Single Page FAQ

Note: Last updated 2/4/11. See main FAQ for most up-to-date topics if this page is out of date.

How do I search the Wiki to find the information I need?

There are several ways to find information on the Wiki. Starting from the most general, here they are:

  1. Use the Navigation column on the left to find the general topic you are interested in. The list is long, so be sure to scroll down to see the end.
  2. Click FAQ (Single Page) in the Navigation column to the left, then use "Find" in your browser to search for any keywords in the FAQ. Note: this page is not as up to date as the individual pages (created 18 months ago from individual pages), so if you don't find what you are looking for, go to step 3.
  3. Click FAQ Contents in the Navigation column, then use "Find" in your browser (e.g., Control-F) to search for titlewords in the FAQ topics.
  4. Click Discussion Forum in the Navigation column on the left. You can filter the Discussion forum messages by Keywords (actually, these are titlewords, or any portion of titleword. For example, filtering with "pro" will find topics on XP Pro, profiles, etc. You can clear the filter when you are done.
  5. Use the "Search" box just above the word "Navigation" in the Navigation column on the left. Type in what you want to search for, then click the green arrow to the right. Search capabilities:

Wikispaces supports several operators to help narrow your search results:

"exact phrase"
find documents containing the exact phrase in quotes
only show pages that contain "include"
only show pages that do not contain "exclude"

For example, "firmware update" will only return pages with the words "firmware update" in that order. firmware -update will show all pages that contain the word firmware that do not contain the word update. firmware +update will show all pages that contain firmware and also contain the word update.

Note: Using search will find both regular Wiki pages and Discussion Forum messages. There is no way currently to find words or phrases in the regular Wiki pages, but not in the discussion forum pages.

How do I contact Canon USA for support?

Support for the iPF printers in the USA - (800) 423-2366 then press Option 1

Where can I get a PDF manual for my iPF printer?

The manuals are located on Canon's web site under "Manuals and Brochures" section for each printer. No PDF manual exists for the iPF5000. Direct links to this section of Canon's web site are shown below:






Should I buy a Canon iPF Printer?

Question: Do you recommend that I buy a Canon iPF Printer?

Answer: Yes, these are great printers with many strengths, so we recommend that you buy one if it fits your needs. All of the current large format printers have strengths and weaknesses, but they are different for each printer so it depends which features are most important to you. We recommend that you get enough information to decide if one of these printers is right for you. A recommended source of objective information comparing the printers for Canon, Epson and HP is Scott Martin's review of the new X300 printer generation, which includes comparisons with Epson and HP. You can also check an older newsletter from Scott Martin for comparisons of the iPFX100 generation with Epson/HP printers. Future issues of this newletter can be subscribed from the Onsight front page.

  • Decide if you would be better served by a 24 inch printer. Options here include the Canon iPF6300 or iPF6100, HP Z3200 and the Epson 7880 or Epson 7900. A comparison of the older versions of Canon, Epson and HP printers has been started here.
  • If you want a 17 inch printer, the only real competitors are the Epson 4880 and the Epson 3800, or the Epson 4900 which will be available in November, 2010 and uses the same inks as the 7900. Look at the comparison with the Epson 3800 and 4800, (some might want to also consider the HP Designjet 90, a dye-based printer which is only archival with two HP papers).
  • Check the Known Limitations section to see if the issues mentioned are showstoppers for you. Don't be too concerned about these problems unless they would affect YOUR use of the printer, since printers from all of the manufacturers have limitations.
  • Read the Reviews
  • Ask any unanswered questions on the Discussion Forum

Strong points of the iPF5000/iPF5100 include:

  • Gamut size equal to Epson K3 inks on Epson Premium Luster (but the shape is different, so stronger in some colors, weaker in others)
  • Excellent dmax (L* 3.3 on Epson Premium Luster)
  • Gloss differential and bronzing characteristics of the iPF5000 were identical to the K3 inks in a recent comparison of B&W done by Scott Martin of Onsight. However, the iPFX100 inks were hugely superior. He only tested black and white so there could be differences that one sees with color prints, but probably the results wouldn't be much different. The iPF5100/6100 printers black inks have the least bronzing and gloss differential (without HP's Gloss Enhancer) and that's a real strong point. Scott writes in a Luminous Landscape thread: "I have some wet darkroom fiber base prints along with B&W fiber base inkjet prints from Epson K3 printers, HP Z series printers and Canon iPF x100 printers that I carry around with me and all the photographers that I have shown them to have preferred the x100 prints thus far."
  • No clogs
  • Automated cleanings may waste less ink than Epsons, especially for the iPFX100 printers with firmware 1.35 which have been reported to use 0.35-0.81 ml per day
  • Frugal with ink when making prints
  • Industrial strength build quality
  • No cartridge swap required to print photo or matte black ink
  • Great motorized roll feed which loads very easily
  • Sheets and roll can be loaded at the same time, easy to switch
  • Very neutral B&W prints
  • Can print long panoramas

Weaknesses of the iPF5000/iPF5100 include:

  • Very large size compared to Epson 3800 (bigger than even the Epson 4800)
  • Locked Media Types may cause hassles/problems when printing on third party glossy/luster papers
  • Smallest official paper size 8X10 (but reports of successfully feeding slightly smaller sizes)
  • On selected papers Ultrachrome K3 inks may be more water resistant than Canon according to tests done by some Wiki members
  • Steeper learning curve for those already accustomed to Epson printers

Considerations Before Buying an iPF Printer

Updated 12/15/10. Listed below are known limitations which may affect your decision to purchase this printer. Only you can decide if these issues would pose a significant problem for you. Note that there are many, many features which work perfectly, and that both Epson and HP have significant but different limitations.

Major Issues for All iPF Printers

  • Feeding from the Cassette on iPF5X00 printers is limited to papers less than 11.8 mil thick. Problems reported feeding Hahnemuhle Photo Rag and Somerset Velvet. Note: While some people have successfully fed papers thicker than this without problems, others have encountered problems. This is the official printer specification from Canon. If you want to print on thicker sheet paper, you may have to feed sheets one by one from the top tray.
  • Full Borderless printing is not supported on Sheet paper See this FAQ for a description of the borderless capabilities of the iPF printers. Note that the Epson 3800 has better support of borderless printing on sheets as described on Eric Chan's Epson 3800 FAQ.
  • Scratches on cut sheets of Epson Exhibition Fiber on iPF8X00 printers were reported in this Luminous Landscape thread. The problem was reproduced by Canon, and appears to be due to the design of the paper path in the 8X00 printers. Feedback from original poster "Canon's conclusion was that all gloss and semi-gloss cut sheets will be prone to scratching. Interestingly enough I have some of LexJet's 'metallic' paper in cut sheets and I have not noticed any scratches on it. After spending some more time with the EEF I can confidently say that it's some of the most delicate paper I've handled." Problem was confirmed by Northlight Images in their iPF8300 Review and Notes. Other posters have not reported problems with cut sheets on a variety of cut sheet media, including EEF, as discussed in this Wiki thread. The problem does not affect the iPF6X00 printers since the paper path for cut sheets is straighter (confirmed by the same poster who reported the problem on the iPF8300). Workarounds: Use Epson Exhibition Fiber in roll only on the iPF8X00 printers, or try cut sheets of a different paper.
  • Printheads are expensive ($450-500 each, current street price; two printheads in a printer) and each one comes with a warranty of one year or when the status of the internal dot counter changes from "a" to "b", whichever comes first. Since the internal dot counter used to verify the warranty validity does not indicate actual dot count, users cannot reliably estimate how much warranty period is left. Canon only gives an estimate of the amount of ink used before the warranty expires--4,000 ml per printhead. This volume does not include ink used for maintenance. This may be particularly significant for those who do not print a lot, as their warranty could expire after one year when they have not printed a high volume of work. Note that the warranty covers approximately 40% of the "expected printhead life", so the average expected throughput is about 2.5 times this amount (according to Canon document on their web site). In addition, the Canon extended warranty does not cover printheads as the Epson extended warranty does. There are only a few reports so far of early printhead failure, and all were covered by Canon under warranty.
  • There is less data on archival properties of ink/paper combinations than for Epson printers. Epson printers generally have test results for multiple papers, while Canon's results are on a very limited number of papers. For example, see Epson 7900 results from Wilhelm Research. However, available test results have generally shown Canon inks to be comparable or superior to Epson inks in longevity.
    • Wilhelm Research released print permanence information in September, 2010 for iPF8300 on 2 Canon papers
    • Wilhelm Research released print permanence information in June, 2009 for iPF6100 on 5 Canon papers
    • Wilhelm Research released print permanence information in October 2008 comparing HP, Canon iPF5100 and Epson inksets on Canson , Inkpress and Harman papers. HP's inks are found to have the best print permanence, Epson's have the lowest and Canon's inks are in between.
    • Independent light fade testing by Aardenburg Imaging shows Canon iPF5000 roughly comparable to Epson K3 inkset.
    • Canon issued a report in 2007 for the iPF5000 showing both their internal testing results and some Wilhelm test results. The number of papers in the Wilhelm report is quite limited and no bare bulb test results are included.

