Epson Pushing Firmware Upgrades That Disable Third-Party Ink Usage

cageymaru

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Epson has been accused by the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) of issuing firmware upgrades that disable the ability for Epson printers to use 3rd party ink supplies. Many consumers used 3rd party sources for their ink to save money and conveniences such as upgrades to a continuous ink supply. After a printer has been upgraded with the newest firmware, the customer loses the ability to use 3rd party ink cartridges and supplies. The EFF letter addresses the complaints from Epson customers that they weren't informed that the firmware upgrade would disable 3rd party ink solutions. Also Epson printer owners say that they purchased the printer because it allowed for 3rd party ink supplies to be used.

It is not clear that customers were informed when buying an Epson printer that their ability to use third-party ink options could or would be later disabled. Moreover, it does not appear that Epson informed customers when it sent the firmware update that it would disable third-party alternatives to Epson cartridges. Epson's conduct may therefore be misleading or deceptive within the meaning of the Deceptive Trade Practices-Consumer Protection Act.
 

drescherjm

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Sadly at one time or another all printer manufacturers have pulled similar crap, and eventually seem to get slapped down over it.

Yet here we are again.

Does this prohibit firmware blocking or just the litigation over remanufactured parts? The article was not very specific on what this ruling actually means.
 

The Mad Atheist

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I just got an update request. Since I have one more set of third party ink, I am gonna keep declining the update. Hopefully my printer still works.
Soon they'll force automatic updates for security purposes.
It'll print on your work if you like to upgrade the firmware for better quality. lol

I just simply got tired of inkjet bulslhit and bit the bullet and bought a decent laser printer. Best investment evar.
Same here, got tired of buying ink because heads got clog because I didn't use it much and cleaning them really didn't help. I could just leave my laser printer untouched for months and works flawlessly when I needed it.
 

T_A

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Laser printer is great , but if you want color printing its too expensive for home usage, even corporations have some limits on color printing (technical or by rules)
generally speaking , if you don`t go for all-in-one ink jet printers , its cheaper to just replace the printer when it runs out of ink from the original cartridges .
 
D

Deleted member 93354

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Laser printer is great , but if you want color printing its too expensive for home usage, even corporations have some limits on color printing (technical or by rules)
generally speaking , if you don`t go for all-in-one ink jet printers , its cheaper to just replace the printer when it runs out of ink from the original cartridges .

No it's not. That's a myth because the cartridges they give you are not standard size. They are actually considerably smaller in terms of ink capacity. It's about a break even cost wise. And constantly replacing your printer isn't environmentally smart.

Brother Laser is the way to go.

But when it comes to photo prints, you can have my HP 7960 when you pry it from my cold dead hands. No one has offered a comparable replacement in 15 years.
 

sfsuphysics

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Yeah I was surprised with my new laser printer when looking up third party toner replacement that there's a chip you need to transfer over, like WTF?! Luckily it looks like a simple enough swap over, and in fact they actually give information on what to do and warnings to make sure you don't throw away the chip.
 

PeaKr

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Sep 6, 2004
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Yeah, I'm down to recommending Brother for personal/soho use and any printer I configure gets the basic print driver, NAPS2 for scanning and talks to the LAN only. Oh and if it ain't broke, don't fix it.
 

MatthewK

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Aug 12, 2004
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Personally I'm happy with my Canon Pixma MX922 printer, best printer I've ever had and I've had a lot of them going all the way back to an Epson dot matrix. 3rd party ink is super cheap too.
 

HorseproofBacon

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Laser printing is all fine and dandy, but at $100 per cartridge, replacement gets a little pricey if you do a lot of bulk printing.
 

drescherjm

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There are (at least used to be) some lasers that have official cartridges that cost as much as ink however in general laser is usually cheaper per page.
 

Zarathustra[H]

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I just simply got tired of inkjet bulslhit and bit the bullet and bought a decent laser printer. Best investment evar.


Ditto. I've been all laser since about 2010 now.

I would never even consider going back.

Expensive cartridges that run out right away if you use them, and dry out and become unusable if you don't.

And then the heads get dirty and need special cleaning and it's a mess.

For a while I had an old HP OfficeJet ink based multifunction printer. Then they were throwing out a low page count HP LaserJet P2055dn at work, so I rescued it.

