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So I have always been a frugal girl. I tend to buy the cheaper of two things, thinking it will be the same and not realizing how different it really is until I put the two side by side.


HP asked me to do just that – compare Original HP Ink with refill ink. I got the refill ink from a local refill place and was sent the HP Ink, two HP Deskjet 3510 Printers, paper, and some other supplies. Then I started printing….

Right off the bat I saw a difference. How did I not see this before?? While refill ink was bright, it had “banding” – you know, those weird print lines? HP Ink? NONE. None at ALL.


Ok, I could live with a little banding with my day-to-day printing, right? Not so fast… 


I printed about 30 or so documents a week from each printer. While the HP Ink remained consistent, clear, and band-free, the refill ink got worse and worse. FAST. 


Another thing I noticed – the HP Ink was actually clearer than the refill ink. I had no idea that clarity would come into play with the ink you choose, but it did. It was surprising. 


After printing up about  60 or so documents on my refill ink printer, it suddenly stopped and gave me a “counterfeit ink” warning. No matter what I did, I couldn’t get it to print anymore. The HP Ink printer? Still printing like a champ. 

So what does this tell me? It tells me NOT to skimp on ink. Seeing as my HP Ink has now printed more than double what my refill ink did, and it is clear and sharp, going second-market with ink is NOT the cheaper alternative because you will be buying it more often.