’ll need to focus on money saving compatible cartridges and printers that are cheap to buy up front. At the moment you have 2 standout choices.


sx425w1. Any printer that takes the compatible Epson T1295 ink range, such as the Epson SX425w.

Multipack cost per page printed: 1.04p          Individual cost per page: From 1.2p

These printers are easy to find at many retailers, cheap, with brilliant photo and standard print quality. Most of them have scanning and other bonus functionality which increases the value even more.

The printers are not the fastest, and using Epson original inks will cost a small fortune, but using third party inks gives you some of the cheapest home printing around.

They’re slightly more expensive than our second recommendation below, but we believe the quality and ridiculously cheap upfront cost of the printer more than compensate for that.


brother dcp j5252. Any printer that takes the compatible Brother LC1240 inks, such as the Brother DCP-J525w.

Multipack cost per page printed: 0.78p          Individual cost per page: From 1.0p

The new range of Brother DCP-J and MFC-J printers have had strong reviews, and couple very cheap running costs with good quality.

The print quality isn’t as high as the Epson’s above, and the printers cost slightly more to buy up front, but their running costs and reliability are top notch.



Cheap printing using only genuine cartridges…

If you’ve been burned by third party cartridges and would rather stick with the originals you’ll be looking at slightly higher costs, but you probably knew that already :-)

Top Tip: When someone says cheap ink, you invariably think of Kodak; they’re not. When you factor in a single colour cartridge that has to be replaced once one colour runs out, you can do better.


hp 81001. Any printer that takes the HP 950 and 951 inks, such as the HP Officejet Pro 8100.

Multipack cost per page printed: 1.1p          Individual cost per page: From 1.2p

These HP inks are a fantastic blend of quality and running costs, the only downside is the printers are quite expensive to purchase up front.

Otherwise, you’re looking at cheap printing costs, with professional print quality in a machine that can even handle photo prints.

(If you’ve had a bad experience with HP and want something similar, check out the Brother LC1280 XL inks for equally good value).


hp 364 ink2. If you’re after a far smaller printer for occasional home use and only want to use originals, you’re really limited, with costs per page commonly over 2p-3p a page.

Your best option are printers which take the best selling HP 364 ink range.

Multipack cost per page printed: 2p          Individual cost per page: From 3p

They’re reliable machines with tremendous print quality, and as long as you stick to the high capacity HP 364 inks you’ll receive decent running costs.

Literally hundreds of printer models take these cartridges, so shop around for good HP printer deals and check they take the HP 364’s before buying.


And that’s all there is to finding the cheapest inkjet printer. Countless other manufacturers will have cheap printers with attractive looking cartridges, but odds on they’ll give worse value in the long run.

We hope you find these pointers helpful, and if you have any other tips or need further help just leave a comment below :)

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  1. Michael Foster says:

    Can you advise me on how I can reset my epson expression premium printer so that I may use compatible ink.
    Also can you advise me on a printer that can use compatible inks at a price under £60.
    I would be very grateful if you could help me with this matter as I am a 84 year old and the price of epson ink is stretching me too far.

    Regards Michael Foster

    • Matt Bird says:

      Hi Michael,

      I’m not sure what you mean by “reset” your printer, sorry. Compatibles should just work in your printer, ours certainly do and we’ve not had any reported issues of compatibility.

      For printer recommendations your best bet is to pop over to our Buying Guides that are kept up to date with the most suitable printers. From the sounds of it you’re after a good budget one, so have a look here ->

  2. Jack says:

    Mathew – if you can get your hands on any of the Epson L series, (A4 & A3+), they would make an interesting addition to your cheapest ink study. The ink comes in inexpensive bottles, you would be foolish to second guess Epson by trying to source cheaper. Over 2 years now, used less than 1/2 the original ink – had to clean heads 2 – 3 times.

    May not be available in Europe – Asia have them.

    All the best.

  3. Richard says:

    BUT, Epson seem to count how many times you DON’T use one of their cartridges and they eventually shut it down!!!!

  4. Tahir says:

    This has been very informative. Personally i would have also liked to have know which printer brands have the best customer service,with emphasis on location,ie UK based or not,cost of call,issue resolving progress etc, Guarantees?? On site or return to base RTB.

    The reason i say this is because no one likes the inconvenience when their printer breaks down. When it breaks down its a soul crushing experience for most when you have automated phone response to your enquires. 087 numbers to call customer service or tech dept for advise. Post a big lump of a printer because although 3 year warranty its only RTB. Being sent links to resolve issues which have a dead end.

    Coupled with the above valuable advise and information from about ink cartridges we could be on our way to find a selection of the very best cost effective printers. Printers are only as good as the after sales care one receives as printers will always have issues along the way.

  5. Midshire says:

    I think everyone will appreciate this whilst the economy is so bad and money is short. Thanks for sharing.

  6. Anne-Marie Bur says:

    Can you recommend a printer that will print in black even when the colour cartridges have run out – this would be the best money-saving option I think for many people who just print occasional drafts of text….

  7. Sue says:

    I would rather pay a little extra and know that every time i go to use my printer that it will actually work. I have bought what i considered to be a cheaper option in the past, only to find that the ink has dried on the heads so I end up having to pay more to have it cleaned or mended.