What is MICR Toner?

All information below was found at http://www.troygroup.com/products/micr.aspx


What is MICR

The acronym MICR stands for Magnetic Ink Character Recognition.  This technology uses magnetically chargeable ink or toner to print the numbers and special characters on the bottom of checks or other financial transaction documents.   

The numbers usually include the account number from which the money will be drawn,the identification number and the routing and transit of the check for the bank where the account resides.  MICR technology is used in the banking industry in many countries because it allows for fast and reliable document processing. 


History Of MICR

In the 1950s, the demand for data processing created a need for a mechanized method of check processing.  United States banks, bankers, machine manufacturers, and check processors formed committees to create a solution.  The ultimate result of these committees was the adoption of the E-13B Magnetic Ink Character Recognition (MICR) in 1958 by the American Bankers Association (ABA).

The E-13B system uses specially shaped characters, which are printed on the bottom of bank documents.  Much of the E-13B information was accepted by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) and incorporated into several specifications for MICR printing. 

Today these specifications are made available by ANSI, which defines, in detail, the formation of the E-13B characters, MICR line placements and components of the line, as well as other components of a bank check.  For more information, please refer to the ANSI web site. Some countries have adopted the CMC-7 font providing MICR readability to their banking systems.




United States of America






United Kingdom

Other Mediterranean Countries


South America (except Colombia)










How MICR Works

The E13-B information needed by clearing houses and banks is printed in a magnetic ink near the bottom of the document.  After printing, the documents are then processed mechanically and electronically through a reader-sorter machine.  This machine magnetically reads pertinent information about the check including the amount of the check, account number, institution upon which the check was drawn and other miscellaneous transaction codes.  This information is used by the reader sorter machine enabling an electronic sort of the checks for routing purposes.  

The E-13B characters are read several times, at extremely high speeds; therefore, for MICR to work successfully, the characters must be accurately printed on a document according to precise specifications and must be able to withstand the abrasive reader-sorter process.



TROY develops, manufactures, and distributes the highest quality MICR products in the industry.  TROY's cartridge performance, printer compatibility, and bank acceptance rates are the best in the world.  TROY has the lowest cartridge return rate in the industry.

TROY MICR Toner provides a level of quality which meets the highest standards.  Produced within TROY’s ISO 9001:2000 certified facility, TROY's MICR toner cartridges are precision-matched to meet the print characteristics of each printer model.  HP only supports MICR products in LaserJet Printers that have been modified to the TROY specification.  TROY products  are fully supported by HP Service and will NOT void the HP manufacturer’s warranty.

Consistent MICR quality can only be maintained over time by matching all four of the key variables – printer, fonts, toner and check paper and through rigorous quality testing.  TROY is the only MICR toner manufacturer who develops and manufactures toner to meet Global Standards, meeting the requirements of the US, Canadian, UK and other International standards for MICR  signal readability.  TROY verifies bank reader-sorter conformance throughout the life of the cartridges on its in-house Banctec reader sorter machine.  In addition all TROY MICR cartridges are tested by an independent quality lab to assure the checks printed with TROY MICR Toner achieve the highest level of acceptability in the bank clearing process.


TROY is the only MICR solutions provider that has achieved quality and performance certification from the most rigorous testing institutions in the world including Pira (Printing and Paper Organization), and APACS (Association for Payment Clearing Services)* and also complies with the standards of ABA (American Bankers Association), ANSI (American National Standards Institute), and CBA (Canadian Bankers Association).

All of TROY’s printing solutions are precision-matched to produce the highest bank reader-sorter processing success rates in the industry.  So when you select TROY’s precision-matched Security Printing Solutions, you will be getting the most reliable MICR output available.


TROY’s unique manufacturing and testing process has resulted in a toner which helps maintain optimum performance and long-life of your laser printer. TROY MICR toners are produced with the tightest tolerances, resulting in toners, which consistently meet or exceed the yield of your OEM cartridges providing customers with a low cost per print.  Our extensive toner product line includes cartridges for use in HP, Lexmark, IBM and Xerox printers.   

TROY has also broken the mold in MICR toner by producing a patented toner, TROY MICR Security Toner, which helps to protect against chemical alteration of checks and other documents.  TROY’s patented solution is the first laser toner, which will help to protect the words and graphics you are printing. 

A unique combination of paper and toner can provide TROY Laser Indelible Solution™ a technology which allows the MICR characters to bleed through the check being recognizable on the front and the back without compromising bank reader sorter rates.  For years companies have been using this type of security through impact printers to protect their checks; TROY is the first to offer this technology as a laser based solution.

Customers using TROY-branded toner cartridges in a TROY MICR printer are backed by our Quality Guarantee. TROY’s dedicated staff of customer care and support technicians is experts in product feature and functionality. Available 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. EST Monday through Friday (excluding major holidays) at 800-332-6427 or 304-232-0899 , our support staff helps you find a solution. For contact information click here.

*APACS is the UK trade association for payments