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HP Z6100 and Onyx RIP - printing SLOW!

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  • HP Z6100 and Onyx RIP - printing SLOW!

    Is anyone else running Onyx RIP with any HP Z6100 series printers?
    I am, and they run great... however, when the files get large - i.e. big photographs, lots of data, etc.... they really slow down and there is major head pausing on either side of the paper.
    I've been through it all with Onyx, but have come to no solution.
    Is anyone else having this problem?

    Edited by: Jon Kovach on May 19, 2008 4:33 PM

  • #2
    Re: HP Z6100 and Onyx RIP - printing SLOW!


    Are you running a true gigabit network - cables, cards & switch?

    You need to be with this printer.

    Also the 2 way communication can cause issue like this on some PCs - Dells have been known - not sure why I'm afraid.

    In Config printer you can turn off bidirectional communication with the printer - try this to see if it improves.

    Also the printer MUST be on the latest firmware - check the HP website (its a big download!) & restart the printer and PC afterwards.

    Also ensure you are on Onyxv7.1 and are using the latest U4 printer driver.

    The queue needs to be off on the printer and set to start printing "immediately"

    You can set this on the printer or by using the web tool.

    I have no pausing issues now with this setup under any circumstances.

    Good luck!

    I have these and get no pausing on


    • #3
      Re: HP Z6100 and Onyx RIP - printing SLOW!

      Ive got a Z6100 with onyx RIP and the only time I notice the head pausing is when it starts to print, after a few passes it dosnt do it anymore and prints at normal speed. I am not using a gigabit network card either, are you using CMYK contone mode for printing or High Pass / Low Pass?


      • #4
        Re: HP Z6100 and Onyx RIP - printing SLOW!

        Sorry I didn't see these posts until today....

        I am running a gigabit network. It is a shared network with my office, however, and Onyx told me that could be a problem.... Along the same lines, I set up a
        temporary private network, straight from the computer to a switch to the printers, via gigabit and CAT6 cables, and still had the same slow printing.

        I do have my RIP set up on a Dell. I will try to turn off 2 way communication, will let you know how that works out. Are there any other drawbacks to doing that?

        I am on the latest firmware, Onyx release, and printer drivers. I also have the queue off and printing immediately....

        I am printing on High Pass mode. I have just recently read somewhere else that someone is printing in contone mode. What is the difference between the two? Is one going to give me less resolution? I don't know what the contone mode is. I don't even really know what the high pass mode is, either....



        • #5
          Re: HP Z6100 and Onyx RIP - printing SLOW!


          The slow start Mark refers to is what HP call the "soft landing" and is normal - the print transport will seem much slower for a number of passes until the full width of the printhead can fire on the paper.

          Halftone mode (High Pass / Low Pass) is when the RIP is in full control of the printer - level of ink being used,calibration, dot pattern etc etc all controlled by the profile in Onyx. This gives absolute control and thus the optimum results in terms of gamut etc. Drawbacks are that it is a slower and more complex workflow to profile, a little slower in speed and you are stuck with the generic dot patterns Onyx uses.

          By using the Contone profiles they just build the icc part of the profile within Onyx (or your own software) and leave the ink limits, calibration, dot pattern etc for HP to sort within the printer. This is a much quicker and easier profiling workflow, prints a little quicker (although I don't think this is the answer for you as I use halftone with no pausing) and uses HPs own dot pattern which is a little smoother. The big drawback is that leaving nearly everything to HP means that the ink restrictions/ ink limits are not optimised - the HP paper they base your Contone profile on may use settings that are fine for that HP paper, but your paper may be different and you might get poor results.

          Try both - although I tend to stick with high pass (halftone) profiles.

          2 way communication is convenient but won't affect your ability to print if you turn it off. You can always use the HP web-based user interface to check on ink levels etc.




          • #6
            Re: HP Z6100 and Onyx RIP - printing SLOW!

            I see, I see. I am using halftone mode now. I, basically, want full control over ink levels and calibrations. However, I have noticed that... well.... I might not be that great of a profiler. I use a custom milled & coated paper, so I have to custom profile it. The gamut that I came up with on my Z6100 is inferior to that which I did on the 5500. I don't know if I did something wrong, or if that's just how it is. It doesn't seem like that should be how it is, as there are eight inks as opposed to six. If you'd like to see my profiles, let me know in an email, and I can forward them over to you. Maybe I am doing something wrong.

            What I hear about Contone, I don't like. I like getting maximum results out of my paper - as it is custom, and harder to set up as a 'generic' media... i.e. Heavyweight coated. But I tried printing with Contone, and boy did it go faster. No head pausing at all.

            I did not see a setting in Onyx for 2-way communication. Am I missing it? I saw bi-directional printing. I tried that, and that didn't help anything at all. Where is the setting for bi-directional communication?

            Also, can I only go up to 600 dpi resolution in Contone mode? I can't figure out how to get it to stay set at 1200.

