One of the biggest obstacles, I have experienced when I tried to print my cards was with the printer. I looked around for a printer that had cost-effective ink usage and good quality printing.
I tried one of the Epson Ecotank printer. I liked the cost-effectiveness of the ink system. They have done away with the ink cartridges and have added tanks for each of the 5 inks. This is was very attractive because I found that ink cost is the biggest expense when I worked out my costs. In cartridge printers, you find that you lose a little bit of ink with each ink change.
I tested the Epson with some of the paper stock I plan to use. After almost 100 prints, I found that the printer would jam a lot and leak ink onto the print. In the end, I was getting about 30% sellable prints for the heavy card stock I wanted to use. This did not make the ink cost saving worth it. I still love this printer for photo prints on lighter paper stock. But it is not a good choice for heavy card stock.
So I went searching for a new printer. After some research, I found the Canon Pixma Pro 100.
This is my first Canon. I tested the printer by running a large card order I had. The order was for 100 cards. I went through 4 cyan and light cyan cartridges for the job. All the printed went through the printer with no issues.
In the end, I had 100% sellable prints and used 4 sets of ink (not all colors since this design was cyan dominant).
The print quality of the Canon to the Epson on the card stock I am using was comparable.
One of the advantages of the Canon, other than the reduced jamming, is that the printer allows a larger print size (13-inch width). This would be helpful for my custom gift boxes I am planning to create for my Etsy shop.
This printer also prints to CD which is one thing the Epson doesn’t do. I have quite a few cd printing jobs so this is a feature that will be very useful to my business.
That only leaves the cost of the ink. A set of Canon ink runs between $106 and $124 for a set of 8 colors. I have also found third party inks that are much cheaper, so I tested some of them. During my 1000 card job, I found no noticeable difference between the 2 kinds of ink in the quality of the image. So I am comfortable using third party ink which will bring my costs closer to the Epson EcoTank.
I am very happy with how the Canon Pixma Pro 100 runs card stock. With the Epson, I would have to babysit the printing. I ended up losing a lot of production time. With the Canon, I was able to run the job overnight while I slept.
I am very happy with my decision to run the Canon Pixma Pro 100. It saves me money in production time, paper wastage cost and offers the added feature to print cd and DVD. Although the ink cost is higher, I can offer my cards at a reasonable print.
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About the Author
With a lifetime of experience working in the creative industry, my passion is helping others craft an authentic and compelling brand that helps them reach their own creative potential. I am a photographer, graphic designer and musician. I help creatives create. Learn More…
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