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Thread: Piezography question

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    Piezography question

    I am wondering if I can get some opinions from someone that has seen the results of printing piezography in person. I am considering converting a secondary printer into a piezography special edition ink set and am hoping to get some comments as to the differences for both black and white prints and digital negative creation. I came from a 4x5 and platinum and salted paper printing background and have switched to MFD and digital negative, still working on getting something I like. I am partially satisfied with my B&W prints using the advanced black and white driver but am hoping the piezography system will get me closer to what I am looking for. Any thoughts as to the performance of the conversion? Or anyone in the San Francisco Bay Area that has prints or is using a piezography system?

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    Senior Member kdphotography's Avatar
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    Re: Piezography question

    Considering how long B&W piezography has been out, there really aren't that many resources that I have found available on the web outside of Jon Cone's website, other than a few threads or comments here and there. His website, InkjetMall - Archival inks - Color Management - Quad Black PiezographyBW has quite a few resources though you do need to stumble around quite a bit to find everything. You might also find helpful, The State of the State of the Arts in Black & White | THE AGNOSTIC PRINT

    Probably the best thing to do is to order some B&W piezography prints from the various inksets to compare. I liked the selenum K7 MPS (glossy) best, so I am planning on converting my old 9800 soon to a K7 MPS piezography printer (gloss). An auto-switching printer like a 3800/3880 would give you more flexibility, unless you are committed to a single inkset flavor as I am doing. I'll probably use only handful of select papers for this system, and am hoping to push the quality of B&W printing a bit further. I'll use the 9900 for other papers or matte B&W finishes.

    You're free to visit the studio once the planned conversion is complete!

    ken

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    Re: Piezography question

    I've experimented with printing the same digital files (Phase One DF/P-40+) with Epson ABW on my 7900 and with the MPS Glossy piezography K7 ink sets on an R1900, using papers Exhibition Fiber, Canson Platine, and Ilford GFS. In every case, side-by-side comparison shows much finer tone gradations, more depth, and more vividness with the K7 inks. Jon Cone also makes his own papers to match the inks; prints on his Type 5 show noticeably more presence. Refillable carts make it easy to switch from a selenium set to a selenium/warm neutral split tone, for example. The gloss overlay step is no trouble and leaves a perfectly natural and beautiful paper surface. I've printed with the K7 matte inks in the past, and continue to do so if that surface fits the image, but I much prefer the new MPS glossy sets.
    Before buying the ink sets, I found their sample print pack too small to make a good evaluation, so I sent them a favorite digital file, which I had previously printed in the chemical darkroom and with Epson ABW, for a 13 x 19 print in my choice of ink and paper. It was an eye-opener!
    Jon Cone's blog has lots of useful information: PiezoPress | The Piezography Website and Blog

    Lynn Noah

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    Senior Member kdphotography's Avatar
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    Re: Piezography question

    Thank you Lynn---this is good to hear your positive experiences!

    ken

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    Re: Piezography question

    Thanks for the input. It looks very promising I think I will order some samples and try to narrow down the ink sets. The special edition is the one that is catching my attention at the moment. If/when I decide to choose, I will write up a detailed impression. Any other comments and/or experiences would eb very appreciated.

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    Senior Member kdphotography's Avatar
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    Re: Piezography question

    The MPS (glossy) version of Special Edition is a "custom" inkset and not yet broadly released, but it can be ordered. I'm waiting to see a sample of the Special Edition glossy. I'm still leaning towards the Selenium MPS or the Selenium Warm-Neutral split MPS, and hope to do the conversion in the next couple of weeks.

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    Re: Piezography question

    Ken, I would love to come down and check it out if you are doing this in your Carmel location.

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    Senior Member kdphotography's Avatar
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    Re: Piezography question

    I'm in Carmel----and will be converting my 9800 there. You're welcome to come visit. There are other printing possibilities I'm exploring, even with my 9900, and this also might make a nice printing class for a future PIAB outing.

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    Re: Piezography question

    That would be great. I would love to come check it out when you have it set up. I am hoping they will be at SPE this year so I can see the differences between all of the ink sets . I have always wanted to go to one of the PIAB but never seem to be able to swing the time, maybe next time.

