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Author Topic: Strange issue with Epson 3800 printer  (Read 6561 times)
01af
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« on: October 04, 2007, 09:31:41 AM »
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I am in the process of getting comfortable with my brand-new Epson Stylus Pro 3800 printer. It arrived a few days ago, and at first I tried printing text and simple graphics and diagrams on plain singleweight paper.

Yesterday I tried printing my first colour photographs on 46" Epson Premium Glossy photo paper. And the results were unuseable! Along one of the long sides of the sheet there was a trace from a paper transport wheel which not just marked but destroyed the smooth surface of the paper. And furthermore the print looked as if it was printed twice, with the second version rotated by maybe 1 against the first (but only in the lower part of the print, approx. 1" short of the sheet's bottom).

So I ran the head alignment procedure from the printer's panel. I also set the Platen Gap to "Wide" in order to reduce the pressure from the transport wheel on the paper's surface.

The next test print came out better but still far from perfect. The surface now was fine, no marks from the paper transport anymore. But the "rotating problem" still persisted, albeit to a lesser degree. The rotation now was about 0.5 ... which of course is completely inacceptable still.

In the printer's user manual I found the chapter about cleaning the printer so I gave it a try. I switched off the printer, unplugged the power cord, and waited a minute. But inside the printer everything was fine; no undue dirt, debris, or forgotten transport locks.

I re-plugged the printer and powered it on again. The next test print came out just perfectly!

Phew!  And I even forgot to set the Platen Gap to "Wide" again---after power-up it's always reset to "Standard" automatically.

Okay, so while I am happy now with the printer's current performance I am still concerned about the issue. Next week I will have some serious printing to do and I'll need the printer to work reliably, and I have no idea what has happened or why exactly the issue suddenly went away. Will it happen again? Will it go away again after a simple power-down-power-up sequence? Has anybody experienced a similar issue?

-- Olaf
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David Amos
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« Reply #1 on: October 04, 2007, 10:37:32 AM »
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Hello Olaf

Hmmm, I've had my 3800 since the 11th of last month, the only problem i've had is the front drop down door not locking up into place (still waiting for Epson to replace this bit) and that was fresh out of the box.  

I've printed on 4x6" Epson Premium Glossy photo paper, it was the first paper i used in the machine, it looks tiny in the paper feed, it feed through without any marks at all and i didn't change any settings like the Platen Gap so why that had to done is strange.

I would give Epson a call, their engineers are really helpful, they might have heard of this happening to someone else, therefore giving you advice on what to do.  It might be new to them so they might send someone out to take a look at it.  Either way, if you give them a call it might help to put your mind at rest.

Good luck with your printing next week.

David
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grepmat
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« Reply #2 on: October 05, 2007, 05:19:03 PM »
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I'm going to take a wild (but semi-educated) guess here. My understanding is that this printer has two sets of heads, each with four colors. I bet that one set of heads is badly misaligned compared to the other (e.g., rotated). This could explain the "double" printed look, and maybe even the damage.

I agree with the previous poster. Take it up with your dealer or Epson for repair or replacement.

Good luck.

P.S., mine has been flawless and a joy to use.
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01af
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« Reply #3 on: October 05, 2007, 09:09:34 PM »
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Thanks for your replies everyone!

Today I had an online chat with an Epson service person, and he recommended updating the printer driver from version 5.51 (came with the printer) to version 6.50 (the latest). Updating the driver software, by the way, is a pretty complex procedure; just installing the new version over the old won't do. If the software update doesn't help then I shall return the printer to the dealer for a replacement, the technician said.

So I updated the driver (and the LFP Remote Panel, too), and then did some more test printing. All prints today came out just perfectly. So I'm keeping my fingers crossed hoping it's going to stay this way ...

-- Olaf
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Wayne Fox
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« Reply #4 on: October 06, 2007, 02:32:30 AM »
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Any chance that first sheet just got hung up on something, sort of jammed.  The damage to the edge and the "double printing" seems like a result.

Might even be a piece of all those pieces of tape and foam they use ... there's a ton of it.  I found a piece a week later that I'd miss.  Maybe something like that semi jammed the paper.
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tomrock
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« Reply #5 on: October 06, 2007, 04:53:57 AM »
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I bought a 3800 and the main feeder was working fine. The first time I tried the rear feed it wouldn't work. It tuns out there was one more piece of that blue tape that I missed. It's easy to do.
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madmanchan
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« Reply #6 on: October 06, 2007, 10:48:11 AM »
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Quote
Thanks for your replies everyone!

Today I had an online chat with an Epson service person, and he recommended updating the printer driver from version 5.51 (came with the printer) to version 6.50 (the latest). Updating the driver software, by the way, is a pretty complex procedure; just installing the new version over the old won't do. If the software update doesn't help then I shall return the printer to the dealer for a replacement, the technician said.

So I updated the driver (and the LFP Remote Panel, too), and then did some more test printing. All prints today came out just perfectly. So I'm keeping my fingers crossed hoping it's going to stay this way ...

