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How Dithering Colors Can Help Save Printer Ink

2010-06-23

As the business world becomes ever more competitive, every company seeks to find ways to cut costs while still retaining a professional and polished image. For many businesses, one easy way to help reduce costs is by using less printer ink. This can be done by double-siding copies, using lower print settings, or only printing essential documents. While these are all effective methods, they are not the only way to help reduce this type of money loss, and there are several other choices that can help a company save the ink they have and make it last as long as possible. One of these choices is dithering colors on all copies that are made.

Dithering is a printing method in which scattered dots of color replaces uniform lines and segments of half-tone colors. On low-resolution settings, these scattered dots look almost identical to typical printing methods, but use less ink in the process. On in-house company documents that do not need to be closely scrutinized, dithering colors can be an effective way to still get across the message and even visual imagery needed, but without wasting colored ink. When combined with options like recycled paper, faster print settings and recycled and refurbished print cartridges, dithering, both of colors and even of black, can help to extend the life of an ink cartridge.

Typically, the option to access dithering will be found in a printer's control panel either within its proprietary software or through the printing options in the word processing or image program itself. As with all printer options, there will be the ability to control the amount of dithering desired, as well as the spacing. The more dithered the colors are, the less ink that will be used, but at a certain point the cost/benefit will be outweighed. If the document cannot be read or the image recognized, too much dithering has occurred. It is also best to use this type of procedure with cheaper, refurbished ink cartridges. If a special presentation needs a particular style or tone, using a brand-new un-dithered print cartridge is most likely the best option.

As with all cost-saving measures, moderation is the key. It is not color dithering in and of itself that will save a company large amounts of money on printer ink, but the use of this technique in combination with other options. In addition to saving money with these techniques, companies can also help to limit ink cartridge and paper waste, which speaks well of environmental stewardship and can be used as a selling point for the company. By combining this technique and other money-saving options, a business can not only save money, but look good doing it.

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