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Author Topic: My Z3100 Adventure  (Read 6878 times)
karrphoto
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« on: August 26, 2008, 02:55:50 AM »
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While I've had my 24" Z3100 for a few weeks now, I'll tell you, I was so pissed off at HP after I bought it.   I got the printer home, set it up and during the init got "Replace LM".  OK.. Maybe there was something wrong with the cart.   I broke out a twin pack, put  a new one in, "Replace LM"  Ugh, WTF.  Call support.   Oh.. wait, it's 8:20, support is closed till the morning (UGH)

Get on the phone with the support guy, do his thing... makes me check everything and everything again, basically seeming to stall to have to send out a service tech.    He finally relented.. told me the service tech would be there Wed.   Wed.. I get a call from the tech, HP DIdn't ship him the part and it wouldn't be in till thursday.    So I'd have to wait, AGAIN.  

Thursday he comes and replaces the right cartridge assembly thinking it's the chip reader on the LM gone bad, but in the process sees LM ink everywhere.   Finish the install, fire the printer up, "Replace LM"   So time to replace the ink lines.... since thats where the mess of ink was.   Tech orders part and comes back on Friday.

Friday he replaces the ink cartridge, install yet another new LM cart (he thinks the original has been fried by this point because it's not recognized) and viola.. it prints.

Now, he did send me 2 new LM carts... but c'mon... I got a new $3000 printer and $1200 worth of ink and it just sat here worthless for a week and no "sorry about that" from HP.  Tech was very understansing, but HP.. could give a rats ass about it.. and annoyed the hell out of me.

Anyway, that's my story.... always fun...
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rdonson
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« Reply #1 on: August 26, 2008, 07:12:27 AM »
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Who did you buy the printer from?  Some of the more reputable shops have helped HP understand how to make customers happy.
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karrphoto
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« Reply #2 on: August 27, 2008, 02:57:33 AM »
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Who did you buy the printer from?  Some of the more reputable shops have helped HP understand how to make customers happy.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=217278\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

ITSupplies.com

Didn't even have them ship it, went up to the warehouse (graphic distributor.. wow, the toys in there) and picked it up.  Was just my luck the guy pulled that printer...

Tech sent me a couple extra PM carts, but I'm still pissed it took a week for this to get resolved and that tech support was so insistent on trying everything under the sun multiple times before sending a tech.   At one point I was on the phone with the HEAD of the Z3100 support group and he's like, OK, let's test the bongo's.   NOT TELLING me what the hell they were.. so the  test failed.   Moron...    

I don't know if that email for the product manager in the WIKI is still valid, but I'm wanting to write the PM to let him know my problems.  Seriously.... I was so pissed off.
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rdonson
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« Reply #3 on: August 27, 2008, 07:07:59 AM »
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ITSupplies.com

I don't know if that email for the product manager in the WIKI is still valid, but I'm wanting to write the PM to let him know my problems.  Seriously.... I was so pissed off.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=217511\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

I'm not sure ITSupplies will help much.  They're not really in the printing supply business.  DTGWeb is and has been very helpful to some friends.

A forum member contacted Ben Wolf last week so he's still around and trying to get people help.
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petermarrek
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« Reply #4 on: August 27, 2008, 07:46:36 AM »
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Totally opposite experience. Ordered printer, received it, set it up, started printing, everything worked flawlessly the way it should. One problem, the ink levels are going down too fast,& the prints are piling up.
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iCrop
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« Reply #5 on: August 27, 2008, 10:51:52 AM »
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I had a somewhat similar situation 3 weeks after my Z3100 arrived.  The Light Magenta-Light Cyan printhead failed and it took them about a week to finally get a new one to me.  Makes a person want to talk like a pirate.

Now, a year later, I can say I’m extremely happy with this printer.  It took a while to learn the various settings to use to properly profile a paper (with a lot of help from this forum), and adjust things in Photoshop to get a good print, but the stuff I’m printing out now makes it all worth the effort/expense, for me.  Hopefully, in a year, you’ll be as happy with your purchase as I am with mine.

