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Old Jan 26, 2004, 11:06 AM   #11
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It is actually hard to calculate. In all the reviews Iíve read Canon printers use half the ink of a comparable HP and considerably less than Epson, but the Canon paper is pricier. You have to run more cleaning cycles with Epson than Canon and usually none at all with HP, so the HP can actually be cheaper if you donít print that often and print only a few pictures. If you use factory ink and pre cut 4 X 6 paper it is either a wash or pricier to print your own according to whoís calculations you use. My guess is that it costs more to print your own that way.

I prefer to keep my prints in the 3 X 4 ratio of my camera so I print 4 X 5.33 prints. I can fit four of those on a single sheet of Red River paper and set my trimmer to efficiently cut them out. Since I refill my photo printer cartridges with quality ink a 4 X 5 1/3 costs about 5c or less according to which sale I hit at Red River. I actually print things to pass around at 5 X 7 and pay about 10c each for them. If you use non-factory ink and/or paper you have to profile the printer for them, but it is worth it to me.

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Originally Posted by voxmagna

If you want to print 10X8, do you have an 8Mpix camera? because anything less and the printer is doing better than your camera!
Printer DPI is not the same as pixel PPI. An inkjet printer makes lots of dots to represent a pixel. Iíve read all sorts of numbers of how many dots it takes to make a pixel with a photo inkjet, but it takes a lot. As they have increased the resolution in dots per inch in inkjets they have also reduced the size of the dots, so that it takes more dots to make a pixel. The actual input resolution in PPI hasnít really changed that much. Through Photoshop 5 at least and maybe version 6 it would not output more than 300PPI to a printer. Iím not sure they actually changed that but just donít display the message that the image is being sent to the printer at 300PPI. It was more of a support expense problem that they changed it rather than inkjets actually being able to reproduce over 300 PPI. I donít think there is an inkjet photo printer on the market that really can use over 300PPI.

I have a good wide format photo printer and it is really hard to see any improvement over 180 PPI and you absolutely canít see improvement over 250PPI. Any inkjet on the market is well past its ability to improve with increased pixels if you print an 8 X 10 from a 5Mp image.

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I like prints like my Granny took which are permanent and won't fade if I or my dependents look at them 20 years on.
If grandmaís color print has been on the wall for 20 years it is just a ghost of itself by now. I have a picture of my wife that my sister in law had printed at Eckards from a negative (they supposedly use Kodak). It started fading on the wall under glass after about a year and has now faded badly after 2 Ĺ years. It isnít in the sun. All prints including inkjet prints will do well over time in an album and only exposed to light when viewed. Epson had a problem with their turning orange for a while but that has been addressed. And if you use cheap paper bad stuff can happen. But good paper and ink last a long time out of the light.

Epson has a couple of current printers that use pigmented ink. I havenít seen tests but I would guess they have fade characteristics similar to the photo process.

If you print yourself it is a piece of cake to just print another if a print on the wall fades.
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Old Jan 26, 2004, 1:02 PM   #12
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I was just reading an old issue of PopSci and it said that printing at home can cost anywhere around .56 per print at home while other places are around .20 (Average). Thanks for all the info.
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Old Jan 26, 2004, 1:51 PM   #13
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I've had great results printing pictures at Costco. I'm looking at the wall behind my computer now, where there are 2 8x12" prints and one 12x18, all of which look stunning (and the limiting factor in quality seems to by my camera, not the printing).
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Old Jan 26, 2004, 6:09 PM   #14
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Default Just gut off the phone with the imaging experts (yes, thatís

Just gut off the phone with the imaging experts (yes, thatís sarcasm) at my local Costco (in Gaithersburg MD) and they have the Noritsu 3101 (at least that is what someone read off the side of the big white machine) not the 2921DLS. It does 12 x 18 which is good, but in speaking with the tech (and this guy was handed the phone when the other one did not know what the word resolution meant) said it can handle images up to 1200 x 1800. I did not get very far with him, he just kept saying anything larger would slow down their computer of freeze it. I guess the only way will be to save an image at various resolutions and see what they can print, and if appears to down sample the image. Any better Ideas?
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Old Jan 27, 2004, 6:32 AM   #15
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Unfortunately, that might be all you can do.

