Dye-Based Inks for R3000

I was wondering, has anyone here used dye-based inks in the R3000? Not the bargain inks, but high-quality photo inks? I ask because of all the problems that the pigment inks have been causing—particularly, the issue of clogging dampers. I would relly like to hear what folks have to say on this, both positive and negative. Thanx.

We have a high quality dye ink set for the R3000, called Ink Thrift Pro. The issue of particle build up in the dampers isn’t specific to the R3000 printer, but happens with any pro model printer with internal ink lines and dampers. Pigment settling can be avoided with regular agitation of ink cartridges and regular use of the printer. Letting a printer sit for long periods of time with pigment ink installed will cause settling of ink in both carts and the printer’s internal ink system, leading to faster than normal build up in the dampers, as well as effect the ink density/color output and can also cause clogging.

Dye inks are different from pigment inks in many ways, including viscosity, vibrancy, water-fastness and light-fastness/fade. Dye inks aren’t thick with particles like pigment inks, therefore you don’t have particle build up in dampers like with pigment inks- but, prints with dye inks don’t last as long as pigment prints, which is a HUGE consideration depending on your printing needs.

I hope this helps.
Best regards~ Dana

Thanks Dana. Dye inks are something that I am considering, if the pigment damper issue continues to be a problem. First though, I think i will try the Cone pigment inks, as I have heard that they are more damper friendly.

On the question of pigment settling, how often should I remove the carts and shake them? How long and vigorous should the shaking be—slow and methodical, like developing a roll of film, or faster, like a spray can? I use the printer regularly. I just don’t make that many prints (on average, about 2 or 3 a week). So, some inks may sit longer than others.

Yes, I recommend trying our ConeColor pigment inks before moving to dye.
We recommend shaking ink carts about every other week, using the printer at least once a week, and always shaking ink bottles before filling/refilling carts. My routine is to shake the ink carts in our production printers every week (it’s easier to keep track of when it was last done, if I do it every Monday). I shake like a spray can to make sure the pigment is in suspension, then check to make sure the exit channel or chamber contains ink like it should, and reinstall carts, but wait about 10 minutes before printing, to allow ink to settle.

I hope this helps.
Best regards and happy printing~ Dana :slight_smile:

Thanks Dana.


You are very welcome! :slight_smile:

I was interested to hear that you shake the ink like a spray paint can. I’ve always been a bit more ginger; up-ending the carts and bottles several times, but not vigorously shaking them as you seem to describe, to avoid beating air into the ink. I guess you avoid that by letting them sit for a few minutes after. People have different definitions of “shake”, so you may want to add more detail to the instructions in this regard!

I rarely shook the Epson factory carts. Somehow, every time I did, they would quit working—giving the dreaded “Printer does not recognize cartridge”. Frustrating! Was there a reason for this? Or, was it really just a very long and improbable set of coincidences? And no, I did not touch the chip, while I was shaking.

I’ve resisted taking the cartridges out to shake them because I’ve heard there is some risk to getting air in the lines. Am I being overly paranoid or is there something I should do to reduce or eliminate the risk? Or is the risk so small that I have nothing to worry about?

I am referring to an R3000 with Cone pigment ink.


tjncooke: Yes, I shake ink bottles and carts pretty hard, then let them sit for a few minutes before filling carts or using the printer.

anachronon: All pigment ink settles when left sitting still, even Epson ink. It’s less obvious visually when you have settled color inks, since there are SO many colors, but with Piezography ink it can be very obvious since B&W prints are made of density, which is easier to see a change in. Epson instructs customers to shake carts before use, and use within 6 mo- this saves them from recommending customers shake ink to keep it in suspension, and 6 mo time period saves them from issues due to older or settled ink- they’ll just tell you to get new ink. We have learned pigment ink settles, but it can be used safely for about two years after it’s made (and longer than 6mo after installing into the printer)- as long as carts are regularly agitated and the printer is regularly used to maintain consistent results.
Cartridge recognition is controlled by the cartridge chips and printer’s chip sensors, so if the Epson carts stopped being recognized after removing + shaking, then I’m not sure what caused this… strange.

LarryB: Yes, you may get a tiny air bubble when carts are removed, though that amount of air shouldn’t be enough to effect/restrict flow like large sections of air will. Maybe it would be best to remove + shake carts with the printer OFF, so there’s no suction or pressure on the ink lines (?)

Best regards and happy printing to all~ Dana :slight_smile: