Epson 7600 Photographic Dye or Ultrachrome Ink?
I am considering buying an EPSON 7600 exclusively for printing photos. Any suggestion as to what ink to ge it with? Photographic Dye or Ultachrome? I understand that the main difference between them is the archival life of the Ultrachrome over the Photographic Dye. However, any other advantages of one over the other? How about saturation and luminosity? Any input on this is greatly appreciated before I spend this kind of money.
#1. "RE: Epson 7600 Photographic Dye or Ultrachrome Ink?" | In response to Reply # 0guyb Registered since 11th Apr 2002Thu 13-Mar-03 02:44 AM
The ultrachrome has a wider color gamut according to reviews I have read. I don't know what you want in terms of archival lifespan, but as I have read, the ultrachrome ink lasts for years, although the dye is supposed to last much longer.
Whichever one you get, I envy you.
#3. "RE: Epson 7600 Photographic Dye or Ultrachrome Ink?" | In response to Reply # 1bobj Charter MemberThu 13-Mar-03 03:29 PM
The dye inks will last much *less* time, not longer. Ultrachrome is defintely the way to go for most purposes.
Nature Photography from the Pacific Northwest and beyond
#2. "RE: Epson 7600 Photographic Dye or Ultrachrome Ink?" | In response to Reply # 0
The dye based inks have more saturation and a wider color gamut. But they don't have nearly the lightfasness. Worse, they suffer from gasfastness issues. I've had dye prints fade in days given enought airflow in a dimly lit room. If you choose the dye based version, you should be prepared for much shorter life of unprotected prints, overlamination to protect prints from gas fading, storage of prints in protective plastic barrier, and display of prints sealed under glass.
The Ultrachrome inks not only have the greater lightfastness of pigment inks, but they also have a resin microencapsulation that seals and protects the pigments from oxidation. The color gamut is not quite as broad or saturated, but Ultrachrome can deliver cleaner blues in some ranges. The resin encapsulation causes the other major consideration with these inks: the resin has a different sheen that the paper surface on luster, semigloss and gloss media. Matte media doesn't show this effect, but on a gloss paper you will see a variable surface sheen that some folks find objectionable. Under glass, the sheen isn't an issue. If you are sellling prints and want to sleep at nights without worrying about the diplay conditions causing rapid fading of your prints, Utrachrome is your only good option.
Also be aware the for matte media, you need to use the Ultrachrome matte black for best results. The matte black ink provides richer blacks on matte media, but it still isn't as dark as dye based ink on the same papers. When you change to matte or photo black inks, the printer flushes all the lines leading to the cartridges. This purge will cost you something like $70 per changeover in wasted ink. Epson should have designed the printer to be able to flush the black line independently.
Don't buy before you see some print samples. If you do decide to go with a dye-based printer, I'd suggest finding a deal on a 7500. The 7600 can be bought for either ink set, but it will not work with both. The 7500 is very similar except that it's only dye-based. You might find one at a discount.