Printing Troubles

By Thalin
Feb 17, 2007
  1. I'm currently working through printing all my landscape photographs out on professional DuraBrite photo paper, using my Epson C84 Photo Edition, yet I am having serious problems with my printouts which has got continually worse recently, however it dosn't seem to do it as much, if at all when plain paper is used. Here is what I mean -

    This is on the Durabrite photo paper, best quality, and borderless setting.
    As you can see, I am getting these constant fuzzy bands throughout my printouts, and it is most evidant in blue printouts, despite running cleaning utilities to clean print heads, etc, which drains absolutely loads of ink. What do you think is causing this problem?

    If I was to get a new photo printer that dosn't drain ink *cough* Epson, does anyone have any recommendations? Remember that I am going to be using this mainly for high quality photo printouts, and although I have my eyes on the higher-end models, they are around the 200-300 pound mark which is simply too much.
    Do all Epson printers have the problem of constant head clogging, ink draining etc? I heard Canon have this problem a lot less, but instead have shorter 'lifespan' for the printouts. Is this true?

    I have my eyes on a recent printer around the 100 pound mark from good old - the Canon Pixma iP5300 Printer
    Obviously being new (about a few months old) am I looking to be paying more for inks? There are hardly any reviews for this product, but other models in the range have been reviewed and they are good reviews too, but i'm undecided about Epson or Canon, which is why I need your help.

    OK, well I can confirm i'm starting to see the fuzzy bands on normal paper too, and not just photo paper.
  2. Nodsu

    Nodsu TS Rookie Posts: 5,837   +6

    Try re-doing the head alignment procedure?
  3. zipperman

    zipperman TS Rookie Posts: 1,179   +7

    No one else will see exactly what you see as our video settings could be different and other reasons like a different monitor..
    But 1 answer i have is, Are you setting your options of paper type and size ?
    I presume you set it to Landscape.
    I have HP so i can't add much more on useing your options.
    Try this though : Do a Test print.
    Another test is create 4 solid , 2 inch squares,Red,Green,Blue and Yellow and
    see if the results look the same as the screen.

    Your picture looks great on my system.
    But you can't attach the printed picture.
  4. Thalin

    Thalin TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 60

    Nodsu, I have tried many times to do the alignment procedure, and every time there is atleast one box with lines in, then I select the one with less lines and re-do the process, which is meant to get rid of these lines for good, yet there is either another box that ends up having lines in, or it's more than it was before.

    And Zipperman, I can't believe you cant see the light bands going through the page :s I have my paper set to portrait, sometimes the bands are fainter than others, but for the most part, they are very obvious. I don't understand your last sentence, do you want me to attach the picture to my post?
  5. zipperman

    zipperman TS Rookie Posts: 1,179   +7


    What you attached is the jpg or other ext.
    So what you print on paper,you cant show by posting that.
    But it looks ok.
    The ? i'm asking is do you see on paper,what you see on screen and click print.? I see no fuzzy bands,just natures water and sky.
    How old is this printer ?
  6. Thalin

    Thalin TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 60

    I'm still not sure what you mean, although the image that is attached is the scanned printout.

    And no, the bands that are :) there, were not there on the image itself.

    What's strange is that i'm printing out a load of pictures now on normal paper on best quality setting, and they are coming out fine, yet 7-8 prints ago the fuzzy lines were appearing. So it has periods of the fuzziness and then it's fine, although almost all my a4 photo paper printouts do have the fuzzy bands.
  7. raybay

    raybay TS Evangelist Posts: 7,241   +9

    Your descriptions of the results from your C84 are typical of the permanently failed units we see in our shop.
    We can no longer recommend Epson, Canon, Lexmark, Compaq, nor Dell printers... nor most of the HP Officejets... HP Photosmarts still seem to be reliable, as do the Brother, Samsung, Konica Minolta, and Fujitsu.
  8. zipperman

    zipperman TS Rookie Posts: 1,179   +7

    What i see here

    I cannot see what you see on a piece of paper.
    Is that hard to figure ?
    I cannot see anything the same way you do on your computer.
    You seemed to have accepted the scanning preview,right ?
    Only you can see what is printed badly.Only you can make sure all your options are right for printing this type and size.
    Are the latest scans ? Have you cleaned the scanner glass lately ?
    Did you try a R G B Y test ? At least comment.Thats how i test mine.
    You didn't reply to how old the printer is,maybe its time for a new one.
    What are you printing from ?
    Try HP.
  9. Thalin

    Thalin TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 60

    No it's not hard to figure, I just thought myself that they were quite obvious, but I understand what you say about people's monitors being different. And thanks Rayboy, it's nice in a way to know I am not alone, I was considering one of the Canon Pixma IP5300, but your advice has turned me away.