Minor Issues for All iPF Printers

  1. Resizing in the Photoshop Plugin done by percentage rather than by setting size limits for height/width. Very annoying when you want to print to a specific size (which is virtually all the time). You have to guess at the percentage and keep adjusting it until you get the exact size you want. Or, you can do the resizing in Photoshop before starting the Plugin.
  2. Some Media Types do not support Manual (3 mm margins). This may be due to concerns on Canon's part that the Fine Art papers won't produce adequate quality near the extended margin. However, reports to the Wiki indicate that the heavier papers (even up to Hahnemuhle Museum Etching, a 350 gsm paper) print fine with the extended margins. Since Premium Matte is often the best Media Type for these papers and it has 3 mm margins available, this is considered a minor issue. See the list of Media Types that don't have the 3 mm option in this thread.
  3. Version 4 ICC profiles do not work with Photoshop Plugin on Windows platform. Workaround available.

Minor Issues for iPFX100 Only

  1. Relative Colorimetric Rendering Intent from Photoshop Plugin does not include Black Point Compensation. Workaround available. Update: For the x300 printers, the plug-in let’s you choose to use the AdobeCMM if you like and utilize their Black Point Compensation for the Relative Colorimetric intent.
  2. 32 pass printing is not available for Special Media Types. Canon has included this feature for their Media Type using Photo Black ink, but hasn't seen fit to include it for Special Media Types. Now that the Canon Media Types have been unlocked with the latest Media Configuration Tool, this is much less important, since a Canon Media Type can be used to create a profile for a third party paper.

Major Issues for iPF5000 Only

If you are purchasing a used iPF5000 and need information on limitations unique to that model, see this page.

What are the borderless capabilities of the iPF printers?

  • Sheets - borderless on the lateral edges is supported, but full borderless isn't, because the printer doesn't have anywhere for the ink on the top and bottom to go, it only has areas for the lateral overspray.
  • Rolls - full borderless is supported

Borderless is only supported at certain paper widths, as shown in the table below. The information is taken directly from Canon brochures, so is presumed to be correct:

8 inches
10 inches
B4 (9.84 inches)
A3+ (12.95 inches)
14 inches
16 inches
A2 (16.54 inches)
A2+/17 inches
B2 (20.27 inches)
A1 (23.39 inches)
24 inches
A0 (33.11 inches)
36 inches
B0 (40.55 inches)
42 inches
44 inches







For undocumented reasons, some media types disable borderless printing for roll paper. Kier Darby found that the 'Coated Paper' media type, which he used with Canon Coated Matt Paper loaded, was one of these media types that disallows borderless printing.

Where can I request a Canon iPF print sample?

Canon U.S.A.announced the LUCIA EX Print Sample Request Program, a service giving consumers the opportunity to receive 8.5-inch by 11-inch sample photographs printed on the new Canon imagePROGRAF iPF8300/6350/6300 large format printers, prior to purchasing the device. Through the program, customers will receive three printed images captured by Canon Explorer of Light photographers, which demonstrate the high-quality printing capabilities of the imagePROGRAF 12-Color series and new LUCIA EX ink set. Free iPF6300 or iPF8300 print sample is available here

For anyone in the UK who is thinking of purchasing a Canon large format printer you can request a large format printer sample here . In conjunction with Canon UK we provide a print sample service specifically for the Canon imagePROGRAF range. The service is designed to help prospective purchasers make the best and most informed decision on the best large format printer for them. We are not a sales organisation and the sample is sent without obligation to buy. We have sent over 1000 samples in the two and half years we have been operating the service. As mentioned the service is currently only for the UK, however, we do hope to expand the service to other regions and in any case we will assist anyone who requires a sample find the best way of doing this in their local region/country.

What Ink longevity test results are available for the different iPF Printers?

  • Wilhelm Research released print permanence information in September, 2010 for iPF8300 on 2 Canon papers
  • Wilhelm Research released print permanence information in June, 2009 for iPF6100 on 5 Canon papers
  • Wilhelm Research released print permanence information in October 2008 comparing HP, Canon iPF5100 and Epson inksets on Canson , Inkpress and Harman papers. HP's inks are found to have the best print permanence, Epson's have the lowest and Canon's inks are in between.
  • Independent Light Fade testing results for Canon iPF5000 are available from Aardenburg Imaging, along with Epson K3 and HP Z3100. While many of the papers are still in test, it appears that the Canon compares favorably to Epson. Looking at the papers that have completed 90 MLux hours of testing, the best performing are Canon Heavyweight Photo Satin 300 gsm, Hahnemuhle Fine Art Pearl 285 gsm, and Hahnemuhle Photo Rag 308 gsm. There is a wealth of information included in each report about the amount of fading for each color at each total exposure level. Consider joining if you want to support this effort, or if you need information available in the non-public reports.
  • Canon issued a report in 2007 for the iPF5000 showing both their internal testing results and some Wilhelm test results. The number of papers in the Wilhelm report is quite limited and no bare bulb test results are included. Here is a PDF with Canon's own test results for the iPF5000, plus the results of Wilhelm Imaging Research:

What extended warranty coverage is available for the iPF printers?

The Canon CarePAK warranty may be purchased up until the end of the first year of ownership. The fee for the coverage is as follows:

One Year Warranty
Two Year Warranty

Parts and labor for the printer are covered on a next business day support basis. No coverage is provided for printheads, ink or paper.

What is the consensus about service and support of the iPF printers?

While there were a lot of problems early on with the iPF5000 service and support, these issues have virtually all been resolved. Posts to the Wiki about Canon service and support for the last 2 years have generally been extremely positive. In the United States:

  • Canon now has a written warranty on printheads
  • Defective ink cartridges are replaced quickly and without question
  • Profiles are available for most Canon papers
  • Defective Roll Feed Units from the iPF5000 (problem specific to the iPF5000 model) have been fixed by Canon even after the warranty period expired
  • Telephone support techs are generally quite knowledgeable
  • When a service call is required, reports indicate that the service techs are good. Service is provided by CalGraph under a contract with Canon.

