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Author Topic: Are there any archival dye based inkjet inks still being produced?  (Read 741 times)

pixeldoppelganger

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I'm curious if there's any dye based archival inkjet inks still on the market.   I'm looking to get the blackest blacks I can on fine art matte paper.  I've pushed the Ultrachrome HDX inks as far as they can go, and while the blacks are good.. I feel like a dye based ink would surpass the Ultrachrome pigments.   I'm also thinking the dyes would surpass any quadtone ink as well.

Thoughts?

I've found this:
The HP should have the best dMax for the matte black.
But if you are using Epson, you can convert your MK to Piezography Ultra HD MK which is so far the blackest MK I've ever used.


Is this statement accurate?

thanks
« Last Edit: January 12, 2022, 04:15:34 pm by pixeldoppelganger »
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deanwork

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Re: Are there any archival dye based inkjet inks still being produced?
« Reply #1 on: January 12, 2022, 05:49:37 pm »

I use both the recent Piezography MK and the HP Vivera pigments in different printers and both are about the same ( probably the same as the new Epson MK as well because the y look great ) .

They are both excellent. I havenít talked to anyone in 10 years who still uses any kind of dyes in these inks, but itís possible, if you have an Epson that will except refillable ink carts, and you want to reprofile everything.

There is no such thing as an ďarchivalĒ dye. Lyson and others tried to market such stuff ong ago , but in the real world Longevity in daylight was horrible. I wasted a lot of money and time with that junk, all the prints discolored quickly . But we were all naive at that time.

If longevity is no concern you could probably pick up a decent MK dye at MIS associates.
With the great MK pigments we now have I donít know why anyone would do such a thing but itís possible.

John



I'm curious if there's any dye based archival inkjet inks still on the market.   I'm looking to get the blackest blacks I can on fine art matte paper.  I've pushed the Ultrachrome HDX inks as far as they can go, and while the blacks are good.. I feel like a dye based ink would surpass the Ultrachrome pigments.   I'm also thinking the dyes would surpass any quadtone ink as well.

Thoughts?

I've found this:
The HP should have the best dMax for the matte black.
But if you are using Epson, you can convert your MK to Piezography Ultra HD MK which is so far the blackest MK I've ever used.


Is this statement accurate?

thanks
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mearussi

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Re: Are there any archival dye based inkjet inks still being produced?
« Reply #2 on: January 12, 2022, 09:05:41 pm »

An archival dye is an oxymoron.
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dgberg

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Re: Are there any archival dye based inkjet inks still being produced?
« Reply #3 on: January 13, 2022, 08:02:29 am »

The newest Epson ET-8550 6 ink dye printer is the latest from Epson. I think it is still the Epson Claria dye ink. The old 1430 uses that same 6 inkset. Whether it has been improved or not is anyones guess. Don't think it classifies as an archival ink. Where it does shine is when printed to the white films. Mitsubishi Pictorico or Graphica. Gives the closest to Cibachrome you will find anywhere.

rasworth

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Re: Are there any archival dye based inkjet inks still being produced?
« Reply #4 on: January 13, 2022, 05:25:03 pm »

Let's not get too negative about dye ink permanence.  My Canon Pro-100 on select Canon papers achieves reasonably good life per Aardenburg.  I believe it has to do with how well the paper absorbs the dye ink and therefore provides protection from oxidation.

Richard Southworth
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Peter McLennan

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Re: Are there any archival dye based inkjet inks still being produced?
« Reply #5 on: January 13, 2022, 08:01:32 pm »

My Epson EcoTank L-805 uses six dye inks.  In my sunny kitchen, I have naked prints on my fridge that date back nearly ten years.  None of them show any signs of fading whatsoever.

Similarly, I have a dozen or so large canvas prints from MIS pigment inks (dissed earlier in this thread) also hanging in direct sun and unprotected and uncoated in any way, just the raw canvas prints. 

Zero fading after nearly 20 years.

On the other hand, a VERY expensive Cibachrome print of Death Valley succumbed in just a few years in a similar location. Nothing left but cyan, and it was "archivally" professionally framed under glass.

YMMV
« Last Edit: January 14, 2022, 12:36:37 pm by Peter McLennan »
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mearussi

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Re: Are there any archival dye based inkjet inks still being produced?
« Reply #6 on: January 13, 2022, 10:20:14 pm »

My Epson EcoTank L-805 uses six dye inks.  In my sunny kitchen, I have prints on my fridge that date back nearly ten years.  None of them show any signs of fading whatsoever.

