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Best Large Format Printer?

 
 
EskWIRED@spamblock.panix.com
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      09-06-2003
I'm a newbie here, waltzing in without the briefest look at the archives.
Allow me to apologize up front if this has been (re)hashed to death
already.

I'm looking for a kickass printer which will print out beautiful large
format prints of my .tiff files. Image quality is my primary concern,
with availability at a local chain store being second in line.

Can anybody recommend what I should look at?

--
....I'm an air-conditioned gypsy...

- The Who
 
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Tom
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      09-06-2003

<(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
news:bjcn3q$dqj$(E-Mail Removed)...
> I'm a newbie here, waltzing in without the briefest look at the archives.
> Allow me to apologize up front if this has been (re)hashed to death
> already.
>
> I'm looking for a kickass printer which will print out beautiful large
> format prints of my .tiff files. Image quality is my primary concern,
> with availability at a local chain store being second in line.
>
> Can anybody recommend what I should look at?
>
> --
> ...I'm an air-conditioned gypsy...
>
> - The Who



There are a bunch of good ones out there now. This is indeed the golden age
of large format printers.

Take a look at an Epson 7600 or 9600, Mimaki JV-4, HP 5000, 5000ps or 5500
(which are faster than the Epsons and with better blacks), or one of the
machines by Roland or Mutoh .

Be sure to bring your checkbook.

Tom


 
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Bill Hilton
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      09-06-2003
>From: http://www.velocityreviews.com/forums/(E-Mail Removed)

>I'm looking for a kickass printer which will print out beautiful large
>format prints of my .tiff files. Image quality is my primary concern


Epson 7600 is 24" wide for $3,000
Epson 9600 is 44" wide for $5,000

Archival pigment inks with excellent print quality. Many pros have switched
from LightJet 5000 prints to these Epsons, especially using Bill Atkinson's
custom ICC profiles.

>with availability at a local chain store being second in line.


Forget about this ... here's a site with free shipping though ...

http://www.inkjetart.com/pro/7600_9600/

Bill
 
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Savidge4
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      09-06-2003
>I'm looking for a kickass printer which will print out beautiful large
>format prints of my .tiff files. Image quality is my primary concern,
>with availability at a local chain store being second in line.
>
>Can anybody recommend what I should look at?


If you have not stumbled across the multitude of FLAAR report websites yet in
your search for information, below is a link to one of thier main linking pages
to helps you out. I would suggest getting some of thier reports/reviews for a
better "real world" understanding of the models you are interested in.

http://wide-format-printers.org/wide...nks/wide-forma
t_inkjet_printer.html

One of the questions I would ask right out of the box would be; what do you
consider to be large format? Are these images for your own personal use? (if
the answer is yes, then maybe the Epson 2200 at home is a good place to start)


I personally use a 42 inch HP 500 for my "perishable" work, and a 60 inch HP
5000UV for my "non perishable" work, with the use of PosterJet RIP (
http://www.posterjet.de ) to help manage color and production for both units.

hope that helps!
 
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Rafe B.
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      09-07-2003
On 06 Sep 2003 17:52:12 GMT, (E-Mail Removed) (Savidge4) wrote:

>>I'm looking for a kickass printer which will print out beautiful large
>>format prints of my .tiff files. Image quality is my primary concern,
>>with availability at a local chain store being second in line.
>>
>>Can anybody recommend what I should look at?

>
>If you have not stumbled across the multitude of FLAAR report websites yet in
>your search for information, below is a link to one of thier main linking pages
>to helps you out. I would suggest getting some of thier reports/reviews for a
>better "real world" understanding of the models you are interested in.
>
>http://wide-format-printers.org/wide...nks/wide-forma
>t_inkjet_printer.html
>
>One of the questions I would ask right out of the box would be; what do you
>consider to be large format? Are these images for your own personal use? (if
>the answer is yes, then maybe the Epson 2200 at home is a good place to start)
>
>
>I personally use a 42 inch HP 500 for my "perishable" work, and a 60 inch HP
>5000UV for my "non perishable" work, with the use of PosterJet RIP (
>http://www.posterjet.de ) to help manage color and production for both units.
>
>hope that helps!




