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Author Topic: Transitioning off the DesignJet 130 to....?  (Read 1531 times)
little big man
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« on: January 26, 2013, 04:04:55 PM »
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Hi All,

I've been using the DJ 130 for photography prints for 6 years; Neil Snape made some custom profiles for me for the Premium Plus satin paper and that's about all I've used it for since and I've been happy with it.  I've done some repairs but lately it's had too many bad parts and line clogs and I'm ready to do something else and would appreciate any thoughts based on the following:

I'd like to get the 44" Z3200 so it can create its own profiles and expand my printing to a variety of photo papers but also some sign and banner material (I have a tradeshow display that I rent out occasionally).  I'm afraid HP is going to give up on this product line though, or even more shocking, come out with an update to the Z3200.  I'm also interested in the 9900 or a Canon but I'm a low-volume printer and not set up to create profiles and I'm not finding helpful info on signage/banner material compatibility in the Epson and Canon product lines.  I'd be willing to invest in a separate profiling option if necessary or maybe I need two machines?  I'm also trying to factor in support and repair - I'm in Montana and typically find myself outside of the service radius for manufacturers.  

Thanks in advance for your thoughts -

Sean
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Ernst Dinkla
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« Reply #1 on: January 27, 2013, 09:49:26 AM »
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The Designjet 130 is still in the HP catalog, there is a 2004 review of that printer, makes it an 8 years old design.
The Z3200 was introduced in the winter of 2008/2009 and is still in the catalog.
An update of the Z3200 would not shock me but it would be a big surprise, I do not expect it.

Gloss or matte prints, what is it that you like print most? B&W too or mainly color?
Are you interested in the "archival" qualities of the print or is that something of less importance?

I think there is no problem to find similar compatible qualities of banner and sign media for the three printer brands, that should not be an issue.

The DIY maintenance and repair of the Z's is probably easier than with the other brands. Parts are easy to get, Service Manuals available. I think there are also more (skilled) service men with knowledge of Designjets than there are for the other brands. Based on what I read in messages here.


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Met vriendelijke groet, Ernst

http://www.pigment-print.com/spectralplots/spectrumviz_1.htm
December 2012, 500+ inkjet media white spectral plots.





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jsiva
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« Reply #2 on: January 27, 2013, 11:20:33 AM »
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Having lived with a Z3100PS GP 44" for 5 years or so, it has been a love hate relationship.  If you like tinkering with profiles and patches, then it might be for you.  I have been using APS with the built in spectrometer.  Support for the printer, software and spectrometer have been horrendous with each company passing the buck.  Even updates of APS have to be downloaded from some obscure site, and that is when it works.

I have also got iPublish Pro with the i1PRO.  if you're doing any large patches, this is a pain to use.

I recently purchased IP9 for my Epson 3880 and am seriously considering swapping the Z for a 9900 44" with IP9.  The IP profiles I have used so far look very good.  It is a no hassle process, and has great layout tools.

On the HP, the PostScriptdriver and PCL driver also give different results with the same profile.  This is also concerning.  YMMV.

Good luck with your decision.
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little big man
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« Reply #3 on: January 27, 2013, 08:20:18 PM »
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Thanks Ernst - definitely matte prints and mostly color work; wildlife and landscapes.  Archival is a big deal as well.  I think I will have to contact Epson and Canon to talk about signs/banners.

Thanks jsiva for the blow-by-blow account.  I've owned other HP plotters and products that sound just like that experience - dead DL pages and what not.  At least HP is consistent across their lines of business in the user experience, ugh.  Can you elaborate a bit more on the i1Pro issue with large patches - would hate to throw that much $ towards Xrite if it's not a good workflow.

Sean
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jsiva
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« Reply #4 on: January 28, 2013, 01:45:26 AM »
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The i1Publish will not work with the built in spectrometer.  So you will have to print out out your test chart and measure it manually with an i1Pro or the new i1Pro2.