Similarly, I have a dozen or so large canvas prints from MIS pigment inks (dissed earlier in this thread) also hanging in direct sun and unprotected and uncoated in any way, just the raw canvas prints. 

Zero fading after nearly 20 years.

On the other hand, a VERY expensive Cibachrome print of Death Valley succumbed in just a few years in a similar location. Nothing left but cyan, and it was "archivally" professionally framed under glass.

YMMV
Cibachrome is only "archival" in dark storage.
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rasworth

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Re: Are there any archival dye based inkjet inks still being produced?
« Reply #7 on: January 14, 2022, 10:02:04 am »

Continuing a trend started by Peter McLennan, to provide data for the OP as opposed to unsupported absolute statements, my Pixma Pro-100 inks on Canon semi-gloss paper produce images good for 55 megalux hours, per Aardenburg Imaging.  The Pro-100 is no longer available, but the Pro-200 that takes its place has apparently the same dye inks.

Here is a description of converting megalux hours to years for various viewing conditions:  https://www.aardenburg-imaging.com/megalux-hours-explained/

For other than direct sunlight, i.e. normal indoor house exposure, this works out to an impressive lifetime.  Like Peter, I have several images at least 5 years old with no discernable signs of fading.

Again, please don't write-off all dye based inkjet printers as low lifetime, for a restricted number of papers some can do very well.

Richard Southworth
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nirpat89

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Re: Are there any archival dye based inkjet inks still being produced?
« Reply #8 on: January 14, 2022, 11:58:01 am »

Most of the dye printers have the "pigment" black - meaning it is carbon based, same as in the pigment printers, piezography etc.  So for B&W printing, the dye based printer might be equivalent to the rest - my guess.

:Niranjan.
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Peter McLennan

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Re: Are there any archival dye based inkjet inks still being produced?
« Reply #9 on: January 14, 2022, 12:18:41 pm »

I should add that those dye-ink fridge mounted prints are all made on the cheapest photo paper I've found: Costco glossy. Some have ventured that this is really a rebranded Ilford product. I calculate a per-print, full bleed cost of about 20 cents. It's also quite satisfying to order enough inks for hundreds of prints for about $100.

Image quality is comparable to both my Epson 9800 and HP Z3200, although the L-805 limits my prints to 8.5 inches wide.  I love this little printer and its inkset and I'm about to purchase its big brother, the Epson ET-8550 which uses a similar dye inkset but prints 13" wide.
« Last Edit: January 14, 2022, 12:34:35 pm by Peter McLennan »
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Paul_Roark

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Re: Are there any archival dye based inkjet inks still being produced?
« Reply #10 on: January 14, 2022, 12:29:08 pm »

...
There is no such thing as an ďarchivalĒ dye. ...

If Claria ink is the dye state of the art, I agree with John.  I used Claria for a while, based on some very optimistic fade test claims.  After 3 years I took the frames off Claria-based prints that had been in normal household display.  The difference between the print density that had been protected by the frame and the main print area that was not protected was very significant.  I have never seen this with my high carbon content black and white inks.

This is not surprising if one considers the differences between dyes and pigments.  As I understand it, the dyes, when they dry, solidify into very tiny solids -- much smaller particles than our typical pigment particle sizes.  A significant variable in fading is oxidation.  The rate of oxidation is, in part, related to the surface area of the particle (that is exposed to oxygen) relative to the mass (size) of the particle.   As the particle (assume of sphere for simplicity) increases in size, the volume increases much faster than the surface area.  (Radius squared is in the surface area formula; radius to the third power is in the volume formula.)

I might add that, as a black and white printer, I also use the maximum amount of carbon pigment relative to the color pigments.  The carbon bonds are much stronger and resistance to fading much higher than with the color inks.  (There are reasons life is carbon based.)

Paul
www.PaulRoark.com
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John Nollendorfs

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Re: Are there any archival dye based inkjet inks still being produced?
« Reply #11 on: January 14, 2022, 03:40:58 pm »

Having been in the ink business for a number of years in the early years of inkjet printing, it's been interesting reading all of the above comments dissing dye inks.  I will not argue, that dye inks are not at all as fade resistant as modern pigmented inks, but not all dye inks, or pigmented inks are the same either!

Dyes came into inkjet printing initially because they required much less maintenance in operation compared to pigmented inks. Just look at the appearance of the cleaning stations of pigmented printers, compared to dye printers. after a year of use. Pigmented printers have a lot of pigment residue built up, compared  to dye printers. It's only been the last 15 years or so, that the engineering of pigmented printers has advanced to the point that they are as reliable as dye printers in terms of head clogs, etc.

