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Author Topic: DO NOT BUY HP APS  (Read 10069 times)
marty m
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« on: March 19, 2007, 01:44:48 AM »
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The APS -- for the Z3100 printer -- has some serious design flaws that I was not previously aware of (unless I don't know how to use it, and welcome any input or corrections in that regard).

AND ONE QUESTION FOR EVERYONE -- has anyone tried profiling Luster papers with the satin or gloss settings? I assume that the satin or semi-gloss setting is the one to use.

With regards to APS:

I would not have purchased it had I understood these flaws before doing so, so buyer beware:

(1)  LARGE 988 PATCH SET ONLY WORKS WITH 24" ROLLS --

 I tried to profile a 17" roll of paper with the APS using the largest target set of 988 patches.  I received an error message that the paper size was too small.  

Apparently the 988 patch set only works with 24" paper.  With a 17" roll you're forced to use the small 288 patch chart.  

That calls into question the purpose of having the APS in the first place, since the test chart included with the Easy Printer/Color Center is almost twice the size of the only chart that the APS will let you use with 17" rolls.

I haven't tried it yet with 17x22 paper loaded sideways to see if that will work.

I thought that both EasyPrinter/Color Center software and the APS would create profiles on standard -- smaller sizes -- of paper?

For most of my printing I use 17" rolls or 17x22 sheets.  (The fact that the Z3100 prints on 24" rolls is icing on the cake.)  But this mean that any 17" rolls that I already have can only be profiled with the APS with 288 patches or the Easy Printer with about 450 patches.  

Does anyone have an opinion as to which is better -- APS wih 288 patches or Easy Printer with twice as many?

IRONICALLY the specs for Easy Printer would indicate that it works better than APS, since it can create profile on 13 x 19 sheets.

(2)  If you want to create a new paper type to be shown in the printer and the software, it can only be done within Easy Printer.

Thedesign of the APS only allows for the use of existing names, not the creation of of new paper names.  

So if you want to create a new paper type with a new name (like Epson Luster) you need to create the name and calibrate the paper first in Easy Printer, and then you can profile it using the APS.

Not a big deal, but it would be preferable if the APS could be one stop shopping and profiling, so to speak.

(3)  You must have the Eye 1 Colorimeter plugged into an USB port at all times or APS reverts to demo mode.  APS uses the Colorimeter like a hasp.  (Although I could swear that this was not the case when I first installed APS, but that is the case now -- I must have the Colorimeter plugged in or I get an error and warning message.)

That is a dumb design since I profile my LCD about once a month.

(4)  The Colorimeter comes with a white opaque covering to measure room ambient light, but that setting, or the ability to use that feature, doesn't show up when measuring an LCD.  I guess Gretag and HP didn't think it was worth including for the small charge of $800.

THIS IS CRIPPLED SOFTWARE THAT SHOULD BE AVOIDED -- ESPECIALLY IF THE LARGE TARGET SET WON'T PRINT ON 17" ROLLS OF PAPER

The Gretag and HP engineers who designed this must have done it with a hangover after a heavy night of drinking.  

What else can explain such a dumb design to not allow the use of the advanced features of the APS with a17" roll?
« Last Edit: March 24, 2007, 01:05:12 PM by marty m » Logged
neil snape
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« Reply #1 on: March 19, 2007, 02:06:54 AM »
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You'll have to cut the roll, with the on board cutter will be fine for 17" rolls.
The user manual of the Z tells you the formats for sheet or roll, yet you're right the TC9.18 chart isn't in the docs nor size layout instructions for this.
The i1 has always had to be plugged in. This is a conscient decision to ensure that users think about calibrating their monitor. You may like or dislike this idea, but at least it makes a point. When you are not using APS you can unplug it.
As for naming you just profile whatever and name it as you like. I don't understand what you're trying to say. Is it you would like the name of the media set up for third party media show up in the UI?