I cannot speak for the i1Pro2, but with the i1Pro1, you get a  rinky 12" plastic guide that tends to move all over the place.  You need to start the scan of each line at aspecific point, and move it at relatively stable pace until you get to the end of the line of patches.  Then you repeat for each line of patches. The software will confirm whether or not it was a valid scan.  With APS i typically use large 918 patchset.  I don't have the patience to do this with the i1Pro handheld. 

It would have been ideal, if i1Publish (the softwaer from xrite) supported the builtin-spectrometer in the printer, in which case the scanning would be automatic.  It is their OEM (or one of their acquisitions).  They claimed that the version in the HP was rigged specifically for HP and would only work with APS (also rigged x-rite software, but not supported by them).

So if you want automated scanning of patches, you need to buy the rather pricey robotic arm thingy, at which point you may as well outsource the gjob to an expert like Digital Dog.

In my case, I am really starting to like IP 9 with my Epson 3880. Profiles look very good, and are well matched to my monitor.

Other issues have also soured my experience with HP.  CS6 soft proofing is a real downer.  The prints don't look half as bad for gamut/contrast/color as the softproofer will lead you to believe.  Also, recent OSX 10.8 permissions totally wonked out all my profiles.  So again, IP has been a no nonsense solution so far, and when I have had to call them for support, it's been very good.

The new 9900 also has some cool features like cutting canvas, and front loading of roles.  THe 350ml carts also seem like a  good idea, although I would likely never need the 700ml ones.

I am going keep my current setup for the next few months, as the HP appears to have entered its manic phase, and when it works, well, the prints are beautiful. In the meantime, there may be some new products from Epson.

Cheers.
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aaronchan
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« Reply #5 on: January 28, 2013, 06:49:52 AM »
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The i1Publish will not work with the built in spectrometer.  So you will have to print out out your test chart and measure it manually with an i1Pro or the new i1Pro2.

NO, you CAN use HP printer utility to measure whatever target you want and export it into a txt file. And it can be read by i1Profiler which I've done that before with my z3200

aaron
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jsiva
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« Reply #6 on: January 28, 2013, 01:28:24 PM »
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NO, you CAN use HP printer utility to measure whatever target you want and export it into a txt file. And it can be read by i1Profiler which I've done that before with my z3200

aaron

Whoa, a two step process, but fantastic!  I tried reading profiles into iPublish from APS, but never with the HP utility.  Does the HP utility allow you to use larger patch charts like the 918 one that APS uses?
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Ernst Dinkla
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« Reply #7 on: January 29, 2013, 02:55:34 AM »
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Thanks Ernst - definitely matte prints and mostly color work; wildlife and landscapes.  Archival is a big deal as well.  I think I will have to contact Epson and Canon to talk about signs/banners.

Sean

The Z3200 will print excellent Color and B&W matte prints. For gloss Color prints coming from a 130 with its dye inks you may not get an improvement in gloss difference and bronzing, though on the other hand the 130 shows more "metamerism" and will be less consistent on the neutrals. For gloss B&W you have to pick the right media and use plenty of gloss enhancer to keep bronzing at bay but the neutrals are very consistent, on the printer and in time.

For profiling the other messages gave the direction. There is a wide variety of workflows possible outside the normal HP Printer Utility / Color Center workflow: creating a custom media preset for a third party paper, calibrating that paper on the printer automagically and printing, measuring and profiling that paper automagically. You can delay the measuring to a later stage for a 24 hour dry down of the printed target, you can save the measured data for another profile session later on, you can export the data for other profiling software (ArgyllCMS too I think next to the i1Profiler mentioned), you can print a target on another printer and measure it on the Z3200 and make the profile there or export the data. The target's aspect ratio can be adapted to the full width of the loaded roll, so there is some economy in paper use despite the large patches.