Mike
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kaelaria
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« Reply #6 on: August 27, 2008, 01:12:17 PM »
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A week?  I WISH I had my issues (and plenty of other folk do as well) fixed in a week.  And you got product to compensate??

Dude.....don't complain.  Count your blessings and enjoy the printer, 'nuff said.
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marty m
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« Reply #7 on: August 28, 2008, 03:43:33 AM »
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I don't know if that email for the product manager in the WIKI is still valid, but I'm wanting to write the PM to let him know my problems.† Seriously.... I was so pissed off.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=217511\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
As is evident from some of the responses, some forum participants have made a career of apologizing for the incompetent tech support (and early rip-off pricing policies) of HP.  The plain fact of the matter is that US tech support jerked you around.  This is not even remotely acceptable.  I had the same experience with US tech support, and they did not pay serious attention to my issues until I contacted Ben Wolfe -- and the development team in Spain.  Only then did I receive any service.  And, to my knowledge, the development team in Spain never did solve some of the problems plaguing the printer with some users of Vista.

As long as consumers apologize for incompetent tech support then that is what we will receive.  If you don't demand -- and expect to receive -- professional level support then you won't get it.

"Dude, enjoy your printer and don't complain" ??  Auto mechanics who rip off customers would really enjoy having someone as a customer who thinks bad service is acceptable and we shouldn't complain.  

Karrphoto has every reason and right to complain.  The simple fact of the matter is that HP jerked you around about some parts that, at their actual manufacturing cost, cost HP a trivial amount of money.  $10?  $20?  $30 for the actual cost to HP?  Any company that makes a professional product, and delivers professional service, would have promptly sent those parts to Karrphoto by next day air on the spot.  But US tech support was so determined to avoid sending you the parts -- so determined to not spend any money at all to resolve your problem --  that they stalled until they were forced to do something far more costly -- send out a tech guy on a service call.  Yes, Karrphoto described it exactly right.  

Here is what is really astonishing.  There have been numerous reports of bad experience with US tech support in this forum from the first release of the Z3100.  Ben Wolfe pledged to clean up the mess and improve the performance of US tech support.  But over one year later the problems, the rude behavior, and the incompetence of HP tech support continue.  That is the record.  The reports just keep coming.  

As was noted here, we all eventually get the printer to work OK.  But is it worth the aggravation?  

Why shouldn't consumers expect a professional product costing thousands of dollars to deliver professional results -- with professional tech support?  

Is that to much to ask or to expect?  

HP clearly does not think that is a reasonable expectation.  Epson appears to meet that standard and expectation.

What is noteworthy, at least in this forum, is that there aren't nearly as many complaints about incompetent, rude, and unresponsive tech support in the case of Epson.  If you judge by this forum, either Epson has fewer problems, or they are much better at resolving issues with consumers.

What Karrphoto should have done is to simply return the printer if that is allowed under his sales agreement.  

And go buy an Epson.  If more of us had done that it might have actually been noticed by HP and caused them to improve their performance.

PS -- Karrphoto -- read the postings on the new star wheels and pinch rollers.  Those postings include photos showing the new parts.  If your printer does not have those parts you should immediately return it because you have received old merchandise with old parts.  

DO NOT COUNT ON HP TO REPLACE THOSE PARTS WITHOUT REALLY JERKING YOU AROUND.  

Yes, a few people got the parts replaced with no problems.  But this forum are filled with more reports of people who were jerked around by HP in that regard.  Their policy, as of several months ago, was to demand test prints to demonstrate that you have a problem.  Even though HP knows the old parts are defective (because why else did they manufacture the replacements) they still demanded test prints to prove that your defective parts are, in fact, defective.  My advice is to check those parts now, and if they are the older versions, return the printer and insist on a new one with the new parts.  If you fail to do that, you will have no basis to complain later.  Either to HP, or on this forum.  Buyer beware.
« Last Edit: August 29, 2008, 04:19:13 AM by marty m » Logged
kaelaria
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« Reply #8 on: August 28, 2008, 07:48:48 AM »
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Your rant perfectly explains my first post.  Sure, it sux that the support is so BAD.  But the REALITY is he got lucky!  Does he have a right to complain?  Of course.  Will it do any good?  No!  IS his situation SIGNIFICANTLY better than most?  Yes!