    Oh dear...
  10. Nodsu

    Nodsu TS Rookie Posts: 5,837   +6

    Don't mind zipperman.. He seems to have serious problems with reading the threads he replies to..

    Zipperman: the attached picture is a scan of the (bad) printout and I'm sure everyone can see the vertical lines on the picture (which represents the paper that came out of the printer).
  11. Thalin

    Thalin TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 60

    Thanks Nodsu.

    I'm thinking I may as well buy a new printer. It has had loads of problems with ink draining, clogged nozels after like a day of no use etc.

    Does anyone have any recommendations for a good photo printer?
  12. Nodsu

    Nodsu TS Rookie Posts: 5,837   +6

    What is your budget? I'd say anything over $1000 will probably be "good" :D
  13. Thalin

    Thalin TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 60

    Well around 100 pounds would be good, if for that price I can get something good like the , I don't want to spend any more money on a printer that will see the same quality as that!

    For a ridiculous 35 pounds per set of ink cartridges though, it's not really meeting my goals of a good running price.

    Looks like i'm going for the Pixma 6700D unless someone can sway me otherwise. I've read a review that the text quality isn't great, which isn't a major thing for me, and the 5300D is just a bit sharper in photos, but there are so many more reviews for the 6700D that make me think it's the better way to go.

    If I was to get the 5300 or 6700D, does anyone know which is the better option? From what i've gathered, the 6700D has 6 ink tanks, compared to the 5300's 4, so does this mean better quality, but more expensive?
    The 6700D has many more reviews than 5300 which has hardly any, and they are both good photo printers by the looks of things, although the text quality on 6700D is meant to be poor, and that of the 5300 is much better, and the photos are apparently a bit sharper.

    So basically, if I was to get one of these, which would be better? Or maybe there's a better photo printer, maybe even Epson, for around the same price?
  14. Thalin

    Thalin TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 60

    Sorry to use the reply button rather than the edit button, but the thread is starting to disappear down the page and I could really do with getting a new printer soon, so I could do with the advice.

    I think I am pretty much decided on the Pixma 6700D, but wondered if anyone had any experience with it, and what they felt about it, considering I will be using it for professional looking photo printing. I have considered the Epson R800 too, but it's double the price, as are the inks, and i'm thinking that considering it's about 3 years old now anyway, i'm likely to see the same results, for my needs atleast, with the 6700D which is about 5-6 months old, correct?
  15. raybay

    raybay TS Evangelist Posts: 7,241   +9

    Consider availability of ink for the Pixma 6700D. Are you able to obtain it in a reasonable time frame.
    The Epson R800 has a high failure rate after the first year... and no parts availability except in England
  16. zipperman

    zipperman TS Rookie Posts: 1,179   +7

    My suggestions

    I've always used HP and been very satisfied.It has great toll free tech support for a while.
    But once i thought i'd try a 3 color cartridge
    from xerox printers.
    I don't recommend these if there still around.You can't tell which one is dry and replacements are "very expensive"
  17. Tedster

    Tedster Techspot old timer..... Posts: 6,000   +15

    You probably need to either clean or replace the print heads. Often with inkjet printers the heads become partially clogged. You can try soaking the head in isopropyl (rubbing) alchohol overnight and cleaning the ends with a Q-tip. If your printer has a combined head and ink cartridge, it will require complete replacement. If not, you can try to clean first, then replace if it doesn't work.

    Automatic electronic cleaning doesn't always work with inkjets as severely plugged pores on the head won't clear out. So if your printer software doesn't successfully auto-clean, you'll need to clean it with alcohol or replace the head completely.

    Often replacing the head is almost as expensive as buying a new printer. But you can get replacement heads or salvage printers on ebay all the time. I know - I've sold and bought some.

    To reduce severe head plugging, turn off your printer when not in use and auto-clean regularly. Ink that sits for a long time will dry out in the head and plug the micro-pores.
    good luck.
  18. Thalin

    Thalin TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 60

    Thanks for the help, but I think i'll be going ahead with the 6700D, and i'll pass my current printer on to my sister. One question though, i've heard great things about Canon Photo Paper Pro, although there are two kinds on amazon, and I don't see any difference -

    The second states it has borderless printing, which I will need, but why can't the first do borderless printing too?
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