Not sure about the ambient light on LCD's. I did try  ( yesterday finally) the monitor calibration and profiling. My concerns were more on dual monitor set ups which are handled well. There were a lot of pleasant surprises, like validation, trending, etc. I was able to cancel out of a set up when my i1 fell off (my fault of course) during a cal. In Gretag interface this rarely worked before.
The UI is easier than Gretag's and I see it as well thought out. The print profiling has always worked well too. Is it an oversight for the 17" rolls? I don't know. I do know that I would have liked to see the ability to turn a A3+ sheet or any target orientation between formats. Yet you can't.
Could you try to cut off the roll to 17x22" and use it in portrait mode long side being 22"?
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marty m
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« Reply #2 on: March 19, 2007, 03:36:14 AM »
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You'll have to cut the roll, with the on board cutter will be fine for 17" rolls.bility to turn a A3+ sheet or any target orientation between formats. Yet you can't.
Could you try to cut off the roll to 17x22" and use it in portrait mode long side being 22"?
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=107408\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

I tried a variation of that -- I loaded a 17x22 sheet sideways.  The APS rejected that as well.  I think the only thing it will accept is something that is 24" in width.  Like a 24" roll.

It is a profoundly flawed design, and if enough of us complain about it, there is no reason that they can't issue a software update for different roll sizes, so the large target prints in different widths on different size rolls.

We know that HP reads this forum, so none of should let them off the hook on this.

We paid $800 for crippled software.  The fact that it can't be used on standard 17" rolls is about as dumb a design as you could have.

But I was wrong in my earlier statement.  These guys weren't hung over when they came up with this.

They were still intoxicated.
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neil snape
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« Reply #3 on: March 19, 2007, 04:08:17 AM »
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I profiled many A3+ sheets with APS before. With the TC 9.18 chart of course. I haven't tried it in the version I have (adapted for the Postscript option.
I will later though, after some real work is finished.
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ricgal
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« Reply #4 on: March 19, 2007, 04:23:58 AM »
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Marty have you tried printing the target from Photoshop on a 17" roll clipping half an inch off either side-  (dead space on the  target,  the target being 18" of course) then feeding in manually with the APS software-  I intend to try profiling my 4000 like that when time allows.  I managed to shave off half an inch when I used a roll end of HPR to profile-- not sure if it will work with a full inch but may be worth a try.
« Last Edit: March 19, 2007, 04:25:15 AM by ricgal » Logged

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« Reply #5 on: March 19, 2007, 04:29:26 AM »
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Maybe someone could bring out some software to allow extended target support and greater flexibility with APS generaly or perhaps this is wishful thinking.
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neil snape
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« Reply #6 on: March 19, 2007, 07:24:03 AM »
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Maybe someone could bring out some software to allow extended target support and greater flexibility with APS generaly or perhaps this is wishful thinking.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=107428\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
It's always a possibility to have a full version of ProfileMaker since it is them that created APS with HP. It'd also be good to have exportable charts for the APS reading so that the ESP on the Z could be used if this were the case.
So if there were enough demand it could be done technically. Logistics and or patents or other restrictions always take away from wishful thinking though...
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Christopher
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« Reply #7 on: March 19, 2007, 07:37:38 AM »
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APS always was and still is just a waste of money.
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marty m
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« Reply #8 on: March 19, 2007, 08:43:51 AM »
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APS always was and still is just a waste of money.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=107453\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

I should have listened to you when you first said that.

Of course, HP is reading this forum.  Do they want to send out a technical bulletin informing us that a new release is forthcoming that will REALLY make this worth $800?

Instead of $8 which is about it is worth today?

THAT THEY WILL INCLUDE THE 950 PATCH TARGET IN A SIZE THAT WORKS FOR 16" OR 17" ROLLS?

THAT THEY MIGHT ACTUALLY INCLUDE A DETAILED MANUAL, EVEN ONE THAT IS A PDF?  They include a POS that is 8 pages long for $800

That they will include the ability to measure ambient light, since they thoughtfully included the white plastic piece but thoughtlessly left the feature out of the software?

As for the comments about printing on a 4000 -- let me know the specifics if you figure that one out.  The target measures 17" in the shortest dimension, and is 18 or 19" in the other.  I don't recall which is which.  Either you could print borderless on 17" or it won't work at all -- because the dimension that matters is width and it might be 18 or 19"

In any case, I don't intend to hassle with it.  It isn't worth my time.  

