Great choice for easy wide format printing.
6/24/2019 6:28 PM
I have used several different EPSON printers for our digital output for over fifteen years, and I had always been happy with EPSON's products. In May of 2018, I started having print head issues with my four year old 9900 printer, and a business associate suggested that I look at the CANON PRO 4000 before buying a new EPSON as a replacement. I did a lot of research and here is what I found.
I have now had my printer for about a year now and I am happy to report that the quality of the prints is fantastic, and in the time that I have had this printer, it seems to use measurably less ink per print that my old workhorse EPSON 9900 running similar production, and it is probably close to twice as fast.
After comparing features of each printer, several things stood out:
First, the CANON PRO 4000 features a user replaceable print head, a feature that led to the demise of every one of my previous EPSON printers. This is a very big deal. Although EPSON offers a head replacement for their printers, the $1800 part must be installed by a factory certified technician at an additional cost of about $800. The cost of the CANON head is $675 and can be easily "user replaced" in just a few minutes with very little down time.
Second, the CANON printer head is designed with a separate matte black ink channel so no switch over is required when printing on fine art papers versus glossy or luster photo papers. It was the photo black / matte black channel in my EPSON 9900 print head that went bad, probably from switching back and forth between photo and matte black all the time.
Third, the CANON PRO 4000 printer ships with a complete set of 300ml inks. When setting up a new printer, the initial ink loading consumes between 40-60ml of ink. This is true for the EPSON as well. Except EPSON only provides you with a "starter" set of 90ml inks. The first thing you do when you get an new EPSON is buy a set of inks. Not cheap!
Fourth, the CANON PRO 4000 printer ships with a built-in print server and a 500GB hard drive, making it incredibly easy to keep track of your printing and quickly run one or a quantity of prints without even touching a computer. Even more impressive is that the printer ships with a complete suite of software and utilities to run the printer. The "Accounting Manger" utility keeps track of every drop of ink and every square inch of media you print. You plug in the cost for ink and paper, and the manager reports the EXACTLY cost of each print. The "Media Configuration Tool" allows you you setup custom output profiles for almost any media, including your own custom settings. Other utilities provide network setup, print layout, and a Photo Shop plugin called "Print Studio Pro" for printing directly from Photo Shop to the built in print server.
Fifth, the CANON PRO 4000 has an optional second roll feed/take up unit available that allows for quick AUTOMATIC changes between different sizes or surfaces of media. Also handy when running long continuous prints.
When you look at all these features (and many more) of the CANON PRO 4000 printer and compare it to other printers that are available, it becomes a very easy choice.