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Need printer advice, e.g. dirty tricks to avoid

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Need printer advice, e.g. dirty tricks to avoid

Postby MediumRare on Wed Mar 05, 2003 3:46 pm

I have to replace my 11 year old DeskJet 500. I'm looking at a Canon i550 or i850 (single ink) or an HP 3820 (cheaper to buy).

I recall seeing somewhere that some printers have "dirty tricks" integrated- e.g. copious flushing of the jets when turned on (uses lots of ink) or built-in counters for the ink used that block the printer independent of the real amount remaining. I didn't pay much attention because I wasn't shopping for a printer. I am now, and need information. Can anyone comment if my candidates are affected and/or point me to a competent source of information?

General remarks or experience with these models are also appreciated.
Thanks.

G
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Postby CowboySlim on Wed Mar 05, 2003 4:49 pm

I bought a Canon i850 in January. Very happy with it - no dirty tricks that I'm aware of. My daughter has the Canon S520 that I previously used, same deal.

Cleans only at your command, not auto.

Both have four separate ink tanks so that you don't have to buy a complete deal when one color depletes. First time my yellow went out, I still had more than 1/2 blue and red and almost all black.

Check reader's reviews at Amazon or www.cnet.com.

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Postby MediumRare on Thu Mar 06, 2003 1:19 am

Thanks Slim,
I had a short glance at cnet. The i850 seems to do well with the users. One point is the so-so b&w capability on normal paper mentioned in the review. Since I haven't used colour to date, the b&w performance is important to me. What is your experience with "fuzziness" or whatever?

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Postby CowboySlim on Thu Mar 06, 2003 1:58 pm

I bought mine mainly for photos. As such, those comments with respect to B&W did not dissuade me. However, the little B&W text that I've done looks excellent to me. I made a letter of recommendation for a friend of ours last week and she, my wife and I all thought that it looked perfect.

If you are a primarily B&W user, you most certainly want separate tanks, at least a separate B. Otherwise, you'll be tossing out $40 in color ink every time you deplete $10 of black.

You might also start at www.steves-digicams.com and find a link to color inkjet printer reviews, including the subject Canon.

Good luck,
Slim
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Postby MediumRare on Thu Mar 06, 2003 6:46 pm

Well I bought the Canon i850 today. Haven't had much time to play around with it other than a couple of test prints, but I have no cause to complain (yet?). The B&W printing is definitely not worse than the old DJ500 8) , so its progress in any case. I suspect my colour usage will be there (now that its possible).

Have to get to bed now- close to midnight.

Incidentally: 2 more dirty tricks:
- use a bit of colour in B&W prints "to improve the grey shading" (HP, can be disabled in driver)
- "copyright" protection for otherwise useless chip in ink cartridge (Lexmark). See this link (in German) for a satyrical note on that.

Thanks for your help. :D

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