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FAQ - Know More

Section 1 – CISS & Refill Cartridges

Q: Which printer models are supported by CISS systems?

A: Most of the inkjet printers offered by Epson, HP, Canon & Brother have CISS systems available for them. For complete & exhaustive list with the compatibility details kindly visit our website www.splashjet.co.in.

Q: Shall I use Refill Cartridges or the CISS System ?

A:  Refill Cartridges are ideal for users who do not print more than 5-10 pages a day. Most of the refill cartridges will not indicate correct ink level inside the cartridge. This may cause problem when you are printing in bulk. In many printers especially Canon & HP running the printer with empty refill cartridges may affect the print-head permanently.

CISS systems are ideal for bulk users & professionals. They ensure continuous ink supply to the cartridges. You need not worry about the ink levels every time you want to print.

 

Q: Is it difficult to install the CISS? Can a layman do it?

A: Most of the CISS system installations are very easy. However few basic precautions have to be taken at the time of the installation:

  • Fill each CISS container with the correct ink (colour)
  • Place the tanks at the same height as that of the cartridges inside the printer. The height may vary in various printer models.
  • Prime the ink cartridge. This process takes the air out from the system & ensures ink flow from tank to the cartridge. You need to pull the ink through ink cartridge to do this.
  • Remove the Cartridge Cover
  • Place cartridges into the print head.
  • Adjust the CISS arm support in way that the carriage moves freely from left to right without entangling the tubes.
  • Run a head cleaning cycle, print a nozzle check patter & start enjoy printing at a fraction of the cost!

 

Q: At what height the ink tanks should be?

A: It is necessary to keep the ink tanks at the same height as the printer! If your tanks are at a higher level than the printer, the ink may drain down in the printer. If your ink tanks are below the height of the printer, the ink may not be supplied to the cartridge due to a lack of pressure. So, you must always keep the ink tanks at the same height as the printer!

 

Q: When should I refill the ink tanks?

A: Always make sure to refill the ink tanks when the ink level is one third full. We recommend you to keep one set of bottles in spare. Refill your bottles when the inks are at one third level of the tank.

 

 

Q: Can I change the ink type and still re-use my existing CISS system?

A: We strongly recommend not changing the ink type in the CISS system. It is extremely difficult to get clean the CISS system of the previous ink. The new ink many contaminate and cause the damage to the print-head. If at all you have to change the inks, make sure to change the tubes and the ink cartridges used in the CISS system.

Q: Do I need to flush the printer of the existing inks before installing the CISS System?

A: In the printers where the cartridges are moving it is not necessary to flush the printer. Just ensure that the nozzles are proper, install the CISS and run a couple of head cleaning cycles & you are done!

In the printers with non moving ink cartridges it is absolutely necessary to flush the printer of the existing inks. Use proper flushing solutions to run the deep cleaning cycles. No of cleaning cycles required may vary depending upon the width of the printer & length of ink tubing. Once the cleaning is done, it is necessary to do the ink charging so that the ink system is replenished with the inks from the cartridges to the print-heads.

 

Q: I am using a Continuous Ink System and have air in ink tubes. What should I do?

A: Try to print a nozzle check pattern.  If you have a proper nozzle pattern just keep on printing. The air will slowly vent out as it enters the cartridge.

If when the prints are coming out fine & still the air is there in the ink tubes, it is necessary to prime the ink cartridges. Refer to the ink cartridge priming process mentioned in CISS Installation FAQ.

If you have not got a complete nozzle check, carry out up to 3 nozzle checks and head cleans. If your nozzle pattern is still not perfect, leave the printer for 2 hours for the ink to settle. If your nozzle check is still not perfect after 2 hours, you will need to re-prime your cartridge (the cartridge with the air in the line). Refer to the ink cartridge priming process mentioned in CISS Installation FAQ.

Q: My printer is not recognising my new cartridge?

A: This may happen due to the cartridge chip (the green board with electronic markings situated on the back of a cartridge). Sometimes this chip may have dust or dirt on the surface which will cause the printer problems in recognising the cartridge.

  • To get this right
  • Go to cartridge replacement utility.
  • Take the cartridge out.
  • Clean the chip using a cotton bud or soft cloth.
  • Place the cartridge back inside the printer head.

Once the cartridge is placed back inside the print head, turn both off the printer for 10 minutes to reset the printer. When you turn the printer and computer back on the printer should recognize the cartridge. If the problem still persists, get in touch with our technical support team.

 

Section 2 – Inks & Color Management

 

Q: Which are the best Inks?  Dye Based or Pigment?

A: To be honest the answer is with you. You need to consider the end use of the photographs, the media you use and your colour and print longevity expectations. To decide, please consider the advantages and disadvantages of each:

Dye Based Inks:
* Slightly wider colour range
* 10 - 15 years of print longevity (depending on media & storage conditions)
* No bronzing on Gloss or Satin papers
* Water resistant prints only when applied to waterproof media


Pigment Inks:
* Water Resistant Prints on uncoated media
* 80 - 100 years (depending on media & storage conditions)
* Slight bronzing on Satin and Gloss papers
* Compatible with a wide range of media. Best results with Fine art or Matte & R.C. Papers
* Water Resistant Prints on uncoated media as well

 

Q: Can same printer produce high quality Colour and Black & White Prints simultaneously?

A: Yes. Most of the professional photo printers now offer 3K (3-Black) Inks. Matte Black, Photo Black, Light Black or Gray & Light Light Black or Photo Gray inks are commonly found on these printers. This set up enable photographers to print exceptional colour and superb black and whites using just one printer cutting costs and saving often valuable physical space.  

 

Q: I am not satisfied with print quality. Is there a way to improve print quality?

A: Most of the printers offer only predefined media choices & limited controls on quality settings. If you are using non standard media, you may need to try out few options for better quality prints. We have observed significant changes in the print quality with proper printer settings.

Please visit the ideal print settings article for understanding the printer specific settings for best results.

 

Q: Why aren’t my Prints same as seen on my monitor? Is something wrong with the inks I am using ?

A: The image you see on monitor is actually a representation. Different monitors may show the image differently based on software you use, settings, type of monitor & viewing conditions. Only accurately profiled monitors show the images in the true colours.

In addition it is necessary to have an accurately profiled printer. Only then the print that you produce will agree to the digital values contained within your image file.

Theoretically, if your monitor is adjusted for accurate colour, and your printer is profiled accurately, these two colour devices should in reasonable agreement. However practically it is extremely rare & difficult to achieve the same results on both the media. It is important to note that monitors have their own light source whilst the prints are dependent on indecent light for viewing perceptions of the colours.

You must be well aware now that though it is necessary to use right inks, producing matching prints depends on many other aspects.

 

Q: What is Profile? Do I need to profile my printer?

A: Each printer reproduces the colours in the image by interpreting the stored digital values using specific methods developed by printer manufacturer. These colours reproduced so  may not be ideal. A profile is used to measure the correctness of the colour reproduction of the printer. A profile can help the printer to reproduce the colours with close match to exact digital values stored in the image.

Profile is created by measuring printer output data against the standard reference data. The difference in the standard data & measured data is adjusted by creating the profile. A profile corrects and fine-tunes the colours produced. A profile works only when the media used, the inks the printer settings & the image editor used are fixed. It is good idea to profile the monitor as well to make sure correct display of the images.

 

Q: What is Dot Gain?

A: This is the spread of ink on the paper that occurs during inkjet printing. The ink droplets spread and change shape when making contact with the paper.

Q: What is Metamerism?

A: Metamerism is complex topic. In layman terms: Metamerism is an effect where a certain colour looks different when viewed under different light sources. Just like two different colour swatches can look exactly the same under one light source, but completely different under another. In essence, metamerism is difference of the appearance of a print under one light source compared to another.

Technically metamerism is due to the spectrum of light (like a rainbow), where some light sources may give a nice continuous range of spectra but give their light in very limited range of frequencies and vice versa and in differing capacities.

There are no inks free from metamerism effects. The degree of metamerism may vary but it exists. It is observed that dye inks & high quality pigment inks made from consistent pigments have very less metamerism effects.

 

Q: What is Bronzing effect when printed with pigment inks?

A: "Bronzing" or "Differential of Sheen" is the visible appearance on a glossy or satin print where darker areas of the print appear to be less reflective than the remainder. Pigment inks are particularly prone to this effect, which can be seen when you view your print slanted at an angle. Modern pigments offered by Splashjet are much less prone to this effect.

 

Section 3 – Inks

 

Q: Aren't all inks the same?

A:  All inks are not created equal.  From the basic chemical composition to use of colorants and additives, there are many combinations used when ink is formulated. 

The colorant, or the substance used to give color to the ink, is either dye or pigment. Dyes, made of small molecules, dissolves completely in water-based solution.  A water-dye based ink tints or stains the paper on a molecular level.  Because the dye lays flatter on the paper, surface reflects light more evenly and appears more vivid. However, the smaller molecular structure of the dye-based ink also allows it to be damaged by UV light more rapidly that pigmented inks. The dye inks fade rapidly as compared to the pigment inks.

Pigment particles are insoluble in carrier. The size of the pigment particles is much larger.  The reflection of light received from a pigmented print does not appear as vibrant due to the more scattering of the reflected light. The larger molecules do allow a pigmented ink's print to last substantially longer than a dye-based ink's print.       

In addition to the chemical base and colorant, inks also contain additives.  Additives may include buffering agents for control of the inks pH levels, resin for resilience, and humectants for the prevention of evaporation.  Other ingredients added to many types of ink may include fungicides, surfactants, and biocides.  Each ink formula has a unique formulation of each additive, again causing dramatic differences in the final outcome. 

Hence when you think that all inks are same think again! A quality manufacture uses good raw materials, fade resistant pigment & dyes, highly pure ingredients. This helps in making better performing inks.

 

Q: Which are the best Inks?  Dye Based or Pigment?

A: To be honest the answer is with you. You need to consider the end use of the photographs, the media you use and your colour and print longevity expectations. To decide, please consider the advantages and disadvantages of each:

Dye Based Inks:
* Slightly wider colour range
* 10 - 15 years of print longevity (depending on media & storage conditions)
* No bronzing on Gloss or Satin papers
* Water resistant prints only when applied to waterproof media


Pigment Inks:
* Water Resistant Prints on uncoated media
* 80 - 100 years (depending on media & storage conditions)
* Slight bronzing on Satin and Gloss papers
* Compatible with a wide range of media. Best results with Fine art or Matte & R.C. Papers
* Water Resistant Prints on uncoated media as well.