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Old Sep 2, 2005, 4:29 PM   #1
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Hi,

I'm chuffed to say that I will soon be in a position to replace my trusty ol' Stylus Photo 750 with a new machine.

That's not to say I no longer care for the 750 but it has now developed banding problems which I can no longer cure (tried everything, including alignment, Pressit cleaning cartridges etc.).

Thing is, it's so old I can't even remember buying it, so I guess the heads are entitled to be shot by now! [... wipes away a tear].

Anyway .. to the point!

Reading the reviews it seems things have moved on a bit on the printing front since the good ol' days. For example,the R1800 sounds an exciting prospect ...

but ...

... I have a few niggling doubts which are haunting me at the moment.

Firstly, it's that old chestnut - blocked nozzles! I've had what seems like more than my fair share of these with the 750, and various discussion boards on the web at the moment would suggest that Epson haven't quite managed to crack that one completely just yet.

I have to say that the prospect of even finer (1.5 pl:shock: ) nozzles on the R1800 is making me a just a little nervous.

Then there's the credit card crunching ink costs, but I have (finally) come to accept that I'm going to have to use OEM cartridges with the R1800 if I'm going to get the best out of it.

So ...

Is there an alternative? ... maybe, but I'm not sure.

I've also been looking at the Kodak 1400 Dye Sub printer (similar price in the UK to the R1800) and I have to say that the thought of no more blocked nozzles has started to turn my head.

The thing is, from what I've heard and read, the Epson is the better printer - A3 prints, different media types available, lifetime colour fastness, better print quality? (maybe, but not 100% sure on that one yet) etc.

But the thought of no more blocked nozzles is really making me think.

The trouble is, I don't print stuff off every day, (or sometimes every week for that matter) which I know doesn't help the nozzle problem. So when I come to print on my lovely R1800, am I going to keep wasting time and money (for money, read: OEM ink:G ) to get my one or two prints out?

I know that if I use a dye sub, I can leave it alone for weeks and then, when I need it, it'll spit out a clean print for me no problem.

So this is my dilemma.

The R1800 is probably the better 'artistic' printer overall but the dye sub would probably be more reliable.

So, I'd be grateful for your opinions on this.

Which printer would you be inclined to go for under these circumstances?

Would I be compromising much in the way of image quality with the dye sub?

Any opinions and advice would be gratefully received.

Thanks.

Jack N
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Old Sep 6, 2005, 6:04 AM   #2
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I've used the Kodak 1400 printer and yes, you're never going to get any blocked nozzles but it can be susceptible to dust, (any dye-sub printer can). That means the first print might have spots on if you leave the printer for a week or two but should be OK by the second print.

Colour fastness on a dye-sub printer should be better than an ink-jet printer mainly because the ink laid on the paper is solid and also because it is laminated meaning the pigments aren't exposed to the air on greasy fingers. Colour reproduction is usually better on a dye-sub although high end Ink-jets can give a slightly sharper image.

Anymore questions, let me know as I work with quite a few different dye-sub printers.
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Old Sep 6, 2005, 2:46 PM   #3
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Thanks Drexl.

I'd very much appreciate your opinion on something.

I've heard people comment about a possible lack of image depthfrom dye-sub printers, due to the fact that there is no black ink present.

Its so difficult sometimes to come to any conclusions about image quality and characteristics based onreviews and the written word alone. It seems that these days there are many good printers available (both dye-sub and ink jet)and differences of opinion sometimes come down to personal preferences.

Even sample pictures from the manufactures can sometimes be a little misleading as (naturally) they tend to provide images that flatter their machine where possible.

So can you tell me, how do you rate dye-sub image depth based on your experience with these printers, and do you have a particular preference for any of the printers that you have used?

Regards

Jack
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Old Sep 12, 2005, 7:50 AM   #4
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Hi there,

From my experience the difference in quality between dye-sub makes is very little as the technology is pretty simple compared to Ink cartridge technology which can vary widely. If you are choosing a dye-sub I would choose by paper size and extra's like stand-alone features, (like the HiTi's do).

Dye-subs can't match the vividness of some of the colours Inkjets can produce although, IMO, I don't think the difference is too great. Dye-subs can certainly re-produce colour scales more acurately asthe colour of acoloured dot laid down on the paper is controlled by temperature rather than inkjets which cannot change the colour of their inks, only the size of the dots, (i.e. the dithering effects).

Dye-subs can produce blacks remarkably well considering they make black by mixing cyan, magenta and yellow. It may not quite be as dark as an inkjet printer but it is fairly close and due to the accuracy of the thermal heads that lay the colour down it is a very true black, not fading to other colours.

Hope that makes sense.
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Old Sep 12, 2005, 8:17 AM   #5
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Drexl,

Yes, this all makes very good sense!

It's interesting to learn that the quality between various dye-sub printers varies so little. In a way, this makes it much easier to choose, because you don't have to weigh up any 'print quality' -v- 'features' issues when making a decision.

This is always an issue with inkjets!

It seems that the dye-subs really are the big hitters when it comes to reliability and consistancy.

Thank you once again for posting.

Regards

Jack
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Old Sep 16, 2005, 12:44 AM   #6
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Thanks Drexl,

You have convinced me to get a Kodak 1400. Reliability and consistency are my biggest gripes with inkjets. I am ready to move on from those hassles. Now the big question for me is where to buy one from. Any suggestions? B&H Photo? CDW? Other suggestions are welcome.

Lance
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Old Sep 17, 2005, 3:08 AM   #7
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I bought my Kodak 1400 from B&H. Good price and quick delivery.
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Old Sep 19, 2005, 10:24 AM   #8
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Well I'm in the UK and Kodaks are only really trickling into this country at the moment. Go for a wide range of suppliers, (i.e. preorder), and go for the suppliers who get the first one in.
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Old Jan 14, 2006, 6:07 PM   #9
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Could you share you experiences with your Kodak 1400?



Thanks,



Bob


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Old Jan 14, 2006, 10:40 PM   #10
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It has been a very good printer. It is dependable and consistent. I use it mainly for stuff that I want to get out quick. It is limited by the fact that there are only the choices of matte and glossy for papers and only 8.5x12 or 8.5x14 for paper sizes. This requires a lot of cutting to produce the finished product and sometimes wastes quite a bit of paper. It is reasonably economical. It costs a little ove a dollar a sheet for the packages of paper and ribbn so you can product a good quality 8x10 or 8x12 for that price.

I mainly bought it for portabilty (even though it is a bit bulky) so I could provide onsite prnts for some of the events that I do - receptions, dances, christmas parties, and that sort of thing.

My artistic stuff is printed on an Epson R300 using their Velvet Fine Art paper. In the near future I will be purchasing the new 7800 for that type of printing. I will also be able to print on canvas. My goal is to eventually get some of this stuff (mainly landscapes and nature shots) into some galleries and sell them through my website.

What are your printing needs? Maybe I can give you some more specific advice on the 1400.
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