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Author Topic: Epson 4900 Service Program - Ink Charge Questions  (Read 1261 times)

Mark D Segal

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Re: Epson 4900 Service Program - Ink Charge Questions
« Reply #20 on: June 02, 2018, 10:09:13 AM »

Just to remind - an extended warranty, in its essence, is an insurance policy. Like all insurance, there is a less than 100% probability that a covered event will occur. The premiums are set to take into account three main factors: admin costs, the cost of claims and their probability of occurrence. Like all insurance, it is shared risk. If 10 people pay 200 hundred dollars each for cover and the probability of drawing on it were say 1 in ten, the company has 2000 dollars minus admin costs to service that claim and remain whole. Let's say admin costs are 10%, so they have 1800 with which to service the claim. If the claim costs 1500 they make a profit, if it costs 2000 they make a loss. Averaged out over time, they are bound to have their premiums set to make a profit. I wouldn't be taking out my handkerchief worrying about their welfare, nor believing they are any more of a scam than any other so-called legitimate insurance operation.
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Mark D Segal (formerly MarkDS)
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Re: Epson 4900 Service Program - Ink Charge Questions
« Reply #21 on: June 02, 2018, 01:01:37 PM »

Just to remind - an extended warranty, in its essence, is an insurance policy. Like all insurance, there is a less than 100% probability that a covered event will occur. The premiums are set to take into account three main factors: admin costs, the cost of claims and their probability of occurrence. Like all insurance, it is shared risk. If 10 people pay 200 hundred dollars each for cover and the probability of drawing on it were say 1 in ten, the company has 2000 dollars minus admin costs to service that claim and remain whole. Let's say admin costs are 10%, so they have 1800 with which to service the claim. If the claim costs 1500 they make a profit, if it costs 2000 they make a loss. Averaged out over time, they are bound to have their premiums set to make a profit. I wouldn't be taking out my handkerchief worrying about their welfare, nor believing they are any more of a scam than any other so-called legitimate insurance operation.

Hi Mark,

Your numbers seem to be right on the mark (no pun intended, well...).  Even though math has never been my forte, I do understand how all of that works.  It's just a matter of numbers and the amount of risk any particular insurance company is willing to take on.  As I mentioned, ST will also apparently simply replace the printer if it is deemed not to be worth fixing, a write off of sorts.  However, following their apparent business strategy, one could also make an excellent case for the possibility that Epson Wide Format printers such as the P7000/9000, seem to have an above average incident of repairs in order to justify the fact that a one year warranty extension comes in at 12.4 x the cost of the ST warranty, according to Justins numbers.  Again, even given my lack of math proficiency, which I have already admitted, there does seem to be a bit of a discrepancy here in my opinion.  Either ST has a much more proficient business strategy, or, well, something else.  I will not delve any further into that.


Also Mark, since my initial experiences with the SP9900 in 2010/11, I have always suggested that one should extend the warranty on any printer that is part of a business, and I have also referred to that cost as an insurance policy as well.  For me it was one way of being able to sleep at night, knowing that I was covered, and that Epson would be picking up the tab on any sort of issue. I still stand by that advice, but my business downsizing has given me pause to follow my own advice this time, and perhaps a reason to research other possibilities such as ST.  However, that research has to cover ALL possibilities and their possible outcomes with that company.  Things such as technical support and the efficiency and professional ability of their on site techs.

Gary         


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Mark D Segal

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Re: Epson 4900 Service Program - Ink Charge Questions
« Reply #22 on: June 02, 2018, 01:03:38 PM »

Yup - agreed - the quality of what you get is important to research in advance.
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Mark D Segal (formerly MarkDS)
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Re: Epson 4900 Service Program - Ink Charge Questions
« Reply #23 on: June 02, 2018, 01:55:24 PM »

Not much research necessary.  First sentence for us Canucks - answers all questions to the point!  "The SquareTrade Care Plan is available to residents of Canada who purchase on eBay U.S."  Of course I guess I should have taken that into consideration, and I understand completely.  It's $1,230.00 or nothing, not sure yet.  I think I'll get in touch with Vistek and see if they have any alternatives to ST.  Ya, right :D
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Even though a big part of my life has been spent dealing with negatives, they generally end up being positives -- gan

Mark D Segal

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Re: Epson 4900 Service Program - Ink Charge Questions
« Reply #24 on: June 02, 2018, 02:05:09 PM »

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Mark D Segal (formerly MarkDS)
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Re: Epson 4900 Service Program - Ink Charge Questions
« Reply #25 on: June 02, 2018, 05:53:04 PM »

The other thing to consider, and I have no direct knowledge of ST at all, is the same question you should ask about any insurance.  How often and how quickly do they pay.  It's great to get a replacement machine, for example, but not if it takes 6 weeks (for example).
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Phil Brown

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Re: Epson 4900 Service Program - Ink Charge Questions
« Reply #26 on: June 03, 2018, 10:02:09 AM »

How about a 2 year plan directly from Epson America (includes Canada) for USD 535? https://epson.com/Accessories/Printer-Accessories/Additional-2-year-Epson-Preferred-Plus-Service%2C-SP4900-and-SCP5000/p/EPP49B2

Hi Mark,

I must admit that when I read the first part of this post I was all atwitter, and I'm definitely not referring to the antisocial media site.  But of course when I checked the link my enthusiasm quickly waned.  Indeed the P7000/9000 printers have no such deal attached unfortunately.  Now that my heart has settled down and while my morning java is still hot I will proceed to my work as usual.  I just finished restoring a rather large batch of old B&W and colour prints for the Rotary International Convention in Toronto.  Some very interesting photographs, until the 20th hour of work on the same one with more hours to go.  But I do joke of course, since they are all quite interesting.  The most challenging was a panoramic of a hundred plus people at the 1924 Convention in Toronto.  As you might guess, that was the 20+ hour print.  Of course my invoice doesn't actually reflect the total hours, since it is Rotary after all.  Also been working on a "family history" book since late January with my high school history teacher.  A large and in depth project, and very interesting as well.  So at this point in this rather cool morning I shall sign off and hope you have a great weekend Mark.  Take care  :)

Gary   

 
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LuLa - The source of ALL! -- "There's nothing worse than a sharp image of a fuzzy concept" -- Ansel Adams
Even though a big part of my life has been spent dealing with negatives, they generally end up being positives -- gan

Mark D Segal

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Re: Epson 4900 Service Program - Ink Charge Questions
« Reply #27 on: June 03, 2018, 10:15:02 AM »

You're right, CAD 1650 for those models: https://www.vistek.ca/store/printers/241105/epson-2-year-extended-service-plan-onsite-for-sp7900-9900-scp6000.aspx.

You too Gary, have a great rest of weekend.

My late father was a Rotarian and as a kid I remember helping at some of their fund-raising events - good causes.

I'm interested to hear about your photo restoration technique, but perhaps that would be another Forum topic.

Cheers,

Mark.
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Mark D Segal (formerly MarkDS)
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Re: Epson 4900 Service Program - Ink Charge Questions
« Reply #28 on: June 03, 2018, 06:06:07 PM »

You're right, CAD 1650 for those models: https://www.vistek.ca/store/printers/241105/epson-2-year-extended-service-plan-onsite-for-sp7900-9900-scp6000.aspx.

You too Gary, have a great rest of weekend.

My late father was a Rotarian and as a kid I remember helping at some of their fund-raising events - good causes.

I'm interested to hear about your photo restoration technique, but perhaps that would be another Forum topic.

Cheers,

Mark.

Hi again Mark,

I decided to follow up on the restoration reference here, although it might veer off into a separate thread, don't know.  There really isn't anything mysterious involved in how I go about restoring photographs at this point.  Lots of scanning, and of course Silverfast gets a lot of use in that sense.  I use both an Epson Perfection V750 as well as a much older Epson Expression 1680.  I'm sure you are familiar with both models.  I keep the 1680 in good shape for scanning oversized pieces, since the scanning glass is level with the bed, not recessed as in most scanners now.  I have scanned pieces as large as 20x36" on the 1680 without issue, which calls for I believe 10 bites (it's been a while).  Of course one has to make sure all scans are well aligned.  Otherwise PS can have a difficult time reassembling them.  Usually not a problem if I've dome my job properly.  And of course the old 8 or 10" x ? panos are no problem at all, although the alignment is still very important.  Sometimes if I have more that 6 bites to work with I will first merge each half and the the two halves together, which works very well.  Occasionally, on a very large print I will have a friend shoot a camera file.  Actually I have him shoot 5 or 6 identical exposures and I then stack them using the Super Resolution Technique.  At first I was skeptical of the technique, but I proved it to be of use for my purposes. 

OK, that's it as far as creating a digital file of the original.  The rest is basic Photoshop, with a bit of LR stirred in as well.  I've been doing this for a rather long time, so I seem to have developed a good idea of which tool or combination of tools will work best for any particular situation.  That's not saying that the first approach always works perfectly, but often it's a matter of building it up as I go.  Obviously none of this work is done on the Background Layer, as I often have at least half a dozen layers just for a rather small part of the image, not including adjustment layers.  I recall a very nasty image I worked on a few years ago.  It was an old but very well done shot of a large group of people, probably shot with a Banquet Camera.  It was not a large print, so no problem scanning.  However, it was one of those situations where the print had suffered an uncountable number of striations, or crackling of the emulsion, which required many many hours of work.  This image was to be enlarged to approximately 18 x 30, so obviously nothing could be overlooked. I would sit here in the evening after a day at my business location and work on perhaps a 2" square section of the image.  After about two months I had to take a break, so I worked on other images.  I did finally get it finished and printed and charged $450, including the print.  It was worth a lot more, but I knew the customer could not afford it, and she was very please with the final outcome.  I have sold about a half dozen more prints to her, so I did at least get a few more $$$.

The largest image for the recent Rotary job will be printed at 20 x 130".  I did not do the scanning of the original and there were a number of scanning related issues to take care of before I could work on the body of image itself.  Again a pano of a very large group of Rotarians at the 1924 Toronto Convention.  That one took approximately 35 hours and more of restoration work, and there were areas with very little image information to work with at all, so I had to improvise.  Then there were about 45 other image files for me to assess and make a judgement as to whether they would produce a usable print.  In all I worked on 40 images, not including the large pano.  Most required quite a lot of fixing, and others just some general "spotting" and colour correcting etc.  Basically getting them ready for printing.  The printing and assembly for display is being done by a Toronto company, so now they have all of the images I have prepared.  It was a lot of work and not a lot of $$$.  However, it did carry with it a certain degree of satisfaction.  As mentioned, it is for the Rotary Club, so that adds to the satisfaction as well.  I'm not a member, but the friend I mentioned who's book I am working on is a Rotarian, and I've done a few such projects for the local Club as well.  We have permission to use a few of the images I've just referred to in the semi annual Rotary Directory, which I've been doing for a number of years, and will soon be working on again soon.

And by the way, I also do fine art reproductions for a handful of local artists.  I print them on Epson Cold or Hot Pressed Natural and occasionally Canvas, (Not Epson).  As mentioned, I have now downsized my business and moved to my home location in Pickering Village, so my volume of work is diminishing to some extent.  At this point that's not an issue for the most part.  The SC P7000 is doing a great job, as expected. 

The only thing I can add at the moment is this.  Even though I have been doing this type of work for many years, I'm for ever looking for better and easier ways to get the job done.  Tutorials online are a never ending source which I refer to on a regular basis.  Always learning and experimenting.

