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Author Topic: Epson Exhibition Canvas Natural  (Read 2751 times)
Mike Guilbault
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« on: January 10, 2013, 05:56:38 AM »
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Haven't seen much about the new Epson Exhibition Canvas Natural. Its not even listed on Epson's site.  Anyone have any experience with it yet?
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bill t.
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« Reply #1 on: January 10, 2013, 12:05:54 PM »
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It's just starting to trickle into supply.  Atlex.com and ITSupplies.com list it as buyable options, but for instance DTGWeb.com and Inkjetart.com don't even mention it.  If it's as good as Epson Exhibition Canvas Gloss or Crystalline or Black Diamond, it's probably really good stuff, and I won't miss the OBA's at all.  And of course it's said to be "acid free" which puts it in a cleaner ballpark the other currently available gloss and satin canvases.  Apparently Epson is introducing a whole line of "natural" versions of for instance their hot press paper.  I'm guessing "natural" means OBA and acid free as Epson has already stated, but not some sort of Mr. Natural potato-sack texture, fingers crossed on that one.

Tell you one thing though, I'm just not up for another extended "oh it's coming, almost here, will have a good supply any-day-now" routine that I went through with another recent miracle glossy surface canvas, uh-uh.

But wow, sold a lot of 8 foot versions of my best sellers over the holidays due in no small part due to the kick-butt colors and luscious tonality you can get with for instance the existing OBA-enhanced but acid-free Epson Exh Can Gloss.  If I have learned anything over the last 7.5 years of inkjet print schlepping, it's that Big Color sells.

There is another thread on this a couple pages back with some Epson URL's.

Edit...and there don't seem to be any profiles published on the Epson site.  Things like that are the truth-sayers when it comes to new media.  That means you will have to beg Epson to send you beta-profiles, which will probably fail.  Or you can make profiles yourself which can be very difficult with glossy canvas as I and others have found out.  For making profiles it's much easier if the canvas is coated, but I have to say the best Gloss canvas profiles I have are those painfully and laboriously made from uncoated canvas through the use of 4+ swipes per target row.

« Last Edit: January 10, 2013, 12:22:38 PM by bill t. » Logged
Justan
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« Reply #2 on: January 10, 2013, 12:23:03 PM »
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Note to self: find a heated location to spray glamour ii.
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ternst
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« Reply #3 on: January 10, 2013, 03:09:44 PM »
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I've printed several rolls of the new Gloss Natural this past couple of weeks - just got another one off the truck a few minutes ago. I used the BC crystalline in all its different forms for a while, and more recently the other Epson Exhibition Gloss - I can't stand the thin-cardboard canvas they use for either. This new Gloss Natural is more like the old crystalline in that the canvas is MUCH softer, doesn't curl up into a ball, and I like the surface a lot better too - to me it just looks better, and feels better too. Making a custom profile was no problem, although the crystalline profile is OK in a pinch. Now if they'll just get other sizes of the Natural in the pipeline besides 44". Glad you are selling so many big prints Bill - sounds like you are getting rich!
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bill t.
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« Reply #4 on: January 10, 2013, 03:43:22 PM »
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Thanks for the info ternst!  How would you compare the look of Natural with Crystalline?

And what system or service are you using to profile Natural?  My i1Photo Pro (original version) has a very hard time reading textured, glossy media.

Just from looking at the online suppliers, it seems like Epson is supplying Satin sooner than Glossy.
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ternst
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« Reply #5 on: January 10, 2013, 05:58:01 PM »
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I used a monkey to profile. Had to redo several of the strips, but that was probably my fault. I let each patch print dry for 24 hours.

I don't know how to compare the look between the two, only that the Natural is so much softer that it will stretch a lot more and you can get it tighter on the frame, which I prefer to the cardboard look. Bill Atkinson taught me how to do canvas a long time ago, and I've always liked his way of doing it - with a lot of pressure for a very tight stretch. I could never stretch very much with the cardboard canvas, so I've never liked the final product. I obviously have a mental issue against the cardboard canvas, and so the nicer Natural canvas is going to look better on the wall to me. Since you like the stiffer canvas, you may not like the Natural stuff.

Never tried any of the satin canvas, although I don't like the satin varnish, so I'll probably stick with gloss.
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bill t.
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« Reply #6 on: January 10, 2013, 07:16:34 PM »
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Thanks ternst.  I guess by "cardboard" you mean the corrugated look of pronounced grooves in one direction.  I hate that too!  Among other things it gives the canvas print a different look on the wall depending on whether the grooves are horizontal or vertical.  The Crystalline from last spring had a wonderful, neutral textured surface that really didn't look canvas-like at all, and I was very disheartened when it started showing up in its current, corrugated looking reincarnation, which to be fair is pretty much the norm for canvas right now.  Anyway, ordered a 44" roll of Gloss Natural from Atlex this afternoon, will see what it's like.  With shipping factored in it's right now about $50 more expensive that regular Exh Can Gloss, but if it looks good and the texture is a little more neutral, that would be worth it.
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ternst
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« Reply #7 on: January 10, 2013, 07:51:02 PM »
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Yes, the Natural surface is more like the crystalline from last spring (and the winter before) - their newer version was quite a shock being such a dramatic difference in the same product. But my cardboard reference was more to the stiffness of the crystalline and the current epson gloss non/natural - I don't even like to handle it since it feels so harsh. The Natural is much softer and easy to stretch. I know you mount your canvas and don't stretch so that probably won't matter to you. (Perhaps stiffer canvas is better for mounting to boards?) But I do like the softer look of it - finer weave perhaps, not as harsh.
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Mike Guilbault
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« Reply #8 on: January 10, 2013, 08:36:37 PM »
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Has anyone tried the Matte version?  I love Cold Press Natural paper so I'm thinking I might like the EECN Matte. From what I've read, you can finish it with satin or gloss varnish for those looks anyway. 
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darlingm
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« Reply #9 on: January 13, 2013, 01:07:44 AM »
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I've printed several rolls of the new Gloss Natural this past couple of weeks - just got another one off the truck a few minutes ago. I used the BC crystalline in all its different forms for a while, and more recently the other Epson Exhibition Gloss - I can't stand the thin-cardboard canvas they use for either. This new Gloss Natural is more like the old crystalline in that the canvas is MUCH softer, doesn't curl up into a ball, and I like the surface a lot better too - to me it just looks better, and feels better too. Making a custom profile was no problem, although the crystalline profile is OK in a pinch. Now if they'll just get other sizes of the Natural in the pipeline besides 44". Glad you are selling so many big prints Bill - sounds like you are getting rich!

Would you be willing to post your profile for it?  I have an i1 Photo Pro 2 so will be making my own, just have been really wanting to compare gamut in a few particular areas against Crystalline.

BTW, Bill, for what it's worth, my i1 Photo Pro 2 reads Crystalline gloss targets very well uncoated.  Didn't have to do a lot of re-reads.
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Mike Westland Printworks
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bill t.
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« Reply #10 on: January 19, 2013, 01:22:20 AM »
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Well GUESS WHAT!  Epson Exhibition Canvas Gloss Natural may be OBA free, but I'm afraid my keen sense of smell is telling me it isn't Acid Free!  Strong acetic acid smell while printing, and while the ink is drying.  You know, like Kodak Glacial Acetic Acid Stop Bath.

I'm suspect all the "Acid Free" hype is entirely coming from dealers, who probably assume that since the earlier Exhibition Canvas Gloss is known to be acid-free, so is this new stuff.  I checked Epson's PR announcement again, and whaddya know, not a mention of Acid Free anywhere!

Has anybody got any further information about this?  I could be wrong, but that acetic acid smell is wafting in the air as I type, and it's the same as I get with Crystalline and Diamond Black, both of which are known to be slightly acidic in the emulsion.  The only acid free gloss canvas is apparently still the older Epson Exhibition Canvas Gloss (non natural version) which has no particular smell at all.

A little hurried right now.  But to summarize, really nice looking prints!  Gamut about the same as the non-natural Epson Gloss Canvas, but somehow the same image looks more lively on Natural.  The 44" roll I have now is a supple 17 mils thick and has no trouble at all with curling edges or any of the other feed and/or headbanging problems that bedevil the 23 mil thick substrate on non-natural Epson Gloss.  Weave is relatively non-polarized, but unfortunately a little on the textured side, but not too bad.  Maybe a slight step backwards towards to old, old "starfield" surface, but nowhere near as bad.  Coats very nicely.  Coating has very little visible effect on the surface.  Non-natural Gloss has a very slight haze that is cleared up with coating, but Natural is very transparent even when not coated.

Definitely made by a different manufacturer than non-natural Gloss.  Could find no "Made In xxxxx" notices on the packaging, so probably somebody in the US.  The package looks plain-wrap compared to Epson's usually graphic-rich packaging, so I wonder if I have a sort of "beta test" roll.  Printed about 10 feet the roll tonight, and as far as I can tell there is not a single defect.  That's pretty cool! 

But what about the acid thing?  This will take some study.
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Mike Guilbault
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« Reply #11 on: January 19, 2013, 09:34:47 PM »
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Hard to believe that they'd call this natural (as in in OBA's) but then add acidity to it, but it would be nice to know either way.  Thanks for the update Bill.
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