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Thread: How long are folks keeping their 24"+ printers

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    Subscriber & Workshop Member GrahamWelland's Avatar
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    How long are folks keeping their 24"+ printers

    Its time to consider stepping up to a bigger printer from my Epson 2200/3880's which have served me well albeit with the 2200 finally giving up on one print head now. I was wondering what useful lifetime folks were getting from their 24" printers - I.e. any natural aging considerations to worry about such as my 2200 finally dying off.

    I'm considering the Epson 7900 or HP Z3200, although I note that both of these have been around a while and no doubt will be replaced immediately when I buy something for half the price and better capabilities! Anyway, given that a new printer of this size isn't an inconsiderable investment I'd welcome any thoughts on what I should look at circa 2012. A big consideration for me is ink clogging because I've just about had my fill of cleaning the Epsons as they can sit for weeks without printing. That is a big appeal of the HP plus the profiling option.

    Thoughts?

    (apologies - I know that this is like the perennial "which camera bag" question)
    Remember: adventure before dementia!

    As Oscar Wilde said, "my tastes are simple, I only like the best"

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    Re: How long are folks keeping their 24"+ printers

    I recently acquired a used HPZ3100 from a friend, he had in new, was well cared for but had gone unused for a long while, however he did keep it plugged in and turned on so it was doing its maintenance all that time. He wasn't really using it so I got it for song plus a lot of expired carts-I remember when he bought it and I think it was 2008, so almost four years old now.

    so far, after running some basic nozzle cleaning cycles, cleaning the parking station and all the heads by hand with distilled water and qtips, its running like a champ again- they like to be used and were meant to run heavy duty so actually a lightly used printer is probably worse than an heavily used one.

    I have a few problems with random ink crud falling on the paper- I need to go over the inside and clean out some dried ink spatters that migrate to the paper from time to time but I've had a it a month and it is now 90% of the way back to health- just feed it lots of paper and ink and it will all sort itself out.

    The spectro is so very useful, the colour is very good and I thought I had it good with the the 3800 which has never let me down. This is just as good or even better.

    worse comes to worse, the heads are replaceable and not expensive.

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    Re: How long are folks keeping their 24"+ printers

    maybe only downside is they like roll paper better than cut sheet, loading cut sheets is slower than the 3800, so if you don't mind paper curl then roll is great.

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    Re: How long are folks keeping their 24"+ printers

    I guess the question is how often would you be using the 24" width verses 17"?

    I got about 3200 prints out of my 3800 before it expired (even despite expensive measures to keep it on life support). I'd say about 60% of that count was 17 X 22 prints. It was fine until I cut back on the number of prints I was doing and had a lab do laser prints for my wedding albums.


    I replaced it with a 3800 because the instance of larger prints just didn't justify it compared to having my lab do anything bigger than 17X22.


    So, it really depends on volume of large prints.

    -Marc

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    Subscriber & Workshop Member GrahamWelland's Avatar
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    Re: How long are folks keeping their 24"+ printers

    Robert/Marc,

    Thank you for your insights. Good to know that the HPs live up to their reputation too.

    I must admit that I tend not to print much of anything bigger than 17x22 myself and when I do I have a lab do it for me. For a while I actually found it most cost effective to have even Costco with their profiled printers do even the 17x22s as it was cheaper for Lustre than I could do at home. Rationally it is much more cost effective to do it this way as an amateur although I'm not averse to making an investment in a larger printer for the long term so long as it doesn't suffer from not being in constant use. If I were selling prints then I'd have to have my own larger printer for the complete end to end control and could more easily justify it. I just don't want something that'll drive me to distraction with clogging, cleaning and poor performance when I do want it to work and the quality needs to match the rest of my system.
    Remember: adventure before dementia!

    As Oscar Wilde said, "my tastes are simple, I only like the best"

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    Re: How long are folks keeping their 24"+ printers

    well the large format printers might not be for you- as I said, roll paper is the easiest cheapest way with them but leaving a roll mounted up is not advised- it collects dust which then is printed over since the roll is wound outside up. I use mine often enough I can leave the roll mounted, and I'm really using it to see what I am doing most of the time- I have epson semi matt loaded- the HP semi matt is even cheaper, $50/100' roll- I can print something large in a few minutes to get an idea of what the image looks like and this helps me going forward with my projects.

    The 3800 I have is every bit as good but lacks the spectro, but once you have a profile and paper you like the spectro is not really needed.

    I haven't had clogging problems on the 3800- I also even use it for office prints too, so maybe that helps.

    Bottom line is all printers like attention and get lonely and misbehave...

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    Re: How long are folks keeping their 24"+ printers

    Quote Originally Posted by robertwright View Post
    I haven't had clogging problems on the 3800- I also even use it for office prints too, so maybe that helps.
    Yes mine has been pretty good so far too. Only the 2200 has eventually gone RIP after countless unclogging experiences.

    Quote Originally Posted by robertwright View Post
    Bottom line is all printers like attention and get lonely and misbehave...
    As do their owners
    Remember: adventure before dementia!

    As Oscar Wilde said, "my tastes are simple, I only like the best"

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