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Author Topic: 1st print problems with z3100  (Read 43300 times)
mcbroomf
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« Reply #20 on: January 22, 2007, 08:14:04 PM »
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Well it looks like Julie's rep knew what he was talking about.

After my last post I called HP tech support again.  I got a different guy this time.

After re-reading the information in my case he made the following comments during our conversation.  They are quoted pretty close to verbatim as I wrote them down after I hung up.

"Yes, I know what this is, it's the print heads scuffing the paper.
I can reproduce this here.
It only happens on Hahnemuhle right?
It only happens with thicker media.
It is due to the paper curl and stiffness.
We have only known about this for about a week.
Engineering are working on it but don't currently have a solution."

He suggested a work around of uncurling the paper and feeding cut sheets, but that's not acceptable to me as I only want to use 24" rolls with this printer.  He also said that it may not work every time.  The curl and the stiffness of the paper are key, the paper lifts up off the bed (?) after it's fed in as it's got such a strong curl.  He said you can see it if you lift the cover and shine a light inside.  I haven't done this to confirm it, but without vacuum to hold the paper I can believe it.  

I asked how I should return the printer and he said to go through my supplier and if I had trouble to use my case number.  I'm pretty sure it's going back, although I may give HP Engineering a week to see what they come up with.  I will obviously be making no more test prints, long or short, it's cost me enough as it is.  

My concerns if I keep it are as follows;
1) This seems like a re-engineer of the system used to flatten the paper.  How well can this be retrofitted in the field, if at all?
2) How robust will any fix be?  The curl is going to get worse at the end of a roll of paper.  What about other papers, now and in the future?  Will they test them all?  Will it work now and then need another modification for a future generation paper?

I do wonder if this problem is more likely to happen on 24" rolls than 17".  Perhaps someone will test this out.  Given Christopher's comment that HM Photo Rag 308 was OK printed 13x19 I wonder if it's a peculiarity of FAP, or 24" rolls, or some interaction.

Just to keep all of the pertinent information in this string I will take photos of the problem I ran into on my 1st print when I mistakenly profiles using Fine Art > 250 paper type.  This did not have the zebra stripes, but the greys lost definition towards the end of the print, as though I had lost a dark grey or black.

Lastly for Michael, perhaps you could make inquiries with HP about this issue.  It is clearly a recent problem, but I (and others that are affected I'm sure) need to know soon what, if any, kind of engineering fix may be possible.

Thanks
« Last Edit: January 23, 2007, 10:22:55 AM by mcbroomf » Logged

Mike Broomfield
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neil snape
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« Reply #21 on: January 23, 2007, 01:07:25 AM »
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First the firmware 4.0.6 is okay on all the beta printers I know of. On mine it works fine as far as feed goes, and all calibrations etc. There are some small bugs that have been relayed but nothing to do with what is in this thread.

I have or had  two rolls of Hahnemuhle Photo Rag 308 here. I had no problems with printing with the 4.0.6 firmware on a Mac. I didn't try on the PC though. I only use Ethernet. If at all possible use Ethernet , as USB will never be as trouble free.

The media orientation can be a culprit , and has been with not only HP but the other makers too in some cases. I hope they can find and fix any discrepancies fast between these 2 orientation modes.

Paper thickness.   A fine art printer made some tests on Arches Torchon non coated media which is over 500 g/m2 and double the recommended thickness. It printed without head strikes. It is also very rigid. Yet it is quite flat. Maybe it is the thick media that cockle (buckle or wave) under and or during printing with ink loads. This could be the major factor here. HP do and have fully tested their long time supplied media for the older 5500 . Yet if they can and have been able to repro the cockle on their machines then it wasn't happening to all media all the time.

It is simply not true about the media weights. Possibly the thickness if the problem in this thread perceives but weight is not restricted to less than 300 nor 250. My favourite media is the Satin Professional which is +300g/m2. Flawless. So I think it must be a set of conditions mostly around cockle which are image and environmental condition dependent.

Keep this thread alive, hope to hear HP respond with a viable solution quickly.
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Roscolo
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« Reply #22 on: January 23, 2007, 04:13:57 AM »
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Sounds like HP got everything right except leaving off a vacuum.

Thanks for posting this info. as I was very close to purchasing this printer. The vast majority of my printing is done on 300 + gsm papers, so I'm holding off for now. Looks like I'm back to the Canon ipf5000, or 8000, or hopefully the ipf6000 will show up soon.