In terms of print life, a good set of dye inks printed on a good swellable polymer coated paper, should deliver pretty decent print life (20-40 years) depending of display conditions including good atmospherick conditions. Your modern Epson and Canon pigmented prints seem to be coming in at the 80-100 year life. HP prints are about double that at 200 years. (These are all generalized figures) But why, do you ask, do HP prints seem to last so much longer? Better pigments? My hunch is, yes, slightly better matched pigments, but also  their use of neutral gray printing inks and a lot of gray component replacement in the prints. Where Epson uses a lot of Lt Cyan and Lt Magenta ink in their printing algorithms, HP uses a lot of Light gray and gray inks. This also results in a much more neutral looking HP print. This is also why Epson printers are always doing nozzel checks to make sure their prints look right.

Getting back print life, Dye inks are susceptible to dye interactions. Not all dyes sets play together well. Pigments don't seem to have this problem. This is why it's very important for dye sets to be properly matched. Additionally, if a swellable polymer ink reception coating on the paper is used, the individual dye droplets will be kept separated. Also, atmospheric contaminents can cause dyes to prematurely fade. (remember the epson orange fade problem 20 years ago) Epson dye prints on microporous paper exposed to ozone from xerox copiers,  etc, faded to an ugly orange after a just a few days of exposure. This brings us back to the type of papers used in inkjet printing. Today most of the papers have what's called "microporous" ink receptor coating.These papers dry almost instantly. That's good and bad. The bad part is, the papers are open to atmospheric conditions unless the image is protected behind sealed glass, or sprayed with a sealant. Even pigmented prints can suffer from atmospheric fade.(think ozone) This is why properly done canvas prints are printed on water resistant canvas, and then sealed with an acrylic polymer. The glossy canvas option seems like it would be more convenient, but it does not offer the fade and physical protection that a protective coating gives.

Now, getting back the the OP's original post regarding his perception that dye inks seemed to produce a better black. In the early days of pigmented ink sets, black inks were actually a blend of pigmented and dye inks! This might even be true to some extent today, I don't know for sure. Dye ink black would look better on glossy papers, and washed out on matte papers. Matte black carbon ink would look better on matte papers, and ugly on glossy papers. Another innovation that pigment ink manufactures created was "encapsulation" of the pigments with an acrylic. This was done to make the colors brighter, and also to try and keep the pigments in suspension better. Both dyes and pigments are  suspensions. But pigment suspensions are much harder to maintain. This is why  pigmented ink carts are dated. If they lay around unused too long, the pigment particles will settle and congeal leading to nozzel clogging and suboptimal printing results.

Now, you have more, of the "rest of the story".
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Peter McLennan

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Re: Are there any archival dye based inkjet inks still being produced?
« Reply #12 on: January 14, 2022, 04:53:52 pm »

Excellent, John.  Thanks!
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mearussi

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Re: Are there any archival dye based inkjet inks still being produced?
« Reply #13 on: January 14, 2022, 06:34:56 pm »

Having been in the ink business for a number of years in the early years of inkjet printing, it's been interesting reading all of the above comments dissing dye inks.  I will not argue, that dye inks are not at all as fade resistant as modern pigmented inks, but not all dye inks, or pigmented inks are the same either!

Dyes came into inkjet printing initially because they required much less maintenance in operation compared to pigmented inks. Just look at the appearance of the cleaning stations of pigmented printers, compared to dye printers. after a year of use. Pigmented printers have a lot of pigment residue built up, compared  to dye printers. It's only been the last 15 years or so, that the engineering of pigmented printers has advanced to the point that they are as reliable as dye printers in terms of head clogs, etc.

In terms of print life, a good set of dye inks printed on a good swellable polymer coated paper, should deliver pretty decent print life (20-40 years) depending of display conditions including good atmospherick conditions. Your modern Epson and Canon pigmented prints seem to be coming in at the 80-100 year life. HP prints are about double that at 200 years. (These are all generalized figures) But why, do you ask, do HP prints seem to last so much longer? Better pigments? My hunch is, yes, slightly better matched pigments, but also  their use of neutral gray printing inks and a lot of gray component replacement in the prints. Where Epson uses a lot of Lt Cyan and Lt Magenta ink in their printing algorithms, HP uses a lot of Light gray and gray inks. This also results in a much more neutral looking HP print. This is also why Epson printers are always doing nozzel checks to make sure their prints look right.

