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Author Topic: Epson 7900 vs Canon ipf6300 - I Need to Purchase  (Read 7314 times)
ozphoto
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« on: May 28, 2012, 02:47:40 PM »
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I have a requirement for a 24" large format printer, mainly for my clients as well as other wedding photographers who like my output. I would consider my volume to be low to med with weeks where nothing is printed, then lots of printing. I have no need for a rip.

What I know so far and please correct me if I am wrong.

1) Epson has 1 head, requires technician to change when the time comes, costs unknown - Canon has 2 heads, user replaceable at $450.00 each.
2) Epson heads clog and they are noted for this, Canon remaps to another nozzle but because they use heat they wear out faster.
3) Epson has no web portal for cost management any longer - Canon has windows software that runs locally.
4) Epson build quality is better as they use more metal. - Canon uses plastic covers etc.
5) Epson has better black detail and skin tones - Canon has better saturated color?
6) Epson uses 70 watts of power when operating. - Canon uses 200 watts.
7) Epson 7900 is a big brute in size. - Canon IPF6300 is much smaller
Cool Epson has 3 sizes of ink not that I could afford the largest. - Canon has only 1 size.
9) Epson 7900 $3075 CDN - Canon IPF6300 $4000
10) Epson is the de-facto standard for printing professionals. - Canon not so much.

Is Canon worth a $1000 more?

This is what I dug up, whether these are true I really don't know. Can anyone provide some advice. Rebates are included until May 31 on the Epson.

Cheers
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John Caldwell
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« Reply #1 on: May 28, 2012, 06:10:28 PM »
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One of the features of our HP Z3200 24" that's useful to us is the machine's ability to sit for weeks unused, and startup without head clogs. Several other members here will chime in, but there is a lot said these days about head clogs in idle machines. This aspect, for some irregular users, winds up being as important as any other printer feature. Costs and inconvenience of PK-MK ink change, as is needed in the Epson case, might also be a consideration for some users. It is quite debatable, in my mind, that the print appearance offered by any of the leading 24" formats will differ enough for image quality to be the deciding factor. These days print quality, once you have your workflow in order, is pretty startling.

John Caldwell
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ozphoto
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« Reply #2 on: May 28, 2012, 06:19:01 PM »
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Thanks

Like I said my volume would be low, so clogged heads is something I do not want to deal with whether Epson or Canon but I need 24" thats the issue for me, hopefully some more folks will chime in on these 2 machines.
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John Caldwell
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« Reply #3 on: May 28, 2012, 06:22:14 PM »
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Sure. You don't mention HP. I have no angle against Epson or Canon, as we also own Epson 3800 & 4900, and use our collaborator's 9900 for large prints. Perhaps there aren't good HP prices right now.
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ozphoto
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« Reply #4 on: May 28, 2012, 06:35:29 PM »
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Most photographic dealers don't carry HP, just Epson and mostly and some Canon. Not sure why this is? But Epson seems to be the defacto standard for pro's?
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JeffKohn
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« Reply #5 on: May 28, 2012, 09:25:22 PM »
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IMHO, low-volume users - especially those who sometimes go for a while without printing anything - are going to have fewer headaches with Canon or HP. 

I don't think the comments about one brand having better saturation or another having better skin tones really make much sense. They have similar gamuts (well, HP not quite); differences in output would have more to do with media selection and color management than anything else.

For a long time, Epson was the only serious option for large format photo inkjet printers, so that's what pretty much everybody used. People who have been using Epson for a decade or more tend to stay with Epson unless they've had a particularly bad experience, because it's what they know.

Canon has become more popular in more recent years. Initially discount pricing and rebates had a lot to do with it. While that still plays a factor, with the x300 series Canon are pretty much on equal footing with Epson even setting price aside.

Speaking of price, are you comparing MSRP pricing? I find it hard to believe the Canon would be that much more expensive. Here in the US, the iPF2400 can be had for $2499, $2199 if you have something old that qualifies for trade-in rebate. The 8300 has even better rebates, bringing it down almost to same price level if you qualify for trade-in.
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John Nollendorfs
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« Reply #6 on: May 28, 2012, 09:25:49 PM »
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Don't disregard the HP Z3200 printers for consideration. As for "defacto standard", there is no such thing. Dealers don't make much money  from selling the printers. Don't look for much support from the dealers.

All three printers will deliver excellent results for you. Also, there have been some pretty amazing recent deals on 44" Canon IPF8300--less than the 6300! Check out that option. If you are interested in doing canvas prints, then the 44" model is really required to do finished prints wider than 20".

The HP printer has a built-in Spectro--that's worth $1K. Also, HP print heads are a lot cheaper--about $65 for a two color head. My initial print heads with moderate printing lasted over 2 years.

If you plan on doing much B&W printing, the HP is considered to be king, short of using dedicated B&W inks in a printer. Big negative on the HP, is it's sheet handling--real PITA. If sheet handling is major consideration, the Epson is king.

