Print Ink Separation Image thru QTR Calibration Mode

The QuadTone RIP is used for printing B&W images, and is how most users print with Piezography ink. QTR is a $50 shareware program, available for download from The Ink Separation image included in the QTR download can be printed thru QTR’s Calibration Mode to easily check ink shade/color placement, to verify or check if all positions are printing, or to flush an individual channel. This is very helpful to quickly verify inks are installed in the correct positions and printing well. It is also a great way to flush an individual channel without wasting ink in all the other positions as well.
The QTR Print Tool is necessary when printing from Mac 10.6.8 or higher, for accurate output (other printing applications have screwed up color management that will produce poor Piezography output).

Print Inkseparation Image Using QTR Calibration Mode:
Printing the inkseparation image thru QTR’s Calibration Mode will print strips of pure ink from each channel. This is an easy way to check ink shade/color placement and density.

The inkseparation files can be found in the followimng locations:
MAC: Applications> QuadToneRIP> CurveDesign> Images folder. The location for Windows is Program Files> QuadTone RIP>
Windows: C:/ Program Files/ QuadTone RIP/ bin

NOTE: There are different inkeparation images depending on the printer model you’re using. “6” for 6-color printers, “inkseparation” for 7-color printers, “8” for 8-color printers, and “10” for 10-color printers. Be sure to select the correct image for the printer model you’re using.


  1. Open the QuadTone RIP program, select your printer and paper size
  2. Select Tools> Options> Calibration Mode, which will open the inkseparation image file.
  3. Ink Limit: 100% and Resolution either 1440 or 2880dpi then print


  1. Open the “inkseparation” file in QTR Print Tool
  2. Select “NO Color Management” in the Print Tool window
  3. Select your K7 printer model, and paper size, then push print
  4. In the QuadTone RIP window- select Calibration Mode, Ink Limit: 100% and Resolution either 1440 or 2880dpi

The Piezography K7 Ink Separation-8 printout from an 8-color K3 model printer should look like this, note the obvious density differences between each ink shade:

©Copyright Vermont PhotoInkjet, LLC All Rights Reserved. No parts of this can be reproduced without written permission.

Do you have a “correct” printout image so we can compare our result? I printed out the image but not sure how to evaluate the result…


Hi Darin~ We generally print on Hahnemuhle Photo Rag or Epson Enhanced Matte papers to evaluate ink tone and density, to compare to past prints and measurements to ensure our output is correct before making production prints.

We have five 7880/9880 printers, each set up with it’s own Piezography ink tone (all set up with Piezography 2 for matte and gloss printing abilities). Each has it’s own envelope attached to the side, which contain service/use history notes, and base prints to use for comparison. When the printers were first set up with Piezography ink, I printed the Ink Separation image and measured each ink strip (comparing to other prints, and past data I have collected to ensure full/accurate output), which were kept and used as reference over the years. After confirming the correct/stable base of each printer, I maintain use/service notes, and keep each printer updated with dates to track when each machine was last used and had accurate output. If a printer goes about two weeks or longer without use, I make a test print to check the output and make sure everything is correct before making production proofs or final prints. This workflow ensures optimal and consistent output.

Would it be helpful if I scanned and posted an Ink Separation print that I made for you to see what it should look like?

~Dana :slight_smile:

"It is also a great way to flush an individual channel without wasting ink in all the other positions as well. " How do you flush an individual channel? There don’t seem to be any instructions on this page or in the QTR/Print Tool manuals.

You could also use the QTR curve creation tools to create a curve that prints using only the channel you want to flush, and then print (not in calibration mode) a black patch using that custom curve. But the approach in the linked article saves you the trouble of creating a bunch of custom curves, and is now my preferred approach.