I liked that old black and white LaserJet so much that I got a second color laser multifunction printer, so I have a shelf with two printers now, one forregular black and white prints, the other for when I need color or need to scan anything.

Lasers are a little more money up front, but the lack of long term frustration make them well worth it.
 

vegeta535

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Inkjet printers are the biggest racket in tech industry. Nothing has improved over the past 10 years. Ink cartridges are still expansive and like others said you might as well just get a new printer. They replaced my laser printer that died off with the a damn HP inkjet that blows. I only print in black and have to change all the cartridges out serveral times a year. A full set costs the company $30 more then the toner cartridge I use to get. That toner cartridge lasted a year. I never printed much on my home printer but ever damn time I did go to print at home th cartridges were expired and wouldn't let me print. I tossed that printer and just used my work printer. Never again will I buy a HP printer. Inkjet or.otherwise.
 

MMitch

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Bought a Brother all-in-one like 12 years ago, made sure chinese copy works and bought a box of ink... 10 of each colors plus 20 black... for 25 CAD$ shipped.
Still have half the box and they still works...

Printer OEM are raping us, we need to read before buying...
 

Burticus

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I thought all printers had chipped ink carts for years now?

Yeah I got sick of the ink BS too since I sometimes print large volumes of B&W stuff. I got a Brother cheapo 2270DW laser about 5 years ago (under $100, might have been $79) and the generic Linkyo whatever toner carts are under $10 and they last forever.

I still have a cheapie ($30) Canon inkjet for scanning and the occasional copy or color print. I need to try my luck with refilling the carts but I don't want to make a huge mess with the syringes.
 

nilepez

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Ditto. I've been all laser since about 2010 now.

I would never even consider going back.

Expensive cartridges that run out right away if you use them, and dry out and become unusable if you don't.

And then the heads get dirty and need special cleaning and it's a mess.

For a while I had an old HP OfficeJet ink based multifunction printer. Then they were throwing out a low page count HP LaserJet P2055dn at work, so I rescued it.

I liked that old black and white LaserJet so much that I got a second color laser multifunction printer, so I have a shelf with two printers now, one forregular black and white prints, the other for when I need color or need to scan anything.

Lasers are a little more money up front, but the lack of long term frustration make them well worth it.
Same, but some use ink for photos and fine art and those that do often like to use 3rd party inks and papers to get a specific look.

That said, I do sympathize with the printer companies if people use other inks in a $100 printer, because those are sold at a loss with the expectation they'll make money back on ink and possibly paper, but if you've allowed it, removing is pretty crappy.

Personally, I print (B/W) on my laser printer and if I need to print a photo, I'll just order it over the internet. Prints from photo shops are almost always better than what I can get on a consumer printer (even a $500 printer).
 

Merc1138

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Ditto. I've been all laser since about 2010 now.

I would never even consider going back.

Expensive cartridges that run out right away if you use them, and dry out and become unusable if you don't.

And then the heads get dirty and need special cleaning and it's a mess.

For a while I had an old HP OfficeJet ink based multifunction printer. Then they were throwing out a low page count HP LaserJet P2055dn at work, so I rescued it.

I liked that old black and white LaserJet so much that I got a second color laser multifunction printer, so I have a shelf with two printers now, one forregular black and white prints, the other for when I need color or need to scan anything.

Lasers are a little more money up front, but the lack of long term frustration make them well worth it.

Yeah, I've had people ask me about buying a printer for home use and as soon as I mention "laser" they panic at the price because it's not a $50-$100 inkjet, even though they'll only ever print 30 pages a year and would need to swap the ink cartridges every few months due to non-use anyway which would cost them more than just getting a laser. This crap was tiresome in the late 90s, it amazes me consumers just refuse to get smarter about this.
 

Crackinjahcs

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I wonder if there's a way to push Magnuson-Moss into this. I know it is specifically about warranties but this section seems relevant by extension:

"(c) No Warrantor of a consumer product may condition his written or implied warranty of such product on the consumer's using, in connection with such product, any article or service (other than article or service provided without charge under the terms of the warranty) which is identified by brand, trade, or corporate name; except if—(1) the warrantor satisfies the Commission that the warranted product will function properly only if the article or service so identified is used in connection with the warranted product, and (2) the Commission finds that such a waiver is in the public interest. Publication in the Federal Register, and permit public comment on, all applications for waiver of the prohibition of this subsection, and shall publish in the Federal Register its disposition of any such application, including the reasons therefor."