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    Re: Piezography question

    I had letter sized prints printed of my grayscale files...special edition, carbon, and warm neutral/selenium glossy split. ( also have the cone 5 inch samples of selenium and warm) ....after studying these samples in all lighting conditions I have decided on the warm neutral/selenium split for my 7800. I felt the special edition tended to go to much carbon in the shadows, the plain warm only was too green for me and the selenium only, tho nice, was slightly too purple for me, and the carbon was too reddish/yellowish for me. The carbon would be beautiful in "selected" images but not something i would want for all my work....Thus the warm neutral/selenium is a good compromise for me. Eleanor

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    Senior Member kdphotography's Avatar
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    Re: Piezography question

    After some gyrations, the conversion of my Epson 9800 to B&W K7 Selenium MPS glossy piezography is complete. *phew* It really should have been easier, but the instructions for conversion/workflow are somewhat spread out over different instruction sheets and locations. I'm still sorting out some workflow questions and want to add more "curves" to offer more B&W paper selections. I'll be running some comparison prints with my 9900 as well, but the initial prints from the K7 Selenium glossy look pretty darn good...

    Now I gotta start doing more photography with B&W in mind....

    ken

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    Re: Piezography question

    Ken, thanks for all your info. I just got in the new Neutral Piezography 2 for the 4800 and will be installing in the next week or 2, I'll let you know how it goes.

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    Re: Piezography question

    Question for those of you that are using the Cone MPS glossy inks on printers that have PIZZA WHEELS. I have a brand new 3880 that I got just for the MPS Glossy inks (Warm neutral/selenium split). When I use rear manual feed for the fine art papers the print goes under the pizza wheels (MPS ink is not dry) and gets pizza wheel marks in all areas that have somewhat smooth tonalities in mid and shadow tones. Prints with pizza wheel marks are not acceptable to me (I look closely in angled light at all of my prints to check for marks). I did not get any roller marks using the epson inks (I did extensive tests using epson inks first to make sure my printer was in top notch condition). I can use front paper feed and get away from the pizza wheels on the paper but you can't align the print head in front feed mode (only rear feed mode can you use head alignment). For this reason, front feed prints do not have the fine detail due to lack of proper head alignment.

    If anyone has found an answer to this problem with printers using MPS glossy inks with pizza wheels please let me know. I spent weeks and boxes and boxes of paper and tons of the Cone inks trying every setting imaginable to correct these issues to no avail. Any suggestions welcome and thanks!! Eleanor

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    Re: Piezography question

    Eleanor, I have heard that this might be an issue from a friend of mine that did a conversion when they first came out, his solution was to physically remove the wheels. I'm hoping it does not come to that but I have contemplated either removing them all together or using a washer to "lift" them out of the way. If I encounter this, I'll post my solution.

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    Senior Member eleanorbrown's Avatar
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    Re: Piezography question

    Thanks! I heard that someone tried removing the wheels but that the paper started to skew as it had nothing to keep it in place. I also thought about trying to raise the wheels in some way. To get the detail that is available using the Cone MPS system you really need to use the rear manual feed (front feed equals fuzzy detail I tried raising the paper using 2 ply matte board but not only did that cause issues with the paper exiting the printer but the detail still was not what it should be). If you have a problem with the wheels please do post your solution. I have heard from the folks at inkjetmall that they have many "happy users" (quote) using this MPS system with these printers but so far I'm not one of them. Got so frustrated that I put the epson inks back in the printer for now until I hear of a solution. Eleanor

    Quote Originally Posted by Teager View Post
    Eleanor, I have heard that this might be an issue from a friend of mine that did a conversion when they first came out, his solution was to physically remove the wheels. I'm hoping it does not come to that but I have contemplated either removing them all together or using a washer to "lift" them out of the way. If I encounter this, I'll post my solution.

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    Re: Piezography question

    Eleanor: What papers were you using and did all of them show the same problem? Coincidentally I bought a new 3880 as a second dedicated piezography printer just before I saw your post. As you did, I installed the Epson carts and ran extensive tests in preparation for converting to the Cone inks, but I have not yet changed over. I printed on the papers which have been successful for piezography in my 1900: Epson Exhibition Fiber, Canson Platine, Ilford Gold Fiber Silk, Epson UPP Matte all printed perfectly in color and ABW. However, when I ran Cone Studio Type 5, my favorite paper which I planned to use in the 3880, I was horrified to see a large thumbprint-shape scar, filled with horizontal white lines, in the upper right corner one inch below the image top and 1/2 inch from the right edge. This appeared exactly the same on several sheets. I experimented by opening the Mac/Lightroom print dialog box and under Advanced Media Controls raised the paper thickness to 5 (3 is default for EEF). On the next Type 5 print the scar was lighter, so I raised the setting to 13 which turned out to be my lucky number: the print had no mark at all.

