Go to your printer and faxes, which should show from the start menu. Double click on the Canon icon. Click on the word "printer" and select "properties." Under the "general" tab, select printing preferences. There you can choose gray scale printing which will use the black cartridge that is independent of the color. If you print mostly documents, etc., this is a good choice. You can always change back to color with the printing dialogue box that opens when you print from any program. Or to make a permanent change, go through the same steps you did to change to gray scale.
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Re: Black text Printing using Photo Black
You should be able to set the cartridge it uses when you print, as something like 'Print only black'. Fish around in the printer window when it comes up when it comes up. You may also be able to set this as a default in 'Properties' from the 'Printers' option in Windows, but then it will always try to do this, of course, which you may not want.
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You cannot switch to the larger black cartridge. You are using a CMYK (Cyan, Yellow, Magenta, Black) format for printing color images.
The larger cartridge is used for text only. The smaller black cartridge is used for color or graphic images.
If the black cartridge was not present, every time you needed black in an image, it would have to come from the composition of Cyan, Magenta and Yellow. This would greatly reduce the life of the color cartridges.
It won't default to the small one...I emailed Canon support; this is the response I got.
The reason for the two different black ink tanks is for the different types of printing your unit is capable of.They are not intended as backups to each other.The larger black tank is pigment based, and is primarily used for standard black text printing or output.The smaller black ink tank is dye based like the color inks, and is used for photo and graphics output.They are designed to complement each other, allowing the printer to produce the best possible black text output or photo quality as appropriate.
The PGI-220 is the larger ink tank and is filled with standard black ink. The PGI-221 black cartridge is the photo black. There is no way to force the printer to use the photo black cartridge (skinny one) to print documents. The photo black cartridge is only used if you print a photo. I own a Cartridge World ink refilling shop and I can't refill these cartridges yet. There is no way to reset the ink level chip without a resetter and any replacement chips you find on the internet are technically violating patent law.
The PGBK cartridge is a pigment black ink, while the others use a dye for coloration. The pigment black is used when printing text and other documents. The dye ink is used when printing photos and other colored documents. The dye black is used in conjunction with the color (dye) inks to provide tinting and color gradation, and therefore is not used nearly as much as the pigment black unless you use your printer only for printing photos.
If you're printing text and documents, you will need to buy another pigment black (PGBK) cartridge.