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Author Topic: P-9000 severe color imbalance 5 months after head replacement  (Read 153 times)

badbluesman

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After two hours of unsuccessful troubleshooting with Epson support and two more hours on the phone with friends across the country, we are all stumped. Maybe you can help.

Following a warranty print head replacement last October, the P-9000 printed and ran beautifully, like a brand new machine. A group of ABW prints were completed for a Central Coast hospital. Numerous watercolor repro prints were also made to order without any problems.

After that, no printing was done for the past six weeks. Weekly maintenance prints were done for three of those weeks, but I was out of town during the other three.

Two days ago, I fired up the printer for a new B&W portfolio project and, once the nozzles were clean, ran tests to see if I could match a set of proofs I had printed with ABW two years earlier. The new prints came out with a severe magenta cast at tint setting 0/0 (supposedly dead neutral).

Further tests showed the problem to be a major deficit of cyan ink in every print, color or ABW. Nozzle cleanings were done and nozzle checks continued to look perfect. But prints kept coming out with a major cyan deficit. I have previous prints from the same files on the same papers for comparison (see example photos below).

During my support call to Epson we tried the following:

-Specific head cleanings and nozzle checks.

-removing and gently shaking all ink cartridges.

-Replacing the LC cartridge, which was low, with a brand new one. The C cartridge was replaced last fall and still has about 70%. The dates on both cartridges are current and not expired.

-Deleting and reinstalling a new Epson driver

-Updating the printer firmware

After conversations with friends, I created a large, solid cyan print file and printed it five times to clear old cyan ink out of the line. I added a gradient to two of the prints. All test prints were perfectly smooth with no banding, mottling or any other blemishes.

Nothing we have tried so far has had any effect on this printerís color imbalance. Prints continue to come out like the attached examples.

As it is now, this mechanically perfect, clean running P-9000 is virtually useless to me. It would require radical file corrections and trial-and-error guesswork to produce merely acceptable prints (a major cyan boost to every file, turning them into cyanotypes on the monitor).

My specs:

Epson P-9000 printer with OEM inks and connected by ethernet cable. Latest Epson firmware and drivers just installed.

iMac 27Ē 2020 model with the last Intel processor, 2 TB flash storage, OS Monterey

Papers shown in samples are Epson Legacy Platine for the ABW and Hahnemuhlle Photo Rag Baryta for the color prints.

Epson ABW mode was used for the monochrome prints via Photoshop (latest CC version).  Color prints used ICC profile downloaded from Hahnemuhlle.

My fifth and final year of warranty ends on April 11th and Iím working every day to find a solution.

Think of this as a Sunday puzzle for digital printmakers.
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deanwork

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Re: P-9000 severe color imbalance 5 months after head replacement
« Reply #1 on: March 19, 2023, 02:57:36 pm »


Just occurred to me. Try shaking and flushing the magenta channels and possibly light gray.




After two hours of unsuccessful troubleshooting with Epson support and two more hours on the phone with friends across the country, we are all stumped. Maybe you can help.

Following a warranty print head replacement last October, the P-9000 printed and ran beautifully, like a brand new machine. A group of ABW prints were completed for a Central Coast hospital. Numerous watercolor repro prints were also made to order without any problems.

After that, no printing was done for the past six weeks. Weekly maintenance prints were done for three of those weeks, but I was out of town during the other three.

Two days ago, I fired up the printer for a new B&W portfolio project and, once the nozzles were clean, ran tests to see if I could match a set of proofs I had printed with ABW two years earlier. The new prints came out with a severe magenta cast at tint setting 0/0 (supposedly dead neutral).

Further tests showed the problem to be a major deficit of cyan ink in every print, color or ABW. Nozzle cleanings were done and nozzle checks continued to look perfect. But prints kept coming out with a major cyan deficit. I have previous prints from the same files on the same papers for comparison (see example photos below).

During my support call to Epson we tried the following:

-Specific head cleanings and nozzle checks.

-removing and gently shaking all ink cartridges.

-Replacing the LC cartridge, which was low, with a brand new one. The C cartridge was replaced last fall and still has about 70%. The dates on both cartridges are current and not expired.

-Deleting and reinstalling a new Epson driver

-Updating the printer firmware

After conversations with friends, I created a large, solid cyan print file and printed it five times to clear old cyan ink out of the line. I added a gradient to two of the prints. All test prints were perfectly smooth with no banding, mottling or any other blemishes.

Nothing we have tried so far has had any effect on this printerís color imbalance. Prints continue to come out like the attached examples.

As it is now, this mechanically perfect, clean running P-9000 is virtually useless to me. It would require radical file corrections and trial-and-error guesswork to produce merely acceptable prints (a major cyan boost to every file, turning them into cyanotypes on the monitor).

My specs:

Epson P-9000 printer with OEM inks and connected by ethernet cable. Latest Epson firmware and drivers just installed.

iMac 27Ē 2020 model with the last Intel processor, 2 TB flash storage, OS Monterey

Papers shown in samples are Epson Legacy Platine for the ABW and Hahnemuhlle Photo Rag Baryta for the color prints.

Epson ABW mode was used for the monochrome prints via Photoshop (latest CC version).  Color prints used ICC profile downloaded from Hahnemuhlle.

My fifth and final year of warranty ends on April 11th and Iím working every day to find a solution.

Think of this as a Sunday puzzle for digital printmakers.
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badbluesman

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Re: P-9000 severe color imbalance 5 months after head replacement
« Reply #2 on: March 19, 2023, 05:01:58 pm »

Just occurred to me. Try shaking and flushing the magenta channels and possibly light gray.

I did shake all cartridges, but I will change the light gray (LLK) cartridge for a new one that I have. It is very low anyway.
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