Tuesday, June 22, 2010

How to calculate the printing cost per square foot for Canon iPF8100?

How to calculate the printing cost per square foot? This is a very common question from large format users in print services sector. Print services providers are concerned on the print cost as the cost per square foot will be used to determine the print services charges to their clients. Besides, cost per square foot is another important consideration factor a part from printing speed when come to choosing the right production printer for the printing business operation.

To answer this frequent asked question professional, a few declarations and assumptions has been made as below.
1. The cost per square foot calculation will only consider ink cost and print head cost.
2. Canon PFI-701, PFI-702 ink tanks and PF-03 print head cost are based on retail price in Malaysia market. (MYR750 for PFI-701, PFI-702 ink tanks and MYR970 for PF-03 print head)
3. Waste ink and paper cost are not considered in the cost calculation.
4. The print heads will be replaced in every 8,800 A1 size prints*.

* The life-span of the print heads are expected to last more than 8,800 A1 prints depending on the operating environment. All new print heads (PF-03) are eligible for warranty claim for the first 8,800 A1 page counts, hence the author is estimating the print head cost based on worst scenario.

Test Conditions
Output Image: ISO JIS SCID No.5

Media: Glossy Photo Paper
Print Quality: Standard 600dpi
Print Size: A0 Size (827mm x 1,033.8mm)

Test Results:
Total Ink Consumed: 3.827ml
Print Speed: 6.5min

Cost Per Square Foot Calculation:
Based on the the above data, ink cost per A0 size (827mm x 1,033mm)  printing is as below:
3.827ml x MYR750/700ml = MYR4.10 (USD1.24)

Assumed life span for printheads are 8,800 A1 prints, which is also equavalent to 4,400 A0 prints.
There are 2 print heads in a Canon iPF8100, hence the printhead cost per A0 size (827mm x 1,033mm) is as below:
2 units X MYR970 / 4,400 AO prints = MYR0.44 (USD0.13)

Ink Cost (per A0 print) + Print Head Cost (per A0 print)
= MYR4.10 + MYR0.44 = MYR4.54 (USD1.38)

We already have the cost per print in term of per A0 size, now what we need to do is to convert it into per square foot.

1 ft = 304.8mm
827mm x 1,033mm = 2.71ft x 3.39ft =  9.19 sqft

MYR4.54/9.19sqft = MYR0.494 (USD0.15) per square foot

Hence, the Cost Per Square Foot for Canon iPF8100 is approximately MYR0.50 (USD0.15).

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