A reader has asked what type of printer I would recommend. I have a printer that is fairly old, an Epson Photo 820 ( 810 in Europe) and have been using compatible inks for a few years in it ( as they are around $5 CAD a cartridge). This is not a recommended practice, I know, but when a printer is out of warranty and the price is right... :) I feel I am not really in a position to offer advice as I am wondering the same thing myself. I am not sure how many more legs my printer has left, I am nearly out of ink and reconsidering buying more ink but I don't know if the printer will last long enough to use up the cartridges. My printer is dye-based and is quite dependent on what type of paper I print on to get good results ( eg. brightness of colour and bold/crispness of blacks).
There are many great printers out there. I'd love to know what you think is a great printer.
Here are some important issues I'd like to discuss:
1. Is your printer a dye based or pigment based printer? ( pigment based use "water-resistant", "fade resistant"," smear-proof" inks).
2. DYE-BASED printers: Dye based printers are great for the following colouring techniques - Coloured Pencils and OMS & Copics/Alcohol based markers - Not so much with watercolour techniques unless you fix the inks somehow like with a sealing spray. I also heard that you can heat set the print ... I also heard mixed results. Maybe it depends on your paper? Watercolour paper causes less bleeding?
3. PIGMENT-BASED printers: I know Espon makes these. I know the cartridges are a bit more expensive, you will have a harder time finding pigment based compatible cartridges. However, they apparently give good print results on most papers as the ink lays on top of the paper as opposed to dye ink that is absorbed into the paper. MY QUESTION is how are Pigment based printers with various colouring techniques? Can you watercolour on them or do they smear/bleed? How about Pencils/OMS or Copics? Another question, how do you find the prints on cheaper uncoated papers? Is the colour good?
Please use the comments section of this post to give us your opinion. This is your "forum" LOL
Thanks so much for any advice given.