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Posts: 11
Member Since: ‎04-13-2012
Message 1 of 5 (5,252 Views)

can't print at all while a color cartridge is empty?

I own an HP Officejet 6700 AllInOne printer.   I am still using the original setup color ink cartridges.  But it seems that one or more is empty (tho I don't know why as I rarely print in color).  I have tried setting my porinter properties to use black cartridge only but that didn't do the trick.  Am I stuck, can I NOT print in black before I replace the color cartridges?


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Regents Professor
Posts: 5,568
Member Since: ‎09-23-2010
Message 2 of 5 (5,225 Views)

Re: can't print at all while a color cartridge is empty?

This printer does use some color, even when printing black, for various tasks.  Sorry.


This document from HP goes into a lot of detail about how ink is used in this type of printer.


Essentially, there are two ink systems currently in use.


There is the older system that is called integrated print head.  This system has the printhead built into each cartridge.  This is where all color is in one cartridge and black in another cartridge.  As a result of the cartridge being replaced, the print head is replaced with it.  This means you pay full price to replace the color cartridge when only one color was empty rather than as needed.  This also meant that it would use all of the ink cartridge resulting in poor quality prints towards the end of the life cycle of the cartridge.


Then there is the newer Individual Ink System.  This system separates colors into their own cartridge and separates the print head so that there is only one print head.  The problem comes down to that the print head has to have some ink of each color in it to prevent damage.  Residual ink left behind from a previous print job would become dry and clog the print head and possibly requiring it to be replaced.  To prevent this, the printer uses a small amount of ink when printing black to preserve the print head.  Without the print head, printing would not be possible.


The small amount of color ink that is used when printing black is printed under the black ink which makes the black ink sharper and bolder.  In short, the black ink portions tend to look better when compared to an integrated print head system.



To answer the question, the color ink cartridge(s) will need to be replaced if they are empty or below the threshold of the cartridge (the point where print quality is compromised).



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Posts: 11
Member Since: ‎04-13-2012
Message 3 of 5 (5,224 Views)

Re: can't print at all while a color cartridge is empty?

Hi Cloud_strider,


Thanks for your answer.


If this "undocumented feature" had been forthrightly listed as a feature, it would have kept me from buying not only the model I bought but all such models (of any brand) with that design feature.  I never have an absolute need for color but it is nice to have if it doesn't cost me anything besides ink.  In this case it costs me disabling my ability to print at all.


H-P should paty attention.    Or fix the problem.  A single printhead seems to make sense, but the absolute need to mix in a bit of color when all you want is black is a problem that needs to be sloved.


Thanks again.


David Abraham





Posts: 1
Member Since: ‎02-17-2013
Message 4 of 5 (4,749 Views)

Re: can't print at all while a color cartridge is empty?

This feature is such a nightmare. I don't even know if I have ever printedin color except for the page that prints out every single time I turn my printer on. It seems like a scam. You definately get what you pay for. I have already bought a laser printer without these issues. I will not by from your company anymore. 

Posts: 1
Member Since: ‎10-03-2013
Message 5 of 5 (2,952 Views)

Re: can't print at all while a color cartridge is empty?

It's devastating , when I only use the black print , can I use black only & switch the colour one off
Many thanks
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