Which dealers have Wiki participants had good experiences with?

If you decide to buy the printer, it is recommended to buy from one of the reputable authorized dealers, who may give better service in the event of a problem which Canon is not taking care of properly. Dealers that Wiki participants have had good experiences with include (in alphabetical order):

In Canada the list includes:

Focus Pre-press systems
#201 - 6450 148th Street
Surrey , B.c. V3S7G7

Phone : (604) 635-4115
Fax : (604) 635-2773
Manager : Paul Kiendl

What Operating Systems are supported for the printer driver and other software?

  • Windows - 2000/XP/Vista (32/64 bit)/Windows 7 (32/64 bit) (note: 32 and 64 bit SW is not the same the CD that came with my new iPF5100 (nov-2009) did not have the 64-bit versions for Vista64/Win7-64 and would not install. Had to go to Canon site and D/L latest 64-bit SW.)
  • Mac - OS9, OSX

What warranty does Canon provide on the printheads for the iPF printers?

The PF-03 printheads for the iPFX100 printers and the PF-05 printheads for the iPFX300 printers that have a warranty of one year or 4,000 ml of ink used, whichever comes first. This does not include ink used for cleaning. The warranty actually isn't that impressive. At $450-500 for a printhead, that works out to head cost of 450/4000 = 11 cents per ml of ink. So two printheads are warranted for a total of 8 liters, or just over 5 complete sets of 130 ml ink cartridges. If there is a failure after that, it will cost you $450-900 to get your printer going again. That is a best case scenario for the length of your warranty, because if you are a relatively low volume printer, you won't print that much in one year, then your warranty is gone. It could turn out that your printhead cost will be 2-3 times this much per ml of ink if you don't print high volume and the printhead fails right after the warranty expires. I figured less than 5 cents per ml as the printhead cost for HP z3100 (based on 2.5 liter "averaged maximum" throughput per head and $50 cost per head). The total head replacement cost for the HP is about $300 for the printer (6 heads for the whole printer).

Conclusion: Cost advantage for printhead life goes to HP by a wide margin. However, with only a few reports of early printhead failure so far (all replaced by Canon under warranty), this discussion may be more academic than of practical signficance. In actual use the printheads appear to be extremely reliable.

What is the expected life of the Canon printheads?

Canon has published a document "Expected Printhead Life Guideline". While the expected printhead life is VERY good, this information highlights how poor the warranty is: expected printhead life is 14,000 pages for both printheads, but warranty is for 4,000 ml or one year, whichever comes first. In other words, the warranty covers just under 50% of the expected printhead life, a lot less if you are a low volume printer and take longer than one year to reach the 4,000 ml per printhead. The iPF printheads are VERY expensive and have a limited warranty both timewise and in terms of warranted throughput. Counterbalancing this concern: there have only been a few reports of premature printhead failure (all were replaced by Canon under the warranty) and a number of reports of people who printed a lot more than the warranty amount without printhead failure.

Can I Use Qimage with the IPF Series Printers?

Yes. However, you will be printing through the regular 8 bit operating system level instead of the 16 bit Photoshop plugin. The gamut should be the same printing through the driver if properly configured. There may be some differences in subtle tonal gradations and a very slight decrease in edge sharpness (accutance) printing through the driver instead of the plugin. Qimage is for PC only and can be found here

Is clogging a problem with the IPF Series Printers?

NO! There are occasional reports of clogs, but they are so unusual that most users don't even bother to do nozzle checks. One user reported 3 clogs in 2 years, compared to daily clogs with his Epson 9800. Clogging is not a significant issue with this printer!

There is a single user report of colors shifting, which was not related to nozzle clogging. This was a one time occurrence for this poster (and no other reports of such a problem have been received), thought to be due to a momentary change in pressure that caused some ink(s) to be sucked "back" into the line, contaminating the Yellow color primarily. The poster suggested that if you do a nozzle check, be sure to look at the COLOR of the lines as well as the PATTERN. The problem was resolved by doing Head Cleaning B (strong cleaning).

Update: There is a recent report of a user who left his printer off for 3 months while on vacation. When he turned the printer on it ran a 5 minutes cleaning cycle and was ready to go!

What are the colors of the Canon Inks for the iPF Series Printers?

Here is a post by Amadou Diallo on Luminous Landscape printer forum:

"The newer printers from Canon and HP have reds and blues that are more accurately described as orange and violet, respectively. StudioPrint RIP even lists them in ink channels as Orange/Red and Violet/Blue. Attached is a linearization from the Canon 5000. You have CMYK followed by RGB. The additional inks are designed to augment the basic 4 color set. For reasons that only color scientists fully understand it makes more sense to have orange and purple for mixing with the primaries."


You can also see the ink colors for the iPF5000 (photo by Jim_H_WY) below and additional information on weights of inks, etc. in this thread


How does the ink delivery mechanism of the Canon differ from Epson?

According to Barry Levin of The Imagery Group:

"The ink mechanism is ingenious - the ink goes from the cartridges to a reservoir where is it kept for use by the printheads (yes, there are 2). While in the reservoir the ink is kept mixed by an agitator so it doesn't separate, and from there it goes to the printheads. The ink cartridges are drained dry (unlike Epson). The ink also is delivered to the nozzles with slight pressure, minimizing ink jet clog."

Note: Tony Bartlett opened up an empty cartridge and measured the residual ink volume at 5 ml with a syringe. Not bad!

What are the official specifications for the iPF6300 and 8300 printers?

For the official specifications of these printers, see the end of this Canon brochure:

Can I use the iPF8300 without the printer stand?

Question: Is it possible to locate the printer on a table top or flat surface? I have a set of "flat files", as used by architects, which would have to do double duty and host the printer. I know, the cut sheet basket won't fit and all, but the basic idea is "are 8300s/6300s designed to be mounted only on their stands"?

Answer: Just for the record, I called canon support today and asked them if I could set an 8300 on a table or is the officially supplied stand necessary and they said, "no" the stand isn't necessary. They gave the usual caveat about this being a really big device and a coffee table probably won't do.

What is the Dmax of the Lucia EX inkset on various papers?

Note: The Lucia EX inkset is the improved version of the Canon inks available in the iPF6300/iPF8300.

Dmax measured by Jeff Kohn:

Here are some of the DMax's I've measured in monochrome mode on the 6300 (as calculated by QuadToneRIP's QTR-Create-ICC.exe):

For matte papers:

Hahn Photo Rag 308 - 1.68
Canson Rag Photographique - 1.64
Epson Cold Press Natural - 1.72

For semi-gloss/baryta:

Canson Baryta Photographique - 2.59
Canson Platine Fiber Rag - 2.46
Hahnemuhle Photo Rag Baryta - 2.57

Having previously used the Epson K3 inks my impression is that Lucia/EX are about the same as K3 for matte, but better for gloss/semi-gloss (I've gotten L* readings as low as 2.25 on some semi-gloss papers).

Make sure to compare numbers that are apples to apples; it wouldn't be hard to get a single spot-reading from Measure Tool that's higher than the result from QTR-Create-ICC (which is from averaging readings for several patches). These QTR numbers correlate to black-points in the L* range of about 14.5 - 17. It may be possible to achieve slightly better DMax numbers on the matte papers with a different media type selection, but it would probably come at the expense of overall tonality and linearity. The Lucia EX seems to be at its best on photo-black papers.

