Update me on printers and Inks

Discussion in '35mm Cameras' started by Collin Brendemuehl, Nov 18, 2004.

  1. I know this isn't the Digital forum, but so many of us are at least
    scanning negs that this is still relevant. (at least I think it is,

    Right now I print, minimally, with an old Epson Stylus 400.
    It does an ok job. But doing more digitally it does need upgraded.

    I'll be printing no more than 11 wide (11x14, or slightly smaller with
    the borders, as needed) so I don't need a really big printer.

    #1 So the first issue ...
    Which brand is best, esp. wrt
    (a) color accuracy
    (b) ink durability.

    #2 And for a specific comparison, the Epson 1200 & 1270 are going
    pretty reasonably these days. Are their inks on par with the newer

    #3 Does paper make a difference in terms of durability/color accuracy?

    #4 Which if any of the refill or 3rd-party inks might bring a printer
    to current quality (durabiliy/color)?

    #5 Is there really that much difference wrt color accuracy between the
    pro and consumer printers, or is it all in the inks? (relates
    somewhat to #4)

    #6 Personally, I've always enjoyed my Epsons. But what are you pros
    and serious amateurs using? For smaller prints I'm hearing good
    things here in Ohio regarding some of the basic Canon models.
    Comparisions, anyone?
    Any online results comparisions that you can point me to?


    Collin Brendemuehl, Nov 18, 2004
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  2. Collin Brendemuehl

    Mr Jessop Guest

    Canons come up well with colour accuracy and cost of genuine consumables.
    their 8 ink systems are fantastic.
    CAnons biggest weakness is the low fade resistance.

    I have actually heard of one firm selling a fixative spray but couldn't tell
    you its effectiveness. Common sense storing and display under glass and
    the prints are adequate. Canon haven't stopped anyone in the third party
    industry and haven't introduced any technology to hamper you.

    Epson are good when they work. They are using single ink systems now. The
    5 in one carts such as the 1290 1290s and others are expensive. i've also
    heard so many head clogging horror stories and expereinced enough myself to
    be put off for life.

    The low end canons are unimpressive too. However once you pay over $100 and
    into single ink tank territory all the manufacturers seem to shine. Colour
    calibration out the box is better on canon machines and are the simplest to
    use. If you have the skill and patience epson can yield a better result.

    Last years i series seem to do better than this years pixma in terms of
    build quality and colour accuracy. I only print at home in a hurry or doing
    large individual prints. 6x4 and the like i give to the lab now.
    Mr Jessop, Nov 19, 2004
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  3. Although I don't personally own one, I have met two pro's who use the Epson
    2200, and the quality of their prints is excellent.....It does cost around
    $600, but I would seriously consider dredging up the money for one if I did
    much printing......
    William Graham, Nov 19, 2004
  4. Collin Brendemuehl

    Alan Browne Guest

    Alan Browne, Nov 19, 2004
  5. Collin Brendemuehl

    Shelley Guest

    Epson are good when they work. . . . i've also
    I've used the Espon 1160, 1280, and 2200 printers over a span of about four
    years, 90% for black and white printing, 10% for color. I've used MIS inks
    for b&w and Epson for color. I've very rarely had ink clogs and when I have
    they've been easily fixed by running a cleaning cycle. Clogging problems are
    often due to the operator rather than the equipment. The printers need to be
    turned off when not being used, a couple drops of Windex should be
    periodically placed on the ink pad, and if cartridges are used a nozzle
    check should be done each time the cartridges are replaced and the cleaning
    cycle run if the nozzle check indicates a need for cleaning. This is
    "routine maintenance" of the kind required with most things mechanical. When
    it isn't done the printers can develop clogging problems, when it is done
    they don't, at least not in my experience.

    I've been partial to Epson printers mostly because of my good experiences
    with them but also because they seem to be the one company that has
    consistently supported the high end "serious photographer" market fby
    consistently upgrading their existing products and bringing out new ones.
    Canon, HP, et al seem to take an occasional stab at that market and then
    sort of sit back and do nothing for a while. That's just my highly
    unscientific impression, I could be wrong. But if you go to groups dedicated
    to high end photographic printing such as the Yahoo digital black and white
    printing group I think you'll find that 90% or more of the pearticipants are
    using Epson equipment partly for that reason.
    I don't know about the "when they work" statement, mine have never broken.
    With respect to cartridge expense, no question that the OEM or even third
    party filled cartridges are expensive. For that reason most people who do
    any volume of digital printing and are serious about it either have a
    continuous flow system or they refill the cartridges. Either will
    dramatically reduce your ink cartridges. OEM cartridges are a good way to go
    when you're first setting up because they eliminate a variable. Once you're
    set up you'll want to switch to a continuous flow system or refill your
    cartridges rather than buying new ones if you do any volume at all.
    Shelley, Nov 19, 2004
  6. Collin Brendemuehl

    Sly D. Skeez Guest

    I think the defacto standard in printers is Epson, although others are
    making a dent in Epson's domination. Then the question becomes which
    printer and which inks. Also, which ink you choose depends on if you
    want to print on glossy, lustre, or matt papers. A good place to start
    is at:


    It'll take some study to figure out all the options on inks, papers,
    and printers, but it's worth it. In particular, I would look at the
    MIS GP Archival Inkset for the Epson 1280. A similar setup would be
    the 7600 Archival Inkset for the Epson 2200. I believe the two will
    give similar looking prints since they're using very similar inks (but
    I haven't compared the two). Also you might guess that I recommend
    _not_ using Epson's inks, and I don't think it's worth the extra money
    for the 2200. There might be some arguement for the 2200 based on
    color gamut, but I haven't looked into that.

    Again, a key decision is glossy vs. matt

    Jay Wenner
    Sly D. Skeez, Nov 19, 2004
  7. Collin Brendemuehl

    rafe bustin Guest

    Canon: thermal heads, easily replaceable but
    can't use pigment inks. Much faster than Epson,
    even (or especially) in photo quality modes.

    HP: The Designjet series (eg. Designjet 30)
    are worth considering. Again -- user replaceable
    heads, and built more like the Epson Pro models
    (eg., large stationary ink carts instead of
    itty bitty carts that ride with the head.)

    Epson: As you say, the de facto standard for
    photography and fine arts. Excellent print
    quality, but not necessarily the most reliable.

    In truth, the print quality of all three brands
    is very very close and very very good -- when the
    machines are new and/or working to spec.

    Don't expect any of these machines to last for
    more than a couple years' hard printing.

    With the Epson, you are particularly hosed
    when ink nozzles clog. Then it's Windex time.

    rafe b.
    rafe bustin, Nov 20, 2004
  8. Collin Brendemuehl

    DaisyCutter Guest

    DaisyCutter, Dec 17, 2004
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