            There is no two ways about it - I am getting head pausing, and I absolutely cannot figure out why.



            • #7
              Re: HP Z6100 and Onyx RIP - printing SLOW!

              The gamut of the HP5500 dye was pretty good - the Z6100 is at least as good (that's what my HP presentations say anyway!). It sounds as if you may be able to optimise your profile a little more.

              The crucial parts of the process are the ink restrictions and ink limits. You should use "advanced" ink restrictions and use the new measure tool to judge the "colourant" of the colour in question (Lch values) This is better than using density alone to judge ink restrictions and maximise gamut (as long as you have a suitable patch reading spectrophotometer like an eye 1)

              Then when setting ink limits try not to set the 4,5,6 & 7 lines lower than 2.6 - 2.8 as this will eat into your shadow colours and lower the gamut. 1,2&3 can be set to 2.1 or so with no issues. If your media requires you to set these figures lower then you have to accept a smaller gamut - it's the paper and there's not much you can do I'm afraid. One trick is to set the black ink compensation to 4.5 if your RGB & greys are down in the low 2s. This will "fill in" the missing gamut with black - it won't help your gamut much but will prevent a muddy grey appearing in these densities where the darker colour should be - "capping" is the term often used.

              The media you are using will probably cockle and cause head strikes if it gets too wet so you may be limited in how high you can set the ink limits anyway.

              Onyx are about to launch a profiling "Wiki" - I'm beta testing it now & has of good advice but not as much detail as I would like yet - I'll post here when it is launched.

              Your HP has some unique features which you need to understand - "doublestrike" often confuses the issue. I have a post here: which tries to explain how it works.

              The 2 way communication is where you set your TCPIP address in "configure printer" I think the button is called "features"

              If this doesn't help I would try uninstalling the HP windows driver - Onyx doesn't require it.

              There is some more info here:

     just hit "start search" to see all the posts



              • #8
                Re: HP Z6100 and Onyx RIP - printing SLOW!

                I am running 5500 pigment inks. However, when I look at the gamut of the 6100, it's as good as or worse than the 5500 - therefore, I feel as though I may be missing something. I am working to try to improve it now. Reprofiling...

                I tried to profile using contone mode. I didn't see any reduction in resolution, and I saw the speed improvement. Much faster. However, I couldn't get my inks dark enough. I was playing around with the ink limits, but the best I could do (setting ink limits to all 4, and trying BIC from 1-5) still didn't punch the darks enough. It just wasn't working out. So now I am going back to hi-pass mode and starting over.

                I was looking at ink restrictions, and I do not see anywhere to do any type of measuring other than density, with your eye. I have an X-Rite DTP20... maybe I can't do the Lch with that?

                Another question that was never totally answered for me in the same fashion by everyone, is how to read the ink restrictions swatch? I mean, I know that you look for where the ink goes to black and doesn't change anymore... but for lines 4, 5, and 6.... do you take the readings on 4a and 4b and average them? Or should you only look at one line? Then for line 7, where there are three lines, do you average out your guesses? Is there an accurate way to do that? Then I have always done my BIC restrictions by looking at a sample print, adjusting the BIC, then printing the sample print again - I don't know how to read that on the ink restrictions chart.

                I would be very, very interested in reading through the Onyx Wiki!

                I understand doublestrike a little more fully - thanks for your link on that.

                Thanks for the help - I appreciate all of it.


                • #9
                  Re: HP Z6100 and Onyx RIP - printing SLOW!

                  Hi Jon

                  You need to be in "Advanced" Ink Restrictions to use Lch to decide on the ink restrictions - hit the Measure Tool and view the graph.

                  Unfortunately you can only use a spot-reader to read the patches in - something like an eye 1 device. Yours is a strip reader I think so you can't use the tool properly until Onyx enable strip reading with the Measure Tool - it's in the pipeline though. Seems you have to stay with density as you say.

                  I think you mean the Ink Limit Swatch? where there is more than 1 line per number you assess all the rows and choose the lowest number on either where you see no issues. eg 4a has drying problems at 3.2 4b has drying problems at 2.9. You set the lowest one (2.9 here) as your ink limit. Same for the 3 line grey swatch.

                  Black ink compensation, as I understand it, is used when you have a media which is barely compatible. Sometimes you have to set your ink limits very low. 12&3 are often around 2 - 2.2. this is normal. If your 4,5 &6 are giving you real problems you sometimes have to set these in the low 2's as well. When you do this your gamut takes a big hit as you are limiting your colours in the shadows. You can achieve light & mid colours, and of course black, but there are fewer dark colours. If you leave BIC at 1 and build the profile you will not only see a reduced gamut (not much you can do here) but in a grad on an image you will see a mid-grey where your dark colours should have been. This "capping" shows up instead of the darker coloured shadows you were expecting.

