CIS for Epson R1800 by EFILLINK
I have recently installed the EFILLINK CIS system for my Epson R1800. I share my experience with you:
System Setup and installation tips:
a-.Take your time when setting up the system, do not stress. Look at the videos 3 times before starting the install (they are downloadable at the EFILLINK web site: http://www.efillink.com )).
b-.the BASE of the CIS system should be (approx 7cm) higher than the base of the printer, this is important to avoid backflow pbs: look at the Efillink website.
c-.when the system is installed for the 1st time, you have to transfer 2/3rd of each ink bottle in the CIS recipient: this is because you will pump the ink through the cartridges from the CIS, in order to fill the tubes with ink and make the system operational (and consequently, the ink level in the CIS does down simultaneously).
Look at the photo herebelow showing that quite the entire bottles can be transfered to the CIS containers.
d-.when you are at the step where you have to pump the ink in the tubes from the CIS, do not hesitate to enter the seringe deeply and firmly into the cartridge: if it is not enough inserted into the cartridge, you will not be able to pump the ink: instead, you will face a spring effect and no ink will go through the tubes.
e-.The on/off switch of the CIS MUST be on the ON position when you print: if not, no ink will go out of the CIS to the printhead. It must be OFF when not printing.
f-.I have used a scoth to keep the front printer panel closed: some other people do not need that.
Here is the system at work:
Now let's talk about the results:
All the tests have been done with the Epson Premium Glossy photo paper (255g/m2), using Photoshop, with NO correction at the R1800 driver level: the color management is made by Photoshop as every profesionnal do (perceptive mode).
1-.When using the Epson profiles (available on the Epson US website).
The result is very good, with a good respect of the colors (very very closed to the original, let's say identical as it not possible to identify any difference on this aspect).
There is a little too much light, so we have to slightly pull down the light cursor in Photoshop, but this is obviously just a matter of profiling, so it is NOT a pb and can easily and immediatly be fixed by adjusting the light in Photoshop.
The only issue is the Glossy aspect: the printouts are more glossy with the Epson Gloss. But it is just "less glossy", and nevertheless definitely very good.
I had printed out a "reference" A4 photo (20cm x 30cm) with NO margin and full page gloss, using the original Epson inks , in order to compare with the Efillink printouts after the CIS installation. Unless you have this reference beside the Efillink printout, the lack of glossy aspect is not evident. Regarding the color matching, the results are absolutely the same than with the Epson ink, so in terms of colors balance you will not be able to detect a difference (at least, I did not).
This Efillink system works damned good: it provides very good photographic results at a fraction of the Epson ink price. It just lacks a little of glossy aspect when used with the Epson Premium Glossy paper (255g/m2), but keep in mind that the R1800 provides more gloss aspect than the R2400 for example.
2-.With the Efillink profile (sent by Ronnie).
The result is maybe slightly more saturated in terms of color (let say "maybe" as the results are so closed...), but for the rest, it is a matter of taste. I personnally prefer the Epson U.S. profiles, although I will order custom profile very soon: this system worths it !
When I printed out A4 (approx 20cmx30cm) photos with NO margin, I initially saw a lot of small lines on the left side of the photo (when you look at the printer, right side if you look at the photo when printed).
This was because I had let to much tube on the left, so the tubes touched the paper inside the printer at each printhead movement whereas the ink is not yet dry: now I have pulled the tubes 1cm to the right, and it is OK.
Ronnie Luck really** cares about his customers: he never lets you in trouble (even at 3 o'clock in the morning ! sorry Ronnie: I live in France and you were in China !...).
As a conclusion: excellent results, excellent inks (made in the USA), well built CIS system (parts made in China but assembled in the USA to be sure of the quality), excellent support from Ronnie.
If the ink Manufacturer could improve the Gloss Optimizer, this CIS system would be upgraded from "excellent" to "simply perfect".
I am about to order a new pack of ink ( ! ) for the future printouts...: yes guys, with this ink price, you do not care anylonger about how many photos you print, or what size they have: you mainly pay for the paper !
A CIS system is a must have for anyone printing more than occasionally: this EFILLINK is for sure one of the best if not he best. I will update this review after a few weeks of usage.