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Author Topic: Canon IPF 6300 New Owner Questions  (Read 4018 times)
Mike Raub
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« on: February 25, 2012, 12:19:34 PM »
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I couldn't resist the trade in allowance + rebate and ordered a 6300 to replace my 7 year old DesignJet 130. I could have had the 8300 for only a few hundred dollars more and was tempted until I saw it's size compared to the 6300. The truck should deliver it Monday. I'll be running it under OS X Lion. I did find Ron Martinsen's helpful blog which had some basic information on set-up. I've also downloaded the 1000+ page user's manual.

A couple of questions.

1. I have a spare ethernet port on the back of my iMac but am running low on USB ports, so I though I'd use the ethernet connection. Since I know little about networking, the ethernet connection instructions look a bit daunting. Will OS X pretty much set up everything automatically, like it does most things of this nature?

2. I'm just a hobbyist printer and sometimes weeks go by between using the printer. If I just leave the printer on all the time will it try to keep the heads clean without wasting too much ink? I didn't find this mentioned in the manual, though I could have missed it.

3. Does this family of printers have any dedicated discussion groups, like those for Epson and HP wide format printers?

Thanks for any advice. I'm really looking forward to having a much wider choice of media types than were available for the DJ 130.
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David White
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« Reply #1 on: February 25, 2012, 12:47:19 PM »
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You'll find a lot of information here:  http://canonipf.wikispaces.com/
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David White
howardm
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« Reply #2 on: February 25, 2012, 01:13:40 PM »
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regarding ethernet networking, it's in reality pretty simple.

if the Mac sets everything up 'automatically', there is a significant chance that upon reboot of the router or power failure in the house that the printer will be 'unreachable' because it's dynamic address has changed.  The fix is to give the printer
a static address which isn't hard.

Although, now that I think about it, the iMac must be wirelessly connected if you have 'spare' ethernet port and therefore you wont be able to get a dynamic address since the iMac won't supply one (that is the job of the router) unless you turn on Internet Sharing in SysPrefs.

It's not hard but if you want to try it, let me know
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David Sutton
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« Reply #3 on: February 25, 2012, 03:29:32 PM »
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1. I'm on Windows so can't comment about a Mac. Canon installed the printer for me, but when doing it myself I get a knowledgeable friend to look over my shoulder. It's not difficult but can be time consuming if you haven't done it before.
2. I've gone for a month without printing. Just leave it on and it will be fine. Set how long you want it running before going into sleep mode (I think mine is set to 10 minutes) and then it wakes up about once a day and does a very small head clean.
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davidgp
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« Reply #4 on: February 26, 2012, 02:58:34 AM »
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1. I have a spare ethernet port on the back of my iMac but am running low on USB ports, so I though I'd use the ethernet connection. Since I know little about networking, the ethernet connection instructions look a bit daunting. Will OS X pretty much set up everything automatically, like it does most things of this nature?


Do you mean connecting directly the Printer to the Mac by ethernet cable without any router in the middle? For that you need an special ethernet cable, normal ones does not work. If you have one wireless router in you house, the easiest solution is just to plug in the printer to it by ethernet. Your Mac will see it without any problem, and if you change your mac in the future, it will still see it... these things today are almost plug and play ;-)
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howardm
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« Reply #5 on: February 26, 2012, 05:40:52 AM »
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It is probably extremely unlikely that you need a special cable (known as a crossover ethernet cable (vs. a normal one)).  The Mac's ethernet port (unless the Mac is quite old) is 'auto-sensing' which means it identifies the need for and compensates for the 'crossover'.  This is basically a standard feature of Gigabit Ethernet.  No harm will come either way (you wont damage anything); it just wont work
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davidgp
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« Reply #6 on: February 26, 2012, 07:50:20 AM »
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It is probably extremely unlikely that you need a special cable (known as a crossover ethernet cable (vs. a normal one)).  The Mac's ethernet port (unless the Mac is quite old) is 'auto-sensing' which means it identifies the need for and compensates for the 'crossover'.  This is basically a standard feature of Gigabit Ethernet.  No harm will come either way (you wont damage anything); it just wont work

Nice to know they do that now...
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Mike Raub
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« Reply #7 on: February 27, 2012, 03:58:12 PM »
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Thanks for all the helpful advice.

How are you Canon users handling uprezzing for the printer? After trying Genuine Fractals and several other similar programs, I finally followed someone's advice and and just let the HP driver do the processing to printer resolution for my old DJ 130. The prints were just as sharp as those I had run through GF before sending them to the printer. I'm guessing I can do the same with the 6300, which probably has a better driver than the HP, or at least a more modern one.

The 6300 just showed up. The box is huge. The box for the 8300 must be about the size of a Smart Car. The printer is made in China, which may explain why Canon can sell them for so little.
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Josh-H
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« Reply #8 on: February 27, 2012, 04:35:15 PM »
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The printer is made in China, which may explain why Canon can sell them for so little.