Getting back print life, Dye inks are susceptible to dye interactions. Not all dyes sets play together well. Pigments don't seem to have this problem. This is why it's very important for dye sets to be properly matched. Additionally, if a swellable polymer ink reception coating on the paper is used, the individual dye droplets will be kept separated. Also, atmospheric contaminents can cause dyes to prematurely fade. (remember the epson orange fade problem 20 years ago) Epson dye prints on microporous paper exposed to ozone from xerox copiers,  etc, faded to an ugly orange after a just a few days of exposure. This brings us back to the type of papers used in inkjet printing. Today most of the papers have what's called "microporous" ink receptor coating.These papers dry almost instantly. That's good and bad. The bad part is, the papers are open to atmospheric conditions unless the image is protected behind sealed glass, or sprayed with a sealant. Even pigmented prints can suffer from atmospheric fade.(think ozone) This is why properly done canvas prints are printed on water resistant canvas, and then sealed with an acrylic polymer. The glossy canvas option seems like it would be more convenient, but it does not offer the fade and physical protection that a protective coating gives.

Now, getting back the the OP's original post regarding his perception that dye inks seemed to produce a better black. In the early days of pigmented ink sets, black inks were actually a blend of pigmented and dye inks! This might even be true to some extent today, I don't know for sure. Dye ink black would look better on glossy papers, and washed out on matte papers. Matte black carbon ink would look better on matte papers, and ugly on glossy papers. Another innovation that pigment ink manufactures created was "encapsulation" of the pigments with an acrylic. This was done to make the colors brighter, and also to try and keep the pigments in suspension better. Both dyes and pigments are  suspensions. But pigment suspensions are much harder to maintain. This is why  pigmented ink carts are dated. If they lay around unused too long, the pigment particles will settle and congeal leading to nozzel clogging and suboptimal printing results.

Now, you have more, of the "rest of the story".
Unfortunately, swellable polymer inkjet papers are no longer made (AFAIK). They were discontinued because they never dried to a waterproof stage like microporous coatings do. I started out using them on my Epson 1400 dye printer and they produced beautiful results, but the moment you'd get any water on them the ink would run no matter how long they had dried.

Also most don't realize that "pigment" inks are not always 100% pigment but a mixture of both pigment and dye. The dye is used to fine tune the color and amount used in each pigment color determines the rate of fade.
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Rand47

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Re: Are there any archival dye based inkjet inks still being produced?
« Reply #14 on: January 14, 2022, 06:57:54 pm »

I'm curious if there's any dye based archival inkjet inks still on the market.   I'm looking to get the blackest blacks I can on fine art matte paper.  I've pushed the Ultrachrome HDX inks as far as they can go, and while the blacks are good.. I feel like a dye based ink would surpass the Ultrachrome pigments.   I'm also thinking the dyes would surpass any quadtone ink as well.

Thoughts?

I've found this:
The HP should have the best dMax for the matte black.
But if you are using Epson, you can convert your MK to Piezography Ultra HD MK which is so far the blackest MK I've ever used.


Is this statement accurate?

thanks
o

Youíve gotten some good feedback above.  Let me toss something else into the mix.  There have been advances in paper technology that make a HUGE difference in Dmax available on matte papers.  I specifically recommend you give Canson Arches 88 paper a try.  Prior to testing the Arches 88, the only matte paper I found suitable in terms of gamut and Dmax was Hahnemuhele Torchon (heavily textured).  The Arches 88 is yet another step forward in unbelievably good gamut and really excellent Dmax.  It is very bright white, yet has no OBAs, and is very smooth.

Give it a tryÖ.

Rand   
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Rand Scott Adams

John Nollendorfs

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Re: Are there any archival dye based inkjet inks still being produced?
« Reply #15 on: January 17, 2022, 01:59:50 pm »

Also most don't realize that "pigment" inks are not always 100% pigment but a mixture of both pigment and dye. The dye is used to fine tune the color and amount used in each pigment color determines the rate of fade.

What we call pigmented inks today, are not the same as traditionally ground pigments. Modern pigmented inks are chemically produced, as opposed to the fine grinding of rocks and clays. The chemically created pigments are still subjected to grinding to break up pigment clumps. AFAIK, dyes are not mixed in with pigmented color inks, other than in the case of some blacks, which  I mentioned  in my earlier post. HP does "neutralize" their gray inks. But I do not know how they accomplish this. My hunch  is they blend in other pigment(s). HP pigmented inks prints, printed through HP printers have consistently tested twice the resistance to noticeable fading compared to either Epson or Canon. Not all pigments fade at same rate. This is not necessarily due to the addition of dyes to "fine tune the color".

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