Inkjet woe and inkjet torment

Rob Gillespie

Cinematographer
Senior HTF Member
Joined
Aug 17, 1998
Messages
3,632
Shit. That's all I can say.
My trusty Epson Stylus Color 640, a faithful companion for the past three years has printed it's final page. Alas, poor, poor 640 will print no more. I've had intermittent quality issues for the past couple of months, but now I'm getting a strange mechanical noise and barely any ink coming out of the jets, despite cleaning to the nth degree. T'is dead. It has ceased to be. It's now an ex-printer. It will be missed.
So what I need is a new one. And fast.
I'm very tempted to go for the Epson 790. Six-colour printing with silly resolution and a decent page throughput. The more expensive 890 seems to have exactly the same spec, but is a bit faster and 10db quieter. And £80 more expensive.
But I've heard people say that Epsons are no longer very reliable and that HP is a better choice. OK, but the HP ink cartridges are TWICE the price for a similar level machine. That's a big issue with the amount of printing I do.
So give me your thoughts and don't be shy

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"One does not simply walk into Mordor."
Rob's Place
 

brentl

Effects Supervisor
Senior HTF Member
Joined
May 7, 1999
Messages
2,921
I'd like to be able to offer you some really witty advice, but since I don't have any I just say "buy another Epson"
I use the 540 too, and love the way it prints. It was quite cheap but I'm sure it evens out when you add in the extra ink cost....this thing flies through ink.
I've heard lots of good things about HP too. Try one of the magazines, see what they have to say.
Brent L
 

Rob Gillespie

Cinematographer
Senior HTF Member
Joined
Aug 17, 1998
Messages
3,632
Ain't got it yet

It actually worked out at £70 more (slightly less bruising). For that you get an extra 2-3 pages per min, 10db lower operating noise, a paper reel feed (can't think of a use just yet but I'm sure I will), a bigger onboard cache and better handling of odd sized paper. With a bit of luck I should get it tomorrow so I can play all weekend.
 

Brian Harnish

Screenwriter
Joined
Dec 15, 2000
Messages
1,216
Y'know...nevermind.

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- Brian
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Julian Reville

Screenwriter
Joined
Aug 29, 1999
Messages
1,195
I finally gave up on inkjets after an HP-560C and an Epson Stylus Photo 700 both died. In fairness to the Epson, it was a great printer when it worked, and maybe I didn't use it enough to keep the jets working. I tried cleaning and cleaning, and replacing the rather expensive ink containers, but nothing helped.
I decided I really didn't need color, and went with a Brother MFC-8500 Laser.
 

DavidY

Supporting Actor
Joined
Mar 19, 1999
Messages
510
After three to four years of service, my Lexmark 5700 required a minor repair. Bought US$90 worth of cartridges. A few months later, the 5700 died for the second time.
Probably fixable, but I am not spending any more $$$ on it. No more inkjets for me....consumables are way too pricey.
Last week, after much research, I ordered an entry level B&W laser, Minolta-QMS PagePro 1100L. Hopefully, it should here this week. With a US$30 (CDN$45) mail-in rebate, bottom line is only US$200 (CDN$310).

Dave
 

Tim Markley

Screenwriter
Joined
Jun 12, 1999
Messages
1,279
I've had nothing but problems with my Epson 740. I'm constantly having to unclog and re-align the print heads on it. It'll be the last Epson printer I ever buy. I previously had an HP for 3 years and never had a single problem with it. My next printer will either be HP or a Canon (because of the individual ink cartridges for each color).
 

Rob Gillespie

Cinematographer
Senior HTF Member
Joined
Aug 17, 1998
Messages
3,632
I think a big part of the reason why HP ink jets last longer is because the cartridges include the actual print head. Each time to change cartrdige, you get a new head, which HAS to make a big difference. Unfortunately it also makes a big difference to the cost. The HP carts I've seen for sale are about twice the price of the Epson ones for my 890.
So far I'm very happy with the 890. It's faster and a hell of a lot quieter than the old 640. Print quality is similar for text, but a quantum leap upwards when printing graphics or photos with lots of shade graduations.
Only problem I've found so far is that it doesn't work too well with the 215gsm TDK glossy photo paper I've been using. It's fine on black, or on lighter colours, but when you print dark colours there is an odd pattern there. Almost like the ink doesn't want to cooperate with the finish on the paper. Odd really, since there doesn't seem to be any problems with drying or smearing - just the mottled pattern.
However printing on Epson photo paper is a different story. Much smoother, with no patterning. I've got a pack of Epson's new Premium Glossy Photo on it's way, which is a hefty 255gsm in weight. Should be good.
 

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