The cost of the printer is virtually irrelevant - its a drop in the bucket compared to running costs of ink and paper.
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BartvanderWolf
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« Reply #9 on: February 27, 2012, 05:48:34 PM »
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Thanks for all the helpful advice.

How are you Canon users handling uprezzing for the printer? After trying Genuine Fractals and several other similar programs, I finally followed someone's advice and and just let the HP driver do the processing to printer resolution for my old DJ 130. The prints were just as sharp as those I had run through GF before sending them to the printer. I'm guessing I can do the same with the 6300, which probably has a better driver than the HP, or at least a more modern one.

Hi Mike,

Have you tried Photozoom Pro by Benvista? It's definitively sharper than with most other methods. The only other one that does a similar thing is Blow-up, but it is not as good in sharp corners which get rounded out. In my experience, GF loses to much 3-dimensionality on gradients, where Photozoom Pro leaves them intact and mainly addresses edge detail.

Cheers,
Bart
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Ellis Vener
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« Reply #10 on: February 27, 2012, 09:16:51 PM »
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"Do you mean connecting directly the Printer to the Mac by ethernet cable without any router in the middle? For that you need an special ethernet cable, normal ones does not work."

Just to confirm: that is completely untrue and has been for a long time - at least since 2007.
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Ellis Vener
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Creating photographs for advertising, corporate and industrial clients since 1984.
Mike Raub
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« Reply #11 on: February 28, 2012, 11:32:05 AM »
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Bart,

Have you compared Photozoom with just sending the image, in whatever resolution it happens to be, to the printer and letting the Canon driver handle the rest? The theory behind this approach is that no matter what you do the printer driver makes the final calculations, so why mess with the data more than needed. That being said, if Photozoom has a free trial, I'll give it a whirl.

MIKE
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Scott Martin
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« Reply #12 on: February 28, 2012, 12:43:00 PM »
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1. Both are plug and play. Use whichever you like. Generally USB is more fool-proof but a little slower.
2. Yes, leave it on 24/7 so it can maintain itself. However, I recommend printing at least one 8x10 a week. This will dramatically lower long terms costs, keep the heads clean and ensure long head life.
3. http://canonipf.wikispaces.com/ is THE place.
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BartvanderWolf
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« Reply #13 on: February 28, 2012, 02:03:32 PM »
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Bart,

Have you compared Photozoom with just sending the image, in whatever resolution it happens to be, to the printer and letting the Canon driver handle the rest?

Hi Mike,

Yes I tried it, but not on a 6300. Upsampling from 300 to 600 PPI is noticeable, but the difference is not like night and day, because we're operating at the human visual acuity limit. Upsampling from 150 PPI to 600 PPI becomes clearly noticeable, and in larger upsampling percentages it becomes even clearer. Of course it also depends on the subject and the media used, but the quality difference makes the roundtrip worthwhile. When you print from Photoshop anyway, then the Photozoom Pro Plugin makes your life even easier.
 
Quote
The theory behind this approach is that no matter what you do the printer driver makes the final calculations, so why mess with the data more than needed.

The theory doesn't hold when you realise that a printer driver is not an dedicated image processing/magnification application, but an interface to translate RGB pixels to a dithered version. Resampling in printer drivers is often not more sophisticated than bilinear interpolation, or maybe bicubic if you are lucky. It requires significant print sharpening to compensate for the contrast losses of such simple algorithms even on glossy media. It also explains the huge success of programs like Qimage, which usually upsamples to 600 PPI, and only then applies sharpening as a function of the upsampling percentage. Numerous people have stated that the output quality is markedly better than printing straight from Photoshop. Photozoom Pro adds to that by really creating extra resolution, and it shows.

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That being said, if Photozoom has a free trial, I'll give it a whirl.

Yes it has a trial version (for both Windows and Mac) which adds watermarks to the output. I'm pretty sure that you'll like what it does to upsampled output. Downsampling is not its forte, but that is pretty decently handled in programs like Lightroom, so could be implemented in Photoshop as well.

Cheers,
Bart
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Mike Raub
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« Reply #14 on: February 28, 2012, 05:16:19 PM »
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Thanks, Bart. I saved a link to a trial version of Photozoom and will do some comparison testing as soon as I get the printer set up. Thinking back, the upsizing program I liked best was one called SizeFixer. I don't know what technology that program used, but the company that made it stopped supporting it a few years ago. It seemed to produce sharper looking output than Genuine Fractals, at least at 300 dpi.
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BartvanderWolf
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« Reply #15 on: February 28, 2012, 06:16:02 PM »
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Thanks, Bart. I saved a link to a trial version of Photozoom and will do some comparison testing as soon as I get the printer set up. Thinking back, the upsizing program I liked best was one called SizeFixer. I don't know what technology that program used, but the company that made it stopped supporting it a few years ago. It seemed to produce sharper looking output than Genuine Fractals, at least at 300 dpi.

