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Thinking of buying Lexmark Prevail Pro705

Discussion in 'Lexmark, Dell, Brother Inkjet Printers' started by leopardmoth, Sep 18, 2010.

  1. Sep 18, 2010
    leopardmoth

    leopardmoth Newbie to Printing

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    First off... I have learned a lot lurking about on this forum!! Thank you all!! :)

    My Dell A960 finally kicked the bucket after years of abuse, so I need a replacement. I've been looking at mainly Canons, but I couldn't find one that fit all my requirements. This is what I need:

    Must handle 110 lb cardstock with no problems, and be able to print photos on it without soaking the paper.
    Must have 4-5 separate tanks/cartridges, since I'm done with dealing with a tri-color cartridge.
    I must be able to refill the tanks/cartridges.
    Must have scanner/copier, but not necessarily an ADF or fax.
    Must not be an HP (the software makes me insane).

    I have tentatively settled on the Lexmark Prevail Pro705 because:

    It can handle cardstock up to .025" thick, which, if I'm not mistaken, is about .009" thicker than 110 lb cardstock.
    It has 4 separate cartridges, which I think I can refill, since there is refill ink available on atlanticinkjet.com (is that good ink? Used it with my Dell.)
    Has a scanner/copier. It also has ADF and fax.
    It is not an HP.
    Its UI sounds similar to the Dell's, which I liked pretty well.
    It has a front loading tray which accommodates even the cardstock! This makes me willing to put up with the extra bulk of the ADF which I almost never use.
    Lexmark made the Dell printers, so I figure if I liked the way Dell printed on cardstock, I should like the way Lexmark prints on cardstock.
    If I need to, I can get replacement cartridges easily, even at WalMart (unlike Dell... and these are cheaper, too!).

    I do not need absolute top-quality photo printing. I need to print ~25 family calendars on 110 lb cardstock every year, some photos, and a good bit of regular printing.

    Does my choice sound reasonable? :D Does anybody have a better suggestion that won't break the bank? (I can get this printer for $130.)
  2. Sep 19, 2010
    leopardmoth

    leopardmoth Newbie to Printing

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    Well, I think this is a relatively new printer on the market, so perhaps that is why I've gotten quite a few views but no responses. I went ahead and bought the printer today. They had an additional $50 off for trading in a used printer. So I obliged them, and got the Lexmark Prevail Pro705 for $80 + tax. Sweet! (I hope!)

    It was relatively easy to set up, but I have not yet had the opportunity to really test it. I'll report back when I do. :)
  3. Oct 16, 2010
    leopardmoth

    leopardmoth Newbie to Printing

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    Okay, so I promised to come back and report. It's official, this printer is everything I wanted and better!

    It prints beautifully on cardstock. Of course, printing on cardstock is not going to give you the quality that printing on photo paper will. But I need a printer that will print as well on cardstock as can be expected, and this does the job even better than my Dell did. The photos are brighter, the shading smoother, and the almost imperceptible striping I got with the Dell is completely gone. Very, very nice. I reprinted five pages from the current calendar and compared them to the ones I had printed with the Dell. I was just hoping it would be as good. I didn't expect it to be even better!

    This thing prints very fast, too (which really isn't as important to me), even on best quality. It also can print two-sided without me having to reload the pages myself, which is a very nice touch! I do get an occasional beginning-of-the-line smudge, which, with the Dell, was a sign that the print head was wearing out. Since this is brand new, I'm not sure what's up. I may see if I can get that replaced.

    I print my own calendars because I can get them exactly the way I want them. The two times I had them professionally printed, I was very disappointed in the quality. The pictures were grainier than they should have been, and there were many streaks in the printing. I almost refused to pay, but I needed them.
  4. Oct 18, 2010
    Bunny

    Bunny Newbie to Printing

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    Lexmark Prevail Pro705 got problems with windows vista . . . !!!
  5. Jul 22, 2011
    JLBDC

    JLBDC Newbie to Printing

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    Do you know how to refill the 100xl cartridge?
  6. Sep 6, 2011
    leopardmoth

    leopardmoth Newbie to Printing

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    I made a point of not getting Vista when it came out, and every Vista machine I've worked on has been trouble. I have Windows 7 on the computer with the Prevail Pro705, and it works great!