FLAAR rarely has good things to say about Epson printers.

Which is odd, because (as far as I can tell) the Epson pro
models (2200 and up, esp. 7600, 9600, etc) are the odds-
on favorites of pro photographers.

Canon has a model (W2750) that seems poised to compete
with the Epson 7600, but I don't hear much about it.


rafe b.
http://www.terrapinphoto.com
 
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Savidge4
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      09-07-2003
>FLAAR rarely has good things to say about Epson printers.
>
>Which is odd, because (as far as I can tell) the Epson pro
>models (2200 and up, esp. 7600, 9600, etc) are the odds-
>on favorites of pro photographers.
>
>Canon has a model (W2750) that seems poised to compete
>with the Epson 7600, but I don't hear much about it.



I think overall why the Epson is the odds on favorite for pro photogs is the
price. In order to get the Pigment ink in the HP line you are spending 2x the
amount of money. The moment you go from photo here, photo there printing to
even a small amount of production the table turns fast to the HP line.

The overall speed even without RIP enhancement of the HP large format is mind
boggling when compared to the Epson line. And this I am sure is a personal
thing, but I prefer the overall color of the HP vs Epson.

Another advantage that I see with the HP line is the available manufacturer
substraights. Matching HP ink with HP paper is a good start to a good print.
matching ink emultions to paper emultions is very critical in getting a decent
dryng time as well as good coverage and color. I have almost always gotten
into trouble straying away from HP certified papers. (this does include many
products from 3M - that are HP certified)


 
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Rafe B.
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      09-07-2003
On 07 Sep 2003 11:35:05 GMT, (E-Mail Removed) (Savidge4) wrote:

>>FLAAR rarely has good things to say about Epson printers.
>>
>>Which is odd, because (as far as I can tell) the Epson pro
>>models (2200 and up, esp. 7600, 9600, etc) are the odds-
>>on favorites of pro photographers.
>>
>>Canon has a model (W2750) that seems poised to compete
>>with the Epson 7600, but I don't hear much about it.

>
>
>I think overall why the Epson is the odds on favorite for pro photogs is the
>price. In order to get the Pigment ink in the HP line you are spending 2x the
>amount of money. The moment you go from photo here, photo there printing to
>even a small amount of production the table turns fast to the HP line.
>
>The overall speed even without RIP enhancement of the HP large format is mind
>boggling when compared to the Epson line. And this I am sure is a personal
>thing, but I prefer the overall color of the HP vs Epson.
>
>Another advantage that I see with the HP line is the available manufacturer
>substraights. Matching HP ink with HP paper is a good start to a good print.
>matching ink emultions to paper emultions is very critical in getting a decent
>dryng time as well as good coverage and color. I have almost always gotten
>into trouble straying away from HP certified papers. (this does include many
>products from 3M - that are HP certified)



No real arguments with the above.

Epsons are pretty slow; I know that now after using a Canon 9000
for a year or so now.

I ordered (and then returned) an HP Designjet 10 because of a
concern about the longevity of the prints -- folks at HP were
telling me, "it's a proofing printer." From the sample I got from
HP, I could tell that the print quality was excellent.

I understand the high end HP wide-format machines have
pigment inks, but not sure about low or mid-range HPs that
use pigments.

Substrates are a non-issue -- there are so many alternate
sources for these, and Epson is no slouch in this department
either.

