I've been having some trouble with my printer recently. Namely, the colours suddenly (seemingly suddenly) aren't as accurate as they were before. I'm a designer see, so accurate colours are something that is important for me. The colours used to print out very accurate to what was viewable on screen (especially when printing from a pdf or direct from an adobe program). Although I understand they won't be perfect on a printer like mine, they where great.
I have always used a mixture of 'Think' inks from choice stationary, and Canon inks. This is because 'think' didn't provide their own version of the canon Grey Ink until recently, and both blacks, big and small (525 & 526) seemed to last such a long time, whereas colours seemed to be used up far more rapidly. So I usually have 'Think' Cyan Magenta Yellow(PGI-526) installed, and Canon Black, Grey(526), Black(525).
The most recent thing I recall, was that I was noticing streaks and a bit of banding in my printing...the magenta PGI-526 and black pgi-525 inks were both running low, so I figured that was the cause. Anyway, I finished off both inks by doing a print head deep clean, and for some reason I did manual printer head alignment (which according to the print outs, was a bit off).
Those are the last things I recall happening with my printer until I recently realised how the colours printed had changed. (But I cant be sure it wasn't happening a bit before this) What could cause this?
- At first I thought it could be that fact that the Canon PGI-525 was replaced with a Think version...but I bought a canon version and installed it and I've seen no change.
- I have also replaced all the coloured inks just in case, although, in that instance I was replacing Think cartridges with Think. The only two inks I haven't changed are a Canon Black and Grey (PGI-526).
- I tried reinstalling all the printer drivers and software on my PC, but that hasn't changed anything.
- The paper I'm printing onto hasn't changed. Nor has the CMYK values of the colours in the document. I haven't knowingly altered any colour profiles in Adobe Programs. I almost exclusively print from PDF's and use the default 'high quality print' pre-set.
- I am wondering about buying Canon branded Cyan, Magenta and Yellow inks, and seeing if those affect the colours at all. I recently ordered a new 'batch' of inks from choice stationary, so I guess its possible they altered 'the recipe'? It seems a long shot to me though.
If anyone could shine a light on this, or suggest something I haven't tried. I'd be really really grateful.
Sorry for such a long post, but I was just trying to be as thorough as possible. So people knew what I had done and tried etc.
Okay. I've scanned some images to try and help better illustrate what I'm talking about. The quality is poor but you should get the gist of it.
1. The first image shows two printouts of a document I was working on, produced with InDesign. They're both printed from the same PDF, that was last saved before I noticed colours changing. The print out on the left is the correct one, as it is a close match to how the document looks on screen.
2. This image is taken from a book I produced and had printed professionally. The blue has the same CMYK value as the lighter blue used in the previous image, so this is a good control to know which colours are more accurate.
I don't think its down to paper, when I'm working I always use the same 80gsm paper to print out tests as I'm going along.
I don't think its down to settings on my adobe programs; I don't recall changing any of those, and PDF documents untouched since before I noticed the colours changed all seem to be affected. I've tried printing different PDFs that contain colours other than blue. And they all print out darker/duller than before compared to earlier print outs.
This makes me think it has to be down to the printer or most likely the ink, does anyone have any other thoughts?
I've bought a full set of canon branded inks, although I've always used 'compatible' coloured inks before without any problems, it should certainly rule that out.