The joys of a new printer

31st May 2014
I have finally given up on my old Epson 3800. Every time I went to print I had to wrestle with a clogged Magenta nozzle for an increasingly longer time. A quick bit of research turned up the Epson 3880 as the ideal replacement. It seems that Epson has the game sewn up. Canon and HP are very much also-rans in this game.

Getting the new printer was the easy part. I have been using ColorBurst RIP for a few years, and was very happy with it. Unfortunately, for whatever reason, it is no longer supported and I couldn't get the files to get me started on the 3880. Enter ColorBurst Overdriveas my printing program of choice. I print on about seven or eight different papers, and had my own profiles for each one. I prefer to build my own rather than use the generic profiles. I bought the gear to build profiles years ago so it's not a big deal, except that I haven't done it for years.

In the meantime, the profiling software has changed so I am now faced with the task of building profiles for a new printer with new software. It has come as a bit of a surprise to me that so much had changed.

I have read lots of books on colour management and printing along the way, but they all stop short at the point where you learn the secret bits that let you improve on, or validate the profile that you have built. I really wanted to be able to get a better idea of what I could do and how I could validate my profiles. I felt that a bit of research, up front, was in order, given that I had to rebuild all my profiles.

A little Googling led me to Native Digital in the UK. They have a number of articles on colour management. Here's a link to the one on printer profiling: Advanced Inkjet Profiling with i1 Profiler. I learnt more from this article than I have from any other source. Even better, when I had some trouble with i1Profiler, Rob Griffith was happy to help out with suggestions. If I lived in the UK, I would go to these guys for anything to do with colour management.

I never thought that changing my printer was going to involve so many changes. I shouldn't be surprised.

Now that I have done a couple of prints, I have discovered that my new setup produces slightly different results to the old setup. I have to reprint a few images that I had set up ready to go on the 3800. They aren't right, and need some rework to make them look the way that I want. I can hardly wait to get this sorted out and get back to a nicely profiled life.

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