July 4, 2005

Retro Days and Ink Jet Printing

Posted in Commentary at 8:31 am by Michael Sweeney Media

My bro sent me a cool link for a PacMan widget. Needless to say, that was worth a few hours of my time 🙂 Just what everyone needs to spend their holiday time… maybe not.. Dont try this while cooking the burgers, you will end up with ash since PacMan is very, very addictive.

My Epson 1280 had a near miss the other day. I use a Continous Ink System (CIS) and in the printing of a small picture, the tubes managed to jammed under the print head with a horrible grinding of the gears. With a gentle yank and a small prayer, the tubes were freed and the printer seems to be OK after running through the re-alignment of the printer. I’ll say this, the 1280 is a real workhorse of a printer. It’s over 2 years old and I’ve run over 2,000 8×10 sheets through it and it still keeps going. A few times the printer ran 24×7 and never missed a beat. I wonder if it’s replacement is just as durable. I may have to buy a second just to have on hand when I wear this one out.

I just bought a box of Photopaper (125 sheets) branded as “Kirkland” at my local Costco. You know, for the price of 15 cents a sheet, it’s pretty good stuff. High gloss and 10mils thick, it prints nicely and doesnt have that nasty bronzing that some gloss papers have. It’s not as “high gloss” as some of the Epson papers but it’s very usable. I normally use a paper I get from Inkjet art called “micro-ceramic lite” which I can buy 500 sheets at 4.5 cents per sheet. This is good enough for the throw-away family shots or handouts and is about 9mil thick. They offer a thicker 10 mil paper which is very good.

Speaking of paper and ink, I will strongly suggest using a clear “coat” for dye ink prints. This is the biggest improvement you can do to make your prints last in light that is brighter than the hallway. I shoot a coat of clear on ALL of my prints other than the cotton or rag papers which seem to be more resistance to fade then the typical gloss papers. I also found a wide variance with fade on the brand of paper. My experience with Illford is very good even without the coating and the matt finish seems to be the best.

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