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[filmscanners] Re: Printers

Gee, another opportunity to me to make an off-topic comment about
something I wanted to mention anyway.

If you are serious about making prints that will hold up more like
photos, you need a printer that makes prints using archival inks.

HP, other than their original PhotoSmart printers and their large format
units come with inks that usually HP is unwilling to give number on, but
overall are considered to be fairly fugitive, meaning they do not stand
up will to remaining in light for more than a year or two.  They are
probably fine for "album" kept prints, at least for the medium run (5-10
years) as long as they are printed on good paper.  Beyond that, little
is known about the dark keeping characteristics of many inkjet inks that
haven't been tested long term.  Since the inks are forever being
reformulated, there basically aren't any long term tests.  The best one
can hope for is either accelerated testing under bright light and high
temperature (and maybe exposure to known pollutants) or kknownqualities
of older materials that are revamped into ink components, like
ccertainpigments which have been used in paints for hundreds of years.

This brings us to the Epson printer line.  The C80 is the only "current"
Epson small carriage printer to use pigmented inks OEM (from Epson).
The inks in this printer are rated for 100-200 years permanence.
However, as nice as it is, it has what I consider a major defect for
photo printing.  The colored inks (CMY) are all polymer encapsulated
pigments.  The black is pigmented but not encapsulated.  They did this
because the polymer slows drying, and this printer is in their business
line, a replacement of the 900/950, and they wanted it to be very fast
with black text printing on regular bond paper.

As a result, you can print CMYK (all ink "colors") when using the matte
surfaced Epson papers, which "trap" the inks to make them nearly
waterproof, due to the paper technology, but the printer driver
automatically prints only in CMY when it is set up for glossy papers,
because the black in will literally rub off and smear on the Epson
glossy papers.  This means the normal glossy printing is done only in
CMY, making lower contrast and somewhat muddy results especially in the
shadow areas.

You can trick the printer to use all 4 inks by using the driver set to
matte paper while printing on glossy, but they you need to "fix" the
paper by spraying or coating or laminating it, which really defeats the
whole purpose of using a glossy paper.

Enter the next generation.  Epson has released in Japan and UK (and will
be doing so in the US in July) a new series of printers.  These new
printers take photo printing to a new level.  Although I haven't heard
about the smaller version (8" carriage) release date for North America
the wider one (13" printing width, borderless) is called the Epson
Stylus Photo 2200.  It uses 7 colors (adding a gray for improved black
and white printing), has a choice of two blacks, one for glossy and one
for matte, and new pigmented inks with dye like color range, and with a
75 year expected permanence, designed with photographers in mind.  It
will print on a number of different paper surfaces as well, including
Epson art papers (and maybe others) and this new ink technology produces
much brighter colors, (according to Epson).

Anyway, the full press release can be found at:


The only caveat is that Epson will have a strangle-hold on these ink
cartridges for some time to come, so I doubt there will be refill inks
available for at least some period.  I don't know what the ink carts
will sell for.

I SUSPECT, within the next year Epson, will be announcing at least one
new 16" printer to replace the 3000, with archival inks, at least I hope so!


PS: OK, Ted, where is Olalla, or is it more a state of mind? ;-)

Ted Bayer wrote:

> Hello Scanners:
> I would appreciate your help.  To stay on topic, I will mention that I
> just purchased an Epson 2450 scanner and need a printer for it.
> I am considering a couple of inkjet printers and would appreciate
> hearing from anyone who is using one or the other.  I would also
> appreciate any suggestions for another brand or model -- I am trying to
> stay within in the $200 or under price range.
> My main use will be to print colored and black and white prints from
> scans.  I will usually make the 4X6 and 5X7 size prints.
> The two I am considering are:
> HP Deskjet 920c
> Epson Stylus C80
> I am told the Epson inks are now more permanent but don't know that to
> be true.
> Your help and advice will be greatly appreciated.
> Ted in Olalla

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