Dmax measured by Scott Martin:

For DMax and Dmin numbers I like to break out an unfiltered EyeOne and use MeasureTool to take some measurements by hand. I take several and average the results. This is more accurate than using the profile for this, especially when a UV filtered device is used to make the profile. Different devices for different purposes.

I just took out some Canson targets from the 8300, 9900 and z3200. On a black patch I'm seeing an averaged L value of 3.1 from the 8300 and a value of 6 from the 9900 and 8.2 on the Z3200. Visually you can just barely make out these differences under bright light. For those that don't know, lower L values are better, and translate into darker, richer blacks!

Dmax measured by Realman10:

From my observations on my 6300 and a friend's 7900 I have found these consistent numbers:
  • Gloss/Baryta color print: L=1.8 for 6300 and L=4.5 for the Epson
  • Same but B&W driver for Epson L=2.2
  • Matte, both around L=15
All measured with an Eye-one Pro no-UV with Measure Tool

The depth of Black of the x300 is absolutely stunning and unmatched on color prints.

What are the official specifications for the iPF6100?

For the official specifications, see the end of this Canon brochure:

Can iPF6300 Inks Be Used in iPF6100 Printers?

From this article by Scott Martin:

Using new inks and print heads in older printers

In the past, users of Canon’s older printers have been able to install Canon’s newer inks and print heads without any repercussions. All users had to do was flush out their old inks using the “Move Printer” function, pull the plastic teeth on the new cartridges and install them normally. While the new x300 cartridges can physically fit and be installed in the same way, Canon discourages people from doing so because the new ink formulation with finer pigment particles and increased polymer will clog older head designs. The new PF-05 heads found in the new x300 printers are custom tailored for these new inks and aren’t compatible with the older printers.

How does the iPF6100 compare to the HP Z3100 and Epson 7880?

Problems with iPF6100: Covered in the Known Problems section of the Wiki.

Problems with HP Z3100: Weak reds, especially on matte papers. Pizza wheels/roller marks on gloss papers experienced by some (update 12/8/07: hardware fix will be made available free by HP per this LL thread). Ink overspray with heavy/continuous use. Firmware/drivers not mature yet, although Firmware version 6 released end of October, 2007. See also the HP Z3100 Wiki to help with your purchase decision.

Problems with Epson 7880: Substantial ink wasted in swapping photo black and matte black. Unknown at this time whether it will be less than the 90 ml needed for swap on Epson 7800. Significant potential for clogging, especially if not used regularly (based on Epson 7800 experience), with subsequent waste of ink and time.


Canon iPF6100

HP Z3100

Epson 7880

Ink Wasted to switch blacks
90 ml / 90 ml
Time to Switch black ink
20 minutes / 20 minutes
Cost of Roundtrip Switch
Roll Feed Motorized
Yes (makes loading the roll extremely easy)

Roll Length Tracking
Yes (prints barcode & reads it when roll reloaded)

Roll and sheets loaded at same time
No (roll unloads automatically when use top manual feed)

Top Load Manual Feed

Front Load Manual Feed

Minimum Paper Size
8 inches wide (11 inch length for top feed)

Maximum Print Length (roll)
59 feet (50 feet from printer driver)
Up to 300 feet (OS dept)

Maximum Print Length (top feed)
62 inches

Maximum Print Length (front feed)
36 inches

Maximum media thickness
59.0 mil
500 gsm

Media Thickness (roll)
3.1-31.4 mil
Up to 19 mil ++

Media Thickness (top feed)
3.2-19.6 mil

Media Thickness (front feed)
19.6-59.0 mil

Size of Ink Cartridges
130 ml (starter cartridges 90 ml)
130 ml (starter carts 69 ml)
110/220 ml
Cost of Ink per ml
58 cents
38 cents (if bought in twin pack at itsupplies)
48cents/39 cents
Ink use (ml/square ft)
About 0.5-0.8 ml per LL 0.8-1.1
in my tests, 1.5 for darkest prints
About 2 ml/sq. ft.
About 2 ml/sq ft.
Ink wasted on cleaning
About 2.5 ml per day with low use (per iPF5000)

Print Using Qimage
Works fine through driver, can't be used with plugin
Clogging Problems
None reported
None reported
Approximately 145 lbs with stand
143 lbs with stand
131 lbs
Size (H X W X D) in inches
46.3 X 39.1 X 35.2
49.7 X 41.2 X 26 inches
46 X 46 X 40
Better dark blues and medium greens

Better warmer colors
Grayscale Range

Quality of B&W Prints
Very good, extremely neutral, very little bronzing

DMax on Harman FB Al Gloss

DMax on HPR
1.58 per Outback Photo review
1.70 per LL thread

Ink Water Resistant

Gloss Differential & Bronzing
Bronzing almost completely eliminated
Almost none

Relative Rendering Intent has Blackpoint Compensation Available
NO for plugin; workaround available;
Yes if printing from Photoshop
through regular 8 bit driver
Paper Transport Issues Causing Smuding/Head Strikes

Longevity of prints
No data available; approx. 95 years for iPF5000
100 years bare bulb
250 years under glass

Quantity/Quality of supplied profiles
17 profiles for Canon papers made with Xrite Profilemaker

Time to print at highest quality

Printer stand
Ethernet, USB 2.0
Ethernet, USB 2.0
Ethernet, USB 2.0
Standby power consumption
< 6 watts
27 watts
< 5 watts
Standby noise
None detectable
Fan runs continuously +

Sound level
49 dB

50 dB
Consistency Between Printers
Canon claims < 2 delta E with calibration

Quality of Manufacturer website
Poor (but Wiki sufficient, so this is
a minor but very annoying problem)


Excellent per LL
Very Good

+ Comment from Paul Butzi: "This fan runs constantly. It is by no means a noisy fan, but it is far noisier than it needs to be. And it runs all the time, even when the printer is in ’sleep’ mode. It runs day and night. Did I mention that this fan runs non-stop, 24/7, constantly?"

++ Comment from Avalan: "I printed on breathing color chromata canvas - 20.5 mil - with no problems or head strikes."

Comments from Wayne Fox on LL forum thread about iPF6100 vs HP Z3100:

The real question being asked here is a Canon ipf6100 vs. an HPz3100. Canon sent me an ipf6100 about 10 days ago, and have enjoyed seeing what the printer can do. I spent about 2 weeks with a 44" z3100 a couple of months ago, and currently own 2 Epson 3800's, a 4800, and a 9800. I ordered the Epson 11880 immediately upon reading about it, and after examining prints made on the 11880, the 9880 and 9800 as well as Canon printers at photoshop world, I am excited about this new printer. I also still have an ipf5000 Canon sent to me shortly before they were introduced and tested it for a few weeks back then.

So I'm sort of an Epson guy, but I've had a chance to play in depth with all of them. From that perspective I will say I believe the 6100 is an outstanding printer, and I'm getting gorgeous prints ... every bit as good as my 3800. Not better mind you, but side by side it is incredibly difficult to find any difference, especially one significant enough to base a purchase decision on output quality alone. The new black inks do make a difference, and black and white prints I did on Museum Etching look really nice on both printers. I see less grain and smoother transition detail than I remember with the ipf5000.

My personal feeling is that I like the output from the Epson and the Canon better than the z3100. The HP is a great printer, but I found it more challenging to maintain delicate transition details, and struggled with reds, especially rich reds. The gloss optimizer is nice if you do a lot of photo papers, but gloss differential and bronzing really isn't much of an issue for any of these printers now.