The fact is, HP support sux, most people here know it by now and it's expected.  It's not right, but it's reality.

And YES the printer is MORE than worth the trouble in the end.  I still LOVE my prints and printer!!

It's kind of like people still complaining about Canon not have MLU buttuns   Yes, it's stupid to have a print button and not something usefull.  Will it do any good?  No.  That's just reality.
« Last Edit: August 28, 2008, 08:01:27 AM by kaelaria » Logged

rdonson
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« Reply #9 on: August 28, 2008, 08:01:27 AM »
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Marty,

Nice rant.

Before Canon and HP joined in the large format photo art printer niche there were lots of complaints about Epson.  There still are.

Just like there is no perfect printer there is no perfect printer company and certainly no perfect support.

When Epson was the only show in town there was certainly more time between innovations in printing.  The competition we see today for innovation in printing will eventually evolve to competition in areas of support as the playing field levels.

As a consumer you vote with your wallet.  If you feel Epson provides what you need buy it.  There are many of us happy with our decisions to purchase HP and Canon printers.  Most of us owned or still own Epson printers as well.
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Roscolo
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« Reply #10 on: August 28, 2008, 12:07:03 PM »
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I had to contact HP support. My only complaint is that it took a while before I actually got a support rep in the pro graphics realm. The phone routing for HP is terrible and it seems that everyone in the company knows it.

Tech support (not just HP, any good tech support) takes you through a lot of steps for a very good reason - this is usually where problems are solved. I agree, if the problems aren't solve and a technician has to be sent, you do feel like that was wasted time. It wasn't. It has to be done - preferable methodically with the same tech rep. Look at it as an opportunity to learn something. Being angry just makes it take longer. Doesn't make sense to send a technician out to every person who just says "my printer doesn't work." IF the tech support person you are speaking with is familiar with the z3100, be patient and work through what they tell you to do. That's how good tech support works. I will say if you are speaking with a tech rep who is not familiar with the z3100, apparently a common occurrence at HP, do not waste any more time. You are speaking with the wrong tech. Get a z3100 tech and then put your emotions aside patiently work through it.

This is what I did when I had a printhead problem. Turns out my problem was probably related to printing from Lightroom. Tech stayed on the phone with me for well over an hour, even while I rebooted, restarted etc. because he was aware how the call routing at HP needs improvement. When I first started the call I assumed I had 2 bad printheads and I also tried to "fast forward" to just getting the printheads sent out. Good thing that didn't happen because the new printheads would have given the same error and I would have been right back talking to tech support again, only with even more time gone on my end.

I will add also that my printer was out of warranty by a few days, so he could have done what my experience with Epson has been and just told me too bad, out of warranty. He didn't. He solved my problem and HP sent me some ink as well.

It takes two people to get good tech support. Being "pissed" is the first step towards bad tech support. Everyone knows you are upset if something doesn't work. Being "pissed" only makes things worse when you're trying to fix the problem. I know it can be frustrating, but you need to put your "pissed" emotions to the side if you want to fix the problem. After all, there is really nothing to be too upset about: if you just purchased the printer and it does not work, you can still return it or if the problem is bad enough, it will be repaired or replaced. All's well that ends well.

I hope the forums here are not slipping into rants, advertisements, and pissing contests.
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Cohiba
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« Reply #11 on: August 28, 2008, 04:22:31 PM »
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HP's quality control and techincal support are why I now have Dell Computers and Canon printers.
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Shutterbug2006
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« Reply #12 on: August 28, 2008, 10:31:27 PM »
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HP's quality control and techincal support are why I now have Dell Computers and Canon printers.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=217934\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Wow. Interesting how people have different experiences.

