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Author Topic: Epson 3880 B&W print ink usage  (Read 4241 times)

ymc226

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Epson 3880 B&W print ink usage
« on: September 02, 2012, 10:56:51 am »

I have printed about 100 prints of varying sizes from 8x10 to 16x20, almost exclusively B&W without any toning (maybe the equivalent of 6 16x20 color prints have been made). 

These have been using Photo black and no Matte black ink. I've noticed that the Photo Black , Light Black and Light Light Black inks are down appropriately with remaining % of (51, 29, 49).   The Matte Black has 87% remaining so 13% to initially charge the lines.

However, the color inks are also down considerably with % left of Cyan 66, Vivid Magenta 66, Light Cyan 52, Vivd Light Magenta 47, and Yellow 65.

Is there color used in what I believe to be pure B&W prints?  I don't think turning off and on would waste ink as the Matte Black is still relatively full.
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Peter Langham

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Re: Epson 3880 B&W print ink usage
« Reply #1 on: September 02, 2012, 02:02:54 pm »

You don't say what method you are using to print these B&Ws, but if you are using the Epson driver, you are using color ink.
Epson black and grey inks are quite warm toned and color inks are used to get any other tone.  this hods true if you are using ABW or printing as rgbs.  One way to use the grey inks only would be to use QTR.  If I recall correctly most of the warm curves for QTR use the grey inks only.  This would allow you to see how warm the Epson inks actually are.  You could also scan an small section of one of your prints and zoom in until you can see the dots of ink.  You will be surprised to see how much color is used.   
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ymc226

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Re: Epson 3880 B&W print ink usage
« Reply #2 on: September 02, 2012, 04:54:21 pm »

Thanks for pointing the issue of the print driver out.  I am using Imageprint 9 if that makes a difference.
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robgo2

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Re: Epson 3880 B&W print ink usage
« Reply #3 on: September 02, 2012, 06:59:24 pm »

Thanks for pointing the issue of the print driver out.  I am using Imageprint 9 if that makes a difference.

Here is a quote from ImagePrint 9's User's Manual:

When printing using ImagePrintís Grayscale technology, the black and gray inks will be used predominately along with small amounts of selected other inks. (The black and gray inks alone are not truly neutral, so other inks must be mixed in to provide neutral- ity).

Who would have thought that the black and gray inks in Epson printers have traces of color?  I use IP 9 as well and have noticed my color ink levels receding as I print B&W.  This explains why.  I must admit that the resulting prints are very neutral.

Rob  
« Last Edit: September 02, 2012, 07:01:15 pm by robgo2 »
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Farmer

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Re: Epson 3880 B&W print ink usage
« Reply #4 on: September 03, 2012, 06:15:31 am »

Bear in mind that to achieve "neutral" looking prints you need to compensate for the paper white.

And, bear in mind that when your printer runs a clean and charges up, it uses all of the lines.

Whoever lead you to believe that they were "pure" B&W was wrong (whatever that really is - anything other than pure black ink on pure white paper isn't really "pure" B&W, is it? :-) ).
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Phil Brown

Alan Goldhammer

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Re: Epson 3880 B&W print ink usage
« Reply #5 on: September 03, 2012, 06:54:45 am »

You can see a comparison of how much color ink is used in ABW mode HERE.
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Randy Carone

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Re: Epson 3880 B&W print ink usage
« Reply #6 on: September 04, 2012, 10:40:53 am »

robgo2,

Epson Black (and light blacks) don't have traces of color in them. The PRINT has traces of color ink.
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Randy Carone

robgo2

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Re: Epson 3880 B&W print ink usage
« Reply #7 on: September 04, 2012, 10:46:32 am »

robgo2,

Epson Black (and light blacks) don't have traces of color in them. The PRINT has traces of color ink.

Randy,

That is not what ImagePrint says in their User's Manual.  Perhaps they misstated the reason why small quantities of color ink are needed to provide truly neutral B&W prints.  I will write to them for clarification.

Rob
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Schewe

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Re: Epson 3880 B&W print ink usage
« Reply #8 on: September 04, 2012, 11:21:17 am »

Epson Black (and light blacks) don't have traces of color in them. The PRINT has traces of color ink.

Actually, the carbon black pigment of the Photo K ink is very warn in color and needs a touch of Cyan to make is cooler. LK & LLK are more neutral but still a bit on the warm side. If you use the color toning, additional colors will be used such as magenta. Unless you go to a really sepia color little yellow is needed.
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robgo2

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Re: Epson 3880 B&W print ink usage
« Reply #9 on: September 04, 2012, 01:08:50 pm »

Actually, the carbon black pigment of the Photo K ink is very warn in color and needs a touch of Cyan to make is cooler. LK & LLK are more neutral but still a bit on the warm side. If you use the color toning, additional colors will be used such as magenta. Unless you go to a really sepia color little yellow is needed.

This is correct.  According to the technical support people at ImagePrint, PK is slightly warm and MK is slightly blue.  So, as I understand it, the color inks that IP uses in grayscale printing are intended to neutralize the color of the ink, not the paper.  

Here is the response that I got from ImagePrint:

Image Print's manual is correct - matte black ink has slight blue cast while
photo black ink has slight warm cast (when you get a drop of ink from Mk and
Pk cartridges you might see this. It is necessary to use some color inks to
compensate for this effect when making neutral b/w print. Image Print was
the first software making neutral b/w prints on Epson 2200, 7600/9600
printers via implementation of the print mode when a bit of color ink was
used for b/w printing - it was before the time when Epson added ABW mode.


Rob
« Last Edit: September 04, 2012, 01:19:53 pm by robgo2 »
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