    I am still using the 100A cartridges I bought last year, and have been refilling them. If I am not mistaken, the 100 and 100XL cartridges are Return Program cartridges, and cannot be refilled. The 100A and 100XLA are not Return Program cartridges, and can be refilled. The first time I refilled them (using the instructions here - http://www.refillinstructions.com/Lexmark/L21.htm ), I put them in and kept printing. One by one, the printer warned of one of the cartridges running out of ink. I posted what happened at http://www.fixyourownprinter.com/forums/printer/51393#904 , and I will copy that here:

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    I have a new Lexmark Prevail Pro705, which I bought because it looked like I'd be able to refill it as long as I bought a set of non-Return Program cartridges. The printer came with 100 cartridges, and I used them until they were done, and then I replaced them with 100A cartridges (when I can afford the XLAs, I'll get those).

    I bought refill ink from rjettek.com, as well as syringes and needles for each color.

    Today I did my first refill (I peeled the sticker up from the white end until I saw the filling hole, which is right before the little circuit thing. I did this, rather than just sticking the needle through the sticker, to make sure I did not damage the circuit.). When I put the cartridges back in, I was disappointed to see that they did not reset the levels, so I nervously waited to see what would happen when the printer decided the cartridges were out of ink.

    Finally, a window came up that said my cyan was reaching the end of its life, and it gave me three options:

    1. I am replacing my ink cartridges now and i want to continue printing.

    2. I want to print using only the color ink.

    3. I want to print using the remaining ink in the printer.

    Okay, Cancel Printing, Order Ink.

    I looked up the first option to see exactly what it meant, and could find nothing, so I read much of this thread. Still not finding an answer that would have the printer recognize refilled cartridges, I just selected #3 and "Okay".

    It next came up with a red warning box telling me that it was the end of the cartridge's life, and that running it completely out of ink could damage the print head, and that the warranty does not cover damage to the printer resulting from running it out of ink, refilling the cartridges, or using third party cartridges. It said if I wanted to continue to attempt to print, to look at the screen on the printer and follow instructions there. It had a "cancel" button that I did not click because I was afraid whatever was on the printer's screen might disappear if I did.

    I looked at the screen on the printer. It said, "Cartridge End of Life. Replace cyan ink cartridge. Cancel, Continue" - I selected Continue (Cancel was highlighted by default). Next, "Cartridge End of Life. The printer will no longer be able to determine how much ink is in your cartridge. Cancel, Continue" - I thought, that would be wonderful if you no longer kept track of how much ink is in there. I clicked Continue. Next, "Cartridge End of Life. Your warranty from Lexmark does not cover damages caused by the use of non-Lexmark ink and/or ink cartridges. Cancel, Print". I clicked Print.

    The cyan ink level indicator now has a question mark over it, and when I print it still tells me that it is "very low". Which it isn't, because I refilled it. :)

    I have now gone through the same process (except the initial "Continue printing with the ink remaining in the printer" 3-choice screen) with the yellow and (just now) the magenta. I am printing just fine, and I just need to keep track of the ink on my own.

    I'm just grateful to be printing.

    UPDATE: It has now happened with the black. I have seen one or two other windows besides what I listed, but they've been along the same lines. I am now printing with question marks on all of my ink indicators, so I have to keep track of my printing. I am doing a lot of printing right now, so that's not too hard.

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    Unfortunately, I think you will need to buy 100A or 100XLA cartridges, but you will be able to refill those. Sorry I didn't see your question sooner!

    I know that Lexmark is one of the bad ones when it comes to refilling, but so far it can still be done, with the right cartridges. I see complaints about it all over the web. I had to have a printer that could take heavy cardstock, though, and that's surprisingly hard to find.
  7. Oct 13, 2011
    panos

    panos Printer Guru

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    Whatever the problems, Lexmark just got their reputation raised in my view after reading their candid responses to complains. eg:

    I think this is the first time I see this level of honesty in a large manufacturer provided at "consumer" level comments.

    Thumbs up for Lexmark.
  8. Oct 14, 2011
    leopardmoth

    leopardmoth Newbie to Printing

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    My Pro705 does not drink ink. I get a lot of printing done before I have to refill, and I don't even have XL cartridges. I don't doubt the gentleman in that first review was having a problem, but I haven't had that problem at all. Of course, in refilling, I probably put more ink in than they do, but I remember when they were new, before I refilled them -- I was impressed with how much printing I did before they got low.

    Another thing you and Panos might find interesting: That printhead issue... I just had that. My printhead almost completely quit printing a couple of weeks ago. I tried several things to get it working again, sometimes getting a page or two of print before it would stop again. Finally, the printer refused to recognize that the printhead was even compatible.

    I called Lexmark, and spoke with a man in the Philippines, who, thank goodness, did not have a super-thick accent. He was very helpful. I explained all the things I had done to try to get the printer working again. Since I had already exhausted all the options he would have suggested (including updating the firmware), he asked for a couple of bits of information from the printhead, and quickly determined that it was from the original, faulty run of printheads. He sent out a new printhead to me right away, along with a new set of XL cartridges (not XLA, so I won't be able to refill them, but hey...).

