FLAAR Reports - Wide Format Printers

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FLAAR Reports - Wide Format Printers

FLAAR ReportsDigital Imaging, Report on Printers, RIPs, Paper, and InksAPRIL 2004Previews of the Report SeriesForPhotographers of all levels;Photo Labs; Photo Studios; Enthusiasts; Pro-sumers; ProsWide Format Inkjet Printers for Exhibit-Quality PhotosFLAAR headquarters at BGSU facilities printing photo quality with ColorSpan Mach 12


FLAAR REPORTSPreview of Photo Wide Format Printer Series2B&W Printing with Wide Format.We get so many requests for help with B&W photographyand printing that we are initiating evaluations ofvarious solutions. B&W prints from the most popularlow-cost piezo inkjet printers turn green; black-andwhiteprints from the most popular thermal printershave a bad magenta cast. So you might want to avoidthem and their problems with metamerism by checkingout this report. Newly updated after PMA 2003Before and after (color and B&W), trellis shadowpattern, Malta Centre for Restoration, photo byNicholas Hellmuth, Nikon D100.ContentsAbstractB&W Printing on the DesktopBlack and White Inkjet Printing: An Essayon Reality in the Art WorldGeneral Observations on various printersIlford Quad-tone ink set for Encad, Oce,Ilford and Kodak thermal printhead printersNew B+W Inkset for ColorSpan printersProblems producing balanced grayscalewith inkjet printersHow to prepare your B&W print in AdobePhotoshop?Absolute top quality, the Iris and Ixia gicleeprintersDon’t buy from the wrong sourceHow to reach a decision?ResourcesSourcesLegal noticeAdvisoryAcknowledgements


FLAAR REPORTSPreview of Photo Wide Format Printer Series3ContentsWhich Large Format Inkjet Printers areoptimal for Photo Realistic Quality InkjetPrinting on Canvas, Photo Glossy, Satin,Matte, and other diverse Inkjet Media.We have eighteen inkjet printers at two universities.The lab manager at each universitycan select any printer in the studio. Noone bribes the lab manager to choose thatspecific printer. He simply selects the printerwhich produces exhibit-quality output quickly,efficiently, and at reasonable cost. Each labmanager has an Epson and an HP, right nextto each other (actually we have three Epsonprinters at Bowling Green State University).Yet both lab technicians, at each university,with no premeditated connivance (they are sobusy they don’t actually often communicatewith each other) they both tend to use onebrand most of the time, both for longevity andfor color gamut.AbstractHow are evaluations accomplished by FLAAR?Continuous Tone Printers vs Inkjet PrintersFuji PictographyEncad, compared with other brands for printing photographsEpson: A Reality CheckEpson 7000 and 9000Epson 7500 and 9500Epson 7600 and 9600EFI Fiery RIP with Epson 5000,7000, 7500,9000, or 9500Epson 10000Epson 10600No more hardware RIP for the Epson 10000 or 10600Recommendations for Epson PrintersSummary on Epson PrintersSpeed Claims with any PrintersInk costs for any printer that prefers its own proprietary ink andmediaRoland: Ups and DownsKodak 5260 for photo labs: another example of banding problemswith piezo printhead designWhat is Banding?Several Printer Designs Work specifically to reduce or avoidbandingMutoh Printers for Fine Art and Photo QualityNewest Mutoh, the Falcon II and Agfa GrandSherpaMimaki JV-4Hewlett-Packard: Ease of Use and ReliabilityHP 500 and 500psHP 800 and 800psHP 1050, 1055, and 1055+Some key Differences between HP and other PrintersColorSpan PrintersColorSpan Mach 12Canon BJ-W9000New Canon Printers, since Autumn 2002Used Printers?Desktop Printers for PhotosBlack and White PrintsColor LimitationsProfit PotentialLongevity RatingsDecision-making FactorsSummaryInkjet printers for portrait labsInkjet printers for photo murals, tradeshowgraphicsInkjet printers for dye sublimation and/or forprinting on textilesInkjet printers for signs, posters, bannersPricing and Where to Find what you NeedFollow-up ServiceTraining on actual Inkjet PrintersTraining Courses in input (digital photography)Glossary of TermsSources and Resources on the InternetWhy? One brand sucks ink by the gallon. The other brand uses less ink, and the ink seems more reasonablein price too.One printer leaves banding defects all across the picture. The other printer does that seldom.Before you buy what the ads lure you to believe is the cats meow, you might like to read this report. Hopefullywe know digital photography equipment; we have a $97,000 Cruse digital camera, two very costlyBetterLight scan backs, a Nikon D100, Foveon chip in a Sigma SD9, and several Nikon Cool-Pix models.We also print for the art department. They own an Epson printer, so why do their students and faculty cometo the FLAAR studio and use another brand of printer?


