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Author Topic: current status of 3100z reds problems  (Read 6427 times)
lcastric
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« on: December 07, 2008, 10:49:04 AM »
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I am very disappointed with the print quality of the 3100z where reds are involved. This is a big problem with South West landscape photography.

Has anyone had success with work arounds? or beating on HP for a fix for the 3100z, not shelling out for the 3200z!
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dave mason
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« Reply #1 on: December 08, 2008, 06:27:48 AM »
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The best solution we have found is to use the Advanced Profiling Solution from HP. This adds serious horsepower to the onboard profiling solution inherent in the Z solution. Next print with Qimage. This solved the problem for us, we are able to match our Silver Halide photo prints with the inkjet canvas product we produce. The reds are on the edge sometimes but nowhere near the problem we had before. Cheapest and easiest solution out there, trust me we have bled the blood on this solution.
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Scott Martin
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« Reply #2 on: December 08, 2008, 09:46:10 AM »
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I have found Monaco Profiler profiles with the perceptual rendering saturation cranked up to the 40-50 range to offer the best results. I found this to be better than the HP APS system when I compared them using firmware v5.
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rdonson
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« Reply #3 on: December 08, 2008, 09:51:44 AM »
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For me the biggest consideration was using papers that are friendly to the Vivera inkset in the Z.   HP papers are optimized with special coatings but several other brands work well too.

What papers are you disappointed with the reds?
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[span style='font-size:14pt;line-height:100%'][span style='font-family:Arial'][span style='font-family:Geneva'][span style='font-size:8pt;line-height:100%']Regards,
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lcastric
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« Reply #4 on: December 08, 2008, 03:09:43 PM »
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Quote from: rdonson
For me the biggest consideration was using papers that are friendly to the Vivera inkset in the Z.   HP papers are optimized with special coatings but several other brands work well too.

What papers are you disappointed with the reds?

Thanks for your reply. I've had severe problems with Breathing Color's Chromata White, Epson Semi Matte and Enhanced Matte. Can you tell me what HP papers you like and the other brand names? Thanks.
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lcastric
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« Reply #5 on: December 08, 2008, 03:12:20 PM »
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Quote from: dave mason
The best solution we have found is to use the Advanced Profiling Solution from HP. This adds serious horsepower to the onboard profiling solution inherent in the Z solution. Next print with Qimage. This solved the problem for us, we are able to match our Silver Halide photo prints with the inkjet canvas product we produce. The reds are on the edge sometimes but nowhere near the problem we had before. Cheapest and easiest solution out there, trust me we have bled the blood on this solution.

Thanks for your reply. Is your method just a straight forward application of the APS? Thanks.
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rdonson
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« Reply #6 on: December 08, 2008, 03:57:54 PM »
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Papers I use that I'd recommend are:

- HP Premium Instant-Dry Satin
- HP Pro High-Gloss Contract Proofing Paper

- HP Hahnemuhle Smooth Fine Art
- HP Matte Litho-Realistic Paper
- HP Pro Satin

- Moab Entrada

- Hahnemuhle Photo Rag Satin

I also use Epson Enhanced Matte or whatever they're calling it these days but my use of it has waned since acquiring the HP Matte Litho-Realistic.  
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[span style='font-size:14pt;line-height:100%'][span style='font-family:Arial'][span style='font-family:Geneva'][span style='font-size:8pt;line-height:100%']Regards,
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Geoff Wittig
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« Reply #7 on: December 08, 2008, 04:33:36 PM »
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Quote from: lcastric
I am very disappointed with the print quality of the 3100z where reds are involved. This is a big problem with South West landscape photography.

Has anyone had success with work arounds? or beating on HP for a fix for the 3100z, not shelling out for the 3200z!

For what it's worth, I've been quite satisfied with reds from the plain vanilla Z3100 (no APS), at least on satin/semigloss type papers. HP's professional satin is quite good for reds, and I actually used quite a bit of Epson's premium luster because it was relatively inexpensive, but had a similar color gamut.

HP's newer Baryte satin fine art paper actually produces a really good red/orange gamut on the Z3100, though this paper is just a bit too thin and will cockle/buckle under the inkload if you produce a very dark print with lots of shadow areas. For fall color or red rock images it's very nice.