Sure HP will get the kinks worked out eventually. The obvious solution seems to be that a wide format printer should always have a vacuum.
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ternst
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« Reply #23 on: January 23, 2007, 05:38:19 AM »
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"I only use Ethernet. If at all possible use Ethernet , as USB will never be as trouble free."

Neil:

I was having major issues with Ethernet on my Mac and the z (printing would stop in the middle of almost every print and then once printing resumed, it would only lay down the gloss ink and nothing else - covered the entire sheet with gloss ink - the cancel command would not work - wasted a lot of paper and gloss ink). HP support told me to only use USB. I moved the printer to my desktop so I could use USB and the problem has only happened once since then. Go figure.

"My favourite media is the Satin Professional which is +300g/m2. Flawless."

I've been waiting for this paper but HP still has none in stock to sell to mortals like the rest of us and they are now showing a month or more delivery date - do you have any idea when this might actually be in stock for sale to the public? From the samples I've seen it looks like a wonderful paper, I just wish they would sell it...

Tim Ernst in Arkansas
« Last Edit: January 23, 2007, 08:21:49 AM by ternst » Logged
mcbroomf
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« Reply #24 on: January 23, 2007, 07:48:15 AM »
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Quote
.... Maybe it is the thick media that cockle (buckle or wave) under and or during printing with ink loads. This could be the major factor here....

[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=97121\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Neil, that is a very good point and does coincide with a couple of observations with the stripes I've had.

The stripes have always been worse (more stripes or more evident) on prints I've made which have heavy ink.  The snapshot I posted earlier was the reflection off the ocean of a very early dark almost predawn clear sky, so it was very deep and dark blue/indigo.  Laying down this much ink would change the stress of the paper a lot more than on an image with a lighter mix of busy detail, and in fact on 2 test prints I made of a Cape Cod pine forest, while I could see the marks they were much less evident.

One thing I could not understand was that towards the end of the print there was a dark band, about 3/8" deep or so (also shown in the snapshot).  This was evident on all of the prints and test prints that had heavy ink.  I realised that this again could be due to the paper stress change, but this time it would be because at the end of the print the rear heads stop putting ink on the paper abruptly at the trailing edge of the image, while the front heads continue to lay down ink.  The clean edge of the paper continues to feed further into the printer and it will change the stress/buckle/wave characteristics of the whole section under the heads causing a different band as the print comes to the end.

For those people who have yet to experience this problem it might be worthwhile printing a full width dark print with little detail to see if you get even inking across the image (top to bottom).
« Last Edit: January 23, 2007, 07:48:55 AM by mcbroomf » Logged

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Christopher
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« Reply #25 on: January 23, 2007, 12:38:24 PM »
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Ok new or old problem ?

Ok I couldn't get the Zebra strips on my z3100, but that's pherhaps because I'm not using anything larger than 13in at the moment. ( A Pano around 13*30 on HM Photo Rag was fine.)

Now I tried some printing on Innova F-Type Gloss ( The glossy version ). I calibrated it and profiles it. Now I have some very strange strips on them. Even at A4 and on 13*19. It goes down all the way, but is only visible against the light. ( So it was kind of hard to photogrpah) They go from top to bottom. They run in print direction. So in a portrait picture from top to bottom. They are across the hole print. They are not always the same strength. They nearly look like roller marks. But that's strange ... I don't have anything like that on my Epson Glossy or on my HM Photo Rag prints..


I hope the Photos show what I mean.
[attachment=1607:attachment]
[attachment=1608:attachment]

Any one similar problem ?

EDIT: I even have them in the calibrtaion target.
« Last Edit: January 23, 2007, 12:41:33 PM by Christopher » Logged

adiallo
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« Reply #26 on: January 23, 2007, 02:47:01 PM »
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Christopher,
In tests here last week I also found some print issues with the Innova FType Gloss. It definitely does not seem to be a good match for the Vivera pigments. I calibrated using the density aim points and ink loads triggered by the Photo Semigloss/Satin setting and get similar artifacts, but much less sever than in your example. The bigger issue is that on actual prints there is some mottling in shadow areas that is clearly visible at various print angles.