If your ink is required when 3rd party ink was available should mean you have to provide it free of charge.

Breaking compatibility with existing 3rd party ink supplies that did work is a shit move.
 

DangerousMan

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I get images specialist ink for my canon printer at a good price, about $30usd for a 12oz kit (5 refills, maybe more) that last me around 1 year, sometimes longer. I don't use my printer much so to make sure it doesn't get clogged I have it set to print a nozzle check twice a week. I also have a monochrome laser for when I need to print lots of pages quickly.

My printers are many years old and I don't think I've ever updated them, guess that makes me lucky. I was however forced somewhat to buy a newer inkjet as my older one doesn't work with win10.
 

cyclone3d

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Laser printing is all fine and dandy, but at $100 per cartridge, replacement gets a little pricey if you do a lot of bulk printing.

Where are you getting your cartidges from? What printer?

I can get a full set of toner carts for my HP for around $50.
 

Burticus

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I've got a working laser printer with a friggin' parallel port. That thing just keeps working.

HP Laserjet 3 or 4? I dug one of those out of the dumpster and it dimmed the lights in my entire house when it started printing. I think HP got rid of parallel port after LJ 4.
 

BloodyIron

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If you're still using inkjet, then you're willfully ignoring industry advice that's been around for literally decades. Namely that inkjet is a bait and switch rip off industry.
 

likeman

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inkjet with a constant ink refill system are quite cheap to run (official or custom)

even epson sell them now as an official part and there own ink they sell in the bottle is not bad price as well ( https://www.epson.co.uk/for-home/ecotank )

i set up one epson ecotank printer for a company as they needed ink based printer for one task as there last 2 injet printers died within a year , no problems with the epson ecotank and using epson bottle ink (everything els is laser)

i remember the days of daisy wheel printers (floor shaker)
 

Hagrid

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I have not used an inkjet in a long time. People still use them?

I do not print much so my laser cartridge lasts for a super long time. I had one printer for years with the same one.(big industrial printer I got for super cheap with a new cartridge)
 

IcePickFreak

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I'm on a Brother all-in-one laser here too, has worked flawless. I've been on a knock-off toner replacement for at least a year now with zero issues, iirc it was $20. The one time I wanted to actually print some color pics in the past couple years, I went to the Fed Ex/Kinko's that's a mile away and picked them up.

At this point, I wouldn't switch back to an Inkjet even if the ink was affordable. The laser printer just works even if it's been sitting in sleep mode for a month.
 

Icon_Charlie

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Laser printer is great , but if you want color printing its too expensive for home usage, even corporations have some limits on color printing (technical or by rules)
generally speaking , if you don`t go for all-in-one ink jet printers , its cheaper to just replace the printer when it runs out of ink from the original cartridges .

For my color I went xerox colorqube series of copiers. Its pretty much using wax as ink and the color and cost is pretty damned good.
 

N4CR

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I just simply got tired of inkjet bulslhit and bit the bullet and bought a decent laser printer. Best investment evar.
#ribbonprintergangstrong

If I get a printer it'll be one of those modern dot matrix jobs. Cheapest running costs of all and impossible to trace in single pass mode ;)
 

N4CR

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HP Laserjet 3 or 4? I dug one of those out of the dumpster and it dimmed the lights in my entire house when it started printing. I think HP got rid of parallel port after LJ 4.
Used to work on these, the 5p has parallel and lan support. Most reliable toner printers I worked on short of department sized commercial Ricoh rigs. Even school kids couldn't kill them..
 

Dk975

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Sep 24, 2005
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Inkjets are such a ripoff. I like this video, , this guy tells it like it is, and I agree with all of it. Laser printers aren't too expensive. I picked up a Brother HL-2320D from Best Buy for $60. The replacement cartridges are $38 for a normal sized one and $53 for the XL one. Don't forget you have to change the drum for every 12 cartridges you use, and that runs about $50 to $80. This is a nice black and white laser, nice quality especially compared to inkjet black only and it super fast.
 
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