How to calculate the cost per copy

Posted by Mélissa Blouin on

For businesses, the cost of office supplies is an important aspect to consider. In most offices or stores, most office supplies cost come from purchases of ink cartridges and printer supplies. It is therefore necessary to understand the source of these costs associated with printing documents in order to manage the purchase of supplies more efficiently. The cost per copy represents all costs associated with printing a page, including supplies and maintenance. The cost per copy is easy to calculate and provides good indications to office administrators. 


Calculating the total cost per copy

When a business wants to establish the cost per copy, several elements must be included in this calculation. In fact, all the expenses related to the printer must be taken and brought back to the cost of a single print. The cooporation should be aware of the following: the price of ink cartridges and supplies, the yield of cartridges and supplies, the price of paper and the price of recurring printer maintenance. The following calculation is an example of the toner cartridge cost: 


Price of the TN450 compatible toner cartridge: 25.96$

Yield of the TN450 compatible toner cartridge: 2600 pages

The cost per copy of the cartridge is 0.01$ (25.96 ÷ 2600 = 0.01)


In order to obtain a real cost per copy, it will be necessary to do the same operation for the price of the paper and the price of the recurring maintenance. Then, you just have to add the costs and in this way, you will get the total cost per copy of your printer. 


The actual yield of a toner cartridge

The yield of a cartridge is the number of pages you will be able to print before needing to change the ink cartridge. This yield is estimated by taking only a 5% page coverage into account, which represents the equivalent of a document page. We can then assume that in most cases, the prints contain images or texts of greater coverage, which means that the total cover of the page is much higher than 5%. The ink cartridge will need to change earlier.


high yield toner cartridges

After calculating your cost per copy, you may be pleased to know that there is an alternative to regular yield cartridges. Indeed, high yield cartridges are becoming more popular, precisely because they offer much lower costs per copy. We will take Lexmark C792A1KG and C792X1KG cartridges to demonstrate the difference in printing cost.


Price of the C792A1KG Lexmark original cartridge : 231.47$

Yield of the C792A1KG Lexmark original cartridge : 6000 pages

Price of the C792X1KG Lexmark original cartridge : 331.10$

Yield of the C792X1KG Lexmark original cartridge : 20 000 pages


Cost per copy of the C792A1KG : 231.47 ÷ 6000 = 0.039$

Cost per copy of the C792X1KG : 331.10 ÷ 20 000 = 0.017$


It can thus be seen here that the cost per copy is twice as high for regular yield cartridges than for high yield cartridges.

Despite your recurring need for ink cartridges, you will now be able to make a more informed choice when shopping for supplies.


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