Photosmart C5550 printer cartridges

Printer comes with 99 and 100 cartridges. Also uses cartridges of 74/75. Unable to find explanation in the manual. HP Chat room tells me to use 74/75, switch it to 99 for the best color. Doesn't sound right. I have to keep the 4 available? My impression is text, but I would like to be able to print the best quality photos occasionally. Anyone know the answer?

petercm wrote:
Printer comes with 99 and 100 cartridges. Also uses cartridges of 74/75. Unable to find explanation in the manual. HP Chat room tells me to use 74/75, switch it to 99 for the best color. Doesn't sound right. I have to keep the 4 available? My impression is text, but I would like to be able to print the best quality photos occasionally. Anyone know the answer?

This can be simple or complex depending on your threshold of 'best' of the photo.  I will describe the different cartridges and their uses and then suggest some options.

The 74 cartridge is a pigmented black ink.  It is used for printing text and some plain paper inkjet graphics paper.  It is not compatible with the glossy photo paper and it is not used for printing on these materials.  This will be the best choice for printing text.  Depending on your printing needs the 74XL may be a better choice, it contains about 3 x the ink at 2 x the price.

The 75 cartridge is a cartridge color tri containing inks cyan, magenta and yellow dye based.  It is suitable for printing on paper or ordinary photo media and can print photos respectable.  When you print graphics that the 75 cartridge can be used to print in black in some modes because the point for the 75 cartridge size is smaller that the 74 75 can produce more nice graphics in greyscale as the 74.  There's a cartrdige 75xl that may be more eocnomical according to your printing habits.

The 99 cartridge is a photo cartridge and is exchanged with the 74.  It contains clear, clear magenta cyan and black photo dye based inks.  Unlike the 75 99 cartridge can produce the range of colors by itself, it must be used with a 75 color cartridge.  When you print the photo 99/75 combination can give better results in the light areas sugh as faces and sky tones.  The results can be less grainy than when you use the cartridge 75 by itself.  Then the 99 can be used to print text, it will be a bad choice because the dye based ink is not as good on paper for printing text.

The 100 is a photo cartridge and is exchanged with the 74.  It contains dye based ink black, grey and light grey.  The 100 cartridge can print print B & w. excellent in itself.  When used with the 75 cartridge it can provide better details in the darker areas than the 75 by itself.

Then... the appropriate combinations would be the following.  I suggest you print the same photo with different combinations to see if there is a difference and an advantage for a particular application.

74/75 best text, best for all round impression.  Best on plain paper.  Respectable for photo on photo paper.  Unless you print a photo using one of the other combinations and compare side by side you can think they're perfectly fine.  More economical

99/75 best for printing photo on photo paper.  Less grain than the combination 74/75, this will be more noticeable in clear areas like the facial tones or sky.  Can be used for the printing of the ordinary, but not really optimal paper for this.

100/75 best for B & W photo printing on photo paper or improving color impressions.  Perhaps the best detail can the combination 74/75 or 75/99, in particular in dark areas.

I have a few cartridges 99 and 100, but rarely use while I find the combination of 74/75 to suit my casual photo printing needs.  I see a difference of photos put side by side among the different options, but given one of them autonomous with the fact that it would look fine without a 'better' option to compare.

Kind regards
Bob Headrick, Microsoft MVP printing and imaging

Tags: HP Printers

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