    Later I called Epson and the tech suggested I set the platen gap to Wider. He did not know much about the paper thickness subject. In any case my 3880 now prints Type 5 OK with Epson ABW at 13 thickness and Wider gap, and I have decided to go ahead and purchase the refillable cart sets and chips in the hope that the Type 5 and K7 combo will work in the 3880. It has been flawless in my 1900, up to 13 x 19 sheets, and much superior to the many ABW test prints I have just run on the 3880. I plan to use different ink combos in the two printers.

    I emailed the surface scarring as a tech support issue to Inkjetmall, asking what settings they used on their 3880s and whether they had ever seen surface marks, and I'll pass along their reply. (Their customer support has been excellent in my past experience.) I don't understand the paper thickness specs in the 3880 printer dialog box which comes up with .3 mm when you enter EEF. The label on the EEF box uses the term 13 Mil, but Google references say that is a measure of length or volume, so I got lost at that point. I also couldn't find a thickness spec for Type 5, but it looks and feels no thicker than EEF. It does feel softer. The instruction at the bottom of page 55 in the 3880 Users Manual says the paper thickness setting can affect print sharpness. If that's true the setting is an important issue, suggesting perhaps that too high may detract from sharpness, but the Manual's guidance is so vague it is no help at all.

    I'll let you know the results when I have the K7 inks installed.

    Lynn Noah

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    Re: Piezography question

    Hi Lynn,

    0.3mm is metric measure - 25.4mm is the same as 1 inch. Confusingly, one Mil is common termininology for one thousandth of an inch, so 13Mil is 0.33mm. Both measurements you mentioned are therefore near enough the same.

    Best wishes,

    Ray

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    Re: Piezography question

    Thanks Ray; if I now can run down the thickness rating of the Cone Studio and other papers I will have something concrete to compare. I don't wish mindlessly to put in too high a setting, as sharpness might be affected, but clearly the paper is sensitive to too little clearance.

    Lynn

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    Senior Member kdphotography's Avatar
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    Re: Piezography question

    Lynn, which piezography inkset(s) are you using? Aside from the apparent headstrike you experienced, have you experienced the pizza wheel marks that Eleanor refers to on her 3880? I'm running the K7 MPS Selenium on a 9800, love it, but also feel fortunate to have a successful conversion.

    ken

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    Senior Member eleanorbrown's Avatar
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    Re: Piezography question

    Lynn I spent weeks and many boxes of paper and lots of Piezo warm neutral/selenium split MPS inks trying to find settings that work with the inks on my 3880. finally settled on .5 paper thickness and wider for platen gap. However this really has nothing to do with the pizza wheel issues. With the epson inks I did not have any issues with pizza wheels...I looked at some of the epson ink prints and under bright light and magnification I did detect very very faint pizza wheel marks on very very dark smooth areas...In other words the pizza wheel issues was really a non issue with the epson inks because they are "set" when they go under the wheels. The Cone MPS glossy inks are another story however...the inks are NOT set whatsoever when they go under the wheels so on prints that have smooth darker areas the pizza wheel marks are easily seen (for me anyway...but I'm particular). I'm sure some people would just ignore them but they were not acceptable for me. Cone tech support told me to do front manual load and avoid pizza wheels entirely, but with front load, fine details are "fuzzy" and you can't align your print head in front load mode...only back load...so if you want the benefit of super fine detail, don't use front load. I haven't found a solution yet. Been printing via back load manual a few prints today and because they were detailed without smooth areas, no pizza wheels were evident. When I print a print that has low mid tones or shadows in areas that are smooth and lack detail, I see pizza wheels. Let me know if you find a solution. The people at inkjetmall don't use their 3880/3800 printer for MPS inks...only for their color inks. The MPS inks are the issue as they are "soft" and easily marked until the final coat of gloss optimizer is printed over. Eleanor

