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Author Topic: Epson 1500W with Ebony VS Epson P600  (Read 1373 times)

robdeszan

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Epson 1500W with Ebony VS Epson P600
« on: May 17, 2017, 12:34:37 PM »

Hello there, long time reader, first time poster.

I am venturing into the world of printing (used to print in a darkroom until late 1990s), moved on to fown film processing +dedicated scanner + digital processing approach, now predominantly using medium format digital and want to go back to printing again.

Speaking Black and White printing only. How do the two options compare when it comes to print quality?

I live in the UK so I would need to import Ebony from the US (a minor pain) but I am worried about some user reports re head clogging on 1400/1500 family with ebony kits.

Has anyone had a chance to compare the two options?

Many thanks,
Pat
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Paul Roark

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Re: Epson 1500W with Ebony VS Epson P600
« Reply #1 on: May 21, 2017, 12:01:26 PM »

Pat,

I have no experience with the P600, but in general the "Eboni" based carbon inksets I use and describe in the various PDFs I've published have been more lightfast than the OEM "Advanced B&W" approach, and they can also be vastly less expensive.

When the "generic" base c6b is used to dilute the Eboni MK, the resulting inksets have been the least likely to clog of any, including the OEM inksets, that I've used.  The reason is rather simple.  The c6b base is for matte paper only and has no binders (glue) in it. Binders are needed to stick pigments to glossy papers, but matte papers don't need any binders at all.  The binders are a major factor in clogging.

In real world work with wide format printers, I find the Eboni MK clogs from simply drying out if not used about like the OEM MKs I have experience with.  The dilute carbons, on the other hand, are way less likely to clog.  When there is a gap in a nozzle check with the dilution inks, it's usually just a bubble of air that has "invaded" the head due to it having sat too long and not been used.

If you are comfortable with old wet darkroom chemicals, you'd be able to make the dilution base yourself from the formulas I've published.  MIS Associates (www.inksupply.com), which commercialized my open source formulas, has also listed the formulas for it's pre-mixed generic base.   (I always use version c6b.)  If you make your own base, all you need is the Eboni MK.  The only problems I've heard of from the use of the base appear to relate to the use of water that was not distilled -- that is, bad water.

There aren't many areas where the least expensive option is also the best, but if you are a B&W photographer and print on only matte papers, the "Eboni-6" based carbon inks, with DIY mixing may be such a case.

Paul
www.PaulRoark.com

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graeme

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Re: Epson 1500W with Ebony VS Epson P600
« Reply #2 on: May 21, 2017, 12:51:12 PM »

I've been using a BW inkset from these guys:

http://www.farbenwerk.com/Black-White

in an Epson 1500W for the last few weeks. ( I'm in the UK ).

I've tried not to go more than about 3 days without printing or at least doing a nozzle check. I've had to do about 3 head clean cycles in that time.

I've been very pleased with the results I've been getting but I have to add the disclaimer that I don't have any formal photographic training & don't know a damn thing about traditional BW darkroom printing.

The Farbenwerk site has a section in English but some of the how to articles are only available in German. ( Google Translate was my friend ). René at Farbenwerk seems like a helpful guy.

Graeme





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deanwork

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Re: Epson 1500W with Ebony VS Epson P600
« Reply #3 on: May 21, 2017, 08:13:31 PM »

Hi Paul,

I am buying a new hp z 3200 printer tomorrow and I would like to do some experiments with my old z3100 printer. I want to dilute the hp Vivera light gray into even lighter dilutions and relinearize with x-rite software and drive it with studio print rip that supports this printer.

I don't know if you have ever diluted gray pigments for use in thermal head printers or not.
Could you recommend a base for me to do this with? I want to be able to print on both gloss fiber papers as well as matte rag media? Any suggestions would be helpful. There are chipped empty hp 70 ink carts available to fill.
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Paul Roark

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Re: Epson 1500W with Ebony VS Epson P600
« Reply #4 on: May 22, 2017, 11:27:58 AM »

John,

I stayed with Epson for all of my work with inks.  The thermal heads use cleaners to fight the build up of residue on the heating elements.  Those are missing in all the bases I formulated.  (Or if what I used works as such, it's just a happy coincidence.)   So, don't use them for the HP printer.  That said, the HP PK and Grays are the most stable in terms of neutral Lab A and B that I know of.  The carbon inksets can easily beat them in Lab L, but for staying neutral, HP did a really good job.

