Epson Surecolor P proofer vs HPz9 printer for print proofs


We have Epson 7900 with spectrophotometer. Currently with clogged heads in Magenta, Yellow, orange. (yes I tried cleaning, power cleaning and manually cleaning with Piezo Flush, etc.)
We only need 24" for a proofing size. We run offset only on Heidelburg 5c and 2c presses- SWOP.

Should we stick with the Epson SureColor P7000 or P7570 proofers or are HP z9 comparable for customer and press proofs? I am very hesitant going with HP for color proofs at the moment.

We will have to upgrade our RIP, assuming to go with EFI Fiery? (still running kodak proofer rip)
As far as RIP software, would the Fiery have the option to output progressive prints, such as a print proof of the Cyan and Magenta only? I can do this currently in kodak proofing - but that is at end of life/obsolete.

Thanks any input would be appreciated.
I know that CGS ORIS Color Tuner can do progressive proofs.

Do you certify your proofs? Always check that the RIP supports the printer model that you are considering, this isn't always a given and different RIPs may support more or less features for a given printer.

Consider the inkset, if you mostly do CMYK proofing, then it may be pointless getting a model that supports extended colours (OGVRGB etc) that are better suited to spot colour reproduction or photo printing.

Many years ago a shop I worked at had a HP and the heads and cleaning kits were a "consumable" item, so you will need to see if this is a consideration to factor in.

Good luck!
The P Series is great for 2 years. Then constant cleanings and going through ink. If you're running SWOP and have a decent RIP, I would imagine nearly any higher end proofer with your RIP compatability will get you there nowadays.
I don't know anything about the HP printer. I recently considered P9000 vs P9570 to replace our two 9900 printers we use exclusively for printing color proofs. Those are the same as the 7900 you have and the P7000 and P7570 you are considering, except with a width of 44 inches instead of 24. Following is what I concluded in my research and testing.


Same printhead and resolution as the 7900.
Same or similar printing speed as the 7900.
Software can print to the P7000 (over ethernet at least - not sure about USB) while thinking it is printing to a 7900. You can print to a 7900, unplug the ethernet cable, plug it into a P7000, set the IP address to match the 7900, repeat the print from the software and get the same result. The color might be slightly different.


Larger printhead. Resolution is 600/1200/2400 instead of 720/1440/2880 like the P7000.
Prints about twice as fast as the P7000.
Software needs to know it is talking to a P7570.
There are lots of reports of the printheads getting damaged striking the media. This seems to happen mostly with media that is thick or textured.
The printhead has twelve inks instead of ten, so you don't have to choose between violet or light light black (called "light gray" for the P7570) - you get them both. There is also no switching between photo black and matte black - they each have their own area on the printhead.

We are using a RIP system that knows nothing about the P9570. After Spectraflow generously helped me out with some testing, I was able to determine that it would be possible to get proofs out of our RIP system to print on the P9570, but I have to write some software to sit in the middle of the communication and translate (or possibly upgrade our RIP, but we would have to pay rent for it and we own the version we have now). The color is close but different enough that I need to calibrate and profile from scratch. I wouldn't be surprised if the P9000 would have been a close enough match that this wouldn't be necessary.

I decided to get two P9570s for the significant speed increase. The drop in resolution is not noticeable. I am not too worried about the head strike problem because we're just printing 170gsm semi-gloss. If we were in the wide format market, I might have gone with the P9000 to avoid the risk of head strikes.
We are authorized resellers of both HP's and Epson printers, and for this application I would highly recommend going with the Epson. Either the P7000 or P7570 will work, but P7000's are recently discontinued and in limited supply. For the RIP, you could use either EFI or GMG. GMG will cost a bit more and have more functionality. The biggest difference, in my opinion, is the auto calibration in GMG that returns the printer to the same state, keeping the profiles valid. There is no comparable feature in EFI, though EFI will do a fine job for most cases. It is possible to print the channels out in GMG as you want, not sure off the top of my head for EFI. If you would like more info please feel free to contact me - Jodie at Spectraflow East in NYC


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