I heard an interesting dicussion where some pros where printing at Costco and complaining about the quality. The final result was this.

Costco might use "professional grade" equipment but they don't have "professional grade" employees (in this area), so expect them to make mistakes, do something funny or print it on a different printer or paper when you least expect it. Do deal. You're getting an amazing deal for the price, but what you get probably won't be as consistant as if you went to a real print shop.

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Old Jan 27, 2004, 6:40 AM   #16
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Default Re: Just gut off the phone with the imaging experts (yes, th

Quote:
Originally Posted by Patrickfromva
Just gut off the phone with the imaging experts (yes, thatís sarcasm) at my local Costco (in Gaithersburg MD) and they have the Noritsu 3101 (at least that is what someone read off the side of the big white machine) not the 2921DLS. It does 12 x 18 which is good, but in speaking with the tech (and this guy was handed the phone when the other one did not know what the word resolution meant) said it can handle images up to 1200 x 1800. I did not get very far with him, he just kept saying anything larger would slow down their computer of freeze it. I guess the only way will be to save an image at various resolutions and see what they can print, and if appears to down sample the image. Any better Ideas?
I have used this same facility on Russell Av. with 3600x5400 images with absolutely no problem... The 3101 has a higher throughput /hour. BTW the customer terminals will rate your pictures with 'AAs..' quality rating as to how big you can enlarge a particular image. As to the 'imaging experts' if they can ring up your order with a little more swiftness... it'll be a significant improvement already! :lol: :lol: :lol:

You control the IN/OUT (ie garbage in / garbage out). It's all automated... they are only experts at scanning their Costco card and accepting the pre-payment to let the order through!

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You're getting an amazing deal for the price, but what you get probably won't be as consistant as if you went to a real print shop.
... If you can get two prints on two different days coming out the same then that's consistent, so long as the 'experts' keep replenishing the machine. The Noritsu computer will keep its chemicals temperatures and the process uniform... :P
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Old Jan 27, 2004, 3:18 PM   #17
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Default Re: Print at Costco or at home?

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I've heard a lot about the discussion between printing at Costco and at home. My friend and I have argued over this for a bit. My question is, is it really cheaper and better to print at Costco (or Walgreens or anywhere else) than at home on a photo printer?
I tried all the CVS, Walgreens, BJ's, Sams Club, Walmart in my neighborhood.

One word: TRASH. Yeah. They use the Kodak / Fuji paper. That is it.
why? maybe they use cheaper chemicals. maybe they do not perform the required maintenance on their printer. maybe the cashier-cum-tech does not know how to tweek the machine for best ouput.

The only one who did a decent job was YorkPhoto found at www.yorkphoto.com for 19c a print. not bad.
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Old Jan 28, 2004, 9:33 PM   #18
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Default Re: Print at Costco or at home?

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Originally Posted by chiks
The only one who did a decent job was YorkPhoto found at www.yorkphoto.com for 19c a print. not bad.
... Is it more like 22c?

Costco is really 19c a print and their turn around time is 24hr with no shipping & handling charge plus if you don't like any print, they'll credit you!
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Old Jan 29, 2004, 5:27 PM   #19
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Default Re: Print at Costco or at home?

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Originally Posted by NHL
Quote:
Originally Posted by chiks
The only one who did a decent job was YorkPhoto found at www.yorkphoto.com for 19c a print. not bad.
... Is it more like 22c?

Costco is really 19c a print and their turn around time is 24hr with no shipping & handling charge plus if you don't like any print, they'll credit you!
Prepaid:
100 4x6" prints $19.00 (19Ę per print)
250 4x6" prints $45.00 (18Ę per print)
400 4x6" prints $68.00 (17Ę per print)

AND
York Triple Guarantee of Excellence. This guarantee assures you that if you are not completely satisfied with your pictures, we will:
refund your money
give you a free replacement roll of film
give you a coupon for free processing
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Old Jan 29, 2004, 6:28 PM   #20
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York looks pretty inviting. But, I prefer 30 mins for my photos instead of waiting a few days. If I want to do that I'll just go back to film . Shipping and handling is a buck anyway. Perhaps I'll try them out.
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