AGAIN, FOLLOW THE ADVICE OF CHRIS.  IT IS A WASTE OF MONEY IN ITS CURRENT FORM
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neil snape
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« Reply #9 on: March 19, 2007, 09:17:41 AM »
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Just because it doesn't do a 17" print on roll for whatever reason, doesn't make it a waste of money for all users. Yet Chris and you do have the right to your opinion.
For most users it is easy to use, has enough options , and being the intended audience is the type that wants ease of use, it fits the bill.
If you both write off any computer device or application for a few oversights then your list of acceptable devices or applications will be very short if not non-existent.
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marty m
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« Reply #10 on: March 19, 2007, 10:07:48 AM »
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Just because it doesn't do a 17" print on roll for whatever reason, doesn't make it a waste of money for all users. Yet Chris and you do have the right to your opinion.
For most users it is easy to use, has enough options , and being the intended audience is the type that wants ease of use, it fits the bill.
If you both write off any computer device or application for a few oversights then your list of acceptable devices or applications will be very short if not non-existent.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=107468\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

With all due respect, can you name any other profiling package -- at this price -- that is limited only to 24" rolls?  Name one.  Just one.

We've all used some of the packages from Xrite and Gretag, as well as others.  While I can't claim to have used all of them, those I've used allow a target to be spread over multiple pieces of paper.  The Xrite Color Elite package, for example, automatically adjusts the target to spread it out over different sized pieces of paper.

If that wasn't possible with the HP, they should have at least had the common sense to create a target that would print on something less than 24" rolls.  Many users of the Z3100 will use a few papers in the 24" size, and others in smaller sizes.

This was a MORONIC design decision.  This is not just an "oversight" to use your choice of words.  

An oversight is something that is not that serious -- like including the white plastic for ambient readings but not including it in the software.  That is qualifies as a dumb oversight.

To limit us only to 24" rolls is far more than a mere "oversight."

As has been previously noted, this is a very expensive piece of software for what you get.  Others have noted for about the same price, you can buy entire packages that include software, hardware and more features.  And yes, even a PDF manual.  The APS doesn't even include a manual.

The only reason to waste $800 on this is because it can be conveniently used with the Z3100.

Except that it can't.  And none of the HP promotional literature described this serious limitation.

You make it sound like we have such high standards we'd find fault with any piece of software.  That is not the case.  

But we have every right to find fault with software that costs $800 and contains such a serious design flaw.
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neil snape
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« Reply #11 on: March 19, 2007, 11:16:14 AM »
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It used to make profiles on other than 24" media.
I just tried now and it doesn't want to accept the A3+ at all. So I'd say it is a bug, not something intended.

The other packages are not set to be used in the Z so I don't see the point. When you buy it you should know that it is NOT for printing out on other printers and reading them inside the Z.

The Help inside says at least 30cm in length. Nothing says that roll only. You're convinced that this is not made for other than 24" roll feed or have bothered even to ask HP ?

To me this is a big bug that I would hope to be fixed quickly.

But I can't do that for you. HP could but this is the LL forum , that you've decided is your contact to tech support .
And no I am not interested in dictating, flaming, bashing , or any other type of internet on a personal level. Maybe you should do the same.
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marty m
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« Reply #12 on: March 19, 2007, 11:35:51 AM »
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It used to make profiles on other than 24" media.
I just tried now and it doesn't want to accept the A3+ at all. So I'd say it is a bug, not something intended.

The other packages are not set to be used in the Z so I don't see the point. When you buy it you should know that it is NOT for printing out on other printers and reading them inside the Z.

The Help inside says at least 30cm in length. Nothing says that roll only. You're convinced that this is not made for other than 24" roll feed or have bothered even to ask HP ?

To me this is a big bug that I would hope to be fixed quickly.

But I can't do that for you. HP could but this is the LL forum , that you've decided is your contact to tech support .
And no I am not interested in dictating, flaming, bashing , or any other type of internet on a personal level. Maybe you should do the same.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=107497\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

I offer my sincere apologies for flaming you.  My rhetoric got the better of me, and I apologize again to you for that.  I just felt that this is more than an "oversight," and a very legitimate reason to complain when we paid $800.

To respond to your other points:

My point about other profiling packages was not they can be used with the Z3100.  But rather, that the same basic functionality offered in other $800-$1000 packages should be available with the combination of the APS and the Z3100.  That would clearly include making profiles on paper as small as 13x19 or certainly as small as 17x22 or 17" rolls.

I have a call into tech support at HP.  (Although they probably have to pass the buck to Gretag.)

I posted here, as well as calling tech support at HP.  Don't underestimate the power of the internet to make or break sales for retailers like HP.  HP, unlike Canon, understands that.  It is noteworthy that when HP came out with their tech paper on zebra stripes, they lifted their illustration *directly* off this web site.  As other users have noted, they are reading this web site.