                  Now the BIC comes into play. By increasing this up to 4 - 4.5 you will "pull" the black and mid colours together, "compensating" for the lost darker colours and hiding the capping.

                  If your 4,5 & 6 are in the high 2's or 3's the you can leave BIC at the default 1.

                  Don't forget the icc will try it's best to fill in some of the missing darker colours. If you limit them in the low 2's and then print off an icc swatch you will still see some darker colours in the icc swatch even though it looks as if you threw them all away when you put a low ink limit on them. It is usually more forgiving then many people realise and you can do a fair job profiling papers that many would at first view as incompatible.

                  Welcome to by the way!



                  • #10
                    Re: HP Z6100 and Onyx RIP - printing SLOW!

                    I GET IT!!!! I finally, finally got it. The light, it dawned on me this afternoon. Wow! I was messing around with the freaking ink restrictions all day, and I finally got it to work out. Unfortunately, my numbers are fairly low. They are: C 1.9, M 1.75, Y 1.7, R 1.9, G 1.9, B 1.9, CMY 2.5, BIC 2.5. I know that you mentioned not to go too low, but I just can't get any higher with my media. I had the BIC up to 4.5 and couldn't get it to work without puddling. I took it back down, and gradually knocked my other colors down.... and finally things started to go from light to dark, I saw no puddling, and I see no sudden lightening then darkening in the darks.... I was getting that for a while. When it prints, I take it right off and it's cool & damp.... but nothing too major. It dries to the touch within 5 minutes or so... there is no shine to the ink - and I believe this to be looking quite perfect.... to me, anyway.

                    I am in the process of running the ICC profile (ultra with linearization).... then will build everything later. I can't wait to see how this comes out - I just feel it will be so much better.

                    I opted to go with the basic grayscale instead of the advanced, based off some other advice I got.

                    Sorry to post so much - I am just hoping this might help others while it's helping me.

                    Thanks for all your help - though I am still in need of much more!!! haha

                    p.s. Just saw your post - I am not so sure about my BIC number now.... should I hold firm to the statement "if it works for me, then it works"? i.e..... things/settings are going to be different for everyone?

                    Thanks for the welcome - didn't even realize I was talking to the same person over there, too....! You are everywhere, at once.

                    Edited by: Jon Kovach on Jun 26, 2008 5:50 PM


                    • #11
                      Onyx Error#4

                      NEED HELP with Onyx Rip v7.1, try to install hp z6100ps driver,but get (Error#4 Unsupported printer HP Design Jet Z6100 6o" printer offline. also the printer DLL cannot be loaded. Thanks, Dave


                      • #12
                        HPZ6100 Printing slow

                        Hi there Jon

                        Sorry but I didnt see if turning 2 way communication off worked? The company I work for has 3 Z6100s on the network (Running Gigabit) and have the slow running & head pause problem.

                        When more of the printers are in use at the same time the problem escalates. Im happy with the colour & quality and all profiles are pretty much nailed down now.

                        Any thoughts mate? anyone else also.


                        Just joined, seems like a great site!


                        • #13
                          Well, turns out what it was was the fact that I am running high quality profiles, with stochastic dot patterns, as opposed to a contone dot pattern, which would print much faster. However, much less control. I like having control of my profiles.


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by focalfire View Post
                            Hi there Jon

                            Sorry but I didnt see if turning 2 way communication off worked? The company I work for has 3 Z6100s on the network (Running Gigabit) and have the slow running & head pause problem.

                            When more of the printers are in use at the same time the problem escalates. Im happy with the colour & quality and all profiles are pretty much nailed down now.

                            Any thoughts mate? anyone else also.

                            I assume you are running 1 rip for all 3. or 3 separate rips? sorry i am not familiar with these.
                            if its one rip you need a server with 2 core 2 quad. raid 5 15k scsi and a lot of ram.
                            either way you need to segregate the network. either with vlans or the easier way to run crossover cables and second network cards in the rips. if its one rip then get one of the server cards with 4 ethernet ports on it. run a separate set of ip addresses on each one. just my thoughts on something to try.


                            • #15
                              You may want to look into a Harlequin RIP. You can demo the HP Z6100 RIP from the following link:

                              Digital Proofing RIP Software for Epson, HP - Proofer Software for Epson, HP

                              If you are using three of these printers, you may be able to get by with one RIP computer but I would recommend three separate RIPs with three separate computers. If you need ultimate throughput speed then this is the way to go.

                              You may want to try the following: Setup the RIP software to output to shared windows printers. To do this you would need to setup a shared Windows printer for each of the HP Z6100 printers. Next, you will need configure the RIP with different setups so that each setup prints out to the appropriate shared Windows printer. This way, the RIP is outputting only a file to the shared printer and your RIP is only tied up for the time it takes to write the file to disk and output the file. You would not have to wait on the printer to start or stop printing before you can send out another job to the other printers.


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