I think one of the benefits of the Epsons is the piezo technology --
the heads can squirt almost any kind of ink, and there are many
alternate inks to choose from.


rafe b.
http://www.terrapinphoto.com
 
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Tom Monego
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      09-07-2003
HP against the 7600 and 9600 is an apple and oranges comparison. The correct
one is the 10600 vs HP. Baoth are good, fast printers in the $10K range. The HP
is designed more as a poster, sign printer, it's one downfall for fine art
printing is the right angle paper path, eliminating the use of heavier
materials. This at least is how my dealer described it to me last week when I
was asking about a replacement for my Epson 9000. He also felt the print
quality was subjectivly better on the Epson 10600 and definitly better on the
7600 and 9600. Print life is also better with the Epsons. He also commented
that he sells more HP's than Epsons, his comment was "Just different printers".
He also mentioned Mutoh and Mimaki, but both were significantly more $.
Epson is also more forgiving on nonbrand papers, though Epson now has a good
line of papers.
For 11x17 printers I don't think there is a better one out their than the Epson
2200, but inks on desk top printers are infuriatingly expensive.


Tom

>I think overall why the Epson is the odds on favorite for pro photogs is the
>price. In order to get the Pigment ink in the HP line you are spending 2x the
>amount of money. The moment you go from photo here, photo there printing to
>even a small amount of production the table turns fast to the HP line.
>
>The overall speed even without RIP enhancement of the HP large format is mind
>boggling when compared to the Epson line. And this I am sure is a personal
>thing, but I prefer the overall color of the HP vs Epson.
>
>Another advantage that I see with the HP line is the available manufacturer
>substraights. Matching HP ink with HP paper is a good start to a good print.
>matching ink emultions to paper emultions is very critical in getting a decent
>dryng time as well as good coverage and color. I have almost always gotten
>into trouble straying away from HP certified papers. (this does include many
>products from 3M - that are HP certified)
>
>


 
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Savidge4
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Posts: n/a
 
      09-07-2003
>No real arguments with the above.
>
>Epsons are pretty slow; I know that now after using a Canon 9000
>for a year or so now.
>
>I ordered (and then returned) an HP Designjet 10 because of a
>concern about the longevity of the prints -- folks at HP were
>telling me, "it's a proofing printer." From the sample I got from
>HP, I could tell that the print quality was excellent.
>
>I understand the high end HP wide-format machines have
>pigment inks, but not sure about low or mid-range HPs that
>use pigments.
>
>Substrates are a non-issue -- there are so many alternate
>sources for these, and Epson is no slouch in this department
>either.
>
>I think one of the benefits of the Epsons is the piezo technology --
>the heads can squirt almost any kind of ink, and there are many
>alternate inks to choose from.



I personally think that substrates is a HUGE issue. You hear all the time in
regular at home printers that you get the best prints from such and such a
printer form Matte paper yada yada. That same thing is multiplied on large
format.

If you have an HP large format and print the exact same print with HP paper
then a 3rd market paper you can SEE the difference. Let alone the ink pooling
and or su-low ink dry time.

Printing is more than putting ink to paper. in todays world it is more kin to
chemistry than anything. when printing, the ink and paper form chemical bonds,
and if you need A & B for the "perfect" bond and you are using A & C, well its
not going to be its best and more than likely you will need to jump through
some hoops to get things right.

A good example of this would be Illford paper. they make specific ink/paper
printer profiles. these profiles produce great results with the ink/paper
relationship. using Illford ink on say Epson paper may or may not produce good
results, but not the same quality that would be found with Illford paper.

My thoughts on Piezo heads... sure they can squirt any kind of ink, and sure
they are somewhat better up front as far as print quality. But the moment you
start cleaning your print heads and doing the things that are required to get
the best possible print quality you are degrading the overall effectiveness of
of the Piezo print head.

This is what ultimatly pushed me to HP, on my HP 500 for $30 a print head I
can replace them. for $125 a print head on my 5000 i can replace them. I can
control the quality of my printing over time. If i see degregation in print
quality, i can in essence "fix" that problem. With the Epson products, well
thats not possible.
Seems to me that spending $3000 let alone $15,000 you want longevity in your
investment. And I cant see how there would be an arguement that HP does not
provide that longevity with the simple added feature of replacing the single
most important element of printing, the print head itself.