    Quote Originally Posted by Eden View Post
    Eleanor: What papers were you using and did all of them show the same problem? Coincidentally I bought a new 3880 as a second dedicated piezography printer just before I saw your post. As you did, I installed the Epson carts and ran extensive tests in preparation for converting to the Cone inks, but I have not yet changed over. I printed on the papers which have been successful for piezography in my 1900: Epson Exhibition Fiber, Canson Platine, Ilford Gold Fiber Silk, Epson UPP Matte all printed perfectly in color and ABW. However, when I ran Cone Studio Type 5, my favorite paper which I planned to use in the 3880, I was horrified to see a large thumbprint-shape scar, filled with horizontal white lines, in the upper right corner one inch below the image top and 1/2 inch from the right edge. This appeared exactly the same on several sheets. I experimented by opening the Mac/Lightroom print dialog box and under Advanced Media Controls raised the paper thickness to 5 (3 is default for EEF). On the next Type 5 print the scar was lighter, so I raised the setting to 13 which turned out to be my lucky number: the print had no mark at all.

    Later I called Epson and the tech suggested I set the platen gap to Wider. He did not know much about the paper thickness subject. In any case my 3880 now prints Type 5 OK with Epson ABW at 13 thickness and Wider gap, and I have decided to go ahead and purchase the refillable cart sets and chips in the hope that the Type 5 and K7 combo will work in the 3880. It has been flawless in my 1900, up to 13 x 19 sheets, and much superior to the many ABW test prints I have just run on the 3880. I plan to use different ink combos in the two printers.

    I emailed the surface scarring as a tech support issue to Inkjetmall, asking what settings they used on their 3880s and whether they had ever seen surface marks, and I'll pass along their reply. (Their customer support has been excellent in my past experience.) I don't understand the paper thickness specs in the 3880 printer dialog box which comes up with .3 mm when you enter EEF. The label on the EEF box uses the term 13 Mil, but Google references say that is a measure of length or volume, so I got lost at that point. I also couldn't find a thickness spec for Type 5, but it looks and feels no thicker than EEF. It does feel softer. The instruction at the bottom of page 55 in the 3880 Users Manual says the paper thickness setting can affect print sharpness. If that's true the setting is an important issue, suggesting perhaps that too high may detract from sharpness, but the Manual's guidance is so vague it is no help at all.

    I'll let you know the results when I have the K7 inks installed.

    Lynn Noah

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    Re: Piezography question

    Ken:

    On pizza, I take it from your question that you think my paper damage may have a different cause (head strike) than Eleanor's report. All my 3880 test prints were clean except for the identical thumb-print size on all the Type 5s until I raised the paper size setting. I've owned several Epson printers and have been fortunate never to have seen any paper damage before, so I don't know exactly how the pizza wheel marks would appear, but the Type 5 marks were just in one spot and definitely didn't look like they were made with a pizza wheel. I wonder if Eleanor has any evidence with OEM inks which would enable her to return her unit under warranty. One Epson printer I purchased didn't work smoothly out of the box and the Epson store replaced it without fuss. As soon as I get the refillable carts installed, I will know whether I will have Eleanor's problem printing the peizography inks.

    On inksets, I started a few years ago with neutral on matte papers using an R1800. According to Epson, that printer, and the later 1900, had the smallest microdots of the Epson printers and it was ideal for K7. The neutral matte is very nice for portraits (very soft skin gradations) and for restoring old photographs, which I enjoyed. Neutral matte didn't give me the thrill I remember from the chemical darkroom, however, and until MPS came out I spent most of my printing time in color, getting a 7900 three years ago. Last year I read a review of a Jon Cone/Inkjetmall stand at one of the big photo shows -- I think it was in Atlanta -- and the reviewer had great praise for their display of prints using the new MPS. Since Inkjetmall is not far away in Vermont I asked the staff if I could come by and see the prints. The folks there are very friendly and professional (I took a workshop there when I first started piezography) and they brought out the set for me. I was just blown away seeing them up close. After studying the different mixes of inksets and papers among the Atlanta prints, I decided on inksets of selenium glossy and sel/warm neutral split tone and I began using Type 5 paper. I love the selenium on Exhibition Fiber for such subjects as snow scenes (we have plenty of those) and sea foam (out your way). The selenium/warm neutral split tone has great depth and tonal range on Type 5 for subjects I've printed recently such as spring ferns, stone walls, and baby pictures. It wasn't long before I wanted a second printer at the ready. The refillable cart sets for Epson desktop printers (2880 and below) are really affordable, so it's easy to change around and make your own mixes. Empty cart sets for mine are $29. I just bought a sample set filled with carbon inks for $120 and will try that tomorrow. Since I already have neutral inks, I have also made up a special edition set by buying bottles of just two additional shades. My plan is to select one or perhaps two for the 3800 and have the others available on the inexpensive 1900 depending on what seems appropriate for the type of image. I'll let you know how the carbon and special edition mixes work out.