As always it's important to match the paper to the ink. Disappointing, but if that is the trade-off for the HP's greater longevity performance, I can live with choosing another paper. No issues so far on 3rd party matte papers and the HP branded papers, matte ang glossy look fine.
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Christopher
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« Reply #27 on: January 23, 2007, 02:55:27 PM »
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Christopher,
In tests here last week I also found some print issues with the Innova FType Gloss. It definitely does not seem to be a good match for the Vivera pigments. I calibrated using the density aim points and ink loads triggered by the Photo Semigloss/Satin setting and get similar artifacts, but much less sever than in your example. The bigger issue is that on actual prints there is some mottling in shadow areas that is clearly visible at various print angles.

As always it's important to match the paper to the ink. Disappointing, but if that is the trade-off for the HP's greater longevity performance, I can live with choosing another paper. No issues so far on 3rd party matte papers and the HP branded papers, matte ang glossy look fine.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=97212\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]


Yes I mean it doesn't bother me that much. It's a nice paper, but still not what I would like to have. I would never sell my photographs on this paper.
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dkeyes
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« Reply #28 on: January 24, 2007, 01:54:16 AM »
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Wow, I have just ordered the 3100 44" and after reading this discussion I'm thinking of cancelling it. I print mostly on glossy media and Hanemule rag, but I also need to use Ethernet since my printer is 40' away (in the basement studio). My files are large, 300+mg. Am I asking for trouble using Ethernet and this printer? Not to mention I hadn't thought about the lack of a vacuum on this printer. This seems to be a problem with some papers.
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Christopher
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« Reply #29 on: January 24, 2007, 02:03:25 AM »
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Wow, I have just ordered the 3100 44" and after reading this discussion I'm thinking of cancelling it. I print mostly on glossy media and Hanemule rag, but I also need to use Ethernet since my printer is 40' away (in the basement studio). My files are large, 300+mg. Am I asking for trouble using Ethernet and this printer? Not to mention I hadn't thought about the lack of a vacuum on this printer. This seems to be a problem with some papers.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=97274\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Ok the following. I use a 15 meter Ethernet cable and have printed two over 500mb files with no problems. I also don't have any problems with HM Photo Rag so far. Also most real glossy papers work wonderful. ( Ilford Glossy, Epson Glossy, HM Glossy, and I LOVE the HP Glossy) Now The only problems I noticed som far is with Inova F-Type Gloss. Now there must be said, that I haven't printed larger than 13*19 yet. I first want to decide what paper I will use before buying expensive rolls.

I'm still not 100% sure, that these problems are typical for the z3100 series, or if only some very specific problems. Why ? First fo all the HP Forum is pretty clean only two or three posts about it. Here we also don't have many more posts. I know of people using it without any problems.

Now one question at Micheal:

Have you tried printing on larger rolls with Fine Art Paper ? Like HM FAP or More important Photo Rag 306 ?


One problem could be that the driver/printer has problems with heavy Glossy paper wich is profiles under glossy/pearl.

Edit: I have the 44 version.
« Last Edit: January 24, 2007, 02:04:06 AM by Christopher » Logged

dkeyes
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« Reply #30 on: January 24, 2007, 02:17:33 AM »
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Ok the following. I use a 15 meter Ethernet cable and have printed two over 500mb files with no problems. I also don't have any problems with HM Photo Rag so far. Also most real glossy papers work wonderful. ( Ilford Glossy, Epson Glossy, HM Glossy, and I LOVE the HP Glossy) Now The only problems I noticed som far is with Inova F-Type Gloss. Now there must be said, that I haven't printed larger than 13*19 yet. I first want to decide what paper I will use before buying expensive rolls.


Christopher,
Glad to hear your having success using Ethernet. I have been using the Epson Glossy and Innova F-Type gloss on the Epson 9800. Both look great, with the Epson being slightly warmer. The Innova has slightly better blacks I think. Will be interesting to print exact same prints on exact same papers on the HP 3100 now. How does the HP Glossy compare to these two papers?

What's still troubling, and I can't believe I didn't notice this before I ordered the printer is the lack of a vacuum. How can these printers handle the paper accurately without a vacuum? When I've used the Epson 9800, the vacuum, which is adjustable, sometimes makes the difference between having scuff lines and no lines on the print.
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Christopher
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« Reply #31 on: January 24, 2007, 07:28:13 AM »
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Christopher,
Glad to hear your having success using Ethernet. I have been using the Epson Glossy and Innova F-Type gloss on the Epson 9800. Both look great, with the Epson being slightly warmer. The Innova has slightly better blacks I think. Will be interesting to print exact same prints on exact same papers on the HP 3100 now. How does the HP Glossy compare to these two papers?