I mentioned a few days ago (I believe in this thread) about challenges using the front loading manual feed for thicker material on the ipf6100. I finally did figure it out and now I'll admit it isn't that bad, so my only criticism of the Canon ipf6100 is again in documentation (it shouldn't have been that hard to figure out). The user interface for printing is still a struggle (let's be honest, printing interfaces should be better for all printers, but I think Canon is the worst of the 3). That being said, it is better than the ipf5000, and once you figure it out isn't an issue.

One final opinion when comparing the z3100 to the 6100 (or the Epsons for that matter) is in regards to the onboard eyeone and self profiling. While I commend HP for the idea, and I know everyone is excited about it, I personally think profiling is going in a different direction. The self-calibration of the new Canon printers seems insignificant, but in reality it is a big deal. It puts them at a level that Epson seems to have achieved, especially with the 3800, that being the printers are very consistent. It isn't that the printer is consistent with itself, it is consistent with other printers. Paper makers will be able to provide canned profiles that are equal to or better than you can make for yourself. I believe the Canon is consistent enough that most of the good media out there will have canned profiles very quickly. So it just doesn't seem to be worth the extra money to buy one in the printer. 5 years ago this would have been remarkable, but seems unnecessary now.

Please understand this printer may have issues that no one knows about ... it's too new. So my comments are regarding output quality, not build quality. It could very well be the roll feed system of the printer is flakey and a month or two from now the net will be full of people upset that they bought the printer based on what someone said. I will say the printer seems well built, and I had very little trouble loading paper with very few skewing errors, even with the front manual slot (once I finally figured how to use it with my preferred paper choices.) As far as build quality it isn't new, it is pretty much identical to the 6000, so instinct tells me it's going to be fine. But no one knows right now, so if that worries you, I guess you can wait or look at other makers.

Finally I do have a couple of broad recommendations. If you don't need roll feed, don't switch between photo blacks too often and only need a 17" printer, the Epson 3800 is a strong contender. Beautiful quality, and I have 0 clogs in over 2 months between 2 printers. If you need roll feed and need to switch blacks more than occasionally, the Canon would be my choice. I've heard the new 80 series reduces the amount of ink it takes to swap, but it will still take more than the Canon (which doesn't require any). If you are the rare user that prints on heavy stock ... especially heavy roll stock, the straight through paper path design of the 7880 is something you should look at closely ... the Canon does present some challenges there.

How easy is it to load thick sheets from the front slot compared to other printers?

Comments by Wayne Fox on LL forum:

I agree paper loading is improved, but personally I think the front load slot is very weakly done, as is accessing it through the driver. My basis for comparison is 24" and larger printers ... ipf 6100 vs Epson 78xx series printers. (the same criticism doesn't apply if comparing desktop models, ipf5100 vs Epson 3800/48xx) On the Epson all paper bascially has a straight through path, and loading a sheet of bond paper isn't any different than using poster board, so thick media is a non issue.

On the Canon you must use the front load slot (my current favorite paper is Museum Etching) With the Canon this more difficult than it should be, both in accessing it through the driver, as well as loading a sheet. I spent some time with the Canon rep at Pictureline today because I couldn't even figure out how to do it right ... basically you have to set the printer to the POP paper setting, load the paper, then set the driver to use whatever the true paper type is. I haven't tried that yet ... so far all I could get to work was using POP in both the driver and printer, but then I lose all control of ink densities etc. and can't optimzie my profile. I won't be able to try this other way till Monday, but I assume it will work. Not documented very well.

Loading a piece of paper is very strange ... pull up these 4 tabs, lift the printer top, insert the paper on top of the tabs, making sure to flip the little insert backwards so the aligment guide is available. It was a little fight to keep that little insert from flipping back. Stick your hand in to get the paper under the little rollers, shove it all the way back and line it up with the lines, shut the lid and hit OK. In 4 tries I"m only 50/50 in not getting a skewing error ... maybe I'll get better.

Maybe an improvement, but far from easy. This is definitely not a good printer for anyone that does a lot of manual feed thick stock.

Update: A few days later Wayne posted these additional comments:

I mentioned a few days ago about challenges using the front loading manual feed for thicker material on the ipf6100. I finally did figure it out and now I'll admit it isn't that bad, so my only criticism of the Canon ipf6100 is again in documentation (it shouldn't have been that hard to figure out).

Is there a good solution for catching sheets rather than letting them fall into the basket?

Yes. Uwe Steinmueller on Outback Photo describes a problem with the "basket" catching single sheets (which may be damaged if the surface is delicate) and their crude but effective workaround here.

How can I make an adapter for the IPF8000 instead of buying an adapter for 3 inch core roll paper?

One way to do this is detailed in this article.

A poster to the Wiki writes, "I found an even better solution with some papers (e.g., Canon Photo Pearl). They have a plastic cup that you can just put on the roll without sawing anything. They look like the smaller blue 3"adapter that came with the Roll Feed Unit for the Canon IPF5000. I found that all of the Canon 3" core papers had that thing, you can achieve the same results by cutting as stated in that article but this is somewhat nicer and easier.

First image: This piece came with my roll of Canon photo pearl 260gsm and Fine art extrasmooth (Note: those are European names). The smaller part fits 2" core easily (I have a roll of pearl photo loaded this way in the printer now; it's even faster than replacing those 3" blue caps Canon supplied):


Piece connected to gray thing:


Differences between Canon blue 3"core adapter and piece supplied with 3"core roll:


I also purchased roll holder set, it came exactly packaged as with the Roll Feed Unit with same pieces. Price paid was about $60 a little bit too much but worth it if you are changing papers all the time. Usually I leave one all-round paper on one set and change the finer papers on the other.

What are the differences between the iPF5100 and the iPF5000?

Theses are the improvements claimed by Canon:

  • New black inks to reduce bronzing and improve scratch resistance, and reduce print graininess (even from Firmware 1.23 on iPF5000). Comment: John Hollenberg has seen iPF5100 prints sent by Avalan and confirms that bronzing is reduced by 85-90%. Scott Martin of Onsight calls the B&W prints made with the new black inks "stunning".
  • Printer calibration to reduce inter-unit delta-E to 2 or less.
  • Built in roll feed unit. Comment: This will almost certainly take care of one of the biggest criticisms of the iPF5000, a design defect that caused roll feed units to malfunction and required a service call to fix. The broken tabs problem on the roll feed unit should be solved as well. Update 4/28/09: The Wiki has received NO reports of malfunctioning roll feed units for X100 generation printers.
  • a new, quieter platen fan and sound-absorbing material added to the inner wall of intake ducts in the iPF5100 printer combine to yield quieter operation (per official Canon iPF5100 brochure)
  • Black inks will not be backward compatible with iPF5000.

There are several other improvements:

  • Top manual feed now works with paper up to 62 inches in length--no more concerns about feeding 17X25 inch sheets
  • There are 5 additional Special Media Types for matte papers (iPF5000 Special Media Types are for photo papers only)
  • Export plugin improvements:
    • Full screen preview
    • More print quality selections - 32 pass printing (iPF5000 maxed out at 16 pass) Comment: It is not known yet if this produces a visible improvement in quality. Scott Martin of Onsight reports that 32 pass is only supported for photo black compatible media, but not for matte media.
    • Categorized paper type view
    • Roll paper layout view
    • Bicubic enlargement

What are the pros and cons of the iPF5100 compared to the Epson 3800 and 4880?

See also What are the differences between the iPF5100 and iPF5000?
See also the Epson 3800 FAQ by Eric Chan to help with your purchase decision.
See also the Luminous Landscape thread Epson x880 series vs. Canon x100 Series


Canon IPF5100

Epson 3800

Epson 4880

Ink Wasted to switch blacks
1.5 ml / 4.5 ml
90 ml / 90 ml
Time to Switch black ink
1:55 / 2:55 minutes
20 minutes / 20 minutes
Cost of Roundtrip Switch
Roll Feed
Yes (now built-in, was an option for the iPF5000)
Roll Feed Motorized
Yes (makes loading the roll extremely easy)
Not applicable
Roll Length Tracking
Yes (prints barcode & reads it when roll reloaded)
Not applicable
Roll and sheets loaded at same time
Yes (roll unloads automatically when use top manual feed)
Not applicable
Minimum Paper Size
8X10 (some have printed 7X10 notecard paper from the Cassette without problems)
Maximum Print Length
59 feet using roll feed (50 feet from printer driver)
Limited to 37.4 inches
Limited by application, OS, driver or RIP
Borderless Printing
Full borderless only available with roll printing
Yes, some limitations
Check Epson info
Size of Ink Cartridges
130 ml (starter cartridges are only 90 ml)
80 ml
110/220 ml
Cost of Ink per ml
58 cents
60 cents (vs. 86 cents for Epson 2400)
48cents/39 cents
Ink usage
May be less due to having Red, Green and Blue colors
Uses two inks to produce Red, Green and Blue
Uses two inks to produce Red, Green and Blue
Ink use (ml/square ft)
About 0.5-0.8 ml per LL 0.8-1.1 in my tests, 1.5 for darkest prints
About 1.5 ml/sq ft.
About 1.5 ml/sq ft.
Print Using Qimage
Works fine through driver, can't be used with plugin
Clogging Problems
None reported
Very few problems reported compared to earlier Epson printers
May be improved over Epson 4800
Ink wasted on cleaning
Less than 10% per Canon; about 0.35-0.81 ml per day according to reports in this FAQ
Probably similar to 4800
99 lbs. (108 lbs with roll feed)
43 lbs.
88 lbs.
39 X 29 X 12.5 see Dimensions
27 X 15 X 10 inches
33 X 30 X 14 inches
Better in blues
Better in warmer colors
Better in warmer colors
Grayscale Range
Reported better by Luminous Landscape
Quality of B&W Prints
Very good, extremely neutral
Ink Water Resistant
Not as water resistant as Epson K3 on some papers per Wiki posters. If you rub a wet finger on a print some papers smudge very easily, particularly in blue areas. Other papers appear to be without problems.
Gloss Differential & Bronzing
Lowest bronzing per Scott Martin
Relative Rendering Intent has Blackpoint Compensation Available
NO for plugin; workaround available; Yes if printing from Photoshop through regular 8 bit driver
Printing from Cassette
Banding in last inch on sheets fed from Cassette; fix is now available
Paper Transport Issues Causing Smuding/Head Strikes
No (can set vacuum/head height); Exception: Some have reported head strikes on Fine Art Pearl, Museo Silver Rag and Harman Gloss FB AL, which can generally be resolved by changing settings
Reported for Epson 3800 here but apparently easily worked around
No (can set vacuum)
Quantity/Quality of supplied profiles
Fair/good - Canon profiles for plugin here.
Sound level
60 -> 56 db at 1 meter per Luminous Landscape (a lot quieter)
62 db at 1 meter per Luminous Landscape
Consistency Between Printers
Canon claims inter-unit variation within 2 delta E using built-in calibration
Quality of Manufacturer website
Fair (the reason for this Wiki)

Comment by Tony Bonanno: I've had a bunch of Epsons and I print a fair amount for myself and clients. I went through three Epson 17" PRO 4000's. I've had two Epson R2400's (for small cut sheet).. I've had the 2200, R800, and the older ones back when they first came out with "photo" printers (1200, 870, etc.). So I think I can give you a little perspective. I live at 7000 ft and relatively low humidity. The fact that I've been using the 5000 for six months now WITHOUT EVEN ONE nozzle clog or nozzle issue has made the Canon's problems seem minor. You cannot believe how much ink (and money), those big Epson's (PRO 4000's) cost me in clearing out nozzle clogs and air in the ink lines. I'm talking hours of down time, and hundreds, if not thousands of dollars in wasted ink. The Canon has excellent print quality, and lots of good features. The iPF5000 would probably still be my choice.. at least at this time. Oh, I should mention that the Epsons I've owned all had banding issues from time to time.

What are the official specifications for the iPF5100?

See the end of this Canon PDF brochure for specifications:

Note: The official specifications do not show the iPF5100 able to print borderless on 13 inch roll paper. This is an error in the specifications, the iPF5100 can print 13 inch rolls borderless just like the iPF5000 (confirmed by Canon).

What are the biggest potential drawbacks of the IPF5100/iPF5000?

There are only a few, but they could be deal breakers for you depending on your needs:

  • Very large size compared to Epson 3800 (bigger than even the Epson 4800)
  • Full borderless printing on sheets is not supported
  • Media Types locked out for some paper paths
  • Smallest paper size 8X10
  • Somewhat greater gloss differential than Ultrachrome K3 (Epson 3800/4800) Note: This may not apply to iPF5100. We need more information.
  • Inks less water resistant than Ultrachrome K3 on some papers
  • Steeper learning curve for those already accustomed to Epson printers

How does Monochrome Photo mode compare with the Epson ABW mode and Cone Neutral K7 inks?

Note: Many people find that printing B&W using color profiles works extremely well and is more flexible, as discussed in this thread.

A comparison was done by John Hollenberg on Epson Enhanced Matte with results as follows:

Cone NK7 on Epson 2200 - very smooth tonal transitions, luminosity of highlights slightly less than Epson ABW mode; slightly warm (b* of 1-2 in all areas except deep shadows and highlights--very pleasing. Subjective rating 98.
Epson 2400 ABW Mode - tonal transitions not as smooth (e.g., clouds), but highlights slightly more luminous than NK7. Subjective rating 97.
Canon IPF5000 - prints measured as most neutral of the three prints, but appeared to have a yellowish/greenish hue under 4700 degree Solux task lamp. The midtones/highlights did not appear to track with paper white (which the Epson ABW mode and Cone NK7 inks did,and is the recommendation on the Epson Digital B&W list). This may have been the reason for the unpleasant appearance. It may be that a paper with a warm or neutral white point would not have this drawback (not tested yet). Subjective rating 70.

Update: Prints on Epson Premium Glossy were much better, so it may be that Epson Enhanced Matte is not a good match for this printer. See also the FAQ topic Quantitative Differences in Cool and Warm in Monochrome mode using Epson Premium Glossy.

What is the easiest way to get this large printer into my home or office?

The printer is quite large and heavy and comes strapped to a wooden palette (size 42x34.5 inches for the iPF5000). [Comment by DJ Garcia: The pallet width is 34.5" of non-forgiving wood. I had to take my front door off the hinges so I could make it in.] When you cut the straps off to get it off the palette, you can't carry the printer in the box because it has no bottom. The box lifts off of the pallet and the printer, so you will have to unpack and carry the printer and the many bits and pieces from where you cut the straps. Cut or tear the plastic at the point of the hand grips if you want it to remain covered in plastic while you move it. The plastic slips too much against the body of the printer otherwise.

For these reasons, it is best to arrange delivery. Make sure that the delivery person can bring the printer on its palette to a convenient location in your home or office. When I took delivery of mine the freight delivery person brought it up to the second floor in the elevator for me and left it on my living room floor. Anything less will be a much bigger hassle, since it takes two strong people to move it, even after you have removed it from the pallette. You can see a couple of photos of the IPF5000 in the box/palette here.