Whenever I have talked to Dell, I can rarely hear the support person properly, much less understand the accent. No offense intended. As for Canon, my experience in the printer and scanners department has been that, although they are eventually successful in resolving the issue, it usually takes a heck of a long time to get there.

The one incident regarding my Z3100 took several routings before I got to the right person, all the way through they handled my call professionally. When I got routed to the right person, it was handled most competently. And Manuel spoke impeccable english.

I am incredibly happy with all aspects of my printer, not just the final output - which in my opinion is fabulous and astonishing. If I had anything to suggest to HP to improve my purchase experience, a nice fat book (with examples of how to do things in various application programs) would have been a nice touch. But in hindsight, I've enjoyed the experience of learning, and probably got more out of it because I was forced to think things through.

I have been involved in the support side in the computer world for over 20 years, and I can fully understand why it is necessary to take people through what might seem to be exasperating steps to resolve issues. The bottom line is, in my experience, over half the support calls originate as a problem with the user, and not with the product.
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marty m
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« Reply #13 on: August 29, 2008, 12:09:51 AM »
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Sure, it sux that the support is so BAD.†
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=217786\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
 I agree.
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But the REALITY is he got lucky!†
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=217786\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
 Again, I agree.  Many of us received even worse support.  He was lucky.
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Does he have a right to complain?† Of course.† Will it do any good?† No!†
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=217786\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
 Again, I strongly agree.  The record shows that complaining about bad service and incompetent tech support from HP doesn't do any good.
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IS his situation SIGNIFICANTLY better than most?† Yes!
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=217786\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
 Again, I must sadly agree.  Karrphoto thinks he recieved bad support.  Many of have received far worse support.
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The fact is, HP support sux, most people here know it by now and it's expected.† It's not right, but it's reality.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=217786\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
 And I entirely agree with your bottom line conclusion.  So given that we agree on every point, why are my conclusions "a rant?"

As to my other critics, two of them are, far and away, the biggest defenders of HP on this forum.  No matter what HP does, the company is supported and defended by those two.  Even when the final evidence shows that the complaints against HP were entirely justified, those two steadfastly defend the company.  There is nothing to be gained by responding to them, because they will defend HP to the bitter end no matter what the issue or the complaint.

The other point made in one of the above postings is that tech support must ask a series of questions to weed out the customers who cause their own problems by not reading manuals and who have failed to take simple steps to correct issues.  But that rebuttal doesn't address the points made by Karrphoto, does it?  He went through that process in a long conversation with tech support, and by process of elimination tech support should have realized that none of the other possible causes were the issue.  At that point tech support should have concluded that it was likely that a cheap disposable part was the problem; and then informed Karrphoto that it would be shipped to him by next day air -- thus solving his problem within 24 hours.  It should also be noted that we are not talking about a $100 printer that stupid and illiterate consumers buy at Walmart.  Anyone who buys the Z3100 is a very advanced computer user to begin with and are likely calling tech support after ruling out the obvious issues.  

To anyone considering a purchase of a Z3100, you should read all of the posts for the last year.  Yes, it is a lot to read.  But you are about to spend thousands of dollars.  Read all the posts, pro and con, and come to your own conclusion.  Don't shape your decision by four or five posts in this single thread.  Judge by all of the postings, in all of the threads, and come to your own conclusions.

While you are doing so, keep a tally.  Count how many complaints there are about HP tech support, how many about Canon, and how many regarding Epson.

After reading all the posts, and making your tally, consider what will happen if you encounter any problems.  The key question is the type of support you will receive when you encounter a problem.  That is what you should judge by.

It would be naive to purchase a mechanically complicated printer, that depends on equally complex software and firmware, and buy it on the assumption that you will not have any problems.  You at least need to ask what type of support you will receive in that event.