-- Olaf
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=144134\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Can you please explain the (complex) software update procedure? I still do not have a good idea of what version 6.5 of the driver offers (besides an updated interface).
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01af
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« Reply #7 on: October 06, 2007, 05:15:43 PM »
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Can you please explain the (complex) software update procedure? I still do not have a good idea of what version 6.5 of the driver offers (besides an updated interface).[{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
Well ... I cannot explain but describe it. The point is getting rid of any previously installed Epson software. I guess besides the updated user interface the new driver also has some internal bugfixes. I received the update procedure for Windows XP in German language; the translation is mine. Here it comes:

1. Download [a href=\"http://esupport.epson-europe.com/FileDetails.aspx?lng=de-DE&data=90NVirE+OTo2VjAVYaMZCsZce+H4DIpq&id=318471]the latest Epson 3800 driver software[/url]. The link is to Epson Europe; I wasn't able to find the same driver on Epson's U.S. site (but curiously, the U.S. site has the latest printer firmware while the European site has not ... it's a mess).

2. Log on to your PC as a user with administrator rights.

3. Disconnect the printer's USB cord.

4. Go to System Settings > Printers and Faxes and remove the Epson printer from there.

5. Go to System Settings > Add/Remove Programs and remove all Epson software. If there are more Epson products installed besides the 3800's driver then you'll have to re-install them later.

6. Navigate to the folder "inf" in your Windows folder (i. e. C:\WINDOWS\inf or C:\WINNT\inf or similar).

7. Now comes the tedious part. Locate all .inf files whose names start with "oem". Open each one with a text editor (e. g. Notepad). If "Epson" or "Seiko Epson" appear in the first lines of text then delete this .inf file and also all .pnf files with the same filename.

8. Navigate to the folder "systems32" in your Windows folder and locate all .dll files whose names start with "E_". Delete them all. If a file won't remove then rename it. Delete the renamed .dll files after the next re-boot. Note: If you have more Epson products besides the 3800 then you'll have to re-install their software later.

9. Now execute the downloaded driver setup program. Connect your printer's USB cord when the setup program asks for it.

I have no idea if it really has to be this complicated ... but it worked for me.

-- Olaf
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madmanchan
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« Reply #8 on: October 07, 2007, 06:54:20 AM »
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Thanks Olaf. I wonder why the driver update instructions are so complex this time around. The previous driver updates were pretty much just a simple double-click operation!
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01af
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« Reply #9 on: October 08, 2007, 05:17:48 AM »
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I think I found a difference between Epson 3800 printer driver 5.51 and 6.50: borderless printing with automatic enlargement off doesn't work. When selecting "Original Data" (i. e. no enlargement) then the settings display will show "borderless w/ max. enlargement"  

And when sending an image with this setting to the printer from Photoshop CS3 then it will get screwed up completely---a wide white border will appear at the right and the bottom up the print where no borders at all are supposed to be    

The erroneous display of the driver's settings seems to be just the display because Photoshop CS2 will print correctly still. The real screwing-up obviously happens inside Photoshop CS3    

-- Olaf
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Rhossydd
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« Reply #10 on: October 16, 2007, 07:29:19 AM »
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As a late arriver in this thread, can I also add that the change to driver version 6.5a for the 3800 is NOT a straight forward job.
I tried it and have had warning about incomplete installation of the 3800 ever since. Trying to uninstall it doesn't work and leaves you stuck with 6.5a.
I find 6.5a is a poor revision of the driver, making changes to the configuration harder than it needs to be.

Epson UK don't want to acknowledge there's a problem with this I'm afraid. I did manage to get a 'How to totally uninstall your Epson printer' type file from them, but it's going to be a nightmare that will involve opening 300+ .INF files in order to delete all the associated Epson files.

Not too impressed with this :-(

If I can find a shortcut to this I'll post back.

Paul
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01af
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« Reply #11 on: October 18, 2007, 07:57:27 AM »
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Update: My now three-week-old Epson 3800 has no issues anymore.

Besides updating the printer driver, I did not take any special measures. The issues basically just went away all by themselves. My first photo prints came out screwed up (as described in this thread's first post) ... but now everything is working just fine. I even hauled the printer around 400 miles in the trunk of my car and it is still printing fine, with no additional head-alignment routine required.

Printing through Photoshop CS3 works well if I only avoid borderless printing with "original data" (i. e. no auto-enlargement to reliably avoid white rims showing up).

Overall, I am happy with my choice. While e. g. the Canon iPF 5000 would also be a nice machine to have, I really like the Epson's manageable size and weight and the plethora of 3rd-party support (tutorials, media, software, profiles ...), and I can live with the lack of roll paper support. I only wish it was easier to purchase A2/A2+ sheets---but at last, a 25-sheet package of Epson Premium Glossy A2 has arrived earlier today.

-- Olaf
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madmanchan
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« Reply #12 on: October 18, 2007, 10:13:36 AM »
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Thanks for the update. I did end up deciding to go back to the older version of the driver (5.51, downloaded from the Epson USA) site. I managed to do this by completely uninstalling all Epson printer software from my machine, then re-installing from scratch from the files obtained from the Epson USA support site. I don't know if there's anything wrong with 6.5a, but I couldn't get word from Epson about what has changed (besides the interface) with 6.5a, so I'm holding off for now.
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