Printer recommendations

Epson vs Brother vs Canon vs HP
Home and small business inkjet printers can basically be broken down into two different printhead types. Micro Piezo (electronic) heads and thermal heads.Canon and HP use thermal print heads whilst Epson and Brother use electronic heads.  Thermal heads are much cheaper to manufacture and have a shorter life than Piezo heads.  Thermal head printers tend to be cheaper to purchase (as they are cheaper to produce and wear out quicker)
Electromechanical (micro piezo) transfer method
In the electromechanical transfer method, piezoelectric elements deformed by electrical pulses cause ink droplets to be ejected. Deformation of piezoelectric elements puts pressure on the ink chamber through the intermediary of flexible substances, which generates ink ejection energy. The image the the right shows the principle of the electromechanical transfer method. This is the method used in Epson brand home inkjet printers.
Electric thermal transfer method
In the electric thermal transfer method, bubbles are generated in the ink chamber, and the expansive force of the bubbles causes ink droplets to be ejected. The ink is rapidly heated and vaporized by the heater in the ink chamber until bubbles are generated. The pressure of bubbles generates the required ink ejection energy.The image below shows the principle of the electric thermal transfer method. A similar method is used in the Canon and HP printers.
What printers do rihac recommend when using a Inklink™ system 

As a very generalised rule of thumb, electronic print heads last considerably longer and are more reliable than thermal heads. The downside is that they tend to be slower printers than those using thermal heads (although there are some exceptions to this like the Brother Printers like the MFC-J6530DW)

At rihac we see thousands of printers and the assessments we make are based on what problems we see with printers both with and without our ink supply systems.

Epson printers tend to be the best photographic and general use printers of the bunch.
They offer considerably longer print head life and unlike the thermal heads, electronic heads are easy to manually clean.

Brother MFC-J6530DW  RRP $349

Perfect for: Home, small office
Install Difficulty: Very Easy (Single use cartridges)
Install Time: a few seconds
Options: CISS, refillable cartridges and single use cartridges

This new A3 multifunction is ideal for a demanding office environment. It is a really sturdy and solid machine that can print upto 20 pages a minute in colour (22 in monochrome).  We really like this machine (infact we use 4 of them in our office) as it is so well priced for an A3 printer and A3 scanner. There is also it's baby brother the MFC-J5330 which is still A3 printing but only A4 scan for only $209, or big brother the MFC-J6930 that has 2 paper trays, a 100 sheet rear feed tray and a dual sided scanner ($429). These printers use pigment inks which are ideal for a small or larger office environment as they produce razor sharp text and images that won't fade.  The static cartridge bay means it is a breeze to install and the top of our list for home and small office printers. We have a few options available for this printer. Firstly, we have our rihac single use cartridges. These cartridges are extremely large.  The Black cartridge is 68mls which is 3/4 of an inking system and has a page yield of 3,000 pages.  The colour cartridges are 20mls with a page yield of 1,500 pages.  Compare this to some new Epson printers which have as little as 2.6mils of ink in their cartridges. We also offer large refillable cartridges (BK 110mls, CMY 70mls) which are used in conjunction with a chip resetter. There are a few things to consider with the refillable cartridge or CISS option. Firstly the chips used in the refillable cartridges and CISS has a non user replacable battery which lasts around 12 months. This means you need to purchase a set of chips every year, although they are not expansive. The other thing to consider is that the chip resetters are pre-programmed with a set number of resets (either x40 or x120). Once the resets are used you need to replace the resetter, although 120 cartridge resets will likely outlive the printer. The refillable cartridges we offer for these printers are a great option and generally a better option than a CISS (because you have to remove the cartridges to reset either way and the refillable cartridges hold nearly as much in k as a CISS.  But importantly with the dual tray models (5730, 6730 & 6930) the CISS would need to sit level with the first paper tray (7/12 cm above the desk level).


