July 16, 2014
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I have given up printing in the office or at home, the simple economics of it didn’t work out. The printers and paper were manageable but the cost of the inks, particularly when the printer wasn’t used continuously and so needed regular head cleaning, proved uneconomic. If you can justify regular use and enjoy the process this article will advise you as to the best printer to buy
Go large with your photo printing, right on your own desktop. We test
six leading models to find the best A3 and A3+ printers for photographers.
Regular A4 photo printers are compact and convenient but, if you want a picture to frame and hang on the wall, the maximum size of their output leaves a lot to be desired.
By upgrading to an A3+ printer you can generate photo prints of up to 19×13 inches in size. A large print has much more wow factor, while you still have full control over the printing process and retain the relative immediacy of creating prints on your own desktop, without having to upload images and wait for photo prints to be delivered in the post.
Designs differ when it comes to large-format printers. Some use dye-based inks, which typically give the smoothest output on glossy paper.
Pigment-based inks are more robust and a better choice for matte media. Another consideration is whether you only want to make colour prints or if you’re also keen on top quality black-and-white photo output. READ MORE HERE
June 12, 2011
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My experience of this week may not be typical but it is the source of huge frustration.
A couple of years ago I bought a HP Photosmart Pro B8850 printer. In part I bought this because the heads are changeable so I thought if they got blocked I could just replace them easily. Blocked heads were a continual problem I had with a photo printer from another main manufacturer.
In the first year my printer developed a fault and under guarantee HP replaced at no cost, fantastic service, that one also developed a fault and again replaced at no cost. Finally I thought a major manufacturer who understood service.
The machine is now out of guarantee and has developed a fault. 2 days of calls to HP, being directed to one number which directed me back to the original number, talking to seemingly nice people somewhere in the north of England called Steve, David, Tracey (I think, she was a bit hard to understand), there were others but I gave up the will to live in their fantasy world of service, who were totally unable to help. It seems that if you have a HP photo printer aimed at professional photographers or serious home users and your printer has a problem out of guarantee no one will help. HP do not service these printers, completely wipe their hands of any responsibility, won’t even give advice as to how or where you might get help to repair your printer, they will give you numbers of companies that when you call them say they have never repaired HP printers, just lap tops. HP are prepared to sell you software telephone service starting at £15.99 but if you know the problem is hardware forget it.
I did the obvious, try to find a third party that would repair my machine, hours of internet searching and telephone calls determined that no one in the UK will touch the Photosmart Pro printer range. One company said they did not do so because HP do not make spare parts for the range, I don’t know if this is correct but it did seem to chime with my fruitless searching. If anyone out there knows where I can get my machine sorted please let me know however I don’t think such places exist. The replacement machines I had during the guarantee period came from Hungary so maybe I have to take my printer on holiday.
So what have I learned? Recognise that a printer is designed to be junked when it fails. And make sure in future that when I buy an electronic consumable recognise that it is just that and be prepared to throw it away when it goes wrong or maybe buy the extended warranties offered so that they continue to give me new ones when the original fails, oh and don’t buy HP ever again.