Well Mark, I hope this is what you referred to with your interest in my restoration "techniques".  Nothing fancy or mysterious, just a lot of work and attention to detail.  I hope you enjoy the read, if you can hang in here long enough.  Any further questions, I'm right here.

And cheers to you as well Mark,

Gary
 
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LuLa - The source of ALL! -- "There's nothing worse than a sharp image of a fuzzy concept" -- Ansel Adams
Even though a big part of my life has been spent dealing with negatives, they generally end up being positives -- gan

Mark D Segal

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Re: Epson 4900 Service Program - Ink Charge Questions
« Reply #29 on: June 03, 2018, 06:27:51 PM »

Very interesting Gary. In SilverFast, do you use iSRD? It corrects all kinds of physical defects with little more than a click - can save huge amounts of time in Photoshop post-scan. Also, SilverFast has some "Auto" settings that can help restore faded and/or off-colour photos quite considerably, again saving time and layers in Photoshop.
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Mark D Segal (formerly MarkDS)
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Re: Epson 4900 Service Program - Ink Charge Questions
« Reply #30 on: June 04, 2018, 08:12:47 AM »

Very interesting Gary. In SilverFast, do you use iSRD? It corrects all kinds of physical defects with little more than a click - can save huge amounts of time in Photoshop post-scan. Also, SilverFast has some "Auto" settings that can help restore faded and/or off-colour photos quite considerably, again saving time and layers in Photoshop.

Hi Mark,

I don't like to bake in anything in Siiverfast that I can do in PS, so although I had experimented with iSRD I had never used it much.  I'd rather have complete control over every step, even though it does require more time occasionally.  However, I did purchase the iSRD filter(plugin) and am now using it in PS on layers in combination with my usual procedure.  So far I am finding it to be quite useful, although I do need to work with it more to become proficient with the tool.  I have several go-to procedures that I call on to recover colour and detail from a faded photograph.  In some situations it requires a combination of three approaches in order to achieve what I need to work with.  Recently a customer brought in a 16 x 20 of a rather old wedding shot, bride and groom walking down the isle, her daughter and husband.  It was rather severely faded, but I was sure I could revive it to her satisfaction and mine as well.  I did four bites on the 1680, merged them and started working on the colour first.  To my amazement it took all three of my usual approaches to bring back enough colour to work with, but it was enough to do the job.  When the customer brought it in I had one of my "Test" prints sitting on my table, one that I put together a number of years ago to exercise all colour channels.  She pointed at the lighter end of the Cyan grad and mentioned that the grooms suit was close to that colour.  Of course there was no way I could recover that degree of colour, so I knew I'd have to paint it in.  I finished all of the necessary retouching. When I came to that point I called the customer and asked if the grooms suit colour could be described as "powder blue", since I recalled that being a rather popular colour for grooms back in the 70's.  She confirmed that and I now had a colour to work with.  I brushed in the "powder blue - light cyan" suit, on a separate layer, adjusted the opacity etc. and it was looking good.  Brushed in some saturation on the flowers and the skin tones etc. and started testing for print.  When she came in to pick up the "new" 16 x20 she was very pleasantly surprised, saying that it looked almost better than she remembered it from the time she had originally hung it on her wall many years ago.  Another satisfied customer. 

So yes Mark, I will be experimenting with the iSRD filter in PS much more in the future.  I used it on some of the Rotary images as well, but I need more time to finesse it a bit I believe.  As with any tool, it's only as good as the user, so time will tell.  I'll also revisit your book concerning that tool.

Thanks Mark,
Have a great day, albeit it a rather dull and dreary one weather wise.

Gary


     

     
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LuLa - The source of ALL! -- "There's nothing worse than a sharp image of a fuzzy concept" -- Ansel Adams
Even though a big part of my life has been spent dealing with negatives, they generally end up being positives -- gan
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