[SOLVED (sort of)] How to print darker black on Epson Artisan 1430

Questions on certain printers and applications
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[SOLVED (sort of)] How to print darker black on Epson Artisan 1430

Post by caelia » Mon Jun 25, 2018 1:40 am


I am running TurboPrint 2.45 on Arch Linux, and I am trying to print on an Epson Artisan 1430. In case you're not familiar with the printer, it is a high-quality inkjet printer designed for printing photos and digital art. It uses 6 ink colors: Cyan, Light Cyan, Magenta, Light Magenta, Yellow, and Black - so I suppose you could call it CcMmYK.

Anyway, I have been trying to print an RGB image (native color profile: sRGB) from GIMP on this printer. The overall color reproduction is good. But there is a substantial amount of black in the original, and the black areas print out as grey. I've made several attempts, changing various color settings each time (though I have not kept a record of the changes), but each time the black areas are much too light. Finally, after my last attempt, I checked the ink usage stats in TurboPrint Control Center, and I discovered that no black ink was used at all. I have verified that the black ink cartridge is not empty, and I have cleaned the print head and run a nozzle check, and there is no indication of any problem with the printer itself.

So I guess the question is, how do I force the printer to print with black ink?

UPDATE: So, I ended up increasing the Black Level (UCR), black Color Correction, and black Ink Limit. The surprising thing is that I had to set Black Level (UCR) to 90% to get any black ink at all, despite the fact that the image has substantial very dark areas.

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Re: [SOLVED (sort of)] How to print darker black on Epson Artisan 1430

Post by zedonet » Mon Jul 02, 2018 10:40 am


it is correct that lighter shades of grey (approx. RGB=60,60,60 to RGB 255,255,255) are mixed from cyan, magenta and yellow inks for smoother dithering with less visible ink drops. Deep black (RGB=0,0,0) is printed with 100% black ink plus approx. 25% cyan, magenta and yellow ink.

From your description it sounds as if your photo doesn't contain very dark colors.
So another way to print darker black is to increase the image contrast - either by increasing the "Contrast" setting in the TurboPrint driver settings or by using the "Normalize" or "Automatic Contrast" function from your image editing tool (e.g. GIMP: "Colors" -> "Auto" -> "Stretch Contrast").

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