I know SizeFixer, Mike, and believe me it's not even close to what Photozoom Pro can do. I started using it years ago because it has an interesting implementation of deconvolution capture sharpening (once they caught up with new camera models), and it has an "Edges+" function that adds an adjustable amount of edge sharpness. I just tried it (on an old computer) on the Crop I posted in the other thread, and it tried to make sharp circular/rectangular blobs with rounded corners of the brick structure, very unlike the true image. It's a similar rounding of corners that I also dislike in Blow-up.

Cheers,
Bart

 
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Mike Raub
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« Reply #16 on: March 03, 2012, 05:09:32 PM »
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Just got the printer set up today. This is a serious piece of gear; it makes my DJ 130 look like a toy.

I'm having one problem I can't figure out. When I hit the tab for the printer utility, I get a message that the printer is not connected. Since I just finished a print, it obviously is connected. Anyone know what the problem is?

Are ICC profiles automatically installed with the driver and PS plugin? I found the correct paper in the plugin and am assuming that means it has selected the right profile, but that's not clear to me.

Bart, I tried PhotoZoom, but in side by side comparisons, I can't any difference between uprezzing to 600 dpi (a 1.2 GB file for a 20x30 print) and sending it to the printer at 187.5 dpi and letting the driver so it's thing. Maybe I'm not doing something right.

I bumped up brightness about 10 units in the plug in and am getting eye-popping prints. The colors seem much richer than those from the DJ 130.

I think I'm going to like this thing.
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BartvanderWolf
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« Reply #17 on: March 03, 2012, 08:31:00 PM »
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Hi Mike,

Congratulations on getting the printer.

Bart, I tried PhotoZoom, but in side by side comparisons, I can't any difference between uprezzing to 600 dpi (a 1.2 GB file for a 20x30 print) and sending it to the printer at 187.5 dpi and letting the driver so it's thing. Maybe I'm not doing something right.

Thanks for the feedback. Maybe the subject didn't have enough high contrast edges in it? You could also try a larger percentage upsampling to really create a challenge, 400% or more makes it easier to see.

Here is a scanned sample of a 400% upsampled print of the crop presented earlier, printed at 600 PPI, bicubic Smoother (on the left) versus Photozoom Pro (on the right) * :


The input images themselves were not additionally sharpened (they were as posted) and both crops were also printed without any output sharpening. The scans were resized to their correct output dimensions on a 96 PPI display. Display size and print size should be identical, although the display is of course lower resolution than the print.

To me, the difference is clear (especially on an actual glossy print), and would be even clearer if a complete output sharpening workflow was used (which was left as an exercise for the readers). As I said, going larger will get even more convincing.

Cheers,
Bart

* P.S. do download the image and display it at 100% zoom. It seems like the LuLa bulletinboard software downsamples the image for display, thus making the difference less obvious.
« Last Edit: March 03, 2012, 08:46:25 PM by BartvanderWolf » Logged
Mike Raub
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« Reply #18 on: March 03, 2012, 10:01:02 PM »
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I have one additional problem. I sized the print to exactly 20x30 in PS5 and chose 20x30 as the page size in the Canon PS plugin. The printed area though is about 1/2" smaller in both length and width. Is the printer somehow enforcing a margin, even though the paper is plenty wide at 24"? If I recall correctly, I had the same problem with the HP driver and worked around it by creating a custom page size of 21x31 to get full printing. I thought the more modern Canon driver would be smarter about this.
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David Sutton
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« Reply #19 on: March 04, 2012, 11:24:35 PM »
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Hello Mike.
I don't use the Canon plugin but print directly from Qimage. However this may still apply. For sheet paper I pick “manual 3mm margins”. Here is where it gets tricky. I allow 6.1 mm for the margin the printer “enforces”. Not 6mm as you would think because the driver then wants to resize my print. 6.1 and the driver is happy. So if I want a 3cm border around the print the maths goes like this:
For paper 24” wide I start with the metric equivalent which is 60.96cm. Take off 6.1 mm = 60.35 cm. This is the size I will save my print as for sending to the printer. The border for the print will be 2.7cm and once the margin is added by the printer I will have my 3cm border. You'll need to convert to imperial to make it work for you. I only have to do this once for each file, and if using a different paper I just softproof for that paper and paste the image over my original at the same ppi.
By the way, I just sent a 1.2 meter pano to the printer at about 128 ppi and the print is fine. Admittedly not a lot of fine detail in it, but Qimage does an amazing job of uprezzing. I've tried other software but keep coming back to it.
David
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