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jim10219
12-Sep-2017, 20:02
I have an Epson 9880 and have some profiles I made for it for various papers. It's usually fairly accurate with its colors, but today I made a 48x32 print and the colors were very different from an identical, smaller 8x12 print I made both earlier and later. The image is the same image. The color profiles are the same, same paper, same printer, same file (just resized), done through the same computer using all of the same settings and software.

I printed the smaller file first to test it and liked what saw, so I blew it up and reprinted it and the turquoise sky came out magenta, the blacks came out darker, and yellows more intense. Then I took that enlarged file and shrank it back down, and got the colors I liked again, without making any other changes other than the size. Has anyone else experienced this issue, or have any ideas as to what could be causing it? I'm stumped.

Ken Lee
13-Sep-2017, 04:25
Did you agitate your ink cartridges before starting up the printer ? Ink settles over time and if you haven't made any prints recently you may get rather different results.

Perhaps one of your nozzles is clogged: a cleaning cycle/head adjustment is always a good idea before wasting paper.

Jim Jones
13-Sep-2017, 05:33
Perhaps different lots of paper in the different sizes can cause some shift in colors.

xkaes
13-Sep-2017, 06:02
I thought that sort of thing only happened in a REAL darkroom. Just one more reason -- for ME -- not to go down the digital/non-darkroom route, since it won't solve THAT problem.

jim10219
13-Sep-2017, 06:40
Thanks for the suggestions, but I've been printing a bunch this week, including several before and after that one and all of the others came out fine. I also ran a nozzle check before (because I hate to waste ink on such a large print) and after (because I had problems) and both showed up fine. Plus I usually see banding, especially in the blacks when there's a nozzle clog. Also, I've been printing on the same roll of paper. So the prints that came out fine were printed on the same roll.

I printed these from Photoshop and selected "Printer manages colors" and made sure the proper profile was selected in the Windows 10 settings. Is it possible that due to the large size of the file that the profile wasn't applied? I did have an issue with it dropping out on larger prints without giving any error messages in the past and had to turn off "Enable Advanced Printing Features" in the Windows 10 printer settings. But after turning that option off, it printed without issue, and the colors came out fine (and still do at smaller sizes).

I'm using 42" roll paper, and usually print 4-5 8x10's at a time, lined up next to each other to conserve paper. I usually just open up a blank 42x13" file in Photoshop and place 4-5 photos along the artboard and print them all at once. It's never given me issues that way. But this time it started off printing in the wrong colors and continued throughout, suggesting that it wasn't a print head overheating issue or something physical like that. Rather, I'm really thinking it's a profile not being applied issue, due to the fact that the colors look shifted in multiple directions and not just one (like lack of yellow everywhere), but I could be mistaken. I guess I should print this photo without a profile and see what I get.

Jim Michael
13-Sep-2017, 07:26
Subtle differences I sort of expect and do a mag test, but large shifts would indicate an issue with calibration or profile I would think. Usually calibration on my HP 3200.

Bruce Watson
13-Sep-2017, 07:31
I printed the smaller file first to test it and liked what saw, so I blew it up and reprinted it and the turquoise sky came out magenta, the blacks came out darker, and yellows more intense. Then I took that enlarged file and shrank it back down, and got the colors I liked again, without making any other changes other than the size.

Could just be a perception problem. It's well known that small areas of a color look different than large areas of the same color. People find that out all the time when they paint rooms in houses.

For this reason I was taught to make at least one full size proof print. Because the perceptions of the colors, their relationships to each other, saturation, and contrast all are influenced by size.

This would explain your blacks getting darker and your yellows becoming more intense. But it may not explain a color shift like your turquoise sky that came out magenta.

Just to be clear, everything was the same except print size? Small and large print came out of the same roll of paper? Printed on the same day?

One other thing -- did you dry the prints? Inkjet prints are susceptible to changes as they dry (out gas). I started getting much more reliable results when I started drying prints with a hand held hair dryer. Low heat, high fan. The hand supporting the back of the print can feel the change from cool to warm indicating you've driven off most of the water / glycols.

Drying prints visually (and measurably) changes Dmax and contrast on most papers in my experience.

rjphil
13-Sep-2017, 07:43
I would try a section test using the "Photoshop manages colors" selection, applying your correct profile.

Joshua Dunn
13-Sep-2017, 08:34
I have had nothing but problems with Espon 9800 series printers. I have had massive color shifts that would drive me nuts. I finally just powered the printer off and back on and it fixed it. Kind of like rebooting a Windows machine to fix oddball problems. I have always found these printers inconsistent. As far a profiles, I never have the printer manage colors. I would get a custom profile made for your printer/paper (look at Freestyle Photo for this) and select it when you go to print.

