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Old Feb 21, 2011, 12:55 PM   #1
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Default Need some inkjet help. Hoping you guys can help

OK we use a LOT of ink. I mean tons and tons of ink.

we buy 48pk sets of ink on ebay once a month sometimes twice a month.

Usually we used Canon IP4000 and IP5000 units for pictures and Epson R260/280 and Artisan 50's for DISCS.

the reason is simple. Cheap ink. I can get ink for these units for around $1 per cartridge. if we have to buy OEM ink we would not. we would close up shop. $60 to $90 for a set of ink would bankrupt us pretty quickly.

I am trying to switch to color laser but none of the affordable color lasers have high enough picture quality.

Here is the problem. it is not darned near impossible to get a Canon ip400o or less desired ip5000 any longer. thats it. no more can't get them.

SO when I saw the artisan 50 I was like COOL lets use that for printing pictures.

problems is we are BURNING THEM UP. they don't last a month! (a canon would last 6-11 months and it would hold up for 2 or 3 print heads before it croaked)

well we have finally depleted our supply if Canon's and can not get any more.

Any suggestions for a replacement printer where I can get CHEAP ink that will hold up to printing 50+ pictures a day without dying very rapidly?

I think epson is purposely making the printers of a lower quality so they can't hold up. I notice the R280 does not hold up anywhere near as well as the R260's did and the A50's well 30 days they are toast.

No amount of cleaning and changing carts helps the prints just get worse and worse.

Its not the carts. no sponges. the 77/78 carts are dead simple things. (we had sponge problems with some of the knock off canon carts at one time)

it seems the A50's hold up for disc printing but they die VERY quickly at hard core picture printing.

any suggestions? is there a durable readily available printer that can be refilled relatively easily?

I am even thinking of going to the worst brand (HP) since its a new print head with each cart so if we can get 10 uses out of each cart then we only have to buy a "new one" every 10 carts.

but they are all "combined" carts ie 3 colors in one unit. Very very inefficient.

any suggestions at all? what are you hard core printers switching to for photo quality prints without paying $5000 a gallon ?
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Old Feb 22, 2011, 8:35 AM   #2
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Have you tried Canon's Pro9000MKII to print your photos? While it is difficult to get duty cycles on any ink jet printers these days from manufacturers, I have found information from 3rd party on line sources that suggest 6000 pages/month of printing.

I personally have been using the printer for most all of my printing needs and print a couple of hundred 7 x 10 note cards per month in addition to a lot of various sized photographs. Obviously, less than your requirements. But still quite a bit more than an average user might print. I've had no issues with it.

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Old Feb 25, 2011, 9:28 AM   #3
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If you are printing that much, you need to look at purchasing a professional grade printer, rather than the consumer grade units you have been using. Pro printers use much larger ink carts, and are able to do the continuous printing you need.
Something along the lines of the Epson 4800 or the Canon or HP equivalent would probably give you a much longer service life.
As to the ink cost: you need to figure that as part of your expenses, and price your prints accordingly.

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Old Feb 25, 2011, 12:35 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nerys View Post
...Usually we used Canon IP4000 and IP5000 units for pictures...
I threw my last one (IP4000) in the trash, after it failed while it was stll under warranty. ;-)

Sure, it can happen to any of them (premature failure). But, I really didn't like the printer as much as I did my older HP anyway.

Quote:
Originally Posted by nerys View Post
I am even thinking of going to the worst brand (HP) since its a new print head with each cart so if we can get 10 uses out of each cart then we only have to buy a "new one" every 10 carts.
That's what I use (HP). I've *never* had a clogging problem with any HP, and they've been very reliable printers, whereas I have experienced problems with other brands of printers (Canon, Epson).

In addition, HP printers have better support for Linux, thanks to the HPLIP (HP Linux Imaging and Printing Project), where they release nice tools and drivers for Linux. Since I use both Windows and Linux, that kind of thing is very important to me.

Canon is getting better in this area (Linux support) as time passes, provided you dig around on some of their overseas sites for software drivers, etc. But, they still lag way behind HP, and there is no way I'd consider buying another Canon printer right now. The last one I had didn't last very long anyway (Pixma model, which died after a power blink that didn't hurt any other electronics in my home).

Here's an old thread on the subject (and I ended up throwing the Canon in the Trash versus getting it fixed, even though it was still under warranty, buying another HP again to replace it):

[Recovered Thread: 56839]

Perhaps they've improved since then. But, I'm not going to buy another Canon printer anytime soon to find out.

Quote:
...but they are all "combined" carts ie 3 colors in one unit. Very very inefficient.
You do need to be careful about the model you buy (as some of the inexpensive models with smaller tri-color cartridges can eat a lot of ink quickly). Of course, when you start factoring in wasted ink from cleaning cycles (which you may need to do more frequently with some printers), the cost/page with HP may not be as bad. ;-)

But, it looks like some HP models have more than one color cartridge now (separate cartridges for cyan, magenta, and yellow), with HP claiming to have the lowest print cost in class for some of them. Here's one example I found with a quick google search:

http://www.shopping.hp.com/product/p...C9299A%2523B1H

But, you'd need to look for reviews of a specific model to see how they stack up to current competitors. I haven't personally kept up with them, as I have no need for a newer printer right now, as the HP I bought some 5 years ago to replace the Canon Pixma model that failed still works fine.

In fairness, I'm not a high volume printer anymore (I tend to upload most images needing printing to my local Walgreens instead of printing them at home, as they have very good prices for prints compared to ink/paper costs when printing them myself). But, when I was printing more at home, I still preferred HP for better reliability. I hate clogged nozzle problems and HP printers I've used have not had that issue.
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Old Feb 25, 2011, 2:20 PM   #5
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Clogged heads are mainly a problem of too much idle time ( at least with the Epsons). I have gone through 4 or 5 of the cheap Epsons myself, and only had problems when I didn't print every week or so. I have a grocery bag full of empty carts from them.
With my R1800, I have not had but one problem in three years, due to ink clogs, and that was easily fixed with cleaning. It is an ink hog, though.
The OP shouldn't have to worry about ink clogs, with the volume he is talking about. A continuous ink supply system on a pro grade printer would be the solution I would look for.

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