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Thread: Cone Pigment Inks in Epson 1400

  1. #1
    Boatman's Avatar
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    Cone Pigment Inks in Epson 1400

    I have been using MIS dye inks in my Epson 1400 for a couple of years. I like the inks and their low cost but they do fade. I have a few people purchasing prints frome me now, so longevity has become more of an issue.

    Cone inks, www.inkjetmall.com, has a set of pigment inks for the 1400. These are somewhat more expensive than MIS inks but still less than Claria inks and they are true pigment inks. Cone claims they are of archival quality.

    I'm interested in hearing anyone's experience with this system. Also, is there anything significantly different in the refilling and head cleaning process that I should know about if I switch from dye ink to pigment ink?

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    Administrator Manfred M's Avatar
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    Re: Cone Pigment Inks in Epson 1400

    I can't answer your question, but do know a bit about dye versus pigment. My Epson 3880 is designed to use pigment based inks, In general, dye based inks are more vibrant than pigment based inks, and my printer uses two additional gray cartridges , that it needs to create more subtle colours. Your printer, I believe runs on six cartridges, while mine uses eight; nine really because it has a different black for photo versus matt paper.

    Dye based inks completely dissolve in water (i.e. like a few drops of food colouring in a glass of water), while dyes are more like flour stirred into water. This means that you need larger diameter nozzles for pigments than dyes; your printer as a minimum dot volume of 1.5 picolitres, whereas mine uses a minimum of 3.5 picolitres. I would be concerned that putting a pigment based ink into your printer would clog your print nozzles as they were never designed for pigment based inks. I would also suspect that the print engine is designed around the dye based ink set and your colours would be off if you switched to pigment based inks.

    The Epson Claria inks are getting closer to archival that the cheaper inks and Epson data suggests that these inks have very good archival life; approaching that of pigment based inks. If you are looking at archival quality, switching to the Claria inks rather than pigment based ones would make more sense.

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    Re: Cone Pigment Inks in Epson 1400

    I agree with GrumpyDiver's description of the differences between dye and pigment inks, but I disagree that Claria ink approaches the archival life of pigment inks. I've seen in another thread that you've been out to Aardenburg Imaging's web site and looked at the results for Claria ink. It's certainly much better than standard dye inks, but does not compare well to pigment inks.

    I've used ConeColor pigment ink for several years, and my R3000's minimum droplet size is 2 picoliters. Still not as small as your 1400, but close, and I've never had clogging problems. Epson's Claria and K3 inks both form a more scratch resistant surface than the Cone inks.

    Edit: I forgot to say that Cone recommends gentry agitating the cartridges periodically of you don't print on a regular basis. Also, you can download ICC profiles from InkJetMall for many papers that should provide accurate color. I make my own profiles using a ColorMunki and find them more accurate than the ones provided by InkJetMall, but that might just be me justifying buying the ColorMunki to myself.
    Last edited by John Tait; 31st December 2012 at 04:43 AM.

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    Cone Pigment Inks in Epson 1400

    For what it's worth - after much equivocating - I switched from Epson K3 Ultrachrome to Lyson ink (both pigment) for my Epson 7800, and never looked back.

    In comparison, the Lyson ink ...

    - Has a slightly wider gamut

    - Slightly less head clogging

    - Approx 1/3 the price

    - No issues with fading.

    Hope this helps.

  5. #5
    Boatman's Avatar
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    Re: Cone Pigment Inks in Epson 1400

    I bit the bullet and purchased a set of Epson Claria inks. I use them sparingly,though it seems every time you take them in or out you use a good deal in the head cleaning process! I am continuing with the MIS color dye inks for general color printing. Aardenburg is running some tests on them right now, so soon we will know how color fast these really are or aren't. I think if I started using pigment inks I'd run into problems swapping them with my black-only set, which is very compatible with the Epson and MIS dye inks. My next move will probably be to grab a second 1400 so that I can keep one loaded with black-only and one with color. Now if Epson would just come up with a really good deal in the clearance center!

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