 
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Rafe B.
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      09-07-2003
On 07 Sep 2003 20:49:15 GMT, (E-Mail Removed) (Savidge4) wrote:

>>No real arguments with the above.
>>
>>Epsons are pretty slow; I know that now after using a Canon 9000
>>for a year or so now.
>>
>>I ordered (and then returned) an HP Designjet 10 because of a
>>concern about the longevity of the prints -- folks at HP were
>>telling me, "it's a proofing printer." From the sample I got from
>>HP, I could tell that the print quality was excellent.
>>
>>I understand the high end HP wide-format machines have
>>pigment inks, but not sure about low or mid-range HPs that
>>use pigments.
>>
>>Substrates are a non-issue -- there are so many alternate
>>sources for these, and Epson is no slouch in this department
>>either.
>>
>>I think one of the benefits of the Epsons is the piezo technology --
>>the heads can squirt almost any kind of ink, and there are many
>>alternate inks to choose from.

>
>
>I personally think that substrates is a HUGE issue. You hear all the time in
>regular at home printers that you get the best prints from such and such a
>printer form Matte paper yada yada. That same thing is multiplied on large
>format.
>
>If you have an HP large format and print the exact same print with HP paper
>then a 3rd market paper you can SEE the difference. Let alone the ink pooling
>and or su-low ink dry time.
>
>Printing is more than putting ink to paper. in todays world it is more kin to
>chemistry than anything. when printing, the ink and paper form chemical bonds,
>and if you need A & B for the "perfect" bond and you are using A & C, well its
>not going to be its best and more than likely you will need to jump through
>some hoops to get things right.
>
>A good example of this would be Illford paper. they make specific ink/paper
>printer profiles. these profiles produce great results with the ink/paper
>relationship. using Illford ink on say Epson paper may or may not produce good
>results, but not the same quality that would be found with Illford paper.
>
>My thoughts on Piezo heads... sure they can squirt any kind of ink, and sure
>they are somewhat better up front as far as print quality. But the moment you
>start cleaning your print heads and doing the things that are required to get
>the best possible print quality you are degrading the overall effectiveness of
>of the Piezo print head.
>
>This is what ultimatly pushed me to HP, on my HP 500 for $30 a print head I
>can replace them. for $125 a print head on my 5000 i can replace them. I can
>control the quality of my printing over time. If i see degregation in print
>quality, i can in essence "fix" that problem. With the Epson products, well
>thats not possible.
>Seems to me that spending $3000 let alone $15,000 you want longevity in your
>investment. And I cant see how there would be an arguement that HP does not
>provide that longevity with the simple added feature of replacing the single
>most important element of printing, the print head itself.
>



First off, like I said -- Epson's own "branded" paper comes in a huge
array of sizes and substrates. So many that it's really hard to keep
track of them.

Plus, there are any number of excellent sources of paper for inkjets
now -- far too many to list here. Red River, Hawk Mountain, Legion,
Hahnemuhle, Pictorico, Olmec, Canon, Fuji, Tetenal, Ilford... etc.
etc.

Yes, I'm fully aware that ink + paper is the key -- not just ink and
not just paper. But I sure don't see where HP's got anything over
Epson in terms of dealing with the print longevity issue.

For those who are concerned about this, there are a few alternatives.
First, go with pigment inks. Read Wilhelm's reports (with as many
grains of salt as required.) And finally, do your own longevity tests
-- as described nicely in Harald Johnson's book on digital printing.

Yes, I think it's great that both HP and Canon have replaceable heads.
A shame that Epson hasn't caught on to this, at least not in their
smaller machines. On the 76/96xx printers, heads are replaceable,
though it takes a bit of technical savvy and some skill to realign the
new head(s).



rafe b.
http://www.terrapinphoto.com
 
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