FLAAR evaluates Hewlett-Packard DesignJet 2800CP to replace Encad wide format printers.

Wow, the photo-realistic quality produced by HP DesignJet 2800CP wide format printer exceeds our expectations. Just look at these colorful prints!

These are mostly images from 35mm slides. Try doing this in a normal darkroom. Yet scanning with a Scitex and printing with the Hewlett-Packard printer results in beautiful fine art prints every time.

These inks are normal indoor inks. Our office has strong direct sunlight steaming in the windows. If these prints were from an Epson printer the images would fade quickly. Yet the Hewlett-Packard inks hold up well. If we used Hewlett-Packard pigmented inks the images would last into the next century.

The HP 2800 ps being test

Here is the Hewlett-Packard DesignJet 2800CP in the FLAAR office in Essen, Germany. Actually one of these prints is produced by a circa $25,000 printer (a Roland HiFi) and all the other prints are produced by the HP DesignJet 2800CP which definitely costs appreciably closer to the budget of a normal mortal.

Can you tell which print is from a $25,000 printer and which is from a $15,000 printer? Actually you can get the essentially identical color printer from Hewlett-Packard as the model 2500 with an internal onboard RIP and save $5,000. That is a museum-quality printer for just $10,000.

Just calculate how much profit you can make producing prints of this quality.

Prints shown here are all from 35mm slides scanned on a Scitex EverSmart Supreme flatbed scanner. If you intend to use 35mm slides to enlarge on a wide format printer, be sure you select a scanner that has the necessary quality, such as any of the Scitex scanners. Check out Cameras-scanners-flaar.org and Flatbed-scanner-review.org to see what scanners are good, and what scanners you should avoid.

For additional information and for help making your decision, ask for the "FLAAR report on signs, posters, banners" (specify whether for indoor signs or outdoor signs in the rain and sun) or for the FLAAR report on "Piezo vs Thermal printheads, fact vs fiction, pros and cons of each kind of inkjet printhead." You can also ask for the report on "Media and Inks for Photo-Realistic and Fine Art Giclee," or "Media and Inks for Sign Printing with Large Format Inkjet."

If this will be your first printer, then we have a special report that holds your hand and leads you through all the basic questions that will assist a first-time buyer of a large format printer. Purchase the FLAAR report on "RIP + Help." This explains what RIP software is, why this is useful, and includes tips, warnings, information, and help for a wide range of matters for a newbie. Here you will really appreciate that FLAAR is based at a university; Professor Hellmuth has plenty of experience writing in a manner that explains what you need, and why.

If you are in Canada or outside USA, please contact your local  national dealer. Most USA resellers do not sell outside the  continental USA.


Most recently updated March 11, 2005.
Previous updates: August 02, 2001.