When shopping for ink and toner cartridges, there are a few different options to choose from, the main three being original (OEM) printer cartridges, remanufactured printer cartridges and compatible printer cartridges.

With various different options available, it is important to understand the differences between them. In this blog, we will be discussing the differences and the pros and cons of all of the different types of printer cartridges.



Original (OEM) printer cartridges



Original cartridges, also known as OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) cartridges are produced by the original printer manufacturer and these cartridges are specifically designed to work seamlessly with the corresponding printer model that they are made for. For example, original Canon toner cartridges are manufactured by Canon and original Epson ink cartridges are manufactured by Epson.

Pros of original printer cartridges: 

  • Guaranteed compatibility. 
  • Guaranteed reliability. 
  • Offer better print quality. 
  • Covered by printer warranty.


Cons of original printer cartridges:


  • Higher price compared to alternatives.
  • Subscription cartridges can’t be used in other printers, nor used once subscriptions are cancelled.



Compatible printer cartridges



Compatible printer cartridges are produced by third-party manufacturers, not by the printer company. They are ink and toner cartridges that are made specifically for your branded printer, but they are not made by the printer manufacturer.

Pros of compatible printer cartridges: 

  • Lower cost compared to original cartridges
  • Similar print quality to original cartridges
  • Designed to fit specific printer models 


Cons of compatible printer cartridges: 

  • Potential compatibility issues 
  • Potentially lower quality prints than original cartridges 


Buying compatible printer cartridges can be an excellent way to save money, but it is extremely important to buy from a reputable supplier, such as TonerGiant so that you do not have to worry about low quality. At TonerGiant, we manufacture a range of compatible ink and toner cartridges and they are all made to the highest standards and will be 100% compatible with your printer.

Remanufactured printer cartridges



Remanufactured printer cartridges are recycled original cartridges that have been cleaned, inspected, and refilled with ink and toner. Remanufactured cartridges use the same shell as original printer cartridges, so they will look very similar to OEM cartridges. 

In order to get a remanufactured cartridge, the cartridge will be disassembled, cleaned and then tested for any damages. The cartridge will then be reassembled and refilled with ink or toner, and then it will be tested to ensure optimal print quality.

Pros of remanufactured printer cartridges:

  • Lower cost compared to original cartridges 
  • Environmentally friendly, reducing the amount of waste 
  • Wide availability for various printer models 


Cons of remanufactured printer cartridges: 


  • Quality and reliability may vary 
  • Potential compatibility issues 


Remanufactured are also a great way to save money when buying printer cartridges, and they are also environmentally friendly. However, as with compatible cartridges, it is extremely important to buy from a reputable supplier, such as TonerGiant, so that you can be assured that there are no compatibility issues with your printer and that they are high quality.




One of the biggest differences between original, compatible and remanufactured printer cartridges is the price. Generally compatible and remanufactured printer cartridges are much cheaper than original printer cartridges. 

It’s normal for printer manufacturers to sell cheap printers as they know that if customers buy their original ink and toner cartridges, they will make long-term profits. However, buying compatible ink and toner cartridges can be substantially cheaper and save customers a lot of money. 

Remanufactured cartridges are also usually cheaper than original cartridges, however, they may be more expensive than compatible cartridges due to the additional steps that are involved in the remanufacturing process. 



Original cartridges, manufactured by the printer company, are typically the most expensive option. However, when looking at the prices of printer cartridges, if you are choosing compatible printer cartridges due to the cost, we would recommend making sure that the company you are buying from is a reputable supplier so that you can ensure that you are purchasing high-quality compatible cartridges. 





The quality difference between compatible, remanufactured and original ink and toner cartridges can vary based on several different factors. Original printer cartridges, produced by the printer’s manufacturer, are designed to work seamlessly with the corresponding printer model and are known to produce the highest quality prints. Printer manufacturers will often invest in extensive research and develop ink and toner cartridges that consistently deliver colour accuracy, sharpness and reliability. 

Compatible cartridges, produced by third-party manufacturers, aim to provide a more affordable option to original cartridges, whilst still maintaining a high-quality print. However, the quality of compatible printer cartridges can vary significantly between suppliers, and we would always recommend buying compatible cartridges from a reputable supplier so that you can ensure the highest possible quality. Some compatible ink and toner cartridges may provide comparable results to original cartridges in terms of print quality, however, others may fall short. It is also important to note that the print produced from compatible cartridges does not generally have the same longevity as original cartridges and will typically fade at a faster rate. 

Remanufactured cartridges can also provide a decent print quality, however, while remanufactures aim to achieve quality standards that are similar to OEM cartridges, there may be variations in print quality and performance. The quality of remanufactured cartridges will also depend on the supplier and reputable remanufacturers will ensure rigorous testing is done in order to ensure the refilled cartridges meet industry standards. 



When purchasing printer cartridges, it is important to note that the quality can vary depending on many different factors, and whilst original cartridges are known to offer the highest quality, buying compatible and remanufactured cartridges from reputable suppliers will likely ensure you are getting high-quality cartridges. Therefore, when comparing the quality differences, it is extremely important to take into account the brand and supplier that you are buying from. 





When choosing between original, compatible and remanufactured ink and toner cartridges, there are many differences to consider. It is important that you consider your printing needs, budget, environmental considerations and warranty coverage. 

Original (OEM) cartridges will provide guaranteed compatibility and reliable performance but will come at a higher cost. Remanufactured cartridges will come at a lower cost and incorporate environmentally friendly factors, however the quality may vary. Compatible cartridges will also come at a cheaper price and can match original cartridge quality if bought from a reputable supplier. 

Each type of cartridge has their own advantages and there will be different priorities for individual customers. Ultimately, the decision will be based on personal preference and priorities in order to ensure optimal printing results whilst considering cost. 


TonerGiant Brand Cartridges


At TonerGiant, we sell a range of different ink and toner cartridges including original, remanufactured and compatible cartridges. So whatever your printing needs, we are sure to have the printer cartridge that is perfect for you.

On our website, we refer to all of our remanufactured and compatible cartridges as compatibles and this is because our range of compatible and remanufactured cartridges are designed to be 100% compatible with your specific printer. They are all extremely high quality and at TonerGiant, all of our compatibles come with a 3 year no fuss guarantee so that you can purchase with peace of mind. 

Should you require any further information, or have any questions about our range of compatible and original ink cartridges here at TonerGiant, you can give us a call on 0345 365 3605 and we will be happy to help.