A lot can be said on HP service, software and HP's web labyrinth but considering the above and the good HP documentation on the use of third party media on the Z3200, HP was not shy to extend the capability of this versatile, automated, profiling, spectrometer plotter that is also a good printer. It may have cut in the HP media sales but this is how art printers are used and they met that goal.

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Met vriendelijke groet, Ernst

http://www.pigment-print.com/spectralplots/spectrumviz_1.htm
December 2012, 500+ inkjet media white spectral plots.



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Atlex.com
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« Reply #8 on: January 31, 2013, 09:23:52 AM »
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Hello

The Z series are slowly starting to become discontinued, but the Z3200 PS and the 6200 series are still available.  I would also recommend the Canon IPF8400 (44") or the 9400 (60") as their service has been very good as well.

Epsons 9890/9900 will show about the same quality as the Canon's printer, but with the ability to have 3 size inks helps (depending on your amount of printing).
Canon's comes with 2 ink sizes, but also has the option to see how much ink you used per print that can be helpful.

We do stock all of these units as well as the supplies.
If you have further questions on these models or how they print, feel free to contact us.  Our tech is also available to answer certain questions to narrow down the options for what you would primarily print more.

Atlex.com
Chris W
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Phil Indeblanc
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« Reply #9 on: March 05, 2013, 11:35:13 AM »
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Interesting to read....I too have had the 130, and Neil made a few profiles for me as well. (He is great).
But after some time I looked into a RIP as I was doing lots of magazine work(CMYK contract proofing). So I opted for the EFI 5.1 RIP that HP recommends. It works rather welll, but ONLY on 2 different papers. You CAN'T use the RIP on Gloss or other media!!
I had invested over $2500 worth of paper that now sits in storage as I can't use it. I called HP, EFI took no responsibility, HP shrugged. I was ready to return the printer and all. But I kept it as it was much better than buying Epson clogging issues and ink draining hog issues. I had used Epson for so many years. I have not in the past 6. My last one was a Pro5000 and then a 7200. I love HP for many things that Epson fails at, but the RIP limitation is such a poor implementation, and FALSE ADVERTISING.  They are built stronger and easier to work with than Epson also.

My next upgrade will be a Canon. I hope they are built like HP , or at least not like Epsons finicky heads. I would not use the HP for a month and then send a job with no clogs or any issues for years. That to me is worth HP over Epson alone. Also the dye black inks on the 130 are some of the richest. I'm sure there are a number you can name off now that blows it out of the water in print quality, but realiability is often more important when are brands are so visually appealing.  HP service, even the DJ guys is hit and miss. They took care of some heads to replace under warranty, but how hard would it be to have EFI issue a profile for the other papers? At least in my cameras Canon service is superb so far.

(I also have a CGI Oris RIP for another printer, I've been saving the transfer of it to a 40+" printer, as it was originally licensed for. If I switched it to the 24" it would be a permanent downgrade. I have yet to use this pricey RIP.
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If you buy a camera, you're a photographer...
Atlex.com
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« Reply #10 on: March 05, 2013, 12:19:00 PM »
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The RIP software usually does a great job at matching colors, but it's more used for doing large qty of prints of the same image at one time vs using PhotoShop and printing 30 copies of a poster size file.  Due to a large size file, it can slow down the printing queue and the RIP assists with the processing faster.  The newer Epson models haven't had the clogging issue as much as the older models with the updated print heads.  Unfortunately, since Epson print heads need serviced by an authorized service center, it can cost a lot.  Canon and HP have user replaceable print heads.

If the colors don't come out to the same look, this is normally due to needing the monitor calibrated to match it exactly.  We haven't had any issues when this is fixed from our customers, nor from printing in our office directly.  We sell all of these items.

As far as Canon, they have upgraded their printers with the optional spectroproofer to help with the color management.  No need for a RIP software, but it's helpful as well to assist with large qty of a file to print.
If you're possibly looking into a 44" Canon, you can check out IPF8400 price as it's very reasonable within the price for March.