    On workflow, since LR4 came out I've been doing more of my processing there, including grayscale, and all of my printing to QuadTone RIP. Since I understood LR operates in ProPhoto RGB (gamma 1.8), and QTR has to be prepped in 2.2, I got confused among all of LR's VCs, softproofs, master copies, saved copies, Photoshop edits 1, 2, and 3, etc. so I sent my question to Jon Cone's blog and he posted a very helpful reply today: Lightroom 4 and Piezography | PiezoPress

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    Senior Member kdphotography's Avatar
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    Re: Piezography question

    Hi Lynn,

    I share your excitement with the new piezography MPS glossy inksets! If I had the room, I'd gladly add to my collection of printers. But in light of Eleanor's experience, I would be hesitant to add the 38** series, limited print carriage width notwithstanding. I think Eleanor has spent quite a bit of time tearing apart her 7800 and 3880, to the point that if the salaries for Epson techs were just a bit more, she could take on another career path...
    Btw, the pizza wheel mark issue for 38/3880 series printers is apparently not limited to Cone inks as there are complaints using Epson OEM inks too, but Eleanor's experience is that the marks are only an issue with the mps piezography inksets. I hope there is a workaround solution for her printer.

    There is indeed something special about what the piezography K7 MPS inkset imparts to B&W images. It's changed my approach and perspective towards B&W fine art printing.

    ken

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    Re: Piezography question

    Well I have the 4800 Piezography 2 conversion up and running. I have not had any issues so far. It did take 3 power cleanings to get it to start up right, but after that all is smooth. I have not seen any of the pizza wheel marks but have noticed that I have to let the prints dry about 18-24 hours before doing a GO coat or I get smearing. Just waiting to get more custom curves back before really playing with it more. On the one curve I have for it I have seen a dramatic opening up of the shadows. It looks very promising so far.

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    Senior Member kdphotography's Avatar
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    Re: Piezography question

    Michael, I haven't heard of any pizza wheel issues for any printers other than the 38** series. I prefer to let my prints sit for several hours (or overnight) before applying the GO. I use a blow dryer on the cool setting for several minutes on the print which works well if I need to hurry things along a bit to apply the GO.

    I would enjoy seeing some of your Piezography 2 prints!

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    Re: Piezography question

    I was about two key-clicks away from ordering an MPS system for a 3880 I have not been using but now I'm very concerned about the pizza wheel issue.
    I feel fortunate to have run across this forum with a group of knowledgeable contributors. I eagerly await any updates to this matter. Thanks everyone for sharing your experiences.

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    Re: Piezography question

    Hi everyone, I think it would help if I try to clarify again my issues with the 3880. First let me say that my warm neutral/selenium split MPS prints that were printed on my 3880 using rear manual feed that do not exhibit pizza wheels are stunning. Not all prints show pizza wheels (ie: prints with lots of detail, sky with light and mid tone areas, etc.) The prints that have issues with the pizza wheels are those that have smoother, mid to darker tones with darker ink lay down. In these prints the pizza wheels produce a print that I can neither sell nor send to a gallery for an exhibition.

    There is NOTHING, I repeat nothing...wrong with my printer. Before I installed the MPS inks I ran off a pile 1 inch high of prints using the epson inks on all the papers I would be using for MPS printing. Not one of these epson ink prints showed pizza wheel marks that one could see with the naked eye. I finally got out my 8x loupe and looked at the epson prints with the loupe in bright light and what I saw was tiny pin pricks from the pizza wheels..mind you under 8x loupe. My 3880 does not have anything wrong with it and with the epson inks the prints looked flawless (all using rear feed of course after careful head alignment).

    I read an online post yesterday by Eric Chan regarding the pizza wheel issues comparing the epson R2880 and the 3880 printers and Eric said that the pizza wheels were not as evident on the R2880 printer as on the 3880 so that printer is probably better for MPS printing. So, to recap...you will NOT get pizza wheels on all MPS printed on the 3880 but it's a hit or miss thing...depending on the tones and subject matter of your digital file. I recently printed an image for an exhibition that I really wanted to print using MPS inks...The image, one of my Snow Shadows series had some darker smooth tones in the image and the pizza wheels showed big time. I ended up printing Epson ABW on my 9880 printer instead. So I hope this clarifies the issues with the 3880 a little better. There may be lots of folks printing MPS out there on 3800/3880 who don't examine their prints as closely as I do and are satisfied. I just happen to be very particular and I see with my naked eye pizza wheels that might be a non issue with others.

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    Re: Piezography question

    Well, i finally got the P2 system up and running after many difficulties. The main issue was using CS6 and OSX lion. Dana came up with a solution that yields good results We had to convert to grey gamma 1.8 and use Photoshop manages color set to sRGB 2.1 with relative colormetric and black point on to get the prints to come out. I now have the matte/gloss neutral combo running on a 4800 with about 12 curves. I would like to comment that I have not had pizza wheel issues as of yet but am noticing that the drying time is in excess of 3 days before I can put a gloss overcoat on any of the glossy papers.

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    Senior Member kdphotography's Avatar
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    Re: Piezography question

    Three days? Egads, Michael! Have you tried (or does it even work) using a blowdryer on the low and cool settings? That's the recommendation for using the K7 MPS inkset when you want to speed things along. A few minutes is all it takes, otherwise I let me prints set several hours before the gloss overcoat.

    I look forward to seeing some of your Piezography 2 prints!

    ken

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    Re: Piezography question

    Update on the 3880: As noted above, I bought a new 3880 as a second dedicated piezography printer before I saw Eleanor's posting. Warned by that, I tested extensively with the original inks before converting, and I've also spent several weeks experimenting with different Cone inksets in my 1900 before purchasing the more expensive 3880 refillable carts and a separate chip set (I wanted to keep the Epson set intact).

    In short, the prints are flawless with the papers I'm using (so far Cone type 5, Epson exhibition fiber and premium lustre, Ilford gold fiber silk. I don't plan to use thicker media). I've examined the finished prints carefully under a loupe and a bank of Solux floods and can find no surface marks. The platen gap setting is Wider. All prints and GO step are from rear manual feed. (Once when I tried top feed for GO I got a roller mark.) When I saw the first 16 x 20 prints I was glad I had gotten the 3880 rather than a smaller printer.

    The one problem I had with first prints was the Gloss Optimizer laying down on the white paper margins but not on the inked image. The result was that the ink looked bronzed and even showed what looked like smudges. The border between inked image and white paper was very apparent on my test image of step squares and a rectangular gradient. I emailed a case to Inkjetmall tech support and Jon Cone replied immediately advising me to check the white canvas image I was using for the GO to be certain that it was RGB 255/255/255. I had been printing only from Lightroom for these first prints, and I didn't know the answer until I went back to Photoshop to count the pixels. Apparently I had somehow picked up a corrupted white canvas image in my Lightroom Library module and gone right to the Print module without noticing. As soon as I made sure I had a valid 255/255/255 image the GO went down evenly from both Photoshop and Lightroom and the prints looked perfect. I overprinted a second full GO coat on the prints that looked bad and the problems vanished. In retracing where I had gone wrong, I noticed that even with a valid white canvas the histogram is blank in Lightroom's Library module, so it is easy to go right to the Print module without being certain you have a canvas which will trigger a full GO. If you go to the Develop module with a valid canvas and look carefully at the histogram there, you will see a thin white line at the extreme right (255). I find it's easier to see clearly whether the white canvas is correct if I print the GO from Photoshop, while taking advantage of Lightroom's convenient Print module for the ink image itself.

    As for drying the ink before applying GO, I hold the print up by an edge and wave a hair dryer gently around both sides for about 5 minutes at a distance which is not too hot for my fingers. With larger paper I'll also lay it on a clean surface a wave the dryer over both sides. I've seen no problem with this procedure. Humidity in my printing area is about 62.

    When I was testing with the original inks before converting, I did have head strikes with the Epson inks and both type 5 and EEF paper. Inkjetmall advised me to leave the paper out overnight to adjust to the print area humidity and I have had no repeats. The Wider platen gap setting has also helped.

    My suggestions to Roger who is considering converting his 3880 are (1) test it thoroughly to be sure everything is working perfectly before buying the refillable carts and inks, (2) if you're unsure about which inks send a couple of images to Inkjetmall for prints, and (3) save your used Epson carts for the chips. For anyone thinking of experimenting with piezography for the first time, it's useful to know that, although a color print from a small printer won't match the quality of a several-thousand-dollar pro model, an inexpensive 13" Epson desktop printer, using a $29 refillable cart set and spraying seven shades of ink with Cone curves and Gloss Overlay, will lay down as beautiful an image as as that pro printer which takes four good friends to move into your workspace. The ink will be your most expensive purchase and you can use that in larger printers later if you like what you see. I've made Epson ABW comparison prints on both this 3880 and my 7900, and I've found the MPS prints bring the images much more vividly to life.

    Lynn

  30. #30
    Senior Member kdphotography's Avatar
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    Re: Piezography question

    Well, I couldn't avoid the magic of B&W fine art printing and have finally converted a new Epson 9890 printer to a K7 B&W MPS Piezography glossy and matte printer. After the demise of my 9800 piezography printer (my fault, but she should now be working elsewhere!) I couldn't go back to normal B&W off of my 9900.

    I had a minor hiccup in conversion, a bad cartridge chip which was easily replaced. I had to do more than six power cleans and clean the capping station to purge all the original Epson color inks used to initially charge and inspect the printer. I'm still doing some minor tweaking in the print process. Still experimenting, but it seems that at least some of the older curves that I used for my 9800 (actually 7880/9880 curves worked better) work on the 9890, or at least are near indistinguishable when used on the 9890.

    I'm looking forward to being able to use the gloss optimizer capability of the 9890 K7 printer on select color portraits printed on the 9900. Capture Integration in Carmel is planned for February 2013 and the goal is to do some B&W piezography printing!

    ken

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    Re: Piezography question

    I've been so impressed with the system so far and my students have loved it, we have about 14 working curves for the P2 system now and I am now thinking of converting an old 4800 to a digital negative printer. I still have my eyes on the special edition ink set though. Congrats on the new conversion Ken. The lasts prins I saw of yours convinced me to do a conversion.

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    Re: Piezography question

    I have been using the MPS K7 inks on an epson 3800 for a year or more now. I mainly use Jon's Type 5 paper. I always use the manual rear feed and have the platen gap set to wide. Under proper lighting and on close inspection I can't see any pizza wheels or other imperfections.

    Also I suggest people give Roy Harrington's QTR Print Tool a try for printing. It takes all the nonsense and confusion out of the problems with the colour management pipeline between Adobe and Apple which currently exist. You can trial it for free.

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    Re: Piezography question

    Ken is the devil!

    i have my 4880 running with glossy selenium inks. took three power cleanings. am using manual feed from the back and fiddling around with papers to get a cool black as i don't want the warm tone. so far so good.

    trying epson ex fiber, Cone type5, with supplied glossy profiles Cone is the warmest.

    also tried Canson RAG Photogaphique (only Canson i had on hand) with the Canson Baryta Satin profile, so far the coolest

    still to try:
    have Hannemule Glossy fine art Baryta (is this for the supplies 4880-MPS-HANptoRagBaryta profile)
    harmon Gloss FB AI: (is this for 4880-MPS-HarmonGIFbWt profile?)
    also Ilford GFS ( no profles listed)
    and Innova F type Gloss (no profiles listed)


    i assume the MPS profiles are the relevant ones for gloss optimizer? and the list is small
    Likes 1 Member(s) liked this post

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    Senior Member kdphotography's Avatar
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    Re: Piezography question

    John,

    The MPS designation does indicate it is a curve for glossy piezography printing, so the GO will need to also be applied afterwards.

    Don't be afraid to try the curves listed under other Epson printers! For your 4880, I would first look towards the 3880 and 7880/9880 MPS curves to see if there are any listed that are suitable. You can also try MPS curves listed for the 49/79/9900 as the ink shades are in the same positions. With K7 B&W piezography, it's all about tones and not being anal (me and Don) about using the correct custom icc profile as you would for color printing. In other words, you can free-flow a lot more with K7 B&W piezography and concentrate on what looks good as an image maker. I've found that you can *borrow* from other printer curves for the same media. If nothing is listed for a media you want to use, a good place to start is using the Cone 5 curve to see if that works and I would do this before generating a custom curve and spending money.

    ken

    p.s. Avoid the 9800 curves----I found these didn't work well, even on my 9800.