FLAAR REPORTSPreview of Photo Wide Format Printer Series4Scanners and Scanning 35mm, medium format andlarge format negs and chromes.FLAAR has significant experience as consultant forscanning slide archives, such as for the JapaneseNational Museum. Nicholas Hellmuth started with NikonCoolScan at entry level then began to use the CreoScitexEverSmart Supreme. Currently FLAAR also has aCruse Reprographic scanner systems. These years ofpractice are condensed in this report so you can learnfrom our experience.The entire FLAAR program in digital imaging began withscanning their photographic archive of 50,000 35mmslides and thousands of medium format, 4x5, and 8x10chromes. Here a Scitex EverSmart Supreme scanner atwork in Nicholas’s office in Germany.ContentsAbstractIntroductionColor negativesScanning b+w or scanning color to createb+wHow much DPI do you need?Scanning for the internet, or for home orhobby?Jpeg and compression schemesToaster-shaped scanners for 35mm slidesand negsAuto-loader (especially on Nikon scanners)General information on scanning andscannersScanning objects with relief, or 3-d objectsNewton rings from flatbed scannersScanning into the film grainWhat about the Imacon scanners?Scanners from FujiSweet spotTurnkey systems or scanners as part of apackageKodak photo CDUsing scans on stock photo CDsCreo(Scitex) EverSmart flatbed scannersDrum scannersOlder models of scanners or used scannersUmaxHeidelberg scanners and LinoColor softwareScanner softwareSharpeningDigital imaging softwareRGB vs CMYKStorage of your digital imagesTraining and booksWhere to buyFLAAROther FLAAR reports on scanningGeneralAdvisoryAcknowledgements


FLAAR REPORTSPreview of Photo Wide Format Printer Series5Scanning Medium Format and 4 x 5 inch Transparenciesfor Photographers who wish to print on wideformat printers: inkjet and/or laser-light RGB digitalimagers.Scanning medium format and large format chromes isa bit different than scanning 35mm negs and slides, sowe have a separate report on each in this series. Theentire FLAAR project on digital imaging is based on theJapanese ministry of education providing a grant forProfessor Hellmuth to assist the National Museum ofEthnology, Osaka, on how to scan their photo archive(which was largely Dr Hellmuth’s own photos which themuseum had purchased the year before). This Japaneseproject and a succeeding scanner project had a budgetof about $250,000. So you get all the results of all theseyears experience, for an economical $142 for the entireseries (or discounted down still further to $120 if you havealready become part of the FLAAR favored readers byfilling out the inquiry form).ContentsAbstractKodak Photo CD and Kodak ScannersPrinting Stock Photos from CDsJPEG and Compression SchemesRGB vs CMYKScanner selectionUpdate on scanner brandsWhat scanners does the FLAAR photoarchive use?What about the Imacon scanners?Older models of scanners or used scannersScanner softwareToaster-sized 35mm slide scannersBatch Scanning AttachmentsWe don’t recommend entry-level flatbedscannersUMAX scannersFuji flatbed scannersReality of good scannersOverhead Scanning Systems to handlelarge originals such as paintingsCan you use your megapixel digitalcamera?How much dpi do you really need?Which computer to use?SoftwareSummaryThe History of Scanning TechnologyWhere and How to Store your scannedimages?Summary of where to buy and/or where toobtain further informationOtherBooks on photography and scanningSources and Resources on the InternetFor further informationAdvisoryAcknowledgements