Ernst has posted information about a European company that seems to make a variety of bases.  I believe there was a base that was thermal head compatible.  I forget the name, but you might consider searching something like "ink dilution base" and Ernst's name to see what he found.  Or, just email him if he's not following this thread.

Good luck, and let us know what you come up with.

Paul
www.PaulRoark.com
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deanwork

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Re: Epson 1500W with Ebony VS Epson P600
« Reply #5 on: May 22, 2017, 01:12:37 PM »

Thanks Paul , that was very helpful. I will contact Ernst when I find out how much my Studio Print license upgrade will cost me. There are about three companies that sell 3rd party inks with refillable carts for the z series so somebody knows how to make the base. MIS offers ink for the  Hp 70 carts so they probably have it as well. Getting these companies to share their formula might not be easy though. With SPrint you can control the ink limits very precisely and the dither might be better than the Hp driver, at least it was for all the Epson printers I used it on. The way I look at it if I screw up a few Print heads and it doesn't work it's not going to cost me much at all.



quote author=Paul Roark link=topic=117983.msg978355#msg978355 date=1495466878]
John,

I stayed with Epson for all of my work with inks.  The thermal heads use cleaners to fight the build up of residue on the heating elements.  Those are missing in all the bases I formulated.  (Or if what I used works as such, it's just a happy coincidence.)   So, don't use them for the HP printer.  That said, the HP PK and Grays are the most stable in terms of neutral Lab A and B that I know of.  The carbon inksets can easily beat them in Lab L, but for staying neutral, HP did a really good job.

Ernst has posted information about a European company that seems to make a variety of bases.  I believe there was a base that was thermal head compatible.  I forget the name, but you might consider searching something like "ink dilution base" and Ernst's name to see what he found.  Or, just email him if he's not following this thread.

Good luck, and let us know what you come up with.

Paul
www.PaulRoark.com
[/quote]
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robdeszan

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Re: Epson 1500W with Ebony VS Epson P600
« Reply #6 on: May 22, 2017, 03:08:11 PM »

Many thanks for all the encouraging replies. I've ordered the carbon museum ink set from Farbenwerk (already filled cartridges today) and a 1500W printer (arriving tomorrow); if the results are satisfying I might be tempted to mix my won inks. I've not done printing for over 16 years! Very exciting :) will share some impressions results later.
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Tapezu

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Re: Epson 1500W with Ebony VS Epson P600
« Reply #7 on: May 27, 2017, 03:50:43 AM »

Many thanks for all the encouraging replies. I've ordered the carbon museum ink set from Farbenwerk (already filled cartridges today) and a 1500W printer (arriving tomorrow); if the results are satisfying I might be tempted to mix my won inks. I've not done printing for over 16 years! Very exciting :) will share some impressions results later.

Hello! Any updates regarding the printer and ink combination?

I am currently also thinking of choosing either the Epson 1500W or the P600 with Farbenwerks Carbonprint inks.

Epson 1500W + Starter ink set (100ml): 250 + 210 = 460 EUR
Epson P600 + Starter ink set (100ml): 550 + 300 = 850 EUR

Since the P600 set costs twice as much, I am wondering if the increase in print quality is worth the cost when printing only in black and white. (for me as a complete novice)

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Paul Roark

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Re: Epson 1500W with Ebony VS Epson P600
« Reply #8 on: May 27, 2017, 04:56:44 PM »

Hello! Any updates regarding the printer and ink combination?

I am currently also thinking of choosing either the Epson 1500W or the P600 with Farbenwerks Carbonprint inks.

Epson 1500W + Starter ink set (100ml): 250 + 210 = 460 EUR
Epson P600 + Starter ink set (100ml): 550 + 300 = 850 EUR

Since the P600 set costs twice as much, I am wondering if the increase in print quality is worth the cost when printing only in black and white. (for me as a complete novice)

B&W does not need 8 inks.  The 1430/1500W is an excellent printer.

One of my bottom line recommendations for people who want other than OEM color is to be sure to buy an Epson that has empty, refillable carts readily available.  If you have those, you have access to all sorts of ink combinations.  Without empty, refillables, you're a captive.

Paul
www.PaulRoark.com
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Tapezu

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Re: Epson 1500W with Ebony VS Epson P600
« Reply #9 on: May 28, 2017, 02:28:01 AM »

B&W does not need 8 inks.  The 1430/1500W is an excellent printer.

One of my bottom line recommendations for people who want other than OEM color is to be sure to buy an Epson that has empty, refillable carts readily available.  If you have those, you have access to all sorts of ink combinations.  Without empty, refillables, you're a captive.

Paul
www.PaulRoark.com

Thank you for recommending the 1430/1500W Paul.

If I summed up the reviews on the web correctly, then the major benefit of the P600 would be that it can print well both in B/W and colour with its "default" ink set? If yes, I don't think I can justify the higher price then when I only want to do B/W prints.

I will give the Carbon based ink + matte paper a try. I have to admit, I am extremely excited to open the door to the world of prints (and that for a cost lower than that of a new lens :-) )



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Paul Roark

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Re: Epson 1500W with Ebony VS Epson P600
« Reply #10 on: May 29, 2017, 11:31:55 AM »

...

I will give the Carbon based ink + matte paper a try. I have to admit, I am extremely excited to open the door to the world of prints (and that for a cost lower than that of a new lens :-) )

And displayed under acrylic, that carbon print will last longer than the lens also.

I was interested to see that the Walker, in the other current B&W thread,  is acknowledging that the Epson driver does have some virtues.  I've been a fan of being Epson driver compatible for a long time, mostly because a lot of users are intimidated by rips like QTR.  While I'm a huge fan of QTR and use for  all of my B&W printing, being able to make a B&W through the Epson driver not only allows anyone who is familiar with Photoshop curves to adjust their print density and tone, but it also allows those who print from other applications to use these variable tone inksets.  Using QTR's "Create ICC-RGB" app allows one to make an ICC that contains the PS curve and at the same time linearizes the Epson driver workflow. 

At any rate, I don't think you can go wrong with the Epson 1500W/1430.  That family of printers has been an excellent B&W platform for a long time now, with lots of support from multiple suppliers. 

Paul
www.PaulRoark.com
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Tapezu

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Re: Epson 1500W with Ebony VS Epson P600
« Reply #11 on: June 17, 2017, 03:22:55 AM »

Here is an update from my side:

I have made first prints using the Epson 1500w and the Carbonprint Museum inks from Farbenwerk and have been really satisfied with the results.

Today, I tried out printing this test image: http://www.normankoren.com/makingfineprints4.html#BW_testchart

and noticed that some greyscale areas are a little pixelated (see the attached image). I then used the nozzle cleaning function and printed the same image again but with the same results.

Is this something to worry about that the printer is faulty? Maybe there are still air bubbles in some ink cartridges due to the manual filling?

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Paul Roark

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Re: Epson 1500W with Ebony VS Epson P600
« Reply #12 on: June 17, 2017, 11:15:59 AM »

I'm not familiar with those inks and their relative densities, and I'm not sure what workflow you are using.  What I'd recommend is that you make a QTR profile that puts all the inks in a single partition.  It may be that your current workflow is starting dark inks too soon.

Paul
www.PaulRoark.com
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Tapezu

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Re: Epson 1500W with Ebony VS Epson P600
« Reply #13 on: June 24, 2017, 02:38:47 PM »

Thank you for your suggestion Paul.

I tried out a third different test image and there the problem did not show up. I decided to just continue printing since it was also not noticeable that there was something wrong when printing real photos so far.

I am very very pleased with the results. And its also an interesting learning process to go back and change previous adjustments made on the raw files in order to improve the prints.

The attached picture shows a 13x18cm print printed with the Epson 1500w and the carbon based ink.
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