The real solution is to switch printers. Canon has dumped a ton of money into their fine art printers and are really beating up on Epson. In my opinion if both printers are profiled and working correctly either can produce beautiful prints. But the Canon printers cost less, the ink is less expensive, the print heads are user replaceable and cost less and most importantly they are far more reliable than Epson. I print on a Canon iPF9400 and a Canon Pro-1000 and couldn't be happier. I can't imagine owning an Epson after working on them.

-Joshua

jim10219
13-Sep-2017, 10:20
I have had nothing but problems with Espon 9800 series printers. I have had massive color shifts that would drive me nuts. I finally just powered the printer off and back on and it fixed it. Kind of like rebooting a Windows machine to fix oddball problems. I have always found these printers inconsistent. As far a profiles, I never have the printer manage colors. I would get a custom profile made for your printer/paper (look at Freestyle Photo for this) and select it when you go to print.

The real solution is to switch printers. Canon has dumped a ton of money into their fine art printers and are really beating up on Epson. In my opinion if both printers are profiled and working correctly either can produce beautiful prints. But the Canon printers cost less, the ink is less expensive, the print heads are user replaceable and cost less and most importantly they are far more reliable than Epson. I print on a Canon iPF9400 and a Canon Pro-1000 and couldn't be happier. I can't imagine owning an Epson after working on them.

-Joshua

I won't disagree with you there, but I got this one for free from work when we upgraded to an Epson SureColor P9000 (which is much faster, more reliable, and better in just about every way). Since I couldn't even afford this one, I certainly can't afford to replace it. Besides, I've been using it for years at work and am quite familiar with most of it's quirks (outside of this one) and know how to repair it when it breaks.

jim10219
13-Sep-2017, 10:27
I would try a section test using the "Photoshop manages colors" selection, applying your correct profile.

That's my next troubleshooting step. The only reason why I don't do that regularly is because I couldn't figure out how to keep Windows from applying profiles to the print jobs anyway. So what I had was Photoshop applying one profile, and then Windows applying the same profile over that one, giving me all kinds of funky colors. So if I go back to trying that route, I'll have to figure out a way to keep Windows from doing that. But first I'll try it without any profiles, probably by going through the "Adobe Color Printer Utility" like I do when making these profiles, since Photoshop won't let me print without some kind of profile (on command anyway).

jim10219
13-Sep-2017, 10:40
Could just be a perception problem. It's well known that small areas of a color look different than large areas of the same color. People find that out all the time when they paint rooms in houses.

For this reason I was taught to make at least one full size proof print. Because the perceptions of the colors, their relationships to each other, saturation, and contrast all are influenced by size.

This would explain your blacks getting darker and your yellows becoming more intense. But it may not explain a color shift like your turquoise sky that came out magenta.

Just to be clear, everything was the same except print size? Small and large print came out of the same roll of paper? Printed on the same day?

One other thing -- did you dry the prints? Inkjet prints are susceptible to changes as they dry (out gas). I started getting much more reliable results when I started drying prints with a hand held hair dryer. Low heat, high fan. The hand supporting the back of the print can feel the change from cool to warm indicating you've driven off most of the water / glycols.

Drying prints visually (and measurably) changes Dmax and contrast on most papers in my experience.

It's definitely not just a perception issue. It's far more dramatic than that. And yes, I literally took that exact same file, resized it using Photoshop, and printed it will all of the same settings. I didn't even reload PS in between. Same roll. One print right after another. Same day, maybe 15 minutes apart. Now, while I didn't dry the prints, I did have one smaller one before and one smaller one after the large print and they both looked nearly identical to each other, so I don't believe it was a drying issue. Obviously the larger image will take longer to dry and colors will shift as they dry. But it shouldn't shift colors to that degree no matter how long it needed to dry.

Thank you all for your help so far. I'll keep messing around with it trying to see if I can narrow down the problem. I'll be sure to post my final results back here when I'm done because I've looked all over the web for an answer to this, and it appears I'm the only one who's run into it. At least every other problem I can find similar to this one has the answer "use an ICC profile".

Jim Andrada
13-Sep-2017, 17:58
Sacrifice a goat to the computer gods??? There are days when I can't think of any other way to deal with the damned things (computers, not goats)

jim10219
13-Sep-2017, 18:04
Sacrifice a goat to the computer gods??? There are days when I can't think of any other way to deal with the damned things (computers, not goats)

I don't have a goat, but I have an old Mac G5...

