(with comparison to Epson x900 and HP Z3200 printers)
Canon’s latest generation of large format printers offer an exciting mix of refinements. The 44″ 8300, 24″ 6300 and 6350 (which includes a hard drive) are referred to as the “x300 printers.” I’ve had the pleasure of testing both the 8300 and 6300 printers alongside others as they’ve come to market. Instead of writing a super long in-depth review, I’d like to offer this relatively brief and to-the-point synopsis of my own findings of these printers. I’ll spare the details as to what comes in the box and focus on the points that experienced users are probably looking to hear.
Before I begin, I should say that I get my hands on a huge variety of printers in my work traveling around as a color and workflow consultant. Not only do I own Canon, Epson and HP printers in my own studio where I print my artwork that I show in galleries, I oversee a large base of clients all over the world that use everything from Durst silver halide printers to 20 foot wide Scitex solvent printers. I’d like to think I’m in a decent position to have a bird’s eye perspective of the industry as a whole and I strive to be as unbiased as I can with my observations. I choose to appreciate the differences between different products and try to avoid the type of brand loyalty that seems so common in our industry.
New inkset improves gamut substantially
The most significant improvement with these printers lies in Canon’s new Lucia EX inkset that increases the color gamut by about 20%. All 12 of Canon’s inks are newly formulated with smaller pigment particles and increased polymer encapsulation. The smaller pigment particles reduce reflection (more…)
Dan Winters’ unique ability to sculpt with light has long been a personal inspiration of mine. Now more than ever his work is everywhere. He’s won more awards and contributes to more magazines than I can list. When I was in an airport a few weeks ago I glanced across a wide walkway full of people and caught a glimpse of this Time magazine cover of Tom Hanks on a newsstand. In that split second from some 80 feet away I just new it was Dan’s image. His lighting is so dramatic, so distinct (yet never the same) I just knew it was his.
Austin American-Statesman photographer Jay Janner recently made this portrait of Dan in his Driftwood, TX studio – the first of it’s kind in front of Dan’s handcrafted photo booth in his Driftwood, Texas studio.
FLYP magazine published a great article on his work and career. Highly recommended viewing. Included in the article are two videos where he talks about his devotion to photography and what makes a great portrait.
I’ve always been a fan of high-end displays like those from Eizo, Barco, Quato, NEC and the like. At the same time I recognize that these pinnacles of technology are hard for most people to justify. I love discovering displays that are affordable yet meet the demands of the most finicky printmakers. Simply put, some ~$800 displays hold up darn well against $2000+ displays when they are well calibrated and it’s this “best value, high quality” category that I get excited about and often recommend to my clients.
All of these displays use an LED backlit lightsource, IPS LCD panels and eco-conscious materials. These first two technologies are crucial for demanding professionals. The LED lightsource provides consistency across the screen, a boost in color gamut, power savings, lower heat generation and can achieve the lower luminance (brightness) levels that print professionals need. The IPS LCD panel provides a wide viewing angle so that the viewer doesn’t experience the density shifting that’s become so common with laptop and most LCD displays today that use the less expensive TN LCD panel technology. A lot of companies (more…)