by Mike McNamee Published 01/06/2007
The 800 delivers a Dmax of 2.08 on DCP Semi-Gloss, the 5000 delivered a Dmax of 2.14 on DCP Heavy-Weight Gloss media. The metameric indices were very low, indeed the lowest we have measured to date with any combination of printer ink or paper. We took the trouble to plot the index along the grey tone scale. This showed a high contribution from the rather cool OBA-laden base of the paper but the index peaked at less than 1.0, essentially undetectable to the eye.
The tonal cross-over (the variation of grey bias along the tone scale) was very low, tracking the cool paper quite well. The papers were 5 and 8 Lab points blue which is very high and contributed to dragging the skin-tone saturation down. The tests were done with all the colour inks in operation. There is also a mono mode to produce monochrome output with a capability to fine-tune grey balance and the tonality of highlights and shadows.
Comparing mono prints by eye, the output from the 5000 was much richer but this could be due to the media we used, which also had the higher Dmax. The bottom line is that you can make really top-class mono prints from these printers.
These are quick printers with superb mono performance and an indication that the colour performance could be very high as well. For top-rate performance, colour management would need to be implemented, especially if third-party media were used (see 'stop press' on the right!). Running costs should be very competitive.
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