Single Use Cartridges: FIND OUT MORE

Refillable Cartridges: FIND OUT MORE

Canon Maxify Range of Printers MB5160 approx $198 & MB2160 Approx $169

Perfect for: Office
Install Difficulty: Moderate
Install Time: 15-25 minutes (for CISS and refillable Cartridges)
Options: CISS, Refillable Cartridges & Single Use Cartridges

The Canon Maxify range of inkjet printers are built to rival laser printers. Their high speed printing, lets you print, copy, scan and fax – delivering outstanding quality each and every time you use it. You can use the handy 3-inch colour touchscreen, you can use your smartphone or tablet, or you can use MAXIFY Cloud Link, Google Cloud Print or Apple Air Print – from anywhere in the office, or the world! Various sizes available to suit your needs. Rihac offers a CISS, refillable carridges and Single Use Cartridges.  Our recommendation for this printer is either a CISS for really heavy users and Single Use Cartridges for most others users.  Our sIngle Use 2600XL cartridges have 72mls of ink in the Black and 22mls in the colour, so are more than enough for most users.



Refillable Cartridges: FIND OUT MORE

Single Use 1600XL Cartridges: FIND OUT MORE

Single Use 2600XL Cartridges: FIND OUT MORE

NEW   Epson XP-970 - Approximately $399

Perfect for: Home, Studio
Install Difficulty: Relatively Easy
Install Time: 15-25 minutes

In our opinion the Expression XP-970 is the best A3 printer currently available that can be used with a CISS. It's ease of set-up, speed and quality of prints means it is on the top of our list of A3 printers. As a bonus this printer also offers CD/DVD printing and WiFi capability. The XP-970 is printer suitable for a wide range of applications from photographs through to business documents. The XP-970 allows you to produce high quality borderless prints in a wide range of paper sizes, varying from 6"x4" all the way up to A3, meaning it is the perfect printer for people wanting to print a varying range of documents. The rear paper feed means this printer is perfect for using thicker and speciality papers. What we really really really like about this printer is that it has a removable and replaceable waste ink box.....and you even get a spare one of these in the printer box when you buy it.  The waste box is VERY small but at the moment it is also super cheap at around $15...but expect that to change in the future knowing epson


Refillable Cartridges: FIND OUT MORE


EPSON XP-4105 (RRP $119) or Epson XP-4100 (RRP $119)

Perfect for: Budget
Install Difficulty: Moderate
Install Time: 15-25 minutes

These Small-In-One is a sleek little printer great for the moderate home user. It delivers great print quality and its rear feed means you can print on to heavy papers and card stock. Wi-Fi, With the built in scanner and copy this printer is a great little all-rounder which you can pick up for around $100 so it won't break the bank.  The only difference between the two models is that one is exclusive to officeworks. Epson do this so no one has to match Officeworks price becuase strictly speaking they are 'different models'. They are duplex printers and have am LCD screen and can use Apple Air Print. As with most new Epson printer models, epson have upgraded the chip technology on their cartridges. This means no one in the world can make a resetting chip. However, some smart poeple overseas have managed to make a modified firmware' that turns off the printers need for any chips at all, meaning we can still put on a CISS. The downside is that firmware costs $55AU for this model. But when you consider the genuine cartridges for this printer have as little as 2.4mls of ink inside and cost around $60 a set, a CISS contains the same ink inside 154 x 39/212 series cartridges which would cost you $2,277.87!!!      

Chipless firmware Information: FIND OUT MORE

Chipless Firmware activation key: FIND OUT MORE


EPSON Workforce 2860   (RRP around $199)

Perfect for: All Round
Install Difficulty: Moderate
Install Time: 15-25 minutes
Options: CISS & Single Use Cartridges

Basic little multifunction with a multi document feeder and offers duplex print, scan, copy and fax functions. Connects to your wireless network. has all the features of the XP4100/4105 but has the added advantage of an enclosed paper tray. Again this is one of Epson's new printers that use a new type of cartridge chip. That means that you need to install the chipless firmware and buy an activation key (currently $45 for this printer). Once the chipless firmware is installed a CISS can be installed.

Chipless firmware Information: FIND OUT MORE

Chipless firmware activation key: FIND OUT MORE


EPSON Surecolor SC-P600   (RRP around $1,000)

Perfect for: Photo Printing
Install Difficulty: Easy

Install Time: 5 - 10 Minutes per cartridge

The Epson SureColor P600 uses nine individual pigment-based inks, which offer significantly superior resistance to fading and environmental degradation compared to the dye-based inks in most printers. Wired Connection: Hi-Speed USB, Ethernet, Epson iPrint™ Mobile App, Apple® Airprint™, Google Cloud Print™. FIND OUT MORE

Please note: Our inks and InkLink™ Systems are not manufactured by Epson, Brother, HP or Canon. All brand names and trademarks are the property of their respective holders and are used for reference only
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100ml CISS Artisan 725
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