3880 Linearization Questions

I’ve set up a new 3880 and have tested it successfully with Epson inks. I ran flush fluid through to make sure all the Epson inks were vanquished (till the nozzle checks showed no signs of color other than the red of the flush). I’ve recharged it with Piezography inks and tested it (with the lineariztion checker) to see if it is producing linear prints, which it is not in some cases.

So, what I did was to check both the custom curves that Inkjet Mall made for my original 3880 and the MPS curves from the glossy curves library. I tested JC5 and Epson Exhibition Fiber. They yield quite different results. Here’s a link to the linearization screen shots:

For the EPexFiber, both curves seem to my untrained eye to make unacceptably dark greyscale ramps. On JC5, the MPS curve looks pretty good (tell me if you disagree), and the custom curve seems to be too dark.

Question: Is this a curves issue, or some other issue? I’ve done lots of shaking of the carts and inks in bottles before starting on the most recent part of this adventure.

If we think it’s an ink issue, I’ll buy a new set of inks - these are three years old. If it’s a curves issue, I’ll make new targets and have new curves made. I could also do both.

If I’m totally off, let me know.


Hi Mark~

I typed the message below, then while re-reading prior to sending, thought of something else that could be a huge factor- are you printing form Mac or PC? If Mac, what operating system version, and are you printing from Photoshop or the QTR Print Tool? I know printing from Photoshop on newer Mac OS will cause overly dark output, therefore printing from the QTR print Tool is the best workflow for printing Piezography from Mac.

All your linearizations show overly dark output, though the “MPS-Type 5” output is the best of the four, it is still slightly too dark. I opened your 3880 custom MPS curves, as well as several others I have made for other customers over the years. I attached a screen capture showing several 3800/3880 Type 5 curves I have made for different customers, as you can see they are all very similar, but have differences due to the variances between printers, printing conditions, ink age and condition (if the carts haven’t been agitated and printer regularly used to maintain in-suspension pigment, then the output density of the inks is effected, which effects the target print out and resulting curve), etc…
The darkness of the output from this newer 3880 could be caused by a number of factors, including how different machines print and the age/condition of the printer, as well as the age of the inks you’re using and printing environment conditions. If the ink you used to fill these carts was from older bottles that had been used in the past, depending on if they were well agitated for in-suspension pigment when ink was drawn out previously, and the storage conditions can effect the remaining ink three years later. Without knowing the exact reason why your output is overly dark from this new printer, you can either have new custom curves made for your current printer (or maybe start with one to try before making more), and/or try installing fresh inks to see if you get more accurate results with the existing curves.

Please let me know what you decide, and how I can help.
Best regards~ Dana :slight_smile:

Thanks for the very detailed response.
I’m using QTR print tool on a Mac running 10.6.8 - no color management, the curves as indicated, 2880, uni-directional, installed ink (which is photo black).
I think, based on your responses, that I’ll start with a new set of inks and have a new custom profile made for the printer. There are too many variables to isolate one or another as the cause of this dark printing effect.
I’ll send the requisite target to you as soon as my new inks arrive.

Thanks for the additional information. Your plan sounds good to remove all the variables and get the very best results, I will be expecting your targets after you have installed the fresh inks.
Please let me know if you have questions, or if there’s anything else I can help you with.

All the best~ Dana :slight_smile: