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Author Topic: Printers  (Read 4952 times)

Offline greypoint

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Printers
« on: September 21, 2009, 08:00:00 AM »
For some time I've done without a photo printer at home as it's been easier to get prints done commercially. My only printer, which I've taken to use at work, is a heavy duty HP Officejet which cost quite a bit and is wonderful for churning out thousands of leaflets and schedules but lacks a bit in the photo quality department. I got an email from W/E about the latest Epson printers which seem to be able to give lab quality prints - anyone know if they're good? Any other recommendations for prints that look good and will last? Running costs are a big thing obviously. I still think it's better to use a lab for the times when I want a stack of stuff but it would be good to have the facility to run off the odd print for someone [postage charges make the ordering of one print a bit expensive!]. Don't want to spend a fortune and not really bothered about printing over A4 but would like ease of use [no constant paper jams!!] and low running costs - not much to ask I know ::)



Offline stevebedder

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Re: Printers
« Reply #1 on: September 21, 2009, 09:16:25 AM »
Octobers DCM did a review on photo printers comparing initial cost, ongoing costs, quality etc. Their summary is a little difficult to decipher but from what I could make out.....

The HP Photosmart Pro B9180 was the best for fine art - £460, £1.16 per print and prints A3+

The Epson R2880 was the best for Black & White - £500, £1.90 per print and prints A3+

As for Value for Moneythe HP Photosmart C8180 is £210 but does prints at £1.08 per print as does the HP D7260 but costs just £80, the Canon Pixma iP4600 costs £85 and does prints at £1.21 per print.

The Canon MP620 looked to come out best overall for the mid-range with 92% at £115 and £1.21 per print and the Canon Pixma Pro9000 Mark II (A3+) coming out best overall with 94% at £440 and £1.48 per print.

I was really interested when I first saw the article as I like you want to get a decent photo printer but have now idea what to get. And to be honest, I'm still just as confused even after reading the article.

Hope this helps

Steve

skellum

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Re: Printers
« Reply #2 on: September 21, 2009, 12:29:51 PM »
I have told Steve before that I use an Epson A3+ printer and will buy another eventually, I think you get used to what you know and trust and I print every week now. No matter which  you choose you will make printing errors at first untill you get used to it. The other thing to consider is the manufactures inks which are very expensive. I use a type called " Phoenix " which I used on the prints I submitted to the RPS and they passed that test. Once you have your printer & ink sorted no doubt you will move on to the " Which paper ? " debate.......... :legit:
« Last Edit: September 21, 2009, 12:32:55 PM by skellum ( Dave ) »

Offline greypoint

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Re: Printers
« Reply #3 on: September 21, 2009, 12:40:10 PM »
Thanks for the advice - useful to get an idea of actual print costs [I know it's just an idea and they'll no doubt vary a bit in practice]. In the past when I made several hundred calendars a year I had 3 HP printers - now very much obsolete - that used large ink cartridges easily available in compatible form and did very good prints on quality plain paper and light card. Have'nt tried proper printing on photo paper for ages so I assume the quality has gone up and the price you need to pay for that quality has dropped a bit. It is difficult - I don't want to pay more than I need if it's a case of paying for more features rather than better picture quality - but I don't want to buy something cheap and be disappointed with the results. I'll take a more in depth look at  the models suggested.

Offline happypaddler

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Re: Printers
« Reply #4 on: September 21, 2009, 03:07:27 PM »
Not necessarily directly related - but worth chipping in - a recent Which report says that the cheaper the printer, the more expensive the ink, conversely the more expensive the printer, the cheaper the ink. I've not tested this, so I do not know if it is true. I should say they were not looking at third party inks.

