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Friday, 30 September 2016

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No worries....another will be around the corner.

Mike, I've been an enthusiastic reader of your site for a couple of years now, but finally felt prompted to post by the thread on printers.

As an alternative to buying new, your readers might want to consider a refurbished unit from Epson. I bought a 3880 about six months ago for $950 Cdn. It came with a one-year replacement warranty. In other words, if it breaks, I send it back and they send me another refurb 3880. (No repair coverage.) It came with a full set of new ink carts. The 3880 is no longer being made, and has a few minor drawbacks - no wifi, 5ml ink waste when changing blacks - but I get the impression that the build is bulletproof. They certainly sold a lot of them, and a lot are still in use, many in professional settings.

This was the only way I could get into a 17X22 printer with big 80ml tanks. And I LOVE it. The per-print ink cost is lower because of the higher capacity, and as I run through the supplied ink, my plan is to buy a set of refillable carts from InkJetMall (Jon Cone's operation) and fill them myself with his well-regarded inks. If you buy 220ml bottles, you pay about a third of the OEM cost, after the upfront expenditure of around $130 US for the cart set.

I'm in love with printing my own shots, and printing them big. This is a way I can do it on a bit of a budget.

BTW I checked on the US Epson site, and they do have some refurbs, although no 3800s or 3880s right now.

Hope this is helpful.

[Good to hear of your good experience. I'll write something about this in due course, but the "gratification quotient" of printing with the P600 is off the chart for me. I just printed an old file I had never seen in a print before and it just blew me away—the printer did such a spectacular job and the print is SO lovely. Very satisfying. --Mike]

As I wrote for this post (even though not published) "no worries, the next sale is around the corner"; and for an earlier post, "just wait a minute".

Anyone who buys a printer at retail cost hasn't been paying attention.

I'll second the recommendation on the 3880. I've had mine for some time, now, and use it almost exclusively with Epson Velvet Fine Art paper. It prints a treat, that's for sure.

One annoying issue was that for certain images that had large dark, almost black areas, the 3880 run by the Epson drivers on Windows, using the Epson-supplied profile for Velvet Fine Art, would tend to overload the paper (almost to the point of soak-through) and tended to 'go green' (literally).

I finally bit the bullet and purchased ImagePrint on the advice of Alain Briot, whose workshops I've been attending. ImagePrint replaces the Epson drivers with their own, and has hundreds of profiles so that you can even fine-tune your print for the viewing light temperature. Like magic, all my printing problems disappeared, and the look of the prints are noticeably better than when using the Epson driver/profiles.

At the moment, I'm thinking of the P800, which after rebate is only about $50 more than the P600, but it would only be replacing a 17" printer with another. The last time I upgraded I went from an Epson 13" printer to the 17" 3880, so if it is to be worthwhile, I should be looking at the 24" printers, which are going for over $2000. That's quite a jump, and I'm not sure I'm ready to do 20 x 30 or larger prints, yet, so maybe I'll just stick with my trusty 3880 for while, yet.

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