Ink cartridges, laser toner cartridges, or printer
The Concept of Similarities and Dissimilarities
When you talk about cartridge's one must understand that there are quite a number of similarities between the composition, structure, and usage of the three cartridges. After all the basic concepts between the designs remains similar and only a few minor changes distinguish them from each other. However, one must also understand the fact that there similarities does not mean that they use can be interchanged. Ink cartridges can only be used in ink jet printers.
Typically there are two separate cartridges that are inserted into the printers, one is a colored cartridge filled with the three primary colors while the other is a black cartridge. In laser toner cartridges there is no ink but there is a toner which is a material that facilitates laser printings. However, the coloring parameters remain the same.
Both ink cartridges and the laser variety can be refilled and thus users can save money on the cost of buying a whole new cartridge. Even printer ribbons can be refilled; however, the process of refilling will differ.
Apart from the technical differences associated with the three cartridges, and the process of printing in general, there are differences related to the quality of the print, cost, and speed of printing. When it comes to printing speed printer ribbons are the slowest of the lot while cartridges using laser toners are the fastest. Moreover, with regards to cost, the cartridges for laser printers are more expensive than their ink based counterparts. This is because the cartridges for laser printers offer the best printing output and are faster than the other cartridges. One can take out a large number of print outs of the same superior quality unlike in ink cartridges wherein the results start getting blurry quite quickly on account of the ink running out.
None is better than the Other
If you look at the similarities and differences, you will see that you cannot judge the cartridges based on them. You cannot say that one is better than the other, as it's completely your choice as to which printer you own and thus the cartridges that you are going to use. Experts will tell you that laser toner cartridges are the best amongst the three, but for that you must have laser printers, which in itself is expensive and so are its cartridges.
John C. Arkin, the contributor of Printer Ink Cartridges Articles. More information on the subject is at Differences / Similarities between Ink Cartridges, Laser Toner Cartridges & Printer Ribbons, and related resources can be found at Printer Ink Cartridges.