What's still troubling, and I can't believe I didn't notice this before I ordered the printer is the lack of a vacuum. How can these printers handle the paper accurately without a vacuum? When I've used the Epson 9800, the vacuum, which is adjustable, sometimes makes the difference between having scuff lines and no lines on the print.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=97276\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

As I said, I don't have any problems yet, but I haven't printed so large. Now I have two prints sitting here from the M8 one printed on Epson and one on HP. It is really hard to tell. they look both close, but if I shut my eyes and stwitch them around ( And move them into diffrent light or position) than look again and guess wich one I like better I picked the HP 8 out of 10 times.  Now as you know F-Type Gloss doesn't work, or at least not with my printer. The quality is nice, but there are all the Huh"roller" marks??? over them. I don't have an x800 series printer but I still got my R2400 and compared to that I prefer the Gloss fom the Z in both prints. It looks more even more .... hm let's say better. (it would be easier to descrip it for me in German ;-) )

No the Vacuum is a thing, but I'm not sure if your really need it. A few things about that. IF these problems would be on many printers and papers, we would here much more about them. ALSO I think HP wouldn't make this kind of mistake. I still believe that they knew exactly what they did when leaving the Pump out. In really think the problem is software related. I can't proof it, because I don't have any larger rolls here but here is what I think:

The problems accure than the paper is profiled as Glossy or Pearl Paper. ( Which you would do with HM FAP to use the GLOP ) Mike first used the Fine Art paper setting and made a print. As I recall the print was absolutly fine. I mean no Strips or anything, just the bad colors and banding because of the wrong paper setting. NOW IF the poblem would be that the printer can't handle HM FAP in general, then shouldn't be the same strips in his first print ? I think that the paper you choose in the calibration mode changes the paper handling in general.


One more note, did you try to change the paper thickness in your color center ? I mean because all glossy are normaly calibrated as "normal", and Fine Art Papers like the HM Photo Rag is calibrated as "thick" medium. So did you try to change that setting ?

Ok that's all what I know so far, and as long as I don't have any larger paper I can't reproduce the strips. ( But sorry, but I won't by only for that purpose a HM FAP roll which I will never use again.)
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« Reply #32 on: January 24, 2007, 07:46:54 AM »
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Ok some more news from my side. Now I have actually tested my theory. As I said I got problems with F-Type Gloss and the Z3100 printer. Which gave me strange strips.
Now in the post above I said you should try to use the thick setting. I did that. I Used the thick option, and I was suprised. The makrs are still there, but nearly not visible. Now It's MUCH better. Still not good enough, for Fine Art, but if I compare it to the marks before, than it is a world apart. Before everyone noticed them on the first try. Now it is harder to see it.

I still think it's something cehmical which produces them. Some kind of reaction between the ink and the paper coating.
« Last Edit: January 24, 2007, 07:49:05 AM by Christopher » Logged

Roscolo
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« Reply #33 on: January 24, 2007, 08:07:53 AM »
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I'm still not 100% sure, that these problems are typical for the z3100 series, or if only some very specific problems. Why ? First fo all the HP Forum is pretty clean only two or three posts about it. Here we also don't have many more posts. I know of people using it without any problems.


[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=97275\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Could you post a link to the HP forum?

I don't have the z3100 yet, but I bid a pretty large print job and it looks like I'm going to get it, so I have to make a decision within a week, 10 days on a new printer. Not so crazy about that, because I would like to see what type of beast the canon ipf6000 turns out to be.

If the problem you are experiencing is limited to a few printers that may be out of whack, the z3100 is still an option for me. If media over 300 gsm can't be printed out consistently and reliably without these unacceptable marks on the print, I just don't have time for HP to try to solve the problem.

Thanks for the info.
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mcbroomf
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« Reply #34 on: January 24, 2007, 08:24:16 AM »
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......
The problems accure than the paper is profiled as Glossy or Pearl Paper. ( Which you would do with HM FAP to use the GLOP ) Mike first used the Fine Art paper setting and made a print. As I recall the print was absolutly fine. I mean no Strips or anything, just the bad colors and banding because of the wrong paper setting. NOW IF the poblem would be that the printer can't handle HM FAP in general, then shouldn't be the same strips in his first print ? I think that the paper you choose in the calibration mode changes the paper handling in general......

