The printing industry has set 5% as the standard measure of print coverage. So how does this standard apply to laser printer consumables and the output pages as well? When buying toner cartridges or toner refill kits, notice how these consumables publish a yield rating on its package. Yield rating is expressed as the estimated number of printout pages obtainable from a particular gram load of toner based on the print coverage standard.
To illustrate further, replacement cartridges and refill toners compatible with the Samsung ML 2010D3 toner cartridgeare rated 3000 pages at 5% page coverage. The same standard applies to other replacement printer peripherals such as the photoreceptor drum, laser scanning assembly or fuser assembly; where the expected serviceable life is expressed in number of printed pages at the industry mandated standard of 5% coverage.
How extensive is a page coverage of 5%?
Print coverage actually refers to the amount of toner used to cover a letter-sized piece of paper. Five percent, when used as industry yardstick, actually denotes minimal print coverage. Look up typical business letters or fax cover sheets and that’s how sparse toner coverage is under the 5% standard. From a laymanâ€™s point of view, 5% coverage is equivalent to printing a 1 square inch image on a sheet of paper or printing 2 paragraphs of text (composed of 180 to 200 words) on an A4 size or letter size substrate.
Is this realistic?
The print coverage industry standard will not apply with most workplaces since majority of printouts cover the entire breadth and width of the paper, considering the regular margins set by word processor applications. In construction firms for instance, printouts are produced for bill of materials and workmanship specifications, corporate reports for stockholders; and for contracts and other legal documents serving its various clientele.
For these types of documents, page coverage for monochrome prints would likely fall between 30% to 35%. This way, the 3000 page yield published for the Samsung ML 2010D3 toner cartridge is only good for at least 1,000 pages at 35% coverage. Meanwhile for color laser printers, the reasonable coverage would be between 20% to 35% or 5% to 7% for each of the 4 toner cartridges.
Printing industry think tanks may have been correct in adopting print coverage as the measure, but it would have been more factual if the rate had been raised to the 30% level. No wonder laser printing neophytes can’t help but feel disappointed when the 3000-page rated toner cartridge conks out after the printout of 1000 pages – thinking that they’ve justbeen duped. Well, they ought to learn more! And if toner cartridge pricing is way too hefty considering its limited output, a compatible toner refill kit will help serve laser printer user requirements for a more affordable consumable that delivers the same print quality and yield expected of a replacement OEM toner cartridge.
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