    I popped the new printhead in, and my old cartridges, and it was just like new! Then I noticed on the instructions that I was expected to send in my old cartridges with my old printhead. I went to Lexmark's website and got on a live chat with a representative. I explained what had happened, and that my old cartridges were working fine with the new printhead, and I'm a penny-pincher, so did I really have to send them in? (Besides, I didn't want Lexmark to know that I refill the cartridges, so they wouldn't decide the whole thing was my fault, even though the courts have ruled that printer companies cannot void your warranty if you use third-party ink.) She replied that no, I did not have to send them in, and to just include a note explaining that the cartridges were not enclosed because they are working fine with the new printhead.

    So... I'm very pleased with Lexmark at this point! And I still love my Prevail Pro705!

    I just hope that the firmware update doesn't prevent me from refilling, since part of the update excludes most third-party cartridges. I do use Lexmark cartridges. I just can't afford to buy 5-6 sets a year (at least -- I do a lot of printing), like I would need to. I would buy cartridges more often if they were more affordable. If Lexmark sold their own ink refills, I'd buy that, if it was affordable. You do have to be careful with third-party ink, and make sure you get good ink. Ink recommendations are pretty easy to find on this forum. I get mine from http://www.rjettek.com/ -- I found it recommended on here. :)

    If you use third-party ink or cartridges, I'd try to avoid updating the firmware. You shouldn't need an update anyway, if your printer is working fine. I did it only as a last-ditch effort to get printing again, knowing that a call to tech support was only going to result in me doing it anyhow.

    As I tried to get my printer working again, in my looking around for solutions online, I found many people complaining about the quality of Lexmark products and service. I know only my personal experience, which has been very positive.
  9. Oct 16, 2011
    leopardmoth

    leopardmoth Newbie to Printing

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    I use OEM Lexmark cartridges with third-party ink. I've been refilling these same 100A cartridges for almost a year now, and they're still going strong. I have no quality problems -- you just have to be sure you buy good quality refill ink.

    Cheap refill ink can give quality problems, printhead problems, or actually damage the printer in extreme cases. Good quality ink will not cause any more problems than you would have had with OEM ink. Even with OEM ink, you should print a nice color page every week to keep the nozzles from drying out.

    As far as the warranty goes, this is from the Walgreen's site (they do refills, but their service is not recommended):
    There have been legal fights waging over cartridge refilling for decades; they are still going on. While the courts did decide that Lexmark can enforce their return-cartridge program (the 100 and 100XL cartridges would be part of this program), they have ruled repeatedly that the regular cartridges may be refilled without impacting the printer warranty.
    When you buy the printer, it will come with 100 or 100XL cartridges. These are return-program cartridges. By opening the cartridge package, you agree to return the cartridge to Lexmark when it is empty.

    If you buy 100A or 100XLA cartridges (be careful, look two or three times to make sure you have the right ones), they will cost a good bit more, but you will be able to refill them -- legally, and without harming the printer, as long as you have good refill ink. I closed my eyes and plunked down the money for a set of 100A cartridges almost a year ago. I have refilled them, I don't know, 6, 7, 8 times.

    So I had a bit of an outlay initially. I think the 100A cartridges cost $75 (I just looked, and the black 100A wasn't listed at the moment, but the color ones were $13.79 each). Return program 100 cartridges would cost $52.50. Shipping is free over $25. Then I bought 32-ounce bottles of each color of ink from rjettek.com, as well as four syringes (one larger, for black) and four needles. I believe that ran about $60 (unfortunately, they don't have the 100A ink right now, but there are other highly recommended ink companies).

    So for about $135, I had refillable cartridges and refill ink. Let's say, to be conservative, that I've refilled them six times. If I had bought six sets of return program cartridges, I would have spent $262.50 -- because, if I had joined the Lexmark Return Rewards program, I would have gotten the sixth set free -- and still paid twice as much. You can see that I would have saved money even if I had refilled the cartridges only twice. Now, to be fair, you would normally be using your color cartridges more slowly than the black, but I had to base my math on something.

    It hurts the wallet at the beginning, but pays off pretty seriously in the long run. And I have loads of refill ink left. :D

    Sorry it took me so long to get back; I wanted to look some things up to be sure I was giving you good information.
  10. Dec 5, 2011
    rocfather

    rocfather Newbie to Printing

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    Hi leopardmoth, stumbled across this forum, great info in your posts. I have a prevail pro705 and would like to get 100A color cartridges. If you don't mind me asking, where did you purchase yours? I'm trying to find a site that will ship to Canada for reasonable shipping.

    Thx in advance.

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