Offline oRGie

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Re: Printers
« Reply #5 on: September 21, 2009, 03:41:33 PM »
imho if your going to buy a printer with making photo prints in mind then get an A3+ jobbie..  I cant comment on the latest models as I've been using a canon S800 for so many years now I dont even remember how long, must be nearly ten years at least..  I have a print of my dog as a pup on my wall, framed, that was printed 6 years ago and not showing signs of fading, but I have allways used canon pr101 paper and original inks. Next time I need to buy a printer it will be A3+ and likely either an epsom or a canon again, probably epsom as they have been getting good reviews for a long time now and as Dave sais, it takes time to get used to a printer and work out best inks and paper to use for best results. For the last couple fo years I have been using fuji photo paper and the results seem as good as the canon paper which is hard to buy here, last time I bought some canon paper I had to get it from the net, canon shop iirc..

Offline Sarasocke

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Re: Printers
« Reply #6 on: September 21, 2009, 03:52:12 PM »
I have a Canon Pixma iP4500 and rarely send off for any prints of A4 or under nowadays. I always use original Canon inks, which are not that expensive, when bought thru Ebay (at least here in Germany). The only problem I have is centering the picture, I need to add a mm here and there in PS to make it balance. I've never found out why that is, but it's very annoying when making greeting cards
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Offline Nemesis

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Re: Printers
« Reply #7 on: September 21, 2009, 04:05:26 PM »
Not necessarily directly related - but worth chipping in - a recent Which report says that the cheaper the printer, the more expensive the ink, conversely the more expensive the printer, the cheaper the ink. I've not tested this, so I do not know if it is true. I should say they were not looking at third party inks.
From my years in the industry undoubtedly true ;-)  The best example is Lexmark, producing dumb printers that are almost given away in boxes of cereal, but which use inks that are among the most expensive - that's before getting into the area of chipped cartridges and the lack of 3rd party availability...

As to the original question; within the industry there are only two simple choices every time, HP or Epson.

Although I no longer work for them, I can still recommend InkSaver as a further aid to ink economy.

Offline Oldboy

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Re: Printers
« Reply #8 on: September 21, 2009, 05:39:48 PM »
Thanks for the advice - useful to get an idea of actual print costs [I know it's just an idea and they'll no doubt vary a bit in practice]. In the past when I made several hundred calendars a year I had 3 HP printers - now very much obsolete - that used large ink cartridges easily available in compatible form and did very good prints on quality plain paper and light card. Have'nt tried proper printing on photo paper for ages so I assume the quality has gone up and the price you need to pay for that quality has dropped a bit. It is difficult - I don't want to pay more than I need if it's a case of paying for more features rather than better picture quality - but I don't want to buy something cheap and be disappointed with the results. I'll take a more in depth look at  the models suggested.

Check this out sue Computer Shopper reviews. Click on each in turn to see what they cost per page.  ;D

http://www.expertreviews.co.uk/labs/257/photo-printers/products.html

Offline Jonathan

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Re: Printers
« Reply #9 on: September 21, 2009, 05:50:38 PM »
Most of the "photo quality" inkjets really can give mini lab quality prints.  But that's only because most mini labs do such awful prints ;)

I don't own a proper photo printer.  Everything goes out to the lab and I'm convinced it costs me less in the long run.

But if you're printing high volume A4 then look at the Xerox Phaser.  I absolutely love mine.  If I need 200 leaflets then it's cheaper to fire it up than send it out to a short run printer.  Depending how you lay them out you may find it perfect for calendars.  (Send me a file if you like and I can run a sample print.).  Mine's on page pack which means I pay a fixed cost per copy and Xerox maintain it and send me free ink.

Also it's the only printer I have ever used where if I need 500 double sided full colour A4s I just load it up, hit the button and go and do something else.  When I come back they will all be perfect.
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Offline Bigbill

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Re: Printers
« Reply #10 on: September 21, 2009, 05:51:44 PM »
Hewwo from Windy Sheffy,
Now then,cautionary word here,,,,,having a printer at home is deffo a good move,and,i agree that using a lab for any sort of quantity is a good move.
Having a printer at home though is only the start of it,you will soon get into the wonderful world of printer calibration,which is the point at which you will consider all sorts of dark things,
kicking people to death,boiling the cat,liking showjumping,jumping off the local tall building(ok,i was kidding about the showjumping)etc etc,
for me,all of the big name printers will do a very good job,ive got an Epson R1800,had it for ages and its very good at what it does,no one has ever complained about the prints they have had off me,
i do however still have nightmares about matching the damn prints to what appears on the screen,,,,,as you will soon see !!