FLAAR REPORTSPreview of Photo Wide Format Printer Series6FLAAR Fast Facts: Comments on Cymbolic SciencesLightJet, Durst Lambda and ZBE ChromiraMany of our readers as “Should I buy a LightJet orLambda, or have Inkjet printers caught up yet in continuoustone quality.” This report is by Brent Cavanaugh,who writes from many years experience in a pro photolab in Dallas, Texas, before taking over as manager ofthe FLAAR+BGSU wide format printer facility at BowlingGreen State University. Comments have been added byNicholas Hellmuth based on his inspection of a photo labwhich had several Durst Lambda’s. Was an eye-openingexperience.ContentsAbstractLightjet 5000AdvantagesDisadvantagesComparisonsSummaryComments on Durst Lambda and ZBE Chromira (Nicholas Hellmuth, FLAAR and BGSU)Printing your Photographs on Silk.Professor Hellmuth explains how easy it is to printyour own photos onto pure silk, in your home or office.Nicholas lists which printers, what inks, andwhere to obtain the silk. Amaze your friends, relatives,and business associates when they jealouslylook at your photos printed onto silk.ContentsPrinting your Photographs on SilkPrinters for silkInks for printing on silkSummaryFor further informationWarningSources and Resources on the Internet


FLAAR REPORTSPreview of Photo Wide Format Printer Series7Resolution: How much DPI do you need for InkjetPrinting? New, May 2003.This report actually informs you the different requirementsfor thermal printheads (Canon, Encad, ColorSpan, andHP) vs piezo printheads (Epson, Mimaki, Mutoh, Roland).Professor Hellmuth also adds facts on what resolutionis required for RGB laser light imagers such as DurstLambda, LightJet. Dye sub dye transfer printers (wax orresin ribbons) are a different technology again, and requirea resolution which is not the same as inkjet. Everythingon resolution, for your scanner, for your digital camera, foryour printer, are all contained here.This report helps you how to understand the mumbo-jumboof DPI and Resolution• What DPI to scan at?• What DPI do you need to photograph at?• What DPI does your printer really need?Professor Helmuth cuts through some of the nonsense about 2880 dpi as well as analyzes the conceptof “apparent resolution.” We have noted a fair amount of misunderstanding of these terms, especiallyrelative to the Iris (apparent resolution of 1500 dpi), the ColorSpan in 12 color mode (apparent resolutionof 1800), and the LightJet and Lambda (apparent resolution of 4000 dpi).Learn the ploys manufacturers use to trick you into falling for their advertising claims. First, virtuallyno one uses 2880 dpi after their first attempt. Most commercial labs skip 1440 dpi as well (too slow,uses too much ink). The average user sticks with 720 dpi. Thus we have to smile when we see specstouting 2880 or 1440 dpi. It takes a Roland Hi-Fi Pro a precise two entire hours to do a full sized printat full 1440 dpi. In that same time the Hewlett-Packard 5500 would have filled the room with flawless1200x600 dpi prints, photo-realistic museum quality. We know because our research facility is on auniversity campus associated with two art museums on the other side of the campus.ContentsGeneral introduction to digital imagingresolutionResolution of a camera lens vs resolutionof a digital camera sensorWhere in the software do you handleOutput Resolution?Print resolution for desktop publishing(laser printers)Print resolution for solid ink printersPrint resolution for desktop digital photoprintersPrint resolution for dye sub printers,desktopPrint resolution for hybrid desktop printers,such as Fuji PictographyPrint resolution for large format dye subsuch as MatanPrint resolution for large format LED andlaser light digital imagersPrint resolution for inkjet printers: desktop,tabloid, and large formatPrint resolution for oil-based inkjet printersPrint resolution for grand format solvent inkprinters (Vutek, etc)Print resolution for electrostatic printersCalculating File Size: Translating Pixels toResolutionInterpolating UpInterpolating DownHow much resolution do you really need?Clever way to Damage your Digital ImagesFile compressionWhat camera can provide lots of dpi?A quick primer on digital cameras as input forwide formatWhat about software enlarging of images?Where some books cover pixels and resolution(also see all glossaries)Resources on the Internet which discussResolutionPictures showing resolution


FLAAR REPORTSPreview of Photo Wide Format Printer Series8Workflow for Digital Photography: from taking thepicture through enlarging the image with an inkjet orother digital printer. New, May 2003.Summary of lots of what you need to think about in doingthe original photography to sending the image throughsoftware to get it enlarged with an inkjet printer, Fuji Pictrography,Durst Lambda, LightJet, or other kind of digitalprinter.ContentsIntroductionColor Balance your MonitorDecide what Camera to UseDecide what Lens and Filter to UseDecide what Lighting to UseDecide what ISO to UseDecide what F-stop to UseDecide on Desired Plane of Focus and Depth of FieldDecide what Resolution to UseComposeDo White Balance or Gray BalanceWhite Point, Black PointDecide if you wish to Apply Color ManagementShootImagingAppendix A: Raw Image File FormatSources and Resources on the Internet