It's fair to say that red gamut with the Z3100 on matte papers is not that great, comparing unfavorably to my older Epson 7600 in shadow areas at least. HP's version of Hahnemüle smooth fine art using the 'canned' profile produces a red which is...adequate at best. Using the on-board spectro, my profile yielded a visibly inferior red saturation. On the other hand, I get a perfectly acceptable red on Hahnemüle photo rag satin, which is a unique paper that displays a semi-satin sheen in the inked areas after printing.
« Last Edit: December 08, 2008, 04:39:13 PM by Geoff Wittig » Logged
Scott Martin
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« Reply #8 on: December 08, 2008, 06:03:18 PM »
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Quote from: Geoff Wittig
For what it's worth, I've been quite satisfied with reds from the plain vanilla Z3100 (no APS), at least on satin/semigloss type papers.
When I've made prints of the same evaluation image on all three printers (HP Z3100, Epson K3, Canon x100) on several photo/RC papers I consistently found the Z3100 to have disappointing reds relative to the other printers. The reds aren't bad in comparison to mate papers but not as good as the other printers on the same photo/RC papers. It's a good thing they are taking care of this with the Z3200.
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Mussi_Spectraflow
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« Reply #9 on: December 09, 2008, 12:03:07 AM »
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Quote from: Onsight
When I've made prints of the same evaluation image on all three printers (HP Z3100, Epson K3, Canon x100) on several photo/RC papers I consistently found the Z3100 to have disappointing reds relative to the other printers. The reds aren't bad in comparison to mate papers but not as good as the other printers on the same photo/RC papers. It's a good thing they are taking care of this with the Z3200.
Exactly, the Z3200 was designed to address this. The issues is most noticeable on matte papers, and perhaps even more on non-HP papers. On the gloss/luster papers I've never had any issues. The profile certainly makes a big difference as does rendering intent, these differences seem to be more dramatic with the Z3100 than with 8 color Epsons. Make sure you have the latest firmware and with some papers you will need to experiment with media type settings during the profiling process. All of the above suggestions should help you see improvements.
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Julian Mussi

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Geoff Wittig
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« Reply #10 on: December 09, 2008, 05:40:06 PM »
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Quote from: Onsight
When I've made prints of the same evaluation image on all three printers (HP Z3100, Epson K3, Canon x100) on several photo/RC papers I consistently found the Z3100 to have disappointing reds relative to the other printers. The reds aren't bad in comparison to mate papers but not as good as the other printers on the same photo/RC papers. It's a good thing they are taking care of this with the Z3200.

This is highly dependent on the specific paper and profile you are talking about. Using an HP Z3100 with HP's Baryte satin paper and either HP's canned profile or the profile generated with the on-board spectro, I get screaming neon orange/red saturation that beats anything I ever got from an Epson 7600, and matches the best result I get from an Epson 2400 on premium luster paper. Dark maroon reds in shadow areas can't quite match the K3 printers. On the other hand, Z3100 reds on any matte paper I've tried are quite clearly not in the same league as the equivalent Epson output on a similar surface.

It's all in what you like to photograph and print. The Z3100 produces greens, blues and cyans that are hands down better than anything you'll get from an equivalent Epson K3 printer. The newer Epson 'vivid magenta' inkset closes the gap, but still doesn't do quite as good a job on a cobalt blue sky with neutral clouds, at least in my hands. Individual skill and experience with the specific hardware/paper/inkset/profile combination has a lot to do with the final result.
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Scott Martin
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« Reply #11 on: December 09, 2008, 11:40:41 PM »
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Quote from: Geoff Wittig
This is highly dependent on the specific paper and profile you are talking about.
Right. What I'm saying is that if I profile all three printers the same way on the same paper and compare the results (including a print made using the Z3100's profile) the Z3100 prints have consistently inferior reds wither it's on Hahnemuhle Baryta, Fine Art Pearl, Epson Premium Luster, Photo Rag etc. Z3100 owners often say "it's not bad on these papers" but one really has to do a fair side-by-side comparison to realize what one is missing.

All three brands have their advantages and disadvantages but the reds have clearly been a weakness for the z3100, relative to the competition. HP has denied it, claimed to have fixed it and then silently acknowledged the problem by releasing a new inkset with better reds.
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rdonson
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« Reply #12 on: December 10, 2008, 08:10:17 AM »
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Quote from: Onsight
... the Z3100 prints have consistently inferior reds wither it's on Hahnemuhle Baryta, Fine Art Pearl, Epson Premium Luster, Photo Rag etc.

No doubt, Scott.  For many of us the reds aren't a serious problem though and I think the reds may be helped a bit by papers with coatings optimized for the Z3100 such as the HP papers.  Not perfect for sure but perhaps acceptable in some circumstances.