Jim Andrada
16-Sep-2017, 18:17
Same thing if it'a a virgin.

jim10219
24-Sep-2017, 19:58
Okay. I tried letting photoshop manage my profiles. I get the craziest psychedelic colors when I do. It actually looks pretty cool as an effect, but definitely isn't something I want. My guess is that when I do that, both Epson and PS are trying to apply the same profile. I tried several different ways to turn off color management in the printer drivers, but nothing changes anything. I still get the funky psychedelic colors. I'm convinced the Epson drivers won't let me turn off color management, and won't apply them to large prints. I'm about at my wits end here.

Does anyone know of a good program to print from, or a free rip program? Surely I can't be the only one to have experienced this issue!

jim10219
25-Sep-2017, 14:21
I've been doing some more research on this, and apparently the Epson drivers have issues with files over a specific size (I read, but forgot the pixel count). The usual solution is to just buy a RIP software program (and they like to sell you a server to go with it) to bypass the Epson drivers and gain more control over the printer, but that's another $1,000+ I don't have right now. My guess is that with large files, I'm pretty much given the choice of two profiles at once or none at all. Between the two, none is the obvious answer (due to the psychedelic color thingy from two at once). Or maybe PS isn't interpreting my profile correctly (made with an i1 and Argyle software).

However, it just dawned on me that I can print to a PDF file, instead of a physical printer in the print dialogue! So theoretically, I should be able to open up my files in Photoshop, print to a PDF applying the proper print profile to the file itself (just like you would using a hardware printer), and then open that PDF in another PS window, and print that one choosing "let printer manage colors", which won't apply any new profiles (hopefully), and I can print with just one instance of the correct profile applied (double hopefully)! Then, after I make a million bucks selling giant prints of my carefully profiled photos of blurry and poorly composed, but highly polished turds, I'm gonna get me a good RIP program so I don't have to go through all of this hassle. And if there's any money left over, I'm gonna buy a proper night stand, because this cardboard box next to my bed that I've been using, while fully functional, is a bit of an embarrassing eye sore.

jim10219
25-Sep-2017, 15:44
Well, that didn't work. Apparently the problem isn't two profiles at once. Apparently the problem is Photoshop doesn't read the profile I created correctly. The PDF I created using that printer profile made the PDF take on all of the psychedelic colors that I was getting in the print version. Ugh.

So, now on to plan D: Find a generic profile that will work well enough when the file is too big to use my custom profile. Unfortunately, I'm not using Epson brand paper, and Sihl, the paper I am using, doesn't make profiles for my printer. So I'm just going to have to try a bunch out until I find one that works well enough. At least until I can save up enough money to buy a ski mask, carve a convincing gun out of wood, and rob a bank (I'm kidding... probably).

Jim Andrada
25-Sep-2017, 19:24
Have you tried Adobe Color Print? It definitely bypasses profiles. I think it's basically intended for printing color targets. I only used it to make digital negs so have no idea if it will handle large files. Which leads me to ask if you've tried cutting the print resolution a bit to avoid the problem.

Good luck!

jim10219
26-Sep-2017, 06:16
Have you tried Adobe Color Print? It definitely bypasses profiles. I think it's basically intended for printing color targets. I only used it to make digital negs so have no idea if it will handle large files. Which leads me to ask if you've tried cutting the print resolution a bit to avoid the problem.

Good luck!

I've only tried Adobe Color Print for printing targets. But since I applying the correct profile in the correct way is what I've been trying to do this whole time, I don't think that will do much for me.

I'm also not wanting to decrease the print resolution any. On a file that's marginally too big, it might be a quick work around. But on my larger prints, I don't think I'd be able to cut the resolution down to something acceptable and still remain under the threshold. It does me no good to be able to print a 40"x50" print if I can't print it above 72dpi.

In any case, I found a profile from Epson that works well enough with my paper. I'd say it's about 97% as good as the custom profile I created, and Photoshop doesn't have a problem applying it like it does with my custom profile (which works great when applied directly through the printer drivers on smaller files).

So for now, I think I'm just going to go with this solution and give well enough alone. Two weeks of troubleshooting and research have just about given me an ulcer. Maybe in a year I'm come back to it, but for now, I'm ready to limp off the field, admit defeat, and be grateful I found something that's good enough to get me by.

Thank you all for your help though! You guys have a great community here!

Joshua Dunn
26-Sep-2017, 12:45
Sorry I but I have not been keeping up with this post. The bottom line is that when it works your Epson printer is a decent printer. When it doesn’t it’s a near useless except to burn ink and paper, which equates to money. If I were you I would consider carefully if you need a printer this size. For very reasonable money you can get some awesome 24” printers. If you want to really try and make this printer work you need to take a completely different approach.