FLAAR REPORTSPreview of Photo Wide Format Printer Series9First Look at New Generation Photo-Quality Printers:HP DesignJet 30 and HP DesignJet 130The HP DesignJet 30 and HP DesignJet 130 were shownto the public for the first time at PMA trade show. FLAARwas in the HP booth as well as gathering information fromour extensive network of sources for learning more thanis in the basic specs. It will be a while until productionmodels are available to test. But common sense and apracticed eye allow us to dissect every word of the PRrelease, advertising, and specs. We have become adeptat this kind of analysis of Epson printers and in fairnessto all brands we need to apply the same scrutiny to HPprinters too.ContentsDye Ink and ProofingFast Color StabilityDye Ink and PhotographyColor ManagementMedia SelectionRIP SolutionsLongevityGloss DifferentialContinuous ToneComparative FactsThick and Rigid MaterialSummaryPlease NoteCiting and CreditingLegal noticeAdvisoryFactors influencing outputAcknowledgements


FLAAR REPORTSPreview of Photo Wide Format Printer Series10Wide Format Inkjet Printers for Commercial Photographyshould be a different make and model thanprinters for Fine Art PhotographyHelp, tips, ratings, comparative reviews, comments onwide format printers for portrait photography, productphotography, architectural photography, industrial photography,and other commercial photography.New January 2004.ContentsAerial photographyArchitectural photographyCommercial photographyNature photographyInkjet printers for portrait photographyScientific and medical photographyTravel photographySummaryFor further information


FLAAR REPORTSPreview of Photo Wide Format Printer Series11Digital Cameras Exhibited at PMA 2004.PMA is the largest photography trade show in NorthAmerica. PMA is about three times larger than Photo-Plus in New York. Professor Hellmuth spent 5 days atPMA and offers his commentary on what he saw andexperienced.Contents:IntroductionMedium Format Digital BacksMedium Format Cameras to hold the Digital BacksLarge Format digital backsLarge Format Cameras (to hold digital backs)Large Format Reprographic SystemPoint and Shoot Digital Cameras35mm SLR digital camerasQTVRFiltersCompactFlash Memory for Digital CamerasBatteries for Digital CamerasAccessoriesColor Management for Digital CamerasScannersBooksSterling PublishingAmherst MediaAmphoto Books


FLAAR REPORTSPreview of Photo Wide Format Printer Series12Wide Format Inkjet Printers Exhibited at PMA 2004Since more and more photographers are printing theirimages with inkjet instead of darkroom enlargers or RGBlaser light or LED imagers, it is logical that a photographytrade show such as PMA would feature lots of wide formatinkjet printers. Canon, HP, and Encad revealed new wideformat inkjet printers. Roland was absent, why? Lotsof tips, help, info, and behind the scenes tidbits that DrHellmuth is infamous for.The FLAAR Report on PMA is divided into two halves, thisone on printers, and another separate report on camerasand scanners.Contents:Inkjet PrintersEpsonRoland IncorporatedEncadCanonHewlett-PackardMutohMimakiGeneral ObservationsInksSolvent InkInkjet MediaRIPsColor management for inkjet printersAwards