What is the best printer stand for the iPF5000/iPF5100?

Many have been happy with a stand available from IKEA as described in an article on The Ultimate Printer Stand on the Luminous Landscape web site. This stand weighs about 150 lbs. Note: When assembling the stand (takes 2-3 hours) you do have to be careful to make sure the orientation of the two cross pieces (roughly 1X4 inches each) is exactly as shown in the diagram. If you have them oriented improperly, you will have to put the locking nuts in on the wrong side--and then you won't be able to install the drawer support and sliding mechanism in Hole #1 as shown.

If you decide to go with the official Canon printer stand for the IPF5000 (also $295), here is a brief description from Jerry Rock, who purchased it: "It is constructed of study metal (steel?) and supports the printer well. Four heavy duty wheels attach to the bottom of the cabinet to make the entire unit very easy to move. The front of the cabinet has 2 metal doors which swing out from the middle to reveal a large two shelved storage unit capable of holding all the printer peripherals, papers and supplies. The stand has a black matte finish matching the printer color. The dimensions are 38 1/2 inches wide x 23 1/2 inches deep x 26 1/2 inches high (not including the wheels which add 3" to total height). The printer takes up the entire cabinet surface." You can see a picture of the Canon stand here.

For those that want to go for a more traditional wide stand that Epson, HPs, and higher end Canons, the Canon ST-11 Printer Stand ($295 MSRP, 1255B006AA) is the alternative to the heavy duty cabinet style stand.

Finally, for those who already have a desk/table for their IPF5000/5100s, a Desktop Basket option is avaliable from Canon as the BU-02 (1255B007AA) with a MSRP of $145.

Can the ink cartridges (other than the blacks/grays) from the iPF5000 be used in the iPF5100?

Answer: YES. The non-black inks are compatible with both the iPF5000 and iPF5100/iPf6100, while the 4 black/gray inks for the iPF5100/iPF6100 have a different part number than the black/gray inks for the iPF5000.

Can the PF-01 printheads from the iPF5000 be used in the iPF5100?

Answer: Not known at this time. Clarification required from Canon. However, the PF-03 printheads can definitely be used in the iPFX000 series printers.

Note: The PF-03 printheads come in all of the x100 printers. They have a teflon like coating that further helps prevent clogging.

What are the dimensions, weight, ink cartridge capacity and power consumption of the iPF5000?

  • Printer "Base" that needs support (where the actual rubber feet are on the bottom that it rests on) is about 22 inches wide X 16 inches deep.
  • Printer without Tray or auto roll feed - 39 X 23 X 12.5 inches (99 x 58.4 x 31.75 cm)
  • Printer with Tray Only no auto roll feed - 39.3 X 28.9 X 12.5 inches (99.8 x 73.4 x 31.75 cm)
  • Printer with auto roll feed and tray (not extended) - 39.3 X 31.9 X 13.5 inches (99.8 x 81 x 34.3 cm)
  • Printer with auto roll feed and tray (extended) - 39.3 X 43 X 13.5 inches (99.8 x 109.22 x 34.3 cm)
  • Printer in box and strapped to pallette when delivered - 34.5" wide X 25" high X 45" long (87.6 x 63.5 x 115 cm)

Note: you will need up to 2 feet (60cm) of room behind the printer if you intend to feed thicker paper through the manual front slot, since the paper exits the printer at the rear.

Weight - 99 lbs. (45kg), 108 lbs. (49kg) with optional auto roll feed

Ink Cartridge Capacity - 130 ml (starter ink cartridges that ship with the printer are only 90 ml)

Power Consumption:

  • Operating - 100 Watts maximum (measured at 10 watts with Kill-A-Watt meter when printer On, but idle)
  • Sleep Mode - 6 Watts maximum (measured at 3 watts with Kill-A-Watt meter)
  • Off - 1 watt maximum

The USA version comes with a standard 3 prong grounded plug (in case you need an extension cord).

Note: Click for Complete Specifications from Canon USA.

Where can I see Podcasts from Canon on Setup and Use of iPF Printers?

Podcasts from Canon are available here.

Where is the little brush that is supposed to come with the printer?

Open the main compartment where the printheads are installed. The printer is shipped with the brush stored on the right side of this compartment in a small slot at the top.

What are all the parts that ship with the roll holder spindle for?

While the documentation is very poorly delivered (it doesn't have search capabilities), a thorough search of the documentation does include a full section on the spindle parts as well as the use of them, under the "Attaching Accessories to the Roll Holder" section.

The Borderless Spacer should only be used with ISO A2/A3 Rolls (420mm = 16.54") and not with 17" rolls (431.8mm width). When feeding a 17" roll of Crane Museo Rag and specifying in the CS2 plug-in that Borderless Printing was required, the printer refused to print with the spacer installed, and printed perfectly without it. The explanation that the spacer is for 16.54 inch (420 mm) paper would make some physical sense, because the spacer adds approximately (again, just visually - I haven't measured) the right thickness to push the edge of 16.54 inches to where 17 inches would be--allowing Canon to have only one overflow area.

Some additional information from Dan Wells on the Luminous Landscape discussion forum includes a great description of the remaining parts, including an explanation of the 1 and 2 labelled Holder Stoppers which are (as far as we know) totally undocumented:

"The spindle ships set up for 2 inch cores, and includes two blue adapters for 3 inch cores, which just snap into place. There is a borderless spacer fits right over the 3 inch adapter on the fixed end of the spindle. The last two pieces are grey end caps, marked, cryptically, "1" and "2". The "2" end cap turns out to be for heavy art paper. Hahnemuhle Photo Rag will not feed correctly without it. I don't know if Canon's 260 gsm satin (the other paper I have here) will feed correctly with the "2" cap - I used the "1" and it worked. I am going to try the satin with the "2" next time I switch rolls, so I don't have to keep swapping the 3 inch adapter between the "1" and "2" caps. The 3 inch adapter itself seems sturdy enough, but I worry about breaking the little "ears" that hold it into the cap if I keep swapping it back and forth."

What is the transparent plastic sheet that comes sandwiched between two pieces of cardboard?

The transparent plastic sheet is an insert for the Cassette to ensure that Glossy Photo papers feed properly. Directions for use:

  • Set the blue paper guides in the cassette for width and length to the correct setting for the paper you will use
  • Insert the plastic sheet with the arrow matching the arrow in the corner of the Cassette. The slots in the plastic sheet will fit over the length guide (and possibly the width guide depending on paper width).
  • Put the paper in the Cassette (printable side down) and make any final adjustments to the paper guides

Note: Remove the insert from the Cassette when printing on any paper other than Glossy Photo.

What is the little "ramp" at the back of the paper output tray for?

The top of the paper output tray has a moveable piece which when pushed up and back toward the printer forms a small "ramp". It is intended to be used when printing from the roll, to help the paper move smoothly over the output tray. When printing on sheets, it should be put down so the sheets will catch in the tray properly. In addition, the extensions on the output tray need to be pulled out if printing on large sheets of paper, or the paper will end up on the floor instead of the output tray.

What connections are available to connect the printer to the computer?

USB-2 and Ethernet come standard on the printer. There is a card slot for an optional firewire board, but the board is expensive at $235 list price.

How do I set up a fixed/static IP address for the printer when using Ethernet connection?