Will you receive prompt support?

Will you receive professional support as you have every right to expect for a professional product costing thousands of dollars?

The only reasonable and accurate conclusion to be reached from all the postings is that some people have received prompt, professional, and competent service, while others have received support ranging from inadequate to incompetent to grossly incompetent.  Without a quantitative survey, it is impossible to judge which reflects the majority.  So you have to decide, to quote one of my critics above, as to whether you will be lucky or unlucky when it comes to tech support.  Roll the dice.

But there is one other accurate conclusion from reading the postings and taking the tally that I suggested.  That Epson has far fewer complaints in this forum.

The bottom line is the case of Karrphoto is a warning.  HP could have solved his problem by simply shipping him parts that cost HP a tiny amount of money at their actual cost.  Karrphoto would have his problems solved within 24 hours, and he wouldn't have even posted here.  

Finally, if you decide to buy the printer, insist, as a written condition of the sale, that it include the new pinch rollers and star wheels as delivered.  Do not accept any promises that HP will change the parts "if you have a problem."  Buy a new printer with the new parts, and accept nothing less.  Your dealer can always replace the parts prior to delivery of the printer -- and they will do so if they want your money and the sale.  It is certainly possible that all Z3100s now being shipped and sold have those parts.  But you should still insist on that as a condition of the sale.
« Last Edit: August 29, 2008, 04:41:38 AM by marty m » Logged
neil snape
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« Reply #14 on: August 29, 2008, 07:22:07 AM »
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Marty,

Your post is not a rant.
The way I see it is for whatever you buy these days there is some form of compromise somewhere.
That can be total cost of ownership, QA on the original parts, service contracts, after sales support, you name it , there will be some compromise somewhere.
It's too bad that overall the score globally for tech support after long passing what one could allow some grace for start up hickups, has fallen to the level often cited here on this forum for a pro LFP.
What is hard to say is how hidden are the compromises, how they handled, and how this should be considered for future purchases.
As much as I don't like the idea of black ink switching on Epson, at least it is a known failure on Epson part but not one that has any promise like warranties will have.
Canon corrected their early problems and are back in the good books with users. HP are really testing their users patience , for which they will pay a hefty price. Although the quality of printing when all is fine, and for those who had no problems as I did on the three Z printers I had, suggesting users upgrade to the next round of printers will be a challenge.

One thing though Marty , is there are plenty who have the Z who haven't had any major problems, and have had good experiences with after sales and or tech support, so as you said, one should tally up the reports before shooting the messengers.
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Geoff Wittig
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« Reply #15 on: August 29, 2008, 09:21:06 AM »
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Marty,

Your post is not a rant.

One thing though Marty , is there are plenty who have the Z who haven't had any major problems, and have had good experiences with after sales and or tech support, so as you said, one should tally up the reports before shooting the messengers.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=218061\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]


Just so. Different folks have evidently had different experiences. I have had a Z3100 for about 18 months, and my experience has been almost entirely positive. I had HP tech support out to my home to replace the optical (i.e. not the little mechanical spring loaded thing) paper path sensor; they were out within a few days with the right equipment and had me up & running again the following day. They couldn't have been nicer. About six months back I got bitten by HP's dreadful firmware/driver upgrade, wherein lingering bits of code left on the system from the previous version made the driver crash repeatedly. I got the correct HP tech within about 15 minutes on the telephone, and he walked me patiently through a series of reboots and Windows registry changes, and all was well. Sure, it would be nice if HP's driver upgrade was simpler and less squirrely. On the other hand the Z3100 driver upgrades have markedly improved print quality since I first got the printer; my Epson 7600 still uses the original driver out of the box because Epson has never offered any meaningful improvements.

Could HP's tech support be better? Sure. But I still gnash my teeth over Epson's black ink swapping madness on my older 7600, and Epson would never, ever have moved to provide a better option without pressure and competition from HP and Canon. And since my Z3100 has been working flawlessly most of the last year, I've really appreciated the built-in spectro and calibration. Definitely the best choice for what I do.
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marty m
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« Reply #16 on: August 29, 2008, 09:49:22 AM »
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Marty,

Your post is not a rant.

