New printer or continue with my Pro-10S

Simon Knight

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First it may be useful to know my printing history. I have decided to re-start printing photos especially monochrome images. In the past I have used Canon, Hewlett-Packard and Epson printers often changing machines in an attempt to get neutral monochrome prints. Five or six years ago I had both a Canon S9000 and an Epson 1400W fail within a couple of weeks of each other. At the time the Canon was filled with OctoInks and the Epson with the MIS Eboni six carbon ink set. These two were replaced with a Canon Pro-10S which proved capable of producing the neutral monochrome prints I wanted. Also at around this time my daughter was at the exam phases of her education and took Art in various forms all the way to degree level. My Pro-10S was pressed into service and I chose to use the OctoInks inkset as my daughter often needed / demanded multiple proofs of her work which used lot of ink.

My daughter has now graduated (phew!) so is no longer needing me to print her work meaning that I now feel able to start printing my own photos again. I have recently fitted a new print head and the printer is filled with Canon inks so I am good to go. What concerns me is the issue where all ink channels are purged when one or more ink cartridges of changed. One Youtube video by PhotoSpeed suggests that the newer 300 pro uses 0.5ml of ink from each cartridge (
). I imagine that the older Pro-10s will use the same as both models use the same print head.

I wonder what the accepted wisdom is on when to change OEM cartridges? (I think I have read that its best to change all cartridges that are showing the exclamation warning when one reports empty.)

Given that a full set of inks costs over £100 I have been thinking should I be looking at getting a new printer? I have narrowed my list down to the following : Epson P900, Canon Pro1000 and the Epson ET8550. I have no need of an A2 printer but I am attracted to the large ink tanks in all these machines. In many ways the ET8550 seems ideal except that its ability to produce neutral monochrome prints has been called into question. The Pro1000 is a great machine but I have read that in order to prevent ink purging it is important to print on large sheets and to print several times a week. The P900 has had issues with paper feeding and tractor feed marks on some papers but I have also read that it has been updated to solve the paper feed issues.

The other option is to continue to use the Pro-10S with the inks from Octoinks. To my eye the prints lack the same contrast as OEM and there is less red in skin tones. I also have no idea how long the prints will last but I'm also not sure how long the Canon inks will last on the PhotoSpeed papers I use. Perhaps I should stop worrying about this one issue.

Any thoughts or experiences welcomed and thanks for reading my ramble.

Simon
 

The Hat

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Any thoughts or experiences welcomed and thanks for reading my ramble
Continue with your trusty Pro 10, but refill with OEM inks from the already mentioned Canon printers, you have a price choice of 40ml carts, 80ml carts, or 130ml carts all with the same inks as used in the Pro 10, that way you can change out your carts when one is nearing empty..

The how long is a piece of string thing is when it comes to longevity, Canon inks give you the best fading results, but that’s only if you print on Canon paper so using OctoInkjet inks may will give you the same longevity as the OEM inks..

Maybe this isn’t what you wanted to hear, but it gives you some food for taught..

P.S. you need to tweak the printer to get better colour results from the OctoInkjet ink or better still use a proper profile made by yourself or someone else commercially..
 

Simon Knight

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but refill with OEM inks from the already mentioned Canon printers,
Good point, now you mention it I remember being told this a few weeks ago, I really must pay more attention!
 

Ink stained Fingers

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The other option is to continue to use the Pro-10S with the inks from Octoinks. To my eye the prints lack the same contrast as OEM and there is less red in skin tones.
Please be aware that this might not an issue of the inks but of an non-matching icc-profile. Every ink/paper/printer combination requires specific color adjustment settings - you may use color adjustments via the driver - or get specific icc-color profiles created by a service provider or you do it yourself with an appropriate tool for it. A review of the gamut of a particular ink/paper combination would tell you if the gamut is actually limited in the red range , or what the black level is of the ink in use affecting the contrast or whether it's more a matter of color adjustments to compensate differences in ink and paper.
(This does not just apply to your Pro10s but to about every printer on which you use non-OEM inks and papers)
 

GordW

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I agree with @The Hat ; keep your 10S.

You don't mention whether you have multiple sets of cartridges. One in the printer, one ready to go. That way, when you get a low-ink warning in one channel, you change the entire set. This minimizes how many times each channel gets purged. Then top up the complete set and make it ready to go.

I have two sets with Precision Colors and find the reds more than acceptable. PC mentions that they use Canon OEM ink for their red (it's much more expensive than the other colours). I also have a set of Canon OEMs that I will swap to whenever I have a job that requires the best IQ.

As you appear to be in the UK, you could order a set of refilled cartridges from Octoink. They use Canon OEM cartridges that they clean, purge and fill with their ink. At that point, you could use a Canon OEM for red, and Octoink for the others. But, you may need to calibrate, based on that combination.
 

Simon Knight

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#GordW Thank you.

As I wrote in my mentioned in my original post I have been using Octoinks for the past few years and have several full sets of cartridges. I also have an i-One Studio profiler that seems to work o.k. so my current plan is to print some reference prints using OEM inks having re-profiled the paper. Then swap back to Octoinks and see how close to OEM colour I can get. If I decide I want better colour then I shall look at buying some Lucia Pro from the Pro-1000 or larger printers and start experimenting with Octoink/OEM hybrid ink sets.

As you say the red ink is the first to experiment with followed by possibly the yellow. If there are no issues with using the OEM inks then that leaves me the option that the hat suggests of going all OEM by refilling from larger cartridges from the wide carriage Canon machines. I'm looking on the forum for any reports of issues with using ink from the twelve channel printers with the ten channel print head as fitted in the Pro-10s.
 

Simon Knight

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A review of the gamut of a particular ink/paper combination would tell you if the gamut is actually limited in the red range , or what the black level is of the ink in use affecting the contrast or whether it's more a matter of color adjustments to compensate differences in ink and paper.
# Ink Stained Fingers . Does such a review result in the 3D colour space graphs that you often include in your reports of ink performance ? If so how do I produce similar and then interpret them? I've added this question to my list of questions to research.

Answering my own question : Apple provide an application ColorSyncUtility that graphs ICC profiles.
 
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