FLAAR REPORTSPreview of Photo Wide Format Printer Series13Conclusions: Why this Series of Reports is a Savior to Satisfy your NeedsThe reason you can learn from FLAAR reports is because every statement in Nicholas Hellmuth’s report onPhotokina, PMA, and on PhotoPlus Expo tradeshows is based on a wide range of experience with large formatinkjet printers to achieve exhibit quality.• What class of camera is optimal for the kind of photography I do:o Zoom-lens camera, 3 to 8 megapixelso 35mm SLR, 6 to 13 megapixelso medium format, 6 to 22 megapixelso large format, individual photos up to 450 MB, or larger in pano mode.o or do I need more than one format (we actually use all three).• What lens, back, filter, tripod, or accessory iso The most practicalo The best designed and constructed for ease of useo Is a good value for its priceo Will last for years and then still have resale valueo Will do its job effectively and allow me to concentrate on the shoot.Which lighting that I am already used to from traditional photographyo Still works with digital cameraso Does not function whatsoever with tri-linear scan backsooWould be a disaster with film but is surprisingly the best choice for digitalI never heard about HQI and HDI lighting before? Why is this turning out to be the certifiedkinds of lighting that some museums and libraries will accept?Since Nicholas is a professional photographer who exhibits frequently, you get his infamous pithy commentson pros and cons of each system. Two inkjet printer manufacturers have been hyping their printers as offeringcontinuous tone! They attempt to lure you into buying their printers instead of a Lambda or LightJet.FLAAR can provide independent documentation since obviously we do not sell either system. But we feel itwould be sad for you to make a purchase based on misrepresentation of the reality of inkjet printing, not tomention the true facts about what is involved if you own a LightJet or Lambda. Each system has its pros andcons. Neither is perfect yet each has many benefits. Before you purchase, you might want to learn from anoutside source such as FLAAR.Even though we are a photography-oriented institute, we do not have a LightJet, Lambda, nor a ZBE Chromirawide format digital photo printer. But we do have 18 inkjet printers, so this suggests there is something aboutthese printers that is advantageous? Our reports transmit all this information, all the tips, all the help, to you.If you prefer to buy both the Giclee SERIES and also the Photo SERIES the two are available as a combinedSET at discounted price.If you are a photo-journalist, portrait photographer, product photographer you should select the PhotographySERIES. If you intend to reproduce your photos on canvas, on watercolor paper, or as giclees on photo-baseinkjet media, then we recommend you select the Giclee SERIES.If you are either, and wish to print giclee quality photographs, then buy the combination SET. SETs are describedat the end of Series.IF YOU WISHTO ACQUIRE THIS SERIESGO TO THIS LINKwww.wide-format-printers.orgwww.digital-photography.orgwww.laser-printer-reviews.orgwww.fineartgicleeprinters.orgwww.flatbed-scanner-review.orgwww.cameras-scanners-flaar.orgC L I C K H E R E T OVIEW EACH FLAARNETWORK SITEwww.large-format-printers.orgwww.FLAAR.orgwww.ctpid.ufm.edu.gtwww.wide-format-printers.NETPlease realize that all reports are in Adobe Acrobat PDF format. The reader software is free from www.adobe.com/products/acrobat/readstep2.html.PDF files are intended to be read on your computer monitor. Naturally you can print them if you wish, but if the photographic images within the reportswere high enough dpinaturally in full color. FLAAR itself makes the files available only in PDF format because that is the international standard. We have no mechanism to printthem out and mail them.Obviously if you have dhandle a basic PDF file.Proprietary rights notice © FLAAR NETWORK 2002; first issued August 2003, updated September 2003, last updated April 2004


Learn Digital Photography OnlineRegistration now being accepted for Dr. Nicholas Hellmuth’s next online digitalphotography course, Autumn 2004Take either of the following courses without ever setting foot inside a classroom.Name:• DP 101 - Achieving Quality in Digital PhotographyThis course will develop your creativity and show you how to use digital imaging to produceastonishing images.• DP 201 - Taking Digital Photography to the Next LevelThis is a production-oriented course that will teach you to produce digital images thatwill help you win exhibits, earn a living as a professional, and in general, create imagesthat make an impact.Request more informationSoc Sec No.(or passport number if outside USA*)Home AddressStateDate of birthCityZipCountryOrganizationBusiness AddressStateBusiness phoneHome phoneRegistration:CityZipFaxEmailCountryDP 101 Achieving Quality in Digital Photography $695.00Session 1: Sept 1 - Oct 8, 2004DP 201 Taking Digital Photography to the Next Level $795.00Session 1: Oct 18 - Dec 3, 2004Both Courses (Save $295 when you enroll now!) $1195.00Send me information on future classesMethod of Payment:Check (payable to BGSU)Purchase Order #Credit CardEasy Ways to Register for the On-Line CourseCall: 419-372-8181or toll-free 877-650-8156Fax: 419-372-8667Mail: Continuing Education,International & SummerPrograms40 College ParkBowling Green State UniversityBowling Green, OH 43403 USACard No.Refunds are subject to BGSU cancellation polices.Exp. DateYou can register at any time but once class isfilled we can accept no more registrations, so ithelps to register today.KEYCODE11030602• To comply with the Hope Scholarship and Lifelong Learning Tax Credit legislation, BGSU now requires all credit and noncredit students from the USA to supplytheir Social Security number when registering for classes. A Social Security number is not required for students residing outside the USA. These studentsshould substitute a passport or equivalent number.Bowling Green State University is on EO/AA employer and educator.


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