E N J O Y

Shine On

Offline greypoint

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Re: Printers
« Reply #11 on: September 21, 2009, 05:53:29 PM »
Mmmmm...yes, I understand what you mean 8) .....oh, and give me show jumping over football any day ;D

Offline jimthetrain

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Re: Printers
« Reply #12 on: September 21, 2009, 09:47:56 PM »
Hewwo from Windy Sheffy,
Now then,cautionary word here,,,,,having a printer at home is deffo a good move,and,i agree that using a lab for any sort of quantity is a good move.
Having a printer at home though is only the start of it,you will soon get into the wonderful world of printer calibration,which is the point at which you will consider all sorts of dark things,
kicking people to death,boiling the cat,liking showjumping,jumping off the local tall building(ok,i was kidding about the showjumping)etc etc,
for me,all of the big name printers will do a very good job,ive got an Epson R1800,had it for ages and its very good at what it does,no one has ever complained about the prints they have had off me,
i do however still have nightmares about matching the damn prints to what appears on the screen,,,,,as you will soon see !!

E N J O Y

Shine On


Same here Bill. Sometimes they are perfect and others too dark. Nice big printer though and Dave prints his out on an R1800 aswell. :tup:
BOOZE!!! Helping ugly people have sex.

Offline oRGie

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Re: Printers
« Reply #13 on: September 22, 2009, 10:41:12 PM »
Thanks for the advice - useful to get an idea of actual print costs [I know it's just an idea and they'll no doubt vary a bit in practice]. In the past when I made several hundred calendars a year I had 3 HP printers - now very much obsolete - that used large ink cartridges easily available in compatible form and did very good prints on quality plain paper and light card. Have'nt tried proper printing on photo paper for ages so I assume the quality has gone up and the price you need to pay for that quality has dropped a bit. It is difficult - I don't want to pay more than I need if it's a case of paying for more features rather than better picture quality - but I don't want to buy something cheap and be disappointed with the results. I'll take a more in depth look at  the models suggested.

Check this out sue Computer Shopper reviews. Click on each in turn to see what they cost per page.  ;D

http://www.expertreviews.co.uk/labs/257/photo-printers/products.html

What am I missing, I cant seem to find the cost per page info ???

And Dave, have you worked out an aproximate cost per A3 photo print on your R1800 ? 

Offline Oldboy

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Re: Printers
« Reply #14 on: September 22, 2009, 11:04:10 PM »
Thanks for the advice - useful to get an idea of actual print costs [I know it's just an idea and they'll no doubt vary a bit in practice]. In the past when I made several hundred calendars a year I had 3 HP printers - now very much obsolete - that used large ink cartridges easily available in compatible form and did very good prints on quality plain paper and light card. Have'nt tried proper printing on photo paper for ages so I assume the quality has gone up and the price you need to pay for that quality has dropped a bit. It is difficult - I don't want to pay more than I need if it's a case of paying for more features rather than better picture quality - but I don't want to buy something cheap and be disappointed with the results. I'll take a more in depth look at  the models suggested.

Check this out sue Computer Shopper reviews. Click on each in turn to see what they cost per page.  ;D

http://www.expertreviews.co.uk/labs/257/photo-printers/products.html

What am I missing, I cant seem to find the cost per page info ???

And Dave, have you worked out an aproximate cost per A3 photo print on your R1800 ? 

No your not missing anything. I posted that before I checked one out and it doesn't show that, sorry. They used to state that in the mag so I assumed they still did!  :-[  :-*

 

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