printers

What's a good printer that's cheap on ink?

Printer ink

Episode 1150

Donald from Lion, IL

Donald would like to find a printer that's really good with ink. Leo says that companies don't really care about selling printers anymore, which is why they're so cheap. They make up the money with ink. Ink per gallon is one of the most expensive fluids around. They won't let consumers use third party cartridges, and they actually use circuitry to prevent it. It requires special formations of ink to print it out. And much of the ink doesn't get used on the page.

How can I print from my iPad?

Printer

Episode 1141

Eric from Cathedral City, CA

Eric has an iPad and wants to be able to print wirelessly with his printer. But AirPrint doesn't work on it. Leo says that probably means his printer doesn't support AirPrint technology. There's more than one way to add support for this, though. Before AirPrint, there were apps that could do it. They were kind of kludgy, sending the file to the app and then to the printer.

Can I turn an old printer into an internet enabled printer?

Printer

Episode 1141

Nick from Belmar, NJ

Nick has heard about a technology that could turn any printer into an internet enabled computer. Leo says that the current state of the art is wireless, and using AirPlay, he can Air Print. But if he doesn't have that capability, then XPrintServer can take a USB printer and turn it into a internet enabled and networked printer. If it's older, then it may or may not work. HP did have a technology called JetDirect which did it.

(Disclaimer: xPrintServer is a sponsor)

Does my printer have a memory that can be hacked?

printer

Episode 1120

Mike from Orange County, CA

Mike has a printer that he needs to have repaired, but he's worried that the printer memory could get hacked. Leo says that it's definitely possible. But Leo doesn't think it's really a cause of concern. At best, it'll only remember the last job it had. So it's not really that big of an issue, just a theoretical concern. Just because the memory is there, doesn't mean it can be accessed or that it will even stay there once it's unplugged.

Should I buy my daughter a printer for college?

Episode 1112

Mark from Syracuse, NY

EyeDoc Mark's daughter is going to University and he wants to know whether or not she'll need a printer. Leo says that she doesn't really need to bring a printer because Universities provide them, but she may need to pay for each page. That's why Mark is thinking about buying her one for herself. Leo advises getting a laser printer. They're cheaper to use per page and the printer toner lasts a lot longer. A good black and white printer will cover most of her needs. If she needs color, then she can use the printers at the school and pay for it.

What laptop should I get?

MacBook Pro with Retina display

Episode 1101

Jeff from Valencia, CA

Jeff's laptop is over 10 years old and he's ready to finally get rid of it. But there's so many choices for replacing it. Leo says it's important to think about anything out of the ordinary or unusual he'd want to do with it. If he has a specific software package that requires a certain operating system, that could help make the decision. Should he get Windows 7? Leo says that some machines come with Windows 7, including some from Dell. But Windows 8.1 is the current version and even though people hate it, it's the OS moving forward.

Is it worth it to refill printer ink cartridges?

ink cartridges

Episode 1099

Gordon from Lakeland, FL

Gordon says that inkjet ink is obscenely expensive. Leo agrees and it doesn't have to be. That's why printers are so cheap, because they make up for it with ink purchases. Gordon is wondering if it would be worth it to buy inkjet refills. Leo has traditionally avoided refills because the ink usually isn't as good. It also may violate his printer's terms of service, which would void the warranty. Also, some printer cartridges also contain the printer head. Refilling the cartridge won't clean the head and he could end up with more clogs. That's why Leo recommends Laser printers.

How can I get wireless printing to work with my HP printer?

Add Printer in OS X

Episode 1088

Mike from Denver, CO

Mike has an old HP printer and he wants to use the wireless printing option. It works great wired, but he has issues printing through Wi-Fi. It says his printer isn't connected. How can he get the computer to recognize the printer?

Leo says that he'll have to go into the printer settings and tell it what the Wi-Fi access point is. He should remove the USB connection and have it rediscover the printer. Uninstall everything first and then press "plus" in the Printer section of OS X's settings, and he should be able to add it.