If I was doing art reproductions I'd not be using the Z3100 for work that had critical reds.  For the work I print its good enough when I chose paper thoughtfully.
« Last Edit: December 10, 2008, 08:12:21 AM by rdonson » Logged

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Gary Gray
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« Reply #13 on: December 10, 2008, 11:58:25 AM »
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After a year and a half of using the Z3100 (44 inch model), I've only had one instance with a print containing a poor looking red and that was shortly after I installed the printer, using Premier Photo Luster paper.  I don't know what I did to resolve the problem, it seemed to take care of itself by my calibrating everything with each new roll of paper, and making sure I had all the updates to firmware/software installed.  I've tested the same image since and it seems to do fine now.  I've no complaints.
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howseth
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« Reply #14 on: December 10, 2008, 03:37:03 PM »
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Quote from: Gary Gray
After a year and a half of using the Z3100 (44 inch model), I've only had one instance with a print containing a poor looking red and that was shortly after I installed the printer, using Premier Photo Luster paper.  I don't know what I did to resolve the problem, it seemed to take care of itself by my calibrating everything with each new roll of paper, and making sure I had all the updates to firmware/software installed.  I've tested the same image since and it seems to do fine now.  I've no complaints.

Me too - No red problems yet - at all. after 10 months using Z3100 ( 24" model, no APS); my reds match my screen appearance very closely. That said - I use primarily one paper - Hahnemuhle Photo Rag Satin, and occasionally Cranes Silver Rag. Also, my color work may not be the most highly saturated out there. But,  based on my work - I would not even know about the red problem, unless I read about it.

Howard
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Scott Martin
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« Reply #15 on: December 10, 2008, 03:52:14 PM »
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Quote from: howseth
Me too - No red problems yet - at all.
Are you working with images with very saturated reds? Are you comparing prints to prints from other printers? If you answer "no" to either question you either don't have a demand for better reds or may not realize what you're missing. Cheers if you're getting great prints and are happy with them.
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howseth
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« Reply #16 on: December 10, 2008, 04:15:54 PM »
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Quote from: Onsight
Are you working with images with very saturated reds? Are you comparing prints to prints from other printers? If you answer "no" to either question you either don't have a demand for better reds or may not realize what you're missing. Cheers if you're getting great prints and are happy with them.

Scott did you read my complete post? I said that I was getting a very close screen match - what's not to be happy with? Are you suggesting that I should be happier with prints that are more saturated than my soft proofs? or are coming out of the printer with a different red than  on my screens? so that I would have to reduce the saturation in my Photoshop files? Or change the Hue? Accuracy is what satisfies me. I assume, from the agrieved posts, some peoples work have reds that are not matching - different work - different reds.

Howard
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Scott Martin
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« Reply #17 on: December 10, 2008, 04:21:24 PM »
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So are you working with AdobeRGB 255,0,0 reds or 200,50,50 reds? If you aren't working with very saturated reds to begin with then you might not see the problem that so many people have struggled with, relative to other printers.
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howseth
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« Reply #18 on: December 10, 2008, 06:45:21 PM »
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Quote from: Onsight
So are you working with AdobeRGB 255,0,0 reds or 200,50,50 reds? If you aren't working with very saturated reds to begin with then you might not see the problem that so many people have struggled with, relative to other printers.

Scott -

Well, you do have a point - at 255,0,0 red I get the Photoshop gamut warning - so I am probably closer to working, usually within the 255,50,50 limits. But then again for my work -that is plenty red enough ... now, if I start to specialize in tropical reef fish, or neon sign photos, or whatever - I may have to pony up for the new Z3200.

Howard
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Gary Gray
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« Reply #19 on: December 11, 2008, 07:53:19 AM »
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Comparing to other printers is a test of relativity.  I agree with Howard here, what is important is that they closely match your monitor soft proof.  Now, if I had my old epson sitting here and noticed the two didn't match each other, it would probably drive me nuts.

Quote from: howseth
Scott did you read my complete post? I said that I was getting a very close screen match - what's not to be happy with? Are you suggesting that I should be happier with prints that are more saturated than my soft proofs? or are coming out of the printer with a different red than  on my screens? so that I would have to reduce the saturation in my Photoshop files? Or change the Hue? Accuracy is what satisfies me. I assume, from the agrieved posts, some peoples work have reds that are not matching - different work - different reds.

Howard
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