E-Zink toner cartridge review: a decent alternative, with some caveats

E-Zink provides a cheaper alternative to your printer manufacturer's cartridges.

E-Zink cartridge on top of box
(Image: © Future)

Our Verdict

E-Zink offers a cheaper cartridge alternative than buying direct from the manufacturer. I did have some teething issues with the cartridge I was sent, which printed quite faintly, but this was resolved swiftly by E-Zink. Overall the E-Zink cartridge I tried was on a par with Brother's when it came to printing text, though was a little fainter than Brother when printing blocks of black. If you just want a cheaper cartridge for office work, then E-Zink is a decent option.

For

  • Two cartridges in a box
  • Decent for printing text
  • Good customer service

Against

  • Not so good for printing art
  • Issue with faintness at first

Why you can trust Creative Bloq Our expert reviewers spend hours testing and comparing products and services so you can choose the best for you. Find out more about how we test.

It can feel a bit risky switching from your printer manufacturer's own brand cartridges to that of a third party. With that in mind, I decided to try E-Zink's offering to see if it could compete with the Brother cartridge that came with my Brother HL-L2350DW. This is a black-and-white printer, so I was testing the black-and-white cartridge. 

The cartridges come in packs of one to four; I tried a two pack of TN2420 out over a period of weeks, with a number of different printing projects – seeing how the cartridges fared with run of the mill office printing jobs to how they coped when printing black-and-white artwork, though of course my black-and-white printer is not up there with the best art printers

Setup

E-Zink cartridge inside Brother printer

(Image credit: Future)

Setting up the E-Zink cartridges was easy. An instruction booklet guides you through it – you need to remove the protective orange cover, remove any sealing tape, shake the toner and put the cartridge into the drum under you hear it click. Then you've got to clean the corona wire (which was a new one for me) by sliding the green tab from left to right, and you should be ready to roll. 

Print quality

two sets of text saying 'testing' in different fonts

E-Zink cartridge (right) compared to Brother cartridge (left). Note that the smudges are not related to the cartridges (Image credit: Future)

The first batch of E-Zink cartridges I received printed faintly, especially when compared to the standard Brother cartridge I was comparing it to. I reported the problem to E-Zink, who suggested shaking the cartridge and cleaning the corona wire, but when this didn't work, they sent me new cartridges. I was impressed with the company's customer service, but my experience does suggest that perhaps its quality control isn't as good as it could be, particularly because both cartridges in this first box had the same issue.

The E-Zink cartridge (right) has slightly fainter block black than the Brother cartridge (left) (Image credit: Future/artwork by Ben Brady)

The next batch I received worked much better, and for text, I have since found the print quality to be on a par with the Brother cartridge I have. I did test out the cartridges for printing artwork and found that blocks of black show up slightly lighter on the E-Zink cartridge compared to the Brother one. There was not a big difference and it's hard to see from a photo but if you look just under the tail (above) you should be able to see the difference.

The page yield is supposed to be 3,000, though I haven't had it long enough to test that yet. 

Should I buy E-Zink cartridges?

E-Zink cartridge on top of box

(Image credit: Future)

E-Zink offers decent cartridges at a tempting price, though I did have some issues with quality. This was resolved swiftly with the customer service team, though. If you are looking for a cheaper alternative to buying the manufacturer's own printer cartridges then E-Zink is a good option. I haven't tested the cartridges I have enough to know whether its page yield claims are correct, but if they are, that's another point in E-Zink's favour.  

I should also note that there is no information from E-Zink in the box about recycling the cartridges, though there is a recycling symbol printed in the booklet.

Thank you for reading 5 articles this month* Join now for unlimited access

Enjoy your first month for just £1 / $1 / €1

*Read 5 free articles per month without a subscription

Join now for unlimited access

Try first month for just £1 / $1 / €1

The Verdict
6.5

out of 10

E-Zink Toner cartridge

E-Zink offers a cheaper cartridge alternative than buying direct from the manufacturer. I did have some teething issues with the cartridge I was sent, which printed quite faintly, but this was resolved swiftly by E-Zink. Overall the E-Zink cartridge I tried was on a par with Brother's when it came to printing text, though was a little fainter than Brother when printing blocks of black. If you just want a cheaper cartridge for office work, then E-Zink is a decent option.

Rosie Hilder

Rosie Hilder is Creative Bloq's Deputy Editor. After beginning her career in journalism in Argentina – where she worked as Deputy Editor of Time Out Buenos Aires – she moved back to the UK and joined Future Plc in 2016. Since then, she's worked as Operations Editor on magazines including Computer Arts, 3D World and Paint & Draw and Mac|Life. In 2018, she joined Creative Bloq, where she now assists with the daily management of the site, including growing the site's reach, getting involved in events, such as judging the Brand Impact Awards, and helping make sure our content serves the reader as best it can.