Making this kind of decision is not easy. Hope the above info helps you.

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John Caldwell
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« Reply #7 on: May 28, 2012, 09:34:17 PM »
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Just to add to John's comments about sheet handling on the Z series: I bought an Epson 4900 for the sole purpose of improving cut sheet handling over what the Z3200 offered. I'll have to say that my mission was not accomplished. Since I generally use heavy fine art media, I'm stuck using the 4900's "Rear Manual Feed" paper path, and, as it turns out that path has as many problems as our Z3200 had with regard to sheet goods. Epson tech support admits the 4900's rear feed is troublesome, and in need of a workaround.

Anyway, the Z3200 sheet path is workable, as is the Epson 4900's, in my opinion - but neither is what I'd call ready for release in honesty. I believe the Epson 4900 sheet handling is better when heavy papers are not being used, or when the "front path" is being used.

John Caldwell
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Wayne Fox
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« Reply #8 on: May 28, 2012, 11:53:08 PM »
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Most photographic dealers don't carry HP, just Epson and mostly and some Canon. Not sure why this is? But Epson seems to be the defacto standard for pro's?
In the U.S., it seems the Canon's higher end printers are not represented by the same people who represent their cameras.  My Canon rep is alway trying to get me to sell the 9000 (or is it 9500, I don't remember) but he doesn't have anything to do with ipf printer.  Whoever those reps are don't seem to be interested in many cameras stores.  I've yet to be contacted, and a sell a fair number of Epson printers a year. Yes, it can be tough to get Canon inks locally in many markets.  Just make sure you order and have them shipped in plenty of time if you don't have a dealer.


Just to add to John's comments about sheet handling on the Z series: I bought an Epson 4900 for the sole purpose of improving cut sheet handling over what the Z3200 offered. I'll have to say that my mission was not accomplished. Since I generally use heavy fine art media, I'm stuck using the 4900's "Rear Manual Feed" paper path, and, as it turns out that path has as many problems as our Z3200 had with regard to sheet goods. Epson tech support admits the 4900's rear feed is troublesome, and in need of a workaround.

Anyway, the Z3200 sheet path is workable, as is the Epson 4900's, in my opinion - but neither is what I'd call ready for release in honesty. I believe the Epson 4900 sheet handling is better when heavy papers are not being used, or when the "front path" is being used.

John Caldwell

Seems the OP was asking about the 7900, not the 4900.  The difference in paper feed systems for these printers is dramatic, and the 7900 is far superior in handling heavy papers vs either the Canon ipf printers or the Epson 4900.  It's basically a 100% straight paper path, and all you do is set the paper in the position, and hit the load button ... seconds.
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John Caldwell
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« Reply #9 on: May 28, 2012, 11:59:02 PM »
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Yes, Wayne is right of course, my 4900 and paper path comments aren't relevant to anyone wanting a 24" machine. I love the paper path and resistance to skew that my collaborator's 9900 has.I imagine it's the same as the 7900.

John Caldwell
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Jim Pascoe
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« Reply #10 on: May 29, 2012, 01:04:41 AM »
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I cannot do a comparison for you because I only have an ipf 6300 which I have owned for two months.  Before that I had the 6100 which ran for four years without fault.  In that four years I put approx 13000 worth of paper and ink through the machine, which is well over a hundred cartridges and equivalent of sixty 30-metre rolls of paper, and one set of heads at about 30 months - so it did get a fair amount of use!  It always behaved faultlessly, even when left idle for a week or so.  I changed the machine because I was worried that at four years old it might start to develop faults and also I was offered 800 as a trade-in (new machine 2300) so I though I would switch while the 6100 had some residual value.
Overall, as a user, I cannot fault the Canon printers - which in the end is all that matters.  Regarding costs, all I can say is that the price of the machine becomes fairly insignificant as you get into doing a lot of printing, especially if you are selling your work.  I have nothing against Epson - except for the old 4000 (ancestor of the 4900) I used to have which clogged really badly and wasted me a lot of money in ink and time.

Jim
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K P
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« Reply #11 on: May 29, 2012, 06:14:10 PM »
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Since you are looking for opinions.. here is mine.

Didn't read through all the threads, but it doesn't matter because my mind is made up.  The Canon is the way to go.  I used to have an Epson 4000 and 4800 which clogged like crazy.  Sure my iPF6100 has caused me problems too, had to replace a head because I hardly used it for months, but at least I could do it myself.  With the Epson, if you get a lemon, which sounds like its quite common to me, you're stuck, and head cleanings just drop entire channels in my experience.  The Canon also has nozzles for both blacks which means you're never wasting ink.  I don't care so much about the decato standard.  My local Epson dealer is staffed with snobs, so even though I do buy Epson canvas and paper to run in my Canon printer, everything you can get online so who really cares.  I am finally selling prints and canvases, and nobody cares to ask if its Epson or Canon.  Thanks for reading!
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ozphoto
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« Reply #12 on: May 29, 2012, 06:33:56 PM »
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I plan to go up to the Canon office in 2 days to see a demo of the ipf6300, I plan on asking a lot of questions. I hope I can reconcile the $1000 difference between the Epson 7900 and Canon ipf6300.