First off file sizes are not your problem. I have set 4GB files to a Epson 9800 series printer. Any issues I had (to included inconsistent color shifts) were not because of the file size. There may be a problem with the print head itself. If that is the issue than I would junk the printer. You won’t fix it for less than $1000. What I would do is decide on one really good fine art paper that you want to use. Contact Eric Joseph at Freestyle Photographic and give him your history of printing problems. Tell him you spoke with me through the forum. If he thinks the problems printing are not a print head issue have him make a custom profile for the one fine art paper you chose. Custom profiles are $100 and you will save far more in paper and ink than the $100 you will spend on it.

I could bore you to death on paper profiles and ICC standards and totally nerd out on printing. But I will spare you that torture. Eric does some amazing lectures on printing (one is this Thursday at the college I teach at http://www.freestylephoto.biz/inkjet-printing-open-house) and anyone who cares about printing on fine art inkjet printer should attend at least one of his seminars. They are usually free.

Hope this helps.

-Joshua

David Lobato
26-Sep-2017, 14:11
Seems like stray electrical noise from somewhere. Check your USB, or ethernet, and power cables, try new ones perhaps. This also does the age old power on-off for unknown bugs.

jim10219
28-Sep-2017, 13:02
Sorry I but I have not been keeping up with this post. The bottom line is that when it works your Epson printer is a decent printer. When it doesnít itís a near useless except to burn ink and paper, which equates to money. If I were you I would consider carefully if you need a printer this size. For very reasonable money you can get some awesome 24Ē printers. If you want to really try and make this printer work you need to take a completely different approach.

First off file sizes are not your problem. I have set 4GB files to a Epson 9800 series printer. Any issues I had (to included inconsistent color shifts) were not because of the file size. There may be a problem with the print head itself. If that is the issue than I would junk the printer. You wonít fix it for less than $1000. What I would do is decide on one really good fine art paper that you want to use. Contact Eric Joseph at Freestyle Photographic and give him your history of printing problems. Tell him you spoke with me through the forum. If he thinks the problems printing are not a print head issue have him make a custom profile for the one fine art paper you chose. Custom profiles are $100 and you will save far more in paper and ink than the $100 you will spend on it.

I could bore you to death on paper profiles and ICC standards and totally nerd out on printing. But I will spare you that torture. Eric does some amazing lectures on printing (one is this Thursday at the college I teach at http://www.freestylephoto.biz/inkjet-printing-open-house) and anyone who cares about printing on fine art inkjet printer should attend at least one of his seminars. They are usually free.

Hope this helps.

-Joshua

Thanks, but I need the large printer. I can charge quite a bit more per square inch for larger prints, as people perceive more value in them. Besides, I got this printer for free because it had a broken head and I managed to fix it myself for just a few dollars in parts and about a days worth of time (minus the month long wait on parts to arrive from China). I'm a pretty good at stuff like that having studied electrical engineering. It's software that I don't do. So it makes in my case to replace it with a smaller printer.

In any case, I've already figured out the problem. The Epson drivers won't apply color profiles to files larger than 30,000 pixels. That explains why I wasn't having the issue with the exact same file when printed at smaller sizes. That's also one of the big reasons why they usually sell you RIP software when you buy one of these printers, because a RIP software bypasses your printer's native drivers and allows you to control the printer more directly. However, I could bypass that driver limitation without using a RIP program by allowing another program like Photoshop to control the color profile directly to the file! Unfortunately in my case that created a separate issue due to Photoshop not being compatible with the custom profile I created in Argyle II (I also got a free i1 spectrometer, but no software with it). My custom profile worked fine applied directly to the printer's driver (so long as the file wasn't above 30,000 pixels), but applying that profile at any size file in Photoshop caused the colors to go all funky. I confirmed this by printing a file in Photoshop directly to PDF (instead of a hard copy) and got the exact same color shifts in the new file (proving the issue wasn't the printer or the driver, but Photoshop's compatibility with my custom profile). When I applied commercially available/generic color profiles, I didn't experience this problem with either hard copies or print to PDF's.

So in the end my solution is to just use a generic profile I found that is 98% as good as the custom profile I made on all pictures above 30,000 pixels until I can save up enough money for a dedicated RIP program. I'm happy (enough) with that compromise. I'd rather spend my money on travel and film than more computer junk anyway.

Jim Andrada
28-Sep-2017, 14:28
I keep trying to talk myself into a RIP but at my age I think they'll write it on a piece of stone with my name on it before I convince myself to get one...

Jim Michael
28-Sep-2017, 20:01
You might try out QImage Ultimate. A little less spendy.

neil poulsen
30-Sep-2017, 15:56
Out of curiosity, did you change the resolution to make the larger print? If the resolution used is different from that used to print the profile's target, the color can shift.