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Old 08-03-2006, 02:42 PM   #1
Steve Rindsberg
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Default Color laser printers

My little Epson inkspitter (c84) has pretty much died. Nice beat, dances well but no ink hits the paper. Not useful. Since I've still got some carts left, I figured I'd just get another but no such luck, they've gone to the c88, which uses different carts.

So I'm looking at the current crop of HP laser printers instead. The economics are certainly weird, when you can almost get a new printer, complete with full carts, for the price of the carts alone, but they all seem to be that way. Nobody ever called inkjet ink cheap either. ;-)

HP seems to offer a reasonable blend of size/duplexing/PS emulation/network connectibility in a sub $1k printer (several of them, in fact).

But I wonder about photo quality. I don't really need or expect it to match the best I can get out of even the humble little Epson. Mostly I just print the occasional snapshot to give to friends or tack on the wall.

The main usage would be the occasional business brochure, misc labels/cards and the annual Christmas card run. All of which the Epson did a nice job of as well.

Am I nuts not to just get the C88 and some more ink and find a friend who can use the old carts? Or does the laserjet make sense?

   
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Old 08-03-2006, 03:36 PM   #2
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Default Full cartridges?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Rindsberg
So I'm looking at the current crop of HP laser printers instead. The economics are certainly weird, when you can almost get a new printer, complete with full carts, for the price of the carts alone, but they all seem to be that way. Nobody ever called inkjet ink cheap either. ;-)
Steve,

Be careful of the cartridges that come with new printers. Some are not what they seem to be.

I recently looked into a new HP B&W printer for a client, and discovered that the same model from Staples or OfficeMax came with a regular sized cartridge, but that same model could be ordered direct from HP with a larger sized cartridge, at a significantly lower price, and extra cartridges were cheaper from them too, if ordered with the printer. Client saved about $200 by getting the larger cartridges and a cheaper printer price direct from HP.

Check out the details with the HP direct telephone line before deciding on what to get.
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Old 08-03-2006, 05:52 PM   #3
Hugh Wyn Griffith
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Rindsberg
... So I'm looking at the current crop of HP laser printers instead. The economics are certainly weird, when you can almost get a new printer, complete with full carts, for the price of the carts alone, but they all seem to be that way. Nobody ever called inkjet ink cheap either. ;-)

HP seems to offer a reasonable blend of size/duplexing/PS emulation/network connectibility in a sub $1k printer (several of them, in fact).
<< HP seems to offer a reasonable blend of size/duplexing/PS emulation/network connectibility in a sub $1k printer >>

Have you also considered the ppm?

Do check out the HP Photosmart 8259 inkjet which uses the newish Vivera inks -- 6 individual color tanks that are stationary while the jets move! -- with manual duplexing (very user friendly that shows you each time which way to pick up and turn the paper after printing one side). It has a very interesting ink-saving cleaning method that recycles the ink used in an unusual way.

There's a very detailed review of it at Photo-i

You can get them for about $120 if you look around and it spits out B&W and does color reasonably quickly depending on the size.

The photo quality is dazzling and you could even get it and a decent B&W automatic duplexing laser for well under the $1000 you mention.

I have the PS8250 and the LJ 2200D (now the 2420D)

   
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Old 08-03-2006, 09:03 PM   #4
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One of my clients has a fairly recent HP Color LaserJet. One generation behind the current models. I do not much like the output for photos. And a couple of clients have had Epson C8x printers. All died in the fashion you describe in much less time than seems reasonable. I'd look seriously at the HP inkjet if photo quality is a serious consideration. About six months ago I bought the Epson R800 only for photo output. My HP1320 gets all my daily output. The Epson is only turned on when I need color.
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Old 08-03-2006, 11:25 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Rindsberg
So I'm looking at the current crop of HP laser printers instead.
I bought an HP2605dn a few weeks ago and it produces very impressive output. I chose that model because it contains a duplexer, network card and Postscript clone.

Photographs look pretty good on ordinary photocopy paper although I wouldn't want to frame them. I suspect the quality would improve if I used a higher quality paper but I've not tried that yet.

I guess the acid test would be to take a known image file around the shops and ask for sample prints - if dealers in the US still offer that sort of service (you'd be hard pressed to find any that would do it this side of the pond).

   
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Old 08-04-2006, 12:51 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Ridsberg
My little Epson inkspitter (c84) has pretty much died. Nice beat, dances well but no ink hits the paper.
Sometimes it's possible to clean the heads - with a lot of patience, and lots of "cleaning" print cycles. A friend of mine was able to do so with a printer I'd given up and I gave to him (since his own actually had died).

Whether you think that effort is worth it, is up to you, of course. But if it otherwise still functions mechanically, there's achance.

   
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Old 08-04-2006, 07:14 PM   #7
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Good info .. thanks. Apparently the ones I'm looking at come with full carts rather than those awful starter ones.

Which leads to the odd situation where the low-end version of the printer costs $XXX and a full set of carts costs only slightly less. One site (only slightly tongue in cheek ... I hope that's where it was) suggested tossing the printer and buying a new one when the carts run out.

   
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Old 08-04-2006, 07:16 PM   #8
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PPM isn't really too big a consideration in this case. Anything's going to be far faster than the Epsie C84. And I've already got a nice little B/W laser printer that duplexes (HP 1320 ... I'm pleased enough with it that HP's atop my list for color lasers).

I'll have a peek at the others you suggest, though ... thanks!

   
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Old 08-04-2006, 07:20 PM   #9
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Ah, I stumbled across the 2605 on HP's site ... hadn't seen one in the flesh, but it certainly looked like a VERY good fit.

   
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Old 08-04-2006, 07:22 PM   #10
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I've run the head-cleaning procedure again and again ... it actually seemed to get worse each time. I'll still *have* to take it apart to see if I can fix the other common Epson-killing problem, a small hose that gets disconnected internally. Can't stand the idea of just tossing it out while it's still in (otherwise) good mechanical condition.

But I want to work out what to trot out and buy IF that doesn't work.

[Besides, the occasional "what should I buy" printer discussion makes for an interesting thread.]

   
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