I didn't mean to suggest that it is limited to 24" rolls.  I suspect it would work fine with a 24x36 sheet, if you want to sacrifice a cut sheet for this purpose.  (I don't have a cut sheet that large.)

I did try sheets.  I tried 17x22 loaded vertically.  It was rejected with the largest target.  I then loaded it horizontally, to try to trick the APS into seeing a 22" wide page.  The APS rejected that as well.

My conclusion is that software wants a 24" wide page, come h*** or highwater.
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neil snape
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« Reply #13 on: March 19, 2007, 11:46:19 AM »
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As I just said , I did try an a3+ both landscape and horizontal.
I am as I write profiling another chart on sheet a3+.
I also said I already have made a lot of profiles before on A3+ hence I believe this is a bug.
Hmmm or at least I think I did? I'm going crazy , too much testing, too many changes.


I am and did just save out the charts (Tc9.18) for printing on another printer. I don't know if the bug will prevent it from being reead on the Z or not.
Yet it maybe a good way to profile other printers with the automated spectro.
Until the bugs are fixed , I have to put a hold on the recommendation. I still like what it SHOULD do though.
I'll print out an a3+ on another printer and see what happens.
Edit: not possible to print the TC 9.18 as the image format is 45.7x51. There is an optimisation for size in the app but it's not going to reduce to 330x483.
I think Marty is right here, we need two pages then for A3 or A4 multiple chart printing.
« Last Edit: March 19, 2007, 12:20:20 PM by neil snape » Logged
neil snape
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« Reply #14 on: March 19, 2007, 12:15:46 PM »
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Nope won't work. The TC9.18 saved out is 51x45.7 at 150ppi.
Hence the error for A3+ (330x483mm) in the printer.
Really hope this is going to change.
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marty m
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« Reply #15 on: March 19, 2007, 01:12:26 PM »
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Nope won't work. The TC9.18 saved out is 51x45.7 at 150ppi.
Hence the error for A3+ (330x483mm) in the printer.
Really hope this is going to change.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=107516\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Not to belabor the point, but it just occurred to me that there is a simple reason that we all need the ability to profile smaller sizes --

Namely, new papers.

When a new paper comes out, like Silver Rag or FAP, how many of us would take the plunge and buy it in a 24" roll?  Very few.  Most of us will buy smaller sheet sizes.

But in order to see a new paper in smaller sheets at its best we would need to profile it with the APS and the Z3100.

Today, we can't do that.

In addition, new papers often come out in limited sizes at first.  Silver Rag was available in 17" rolls for many months before it was available in cut sheets, for example.

So it is likely that even if we were prepared to invest in 24" rolls or sheets for a brand new paper, it might well be the case that we couldn't do so even if we wanted to.

I agree with Neil -- HP and Gretag need to get this fixed asap.
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A. Andrew Gonzalez
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« Reply #16 on: March 19, 2007, 02:17:16 PM »
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Is it possible to calibrate and profile Letter size paper (8.5x11) from the Color Center (not APS)?
I have samples of a fine art paper I'd love to test out, but will I need to buy a larger A3/B size to profile?

Andrew
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A. Andrew Gonzalez
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« Reply #17 on: March 19, 2007, 02:27:50 PM »
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Andrew,

You can calibrate with 8.5x11 but need at least 11x17 to profile (the Color Center says A4, but this works).

Jim
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Jim Cole
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marty m
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« Reply #18 on: March 19, 2007, 02:29:21 PM »
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Is it possible to calibrate and profile Letter size paper (8.5x11) from the Color Center (not APS)?
I have samples of a fine art paper I'd love to test out, but will I need to buy a larger A3/B size to profile?

Andrew
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=107533\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Yes, but I am responding from memory.  I recall reading in the manual or the on-line help that letter size is OK for the calibration, and roughly 13x19 for profiling.  (I don't think you can use letter size to profile, but again, I don't have the manual in front of me.)

Bottom line -- you won't have any problems using smaller sheet sizes with the Easy software included with the Z3100.

Some of the experts on the forum feel that APS is a major step up from the Easy software, however.  None of us realized, though, that is only works with 24" paper.
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thompsonkirk
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« Reply #19 on: March 19, 2007, 06:04:00 PM »
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Doesn't this boil down to a case for buying the printer with the cheaper profiling option, & getting profiles for one's favorite papers & best prints from another profiling system that uses more patches - as suggested before?    

http://luminous-landscape.com/forum/index....showtopic=15469
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