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Saturday, December 01, 2012

hybrid Crafters heaven!

Hi guys, well this post is for those of us Hybrid Crafters in the UK, and isnt a craft post more a review. So while it maybe interesting for those over water, in which ever direction, its of more importance to those of us in the uk!

Now as I have previously stated I am a Hybrid Crafter. That means I find a digital image, print it out, then craft a physical product with it. Now I use a LOT of cds, digital papers and images, so that means I use a printer a LOT, at this point those in the UK are perking up their ears!
In the UK the laws arent the same as those in the USA, we invalidate our warranty if we install a CISS system! In America, they dont, as their government turned round and told the producers that it did NOT invalidate their warranty, as they werent doing anything harmful or permanent to the printers, just removing the extortionate cost of ink, and being kinder to the enviroment, by not having to recycle ink cartridges constantly!
So onto my new Baby!
I have had this for 10 days. As a hybrid crafter this has been through some work. By this time I would have been through a full set and a half of my normal cartridges, on my old, ancient, distorts the colours so I have to have special settings for it, and doesnt take what I want it to take printer!
So here's some pics, which I will go through and explain to you!
 The Printer itself is an HP Officejet 7500A. It has a Ciss installed which means that instead of cartridges which you have to replace every few pages, it has cartridges with a continuous supply of ink flowing into them. I have managed to find a small embossing powder jar to help support the lid, as the lid itself cant close as the gap is needed for the tubes carrying the ink to go into the machine.
It takes A3+. Anything from 4x6 inch photo paper to 13x 19 inch cardstock. From Tracing paper to 300gsm Pearlised Card stock! Get in there!!!!
It has an automated sheet feed scanner on top, and it still works even though the lid is open. It also has a flatbed A4 scanner
And now to the important part........the Ciss!!!
This is a printer that uses 4 cartridges, so 4 inks. Now I think you can see my issue here, this was full when I started! 3 A4 Colour Calendars, 14 A4 digi's, and 20 TV samples in 10 days later, and the ink is just over half way down. A LOT of ink!
So I have put this through its paces!

Hence the review.
I have had a CISS before. I have had an HP before. So why did I go for this?
Okay My Old HP took everything I threw at it and more! But the inks were very and I do mean VERY expensive. So I switched to compatibles, but my old machine wouldnt work with the yellow inks. So I invested in a Ciss. Not from the company I got this from, but over the internet, and as an add on to my old machine, and Boy did I have trouble! Ink all over the place, It had air blocks, leaked, all sorts of issues, no support and in the end I threw it away. And ended up giving my old HP away as it was too expensive to run.
I then ended up with an Epson, and it wouldnt take the card weights, printed out too dark, even using their inks, all sorts of issues, Epson even replaced the printer at one point, so boy was I fed up! I did manage to find a company that did a decent replacement/compatible cartridge, but even so I still couldnt get the colours right!
So after all that trouble why on earth did I go for another HP and with a Ciss?
Basically to me a Ciss makes more sense, environmentally as well as financially. No cartridges to replace day after day, no half pages printed then have to re-do as it wont print the page again until you tell it to, so half a page of ink wasted! No frantic trips to the shops, as you have discovered that you have run out of ink to complete your project. How many of you are nodding in agreement?
The printer companies make their money from the ink, that's how they can churn out printers under £30, but only when you get it home, and have used up the 1/2 tank of ink they provided you with, do you realise that in most cases the ink costs the same as the printer was in the first place! There generally isnt anything wrong with the printer, but its now getting close to the point where its actually going to work out cheaper to buy a new printer every time instead of new Cartridges!
And Why did I want another HP, when the inks are so expensive? Because unlike most machines, it can and will take 300gsm Card stock! It takes Vellum, tracing paper, envelopes, tissue paper, photo paper and card, and most importantly has a full range of settings to enable it to take Greeting Card stock and Acetate!
Okay last point here, why did I go for an A3+ machine? Because so much is produced as 12 x 12 inch! Docrafts, Serif, etc all produce 12 x 12 inch. Digitally as well as Physically!
So the problem for me was finding someone that did an HP, on A3, with a Ciss, and support! All in one!
So I did some searching. Ideally I wanted the Ciss Set up for me, and as part of the package, so many hours of research later, I discovered that there was only one company that met with all my requirements.
So now to the test, I phoned them first and had a conversation with the guy who deals with sales, turns out he's the owner, lol! Okay full support promised, he wont sell it until he is sure it works properly, the printer is guaranteed for one year, standard guarantee, the Ciss for a life time. What did he recommend bearing in mind I'm a cardmaker...........He came up with the same answer as me, the HP, Ah I said but will it take 300gsm? Hmmn he said, I have some here, so I'll put it through the machine and email you back.
So he emailed me back the answer was yes, a couple of emails later I was ready to drive down to his office, and see it in operation before buying it. But he wasnt ready for me to go get it. I havent tested it fully yet, or done the videos, he said.
So I waited, impatiently!
12 days a go, I got the go ahead, and due to family commitments, had to wait til Friday! Gggrrrrr!
So I drove down to see it, watched it be put through its paces, talked to the guy, watched him box it up and put it in my car, paid the man and drove home!
Now I'm not saying it's cheap, it isnt, BUT it IS cheaper than buying proper ink cartridges again and again! Over a year even with compatible ink cartridges I am saving money, Time, and projects!
I have a printer that FINALLY prints as I see it on the screen! I have a printer that WILL take my heavier card stocks! And its an HP which means its a work Horse, and keeps going!
So If this has piqued your interest, and do sit down and think about how much YOU spend on ink per year, then pop over to this guy: City Ink Express and have a look, also check out his You Tube support videos, so you have an idea of what to expect! I wouldnt recommend it if I wasnt happy with it, and I do also post comments that disagree with my own views, see my Happy Cut reviews for example, okay its only one lady's bad experience, but I still did post it.




Lexie said...

Sounds fabulous Lou...but I'm skint! lol. One day...

Carrie said...

Great information Lou. Need to look into this. Just bought a new Kodack as my Epsom was c**p. Wouldnt take anything other than copier paper and super smooth card.

Carrie xx

Linny said...

This is brilliant Lou. I had a CISS on my old Epson. I have recently bouoght a Cannon Pixma and Im thinking about a CISS for this. Ive bookmarked City ink addy, Thank you. Linda x

Linda Simpson said...

Great information Lou, will have to think about this but not this side of Christmas. Good luck.

Linda xxx