Amazon Kindle Unlimited Offer: 1-Month For FREE!

Do you still use a printer?


pink Plus
17 6.6k 8 United Kingdom
2 Mar 2020 10:23AM
I own an A3 Epson and an A2 Canon printer, use the A3 for club work and lectures and the A2 for exhibition work, I love printing and framing, it completes the story for me.
They are expensive to run though :-(
LenShepherd 13 4.3k United Kingdom
2 Mar 2020 10:28AM
Short answer - yes I do - primarily because many labs ask for an sRGB file which has a distinctly narrower colour gamut (particularly greens) than Adobe RGB.

I do not see the point of shooting RAW Adobe RGB and then compromising prints by using jpeg sRGB - IF YOU CAN AFFORD THE HIKE IN PRICE.

Based on 2015 ink prices (they have gone up since) and "competition quality" prints an A3 print with the Epson 2440 with similar colour gamut to sRGB worked out for me at around 2.70 each!
With 2020 ink prices using an Epson P800 with larger ink cartridges, A2 ability and near full Adobe RGB colour gamut costs are about 1.90 an A3.
These costs assume good quality Permajet glossy inkjet paper.
Baryta paper can add another 1 to A3 costs.

Most jpeg labs cost significantly less for an A3 print.

Can you tell the difference between jpeg sRGB lab and home printing with a high end printer?
That is far you to decide.
I can - and so can competition judges.
I am satisfied there is a further definite though IMO not huge quality improvement with Baryta paper - but so far I have baulked at around 3 for an A3 print.

Ink costs per print are significantly lower with extremely large "professional" floor standing printers, huge cartridges, and a starting price from around 2,000.

I have a 6 colour Epson L800 A3 - not officially imported into the UK - with large ink bottles and quite low running costs but not IMO up to photo competition quality.

Advantages of home printing are a wide choice of paper, near instantly available prints and no postage costs.

Disadvantages are the obviously greater cost per print - and available space.

Summing up - home printing is distinctly more expensive than sRGB jpeg labs but I am satisfied better quality prints are possible.

My advice if you decide to do your own inkjet printing is get an A2 if you have space for the large footprint - because you get around an extra 400 of ink for about another 400 when you buy one and the larger cartridges are proportionately cheaper and there are fewer cartridge changes to waste some ink, reducing ink costs per print.

Which A2 to buy?
Canon and Epson are each around 900.

Canon has full Adobe RGB gamut but does not take paper rolls - limiting panoramas to about 22 inches on the long dimension.
Canon has a gloss optimiser - which according to Wilkinson does a much smaller than average number of prints - which can increase ink costs if you use this cartridge a lot.
Epson have a lot more gamut than sRGB but currently less than full Adobe RGB - and takes paper rolls - if you buy the paper roll holder - though there are occasional deals including the holder.
I speculate Epson are about to update to full RGB gamut (with new inks) as they already have done this with their larger than A2 printers.
derekd 15 21
28 May 2020 10:40AM
Hi,
I used to do all my own printing at home in my darkroom both colour and monochrome. And got my LRPS with a panel of 16x12 colour prints. but when I switched to digital, creating pictures from a printer was not as satisfying or for that matter as cheap. Over a number of years I had a Nikon coolscan and scanded almost 20000 slides and negs onto my computer. \i have kept all my colour and b/w prints that did well in competition. And when I go to the great darkroom in the sky It will be up to my children what happens to them
mattw 17 5.2k 10 United Kingdom
28 May 2020 12:52PM
Do I still have a printer? Yep, I have three of them Grin

I have an A2 printer for high quality photo prints, a Dye Sub printer for printing onto all sorts of surfaces (Aluminum, slate, wood, fabric, china etc) and finally an Ecotank printer for high volume, low cost work.

If you are concerned about ink costs - then take a good long look at the Ecotank printers. The critical print quality is not up there with the dedicated photo printers - but its still pretty darn good, and the ink works out to 10.7p per ml (for the genuine Epson ink).
(* This is approximate - but for a general rule of thumb, a full page A4 photo print takes about 1ml of ink. Suddenly paper looks criminally expensive!! *)
LenShepherd 13 4.3k United Kingdom
28 May 2020 3:18PM

Quote:
If you are concerned about ink costs - then take a good long look at the Ecotank printers. The critical print quality is not up there with the dedicated photo printers - but its still pretty darn good, and the ink works out to 10.7p per ml (for the genuine Epson ink).
(* This is approximate - but for a general rule of thumb, a full page A4 photo print takes about 1ml of ink. Suddenly paper looks criminally expensive!! *)


These are interesting figures.

I use an Epson A2 P800 - primarily because you get a lot more ink with the initial purchase and the larger 80ml refill cartridges are proportional much cheaper than for an A3+ printer.

Based on 42 for an 80ml genuine cartridge my costs are 0.69 an A4 print.

My previous Epson 2440 costs based on 2015 ink prices was 1.09 for an A4 print.

My genuine Epson ink cost is currently 0.525 a ml in 80ml cartridges.

Edit - an A2 printer is a lot heavier with a larger footprint than an A3+ printer. You also have to lay out more money up front for the initial printer purchase.


mattw 17 5.2k 10 United Kingdom
28 May 2020 6:05PM
My A2 printer is the older model (3880) - and yes, the larger 80ml ink carts do work out a lot cheaper than the smaller carts typically supplied with the A3 and A4 models.

For people doing a lot of printing, I would recommend the extra investment in the A2 printer is worth it simply due to the lower costs of ink.

Interesting that our ink consumption rates seem the be quite different - I guess that is just differences in media and images. My figures are an average from across a verity of prints - certainly not a 'maximum' value.

Sign In

You must be a member to leave a comment.

ePHOTOzine, the web's friendliest photography community.

Join For Free

Upload photos, chat with photographers, win prizes and much more.