Information on my Epson 3880 ink consumption; couple questions

Started Oct 4, 2012 | Discussions thread
Hugowolf Forum Pro • Posts: 12,674
Re: Information on my Epson 3880 ink consumption; couple questions

jeffsw6 wrote:

I received my Epson 3880 and want to share with you my ink consumption data so far.  I am printing mostly 13x19 borderless posters on Epson Luster.  The image below is just so you know about how much white-space is in these prints.  FYI the photo/artwork is not mine; I will mention this to his photographer later but I'm sure he will not mind me sharing it here.

My first dozen copies consumed about 4.5mL ink each.  Mostly it used PK, LB, and VLM; not very much of the other colors.  With OEM ink this is around $2.35/print and paper was under $1.50/sheet.  Once I change to aftermarket ink I believe my cost will go down to $0.72ea on this image and probably around $1 for prints with more color saturation.

I don't know where you got your data from, but even with OEM inks, they should be no where near US$2.35 per 13x19 inches. Your ink costs with OEM ink should be under $1 per square foot. 3880 OEM ink carts are about $50 each.

And 4.5 ml is an awful lot of ink for a 13 x 19 inch print. I just did an average of five 12 x 12 inch prints and it was about 1.50 ml. Are you using the data from the printer log? Do you have the printer monitor turned on?

I think changing paper will also give me some cost savings.  I would appreciate suggestions.  Luster is working out well and I want to stay with that.

Which Epson Lustre are you working with? Ultra Premium Photo Paper Luster, Premium Luster Photo Paper (260)?

A lot of people on this forum seem to like Red River photo papers, but I am not one of them. They certainly offer good value in mid and lightweight papers:

I am willing to cut my own sheets from roll paper.  My main area of confusion is what cutter/trimmer should I buy?  The largest model sold by the local office supply chain is 18x18. 

A 24 inch trimmer would work fine. However, when the 3880 was my main printer, I always wished I had bought a 26 inch trimmer, rather than the 28 inch one that I did. There is often a need to trim on the long edge, and the 3880 prints to 37 inches.

I would look at Rotatrim Professional and Dahle Premium. If you can't afford them, then the single bar Rotatrim and Dahle alternatives.

To be honest, it really isn't worth cutting roll paper to save costs. It is worth it if you can't get the size you want in sheets.

The largest paper I want to use is 17x22. 

You may well find a need for 17 x 25 inch or A2 sheets, which are much closer to the 3:2 aspect ratio of a dSLR. You may also find panoramas of interest.

I am waiting for his photographer to email me an adjusted file with more margin for the bleed area.  The actual print puts the last E in Elmore very close to the edge of the paper.  I don't know how to adjust that (or if it is possible) but I understand it is normal for borderless printing to lose a little bit of the image on the sides.

You can adjust the size of the bleed: in the main tab of the printer's dialog, after you have checked borderless, an Expension button should appear. Click on that and try reducing the bleed size.

You could also mirror the edge in Photoshop, Lightroom, or whatever software you use for printing. A printing program like QImage will do this for you more automatically.

And thirdly: with a quality trimmer, you can trim off any border to create a borderless print of any size you want (within the limits of the printer specs), instead of just the few sizes offered by the hardware.

Brian A

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