Chris W
atlex.com
800-327-2822
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enduser
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« Reply #11 on: March 05, 2013, 05:59:32 PM »
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When we had a Design Jet 90, an 18 inch machine, several years ago, there was some talk of getting re-fillables (easy) and using pigment ink in them.  This was thought feasible due to the machine already using pigment ink in the black cartridge.  What are you risking to try a pigment from Ink Supply in one cart?  That risks only one cheap as chips print head to see if it works or not.

I can't try it because we don't have it any more, but a conversion of a DJ 130 to pigment would be a big achievement. At $900 if you can find a new one or $500 second hand, a cheap 24" workhorse.
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Justan
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« Reply #12 on: March 06, 2013, 10:32:37 AM »
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You can delay the measuring to a later stage for a 24 hour dry down of the printed target--

Never tried this. Does some or all of the color change very much with this much drying time compared to the standard amount of drying time?
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Ernst Dinkla
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« Reply #13 on: March 06, 2013, 04:30:32 PM »
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When we had a Design Jet 90, an 18 inch machine, several years ago, there was some talk of getting re-fillables (easy) and using pigment ink in them.  This was thought feasible due to the machine already using pigment ink in the black cartridge.  What are you risking to try a pigment from Ink Supply in one cart?  That risks only one cheap as chips print head to see if it works or not.

I can't try it because we don't have it any more, but a conversion of a DJ 130 to pigment would be a big achievement. At $900 if you can find a new one or $500 second hand, a cheap 24" workhorse.

For Color and B&W prints I do not see advantages going with pigment other than the fade resistance of the prints. I doubt the black is pigment in the DJ130, it would deliver a bad gloss quality and a low Dmax on matte papers. With Vivera pigment inks the minimum number of ink channels needed is more like what is used in the Z2100, 8 in total. MK,PK, Grey, CcMmY and that one is not delivering the same Color, B&W and gloss the Z3100 gives. Less channels compromises too much on gloss, on neutral greys in color + B&W and on gamut. "Metamerism" most likely is more difficult to suppress too.

The DJ130 could be a nice customised B&W printer with Vivera pigment inks though. Mixing the Vivera PK with ink medium to get several grey grades is possible and will work with the thermal heads. I have done so with an HP Officejet Pro that has 4 channels to see whether any issues occur. That one has 9 picoliter droplets, the DJ130 4 picoliter but I think it will work.

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Met vriendelijke groet, Ernst

http://www.pigment-print.com/spectralplots/spectrumviz_1.htm
December 2012, 500+ inkjet media white spectral plots.
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Ernst Dinkla
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« Reply #14 on: March 06, 2013, 04:35:28 PM »
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Never tried this. Does some or all of the color change very much with this much drying time compared to the standard amount of drying time?

Not much in my experience with Vivera pigment inks so I do it seldom. Color management gurus consider it good practice though. And if you apply an extra varnish then measuring after the varnish is applied should be more correct.

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Met vriendelijke groet, Ernst

http://www.pigment-print.com/spectralplots/spectrumviz_1.htm
December 2012, 500+ inkjet media white spectral plots.
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Justan
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« Reply #15 on: March 07, 2013, 09:45:14 AM »
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^Thanks for the feedback! I may have to try measuring after applying and curing Glamour 2, but Im not sure Id like to alter the effect that G2 has.

But on the topic, how does one re-insert the target after it has been coated?
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Ernst Dinkla
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« Reply #16 on: March 07, 2013, 10:28:40 AM »
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^Thanks for the feedback! I may have to try measuring after applying and curing Glamour 2, but Im not sure Id like to alter the effect that G2 has.

But on the topic, how does one re-insert the target after it has been coated?


You  have to select the option to measure later when you are preparing the target choices for printing, the format is changed so it can load the target later on correctly for measuring.

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Met vriendelijke groet, Ernst

http://www.pigment-print.com/spectralplots/spectrumviz_1.htm
December 2012, 500+ inkjet media white spectral plots.
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