As much as I don't like the idea of black ink switching on Epson, at least it is a known failure on Epson part but not one that has any promise like warranties will have.
Canon corrected their early problems and are back in the good books with users.

HP are really testing their users patience , for which they will pay a hefty price.

One thing though Marty , is there are plenty who have the Z who haven't had any major problems, and have had good experiences with after sales and or tech support, so as you said, one should tally up the reports before shooting the messengers.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=218061\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
Geoff and Neil, I agree with all of your points.  I tried to be fair and balanced, and acknowledge that some had positive experiences with HP support.  I specifically said just that when I said the following:
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The only reasonable and accurate conclusion to be reached from all the postings is that some people have received prompt, professional, and competent service, while others have received support ranging from inadequate to incompetent to grossly incompetent. Without a quantitative survey, it is impossible to judge which reflects the majority. So you have to decide, to quote one of my critics above, as to whether you will be lucky or unlucky when it comes to tech support. Roll the dice.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=218061\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
HP has had over a year to get their act together, and deliver consistent and professional tech support for the Z3100.  As I said, lacking a quantitative survey, it is impossible to know if the majority have had good or bad experiences.  

But it is clear that HP is still not delivering professional level support on a consistent basis.  That was my main point in my first posting, and in my second.  

I also agree that Epson still suffers from the achillees heel of ink swapping.  My recommendation to consider Epson is with an eye to the next model release, since it appears that Epson will solve the issue of ink swapping, and may offer built in calibration as well.  If they can do all of that, and continue their record for mechanical reliability and professional support, then they will beat HP in the marketplace.

Neil is correct -- HP is testing the patience of their users.
« Last Edit: August 29, 2008, 09:52:37 AM by marty m » Logged
rdonson
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« Reply #17 on: August 29, 2008, 10:33:34 AM »
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Marty,

You also said...

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DO NOT COUNT ON HP TO REPLACE THOSE PARTS WITHOUT REALLY JERKING YOU AROUND.

Yes, a few people got the parts replaced with no problems. But this forum are filled with more reports of people who were jerked around by HP in that regard. Their policy, as of several months ago, was to demand test prints to demonstrate that you have a problem. Even though HP knows the old parts are defective (because why else did they manufacture the replacements) they still demanded test prints to prove that your defective parts are, in fact, defective. My advice is to check those parts now, and if they are the older versions, return the printer and insist on a new one with the new parts. If you fail to do that, you will have no basis to complain later. Either to HP, or on this forum. Buyer beware.


It is true that HP support hasn't been the best.  The truth is that when we have a bad experience we complain vociferously in a public forum like this.  When things go well we don't hear about it nearly as much.  The good news is that people can read this forum and come to their own conclusion for purchasing decisions.  

FWIW I have the original rollers and starwheels and haven't felt compelled to replace them.  My Z3100 works for what I'm doing.
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« Reply #18 on: August 29, 2008, 01:45:31 PM »
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Wow. Interesting how people have different experiences.

Whenever I have talked to Dell, I can rarely hear the support person properly, much less understand the accent. No offense intended. As for Canon, my experience in the printer and scanners department has been that, although they are eventually successful in resolving the issue, it usually takes a heck of a long time to get there.

---Snip----

[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=217999\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Canít say whether or not the HP folks were in Mumbai, I gave up waiting for them to answer the phone. Never had to call Canon.
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« Reply #19 on: August 29, 2008, 01:55:15 PM »
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What with 28 pages (89% of which are posts about problems) http://luminous-landscape.com/forum/index....&highlite=z3100

I can't say I'd ever purchase a Z3100 myself.

Edit, they do seem quite popular though...go figure.
« Last Edit: August 29, 2008, 01:55:50 PM by Anthony R » Logged
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