I also called an Epson and Canon replacement parts centre today to get pricing on the heads. This might help me ? Undecided
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chaddro
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« Reply #13 on: May 29, 2012, 10:01:30 PM »
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Question for Wayne...

I have a 9890, and when I load letter size sheets, I nearly always get a paper skew unless I keep positive force on the top edge of the paper (and cross my fingers). I never had to do this with my 7800. Is this "common" or is there an issue with the paper pickup? The printer doesn't register the skew either, and it can be obviously off several degrees.

Seriously, my 7800 pulls the paper in nice and easy while the 9890 grabs the paper it like you've revved the engine and popped the clutch!

Am I missing a setting somewhere? I do have "check paper skew" enabled.

Thanks!
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Jim Pascoe
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« Reply #14 on: May 30, 2012, 01:21:19 AM »
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Question for Wayne...

I have a 9890, and when I load letter size sheets, I nearly always get a paper skew unless I keep positive force on the top edge of the paper (and cross my fingers). I never had to do this with my 7800. Is this "common" or is there an issue with the paper pickup? The printer doesn't register the skew either, and it can be obviously off several degrees.

Seriously, my 7800 pulls the paper in nice and easy while the 9890 grabs the paper it like you've revved the engine and popped the clutch!

Am I missing a setting somewhere? I do have "check paper skew" enabled.

Thanks!

It might be better to start a new post with this question as it seems a bit off topic. - Jim
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ozphoto
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« Reply #15 on: June 01, 2012, 02:12:59 PM »
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Ok looks like the Epson 7900 for $3075.00 versus the Canon ipf6300 for $3800.00 (rebates) in plus taxes and any shipping. This is CDN $.

So come Monday unless someone convinces me otherwise its an Epson 7900.

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BarbaraArmstrong
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« Reply #16 on: June 01, 2012, 02:39:40 PM »
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I was really surprised to see Ozphoto's conclusion for the Epson printer.  Seems the conclusion is based almost entirely on price instead of the comments on user experience in response to his post.  (Granted, single-sheet handling may have been a part of the decision.) That's a perfectly reasonable/understandable way to decide; after all, each of us only has so much to spend.  However, I don't remember seeing, in a long history of enjoying the Printers forum, anyone recommending the larger Epson printers for someone who goes weeks without printing.  Hope to hear good results in this case.  --Barbara
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ozphoto
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« Reply #17 on: June 01, 2012, 02:48:31 PM »
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I need to correct the pricing, the Epson 7900 is actually $2699.00 so its an $1100 difference. I do like the Canon ipf6300 as I went to Canon yesterday for a lab and print session, but for someone like me who is low volume for my clients and picking up the odd print job from other shooters. I can keep these funds for paper and ink and any repairs down to road.

Or am I thinking about this all wrong?
« Last Edit: June 01, 2012, 02:52:47 PM by ozphoto » Logged
BarbaraArmstrong
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« Reply #18 on: June 01, 2012, 03:26:42 PM »
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The answer may depend on how much hair you have on your head.  Remember that feeling when things aren't working and just keep not working and you feel like pulling out all the hair on your head?  I remember a post when Wayne Fox was having conniption fits over his Epson printer, really going crazy with it.  Something happened to make him feel good about it (after how many repair visits?/replacement printers?).  Maybe he could join in.  And I assume he is a pretty regular printer without weeks of hiatus between printing jobs.  (I mention Wayne sometimes in my posts because his responses are always cogent and well-informed, so I've paid some attention to them and give them quite a bit of weight.)  A big argument for the Epson is the availability of numerous retail sources and perhaps better access to repair personnel.  As Wayne pointed out, camera retailers seem not to be carrying the Canon.  On the other hand, it isn't the retailer you'll be dealing with for repair problems, but someone else.  So maybe the relationship with the retailer isn't that important for this purchase.  When I get the other half of my garage converted for interior use, I expect to be in the market for a larger printer, too.  So I'm not a current user of anything larger than the 4900, but have had good reason to follow these posts with keen interest.  --Barbara
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Darrel
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« Reply #19 on: June 01, 2012, 03:49:26 PM »
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Have you looked at US sourced pricing?  You may be able to get the Canon cheaper than the Epson, but you can not apply the Canon US rebates unless someone in the US buys it for you.  The only reason I would not buy the Canon is that Canon Canada is not giving rebates (do they now?), but that should not be the factor.  Printers are cheap these days, look at the price 10 years ago.
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