[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=97290\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Yes, on the 1st print I made I had profiled HM FAP as a "Fine Art > 250gsm" paper, not Photo Semigloss (I may have the names a little off, I'm not with the printer right now).  I didn't get the zebra stripes on that print, and in fact the 1st 1/2 of the print looked great.  The image I was printing is a little busy, but about 1/2 way though I saw some faint banding on a tree trunk, and by the end of the print all of the greys had gone flat, as though I had lost black.  It was then that I reprofiled the HM FAP using the Photo semigloss paper type setting and ran into stripes.  I think that when you choose FA paper > 250 setting it leaves a larger gap between the heads and the paper.  This may for some reason be why the GE can't be used, I don't know, but it would make sense why there is less of an issue if that's the case.  By the way the additional profile patterns and prints I made were fine for all colours, so clearly the black head is OK, so I have no idea why I got that strange effect.

I spoke one last time to HP Tech support yesterday.  I wanted to see if they could give me some idea if we could expect a fix for this soon.  Given that they have been able to reproduce this on their 3100's in the office they don't have to rely on the odd bad system in the field, so I was hoping for some relatively promising news, and if it was then I would make the call on keeping or returning the printer.

I spoke to a different guy than the last 2, however he was also aware of the problem, and had run tests himself and been able to demonstrate it.   He made the following comments during our conversation;

"Probably a month or 2.  This is a long term fix, there is no "quick fix" for this like a firware update.
Able to reproduce it on gloss media, not heavy weight but a paper with a noticeable curl due to the coating.
Also seen it on Photo Satins."

I asked him if he could tell me if there was printer to printer variation (eg we have people here who have printers that are working well, while mine and Andre's have produced nothing good).  He said that once they found a paper that is susceptible to the problem they can reproduce it on all printers (I didn't ask how many they have).

I mentioned that I had seen the problem more easily on images with heavy ink loading and he agreed that this would change the paper curl characteristics and make it more likely to happen.

I had meant to take a few photos of the 1st image I printer and post them last night just to keep all the info in one place.  I should get a chance to do that tonight.
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Mike Broomfield
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mcbroomf
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« Reply #35 on: January 24, 2007, 08:28:25 AM »
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Here's a link to the page for HP support for designjets, click on Support Forums.
At one time I found a different forum or discussion group just for the 3100, and one guy (Tim) had posted a message indicating he had a stripe problem.  I can't find my way back to that page now althogh I posted a reply to it myself.

http://h20000.www2.hp.com/bizsupport/TechS...0&lang=en&cc=us
« Last Edit: January 24, 2007, 08:30:51 AM by mcbroomf » Logged

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« Reply #36 on: January 24, 2007, 11:34:16 AM »
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Try this link to HP Z3100 Support and look down under the "Forums" heading. This may be where you were.

http://h41186.www4.hp.com/country/us/en/su...?pageseq=831457

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Jim Cole
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« Reply #37 on: January 24, 2007, 12:02:33 PM »
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Yes!  
This is it, thanks Jim.  Tim Gray had mentioned this problem, but he posted under the hardware section not print quality.  I followed his post with a Me Too post.  That forum is getting practically no action though.  I posted a link to this string in case he or others are still reading it.
« Last Edit: January 24, 2007, 12:07:39 PM by mcbroomf » Logged

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« Reply #38 on: January 24, 2007, 12:39:17 PM »
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I exchanged an email with Michael Reichmann, asking if he could make inquiries with some engineering contacts he may have made when he visited HP in Barcelona, but he replied and told me that he will soon be on the road for a month and due to time pressures could not help.   In any case it's good to have his forum to discuss the problem.

Today however I got a call from the HP account manager for Charrette (who supplied my printer).  He told me that he expects HP to stand by their product and fix it.  I later got an email from him to let me know that he has set up a call for tomorrow with a representative from HP Engineering in Barcelona.  I'm trying to move the call to a time I don't have a conflict, but I hope either tomorrow or Friday I'll be able to relay the information I get.
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« Reply #39 on: January 24, 2007, 06:37:49 PM »
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This is the 2nd print out of the z3100, it shows the whole image and you can see 5 columns of the zebra stripes.  20x30 on HM FAP with ICC profile made using Photo Semiglass as the paper type.
Ignore the damage that might just be visible 1/3 of the way up on the left, an accident while it was lying on the floor.
« Last Edit: January 24, 2007, 06:46:38 PM by mcbroomf » Logged

Mike Broomfield
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