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    Re: Piezography question

    feeler to see if there is any data out there, but i am not so fond of the sepia like tone i am still getting.
    4880, selenium MPS glossy inks, and tried a couple of papers: Ilford GFS, Cone type 5,

    what i am looking for is a cold black set.

    any comments?

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    Re: Piezography question

    John--is it sepia or the warmth of the print/tones?

    Maybe try different ink shades or probably better to select a different ink set (neutral, special edition, split tone...). Brighter white papers will help, but can mean also using those with OBAs.

    Cone had a "portfolio black" ink but it used dye, and not archival...you could try experimenting with using different ink formulations. For example, you can use Epson's mK instead of Cones mK, as long as the correct shades match up for the right slots.

    Assuming your selenium MPS is installed correctly--- it sounds like you're going to have to change to a different ink set to get what you want...

    ken

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    Re: Piezography question

    will be experimenting today

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    Re: Piezography question

    I am liking what I get from Canson Platine Fibre, not what I'd call cool, but not as warm as the type 5.

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    Re: Piezography question

    I have been using Canson Platine and Infinity Baryta with an MPS Selenium/WN configuration. I love the prints - find that the image tone of Platine and Baryta is similar (both cooler than Cone 5 and a bit warmer than Epson EF).

    The Platine has a slightly warmer paper base (due to no OBA's) and slightly more textured surface than Infinity Baryta. Because of the surface texture on Platine, I was not happy with the surface after GO was applied - a little to "heavy" looking.

    To fix this, I refined Cone's regular GO curve to use less GO density - Jon describes how to do this in his latest Piezography manual that he released on January (on his website). The standard GO curve has the GO density at 45%; after some trial and error, I found that 20% to 15% is perfect for Platine. With this reduced GO, the print surface is much smoother and has no bronzing....

    All in all, a beautiful system. Canson Infinity Baryta and Platine are my standard Piezo papers - I use Cone 5 when i want something warmer. I am still looking for something cooler and have used EEF. I am not fully satisfied with it, though. I am now testing some of Ilford's new Gold Mono Silk - so far, nice image tone and beautiful surface. Will take more reference prints before I have any findings to share.

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    Re: Piezography question

    so far, and i am not getting night and day differences
    i did some rather extensive testing. all printed from the same image, K7 selenium MPS inkset, glossy only, epson 4880.

    all of these were in the sepia-like tonal range with the most neutral so far ranked first: first two were rogues, however.

    GO on all of them

    paper/profile:

    canson platine, canson baryta satin (a matte paper, but came out cool, but not a contender, otherwise, as i am using glossy inks)
    canson paltine, ex fiber even cooler, same problems

    glossy or satin papers: first group a toss up, most cool being red river, but not a good neutral yet

    red river ultrapro satin: ex fib, canson Baryta, harmon gfw type 5
    museo silver rag, harmon GFW
    museo silver rag, ex fiber
    ex fiber, ex fiber profile

    the rest were all warmer:


    ilford GFS: ex fib
    harmon GFW, harmon gfw
    hannemuhle FA baryta, han rag baryta MPS
    canson rag phootgraphique, canson baryta satin
    canson baryta, canso baryta satin
    innova Fgloss; ex fib
    type 5, type 5 (warmest of all)
    Last edited by jlm; 30th April 2013 at 15:44.

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    Re: Piezography question

    John,

    I don't think I quite understand what you may be calling "sepia-like" tonal range. Is it the inkset or is it the paper white itself? Are your prints similar in "tonal range" to the images that we were printing on my K7 selenium glossy inkset 9890 at CI in Carmel?? Totally different?

    The images I'm getting with the 9890 (at least to my eye) are not sepia and the warmth of the images takes on the character of the paper.

    Have you tried a different "printer quad" on QTR? I'm just thinking that maybe the 4880 curves may also have an impact. I remember on my 9800 K7 printer, the 9800 curves were absolutely horrible! (Think dripping ink). I used curves that were generated for a different printer type on my 9800 and the images turned out great. Maybe try different printer curves (but still for the paper you're using)? You've listed Canson Platine as being more neutral for you---but I've always thought of Canson Platine as a warmer paper, particularly since it is without OBAs----hence my thoughts on playing with different curves. Hope you can get this figured out to your satisfaction.

    ken

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    Re: Piezography question

    For some reason the link mentioned above didn't take. I'll try again:
    www.getdpi.com/forum/printing-output/35057-piezography-question.html

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