I understand your suggestion here, about sticking to a brand or model when somebody asks a question about using a particular device.
What I meant is trying to understand first if there is something wrong in the use of a given device, and help to achieve the best results. Then, and only then, if those results are not yet up to someone expectations, suggest which other devices could lead to better ones.
Because if there are some mistakes in the process, no amount of money you can throw at the problem usually solve it - if not maybe by pure chance. But without the right understanding, it can surface again with any little change in the process, and again if the solution is unknown, it can't be solved.
First, the OP has been having problems for a year with his printer. I know the frustration of spending on ink and getting no better results, and then spending more on ink.
Yeah, I know too. I believe your suggestion about "Jeff Schewe's THE DIGITAL PRINT" was very important, because you lead to something that can tell a lot about the printing process regardless of the printer you're using.
Sure, following that book won't turn a consumer printer into an high-end one, yet you'll understand why, and you'll be able to exploit fully whatever your budget permits, and not just waste money on a more expensive model and still get subpar results because you really didn't grap the required technique to obtain good results.
Otherwise, if someone says "my camera always give too dark images", do you tell him to check exposure, or you suggest to change camera?
I shouldn't have to point out that the OP is not the only person reading a thread. Others have the same questions, including many who are trying to decide on a printer. So, I'm being helpful to those who are searching for info on various printers.
Yes, but this way it could be a little misleading. If we were to perform a comparison between the Pro-1 and the 3880 we should ensure that both are properly used and deliver the best results. I'm sure that whatever printer I use, and whatever printer Keith Cooper use, his prints will be far better than mine Would you suggest someone else what printer to use using such kind of comparisons? Does the 3880 always prints better than the Pro-1? Maybe, but it needs to be a fair comparison.
When it comes to printers, we aren't "trapped" in a brand by a bag full of lenses and flashes. It is MUCH easier to finish up a set of inks and move on, either to another of the same brand or a different brand. Sticking with a printer that isn't performing becomes very expensive because it consumes ink.
Sure, but like cameras, the best device is not the latest and more expensive, but the one you know better and can exploit fully. As I said, it could be true you got the wrong device for the expected result, and just need another. But unless you are sure you're using it the correct way to achieve the best results, and still it's not what you wish, you just risk an endless chase of "the best one" wasting money and money because none will give you what you want, if there is some basic failure in the process. Good for sellers, not so good for your pocket and very frustrating - while maybe buying a $35 book - as you suggested - and/or reading Cooper's site could be the real solution. Then feel free to jump from printer to printer until you're fully satisifed with the results - you'll know how to get there.
I'm not trying to defend the Pro-1 - I was just pointing out it's after all a good printer, and maybe the reported issues were not in the printer itself, but maybe in some other steps. Everybody had its issues with one brand or another, and his own preferred ones. Yet, I learnt there's more value in discussing issues regardless of a given brand, than simply saying "oh yes, I used X too, but it was crap and now I'm very happy with Y" - unless you can give a factual proof that X was really crap.