These directions obtained from Don (who was extremely helpful and friendly) at Canon Tech support:

  1. Decide what fixed IP address to use:
    1. Start Menu -> Run -> type "cmd" (without quotes) then press Enter
    2. Type "ipconfig" then press Enter
    3. Sample results: Ethernet adapter Local Area Connection:
      1. Connection-specific DNS Suffix . :
      2. IP Address. . . . . . . . . . . . :
      3. Subnet Mask . . . . . . . . . . . :
      4. Default Gateway . . . . . . . . . :
    4. Choose a fixed IP address, in our case
    5. Type "ping"
    6. If you get "Request Timed Out" you know that there aren't any other devices at this IP address, so you can use for the printer.
  2. Go to printer LCD to set fixed IP address. Navigate menu and make settings as follows:
    1. Menu -> Interface Setup -> TCP/IP -> IP Mode and make sure it is set to "Manual"
    2. Menu -> Interface Setup -> TCP/IP -> IP Setting -> IP Address and set it to address determined above ( in our example)
      1. Set each field in the address using the OK button to activate a field (large cursor box appears), then right and left arrow keys to adjust, then OK
      2. Move to next field in the address with the right arrow, then repeat above
      3. When done setting address, press the Up arrow until you see "Save TCP/IP setting?", then press OK
  3. If you already have the printer installed with USB, configure the printer for Ethernet as follows:
    1. Open "Printers and Faxes"
    2. Click on IPF5000, then right click and click on "Properties"
    3. Click on "Ports" tab
    4. Click "Add Port"
    5. Click on "Standard TCP/IP Port"
    6. Click on "New Port" (not New Port Type)
    7. When the "Add Standard TCP/IP Port" wizard comes up, click Next
    8. Under "Printer Name or IP Address" enter the IP address that you set ( in our example)
    9. The box underneath will be automatically filled in; don't change these entries
    10. Click next
    11. From here on, you are on your own. Probably finished, or click Next for the rest. Can't remember any more directions :-)

"Roll" does not show up as a media source in the plugin or driver.

This could be due to one of two problems:

  • The software does not recognize the roll feed unit (see below)
  • You have selected a Media Type that is not compatible with Roll paper. See the Media Type Compatibility Table.

How can I get the software to recognize the auto roll feed unit?

  1. Open up the "Printer Properties" dialog box. You can do this by right-clicking on the printer icon, or from the printer menu if the printer is open.
  2. Click on the tab that says "Device Settings." It should be the rightmost tab.
  3. Click "Acquire Status" fon this tab. If this is successful, the the checkbox that says "Roll Feed Unit" will be checked for you automatically. Another possibility is to just click on the checkbox yourself. However, using "Acquire Status" ensures that the driver "sees" the Roll Feed Unit.
  4. Click on "Apply" then "OK"

Note: I suspect that there is a check made when the driver is installed and if there is no roll feed unit present this option is left unchecked. Since the roll feed unit is built into the iPF5100, this problem is likely unique to the iPF5000.

If this doesn't fix the problem, you may have selected a Media Type which does not allow Roll as a Media Source. Check the Media Type Compatibility Table.

How do I install the Export Plugin for Digital Photo Professional?

Note: The software that comes with the printer is labeled "Digital Photo Print Pro" which is different then the software that comes with a Canon DSLR camera which is "Digital Photo Professional". You can install the plugin for Digital Photo Professional (DPP) as follows:


You must have DPP 2.1 or greater installed first. Then, just put in the user software cd. From the main menu just below install print driver it has ImagePROGRAPH print plug in install. If you select that it gives you the option of multiple versions of Photoshop and the bottom selection is for DPP. It does state that you need to load the print driver first.


There is a version of DPP for Mac. Apparently the plugin can be installed in a similar fashion as the Windows version.

Does the IPF5000 work with wireless print server/hub?

One user reported success as follows: "I set up the ipf5000 through my wireless network using an Apple Airport Express. I attached a network cable between the Airport Express and the printer. The Apple "Printer Setup Utility" had no problem finding the printer. I was able to make prints with both the printer driver and export module. I use a Macintosh G5 with the Apple wireless card."

What size and type of paper do I need to do the initial printhead alignment?

You will need 6 sheets of Size B (11X17) or larger. It is also possible to use the roll feeder instead, which will use a section of paper 40.25 inches in length.

In order to perform the initial alignment using the roll feeder, you will need to deviate from the instruction during setup. In the Quick Start Guide, step 4 instructs you to load paper into the cassette. If you do so, the alignment will begin using the sheets from the cassette as soon as you confirm the cassette paper size and type. If you skip this step, and instead load paper into the roll feed as instructed in the reference guide, the alignment will print from the roll feeder.

Canon support recommends using a good quality photo paper, since plain paper may have suboptimal reflectivity and ink bleed on plain paper may compromise the accuracy of the alignment There is a Wikipedia article which describes in detail various Paper Sizes

How Much of the 90 ml Starter Inks are Used Charging the Printer Before First Use?

The GARO status monitor for the IPF5000 (Information tab, Status Display) show that 40% of each ink cartridge is used charging the printer, and that 20% of the maintenance tank is used.

How can I copy the manual that came with the printer to my hard disk?

  1. Copy the entire CD that the manual came on to your hard disk. For example, for windows copy to c:\program files\canon\canon ipf5000 printer manual
  2. Delete the subfolders for other languages and other printers (to save disk space)
  3. Navigate to the folder you put the manual in, then to the subfolder Usermanuals\ipf5000.
  4. Click on the file index_e.html, then right click on it and drag it to your desktop. After releasing the mouse button, choose "Create Shortcut Here".

Update 11/21/10: Canon USA now has PDF versions of the manual for all iPF printers except the iPF5000 available for download.

Do I have to drain the ink before moving the printer to another location?

The official Canon answer is YES. Any other action you take is at your own risk. That said, there are several reports suggesting that you can do this if you are careful. This is an important issue, since ink draining is estimated to waste about $250 worth of ink! See relevant quotes below from others experience:
  • "There is no way I can recomend you not follow Canons instructions, as there is no knowing what damage can be caused. However, I can say we take our IPF5000 to events that are 3 days or longer, just pick it up (2 people) put it in the back of the van on foam and there have been no problems. Journeys average around 40 miles each way."
  • "Brian at ColorHQ advised me not to use the move function for short moves where the printer can be kept more or less horizontal. He mentioned that the Canon rep he works with had driven one halfway across the country in the back of a car without using the move function. Apparently the move function is really for shipping the printer by truck or air, or if you need to turn it on end for whatever reason."
  • "My IPF 5000 was a display model and had it's cardriges installed. I had no trouble getting it home across town in my car without clearing the lines. Just handle it carefully, just as you would anyway."
  • According to Scott Martin, "iPF printers have been known to have their ink spill onto the logic board and die during a move. I suspect the 44" and 60" printers are more susceptible to this. I have certainly heard of a number of 5x00 printers being carefully moved without incident."

Where can I find detailed directions on draining the ink so I can move the printer?

  1. Open the User Manual that came on the CD
  2. When you get to the Top Menu, select Printing Functions and Applications
  3. Select Printer Maintenance
  4. Select Preparing to Transfer the Printer

Where can I purchase a dust cover for my printer?

Dust covers specifically designed for iPF printers can be purchased here.

What is the GARO Device Setup Utility and the GARO Status Monitor?

  • GARO (Graphic Arts with Raster Operations) is a Canon proprietary page description language that is used to communicate with the printer. It is based on the HP-GL Raster language and "selects the fastest, most portable, most accurate and most efficient command sets, minimizes overhead in memory and sends data to the printer more quickly".
  • The GARO Status Monitor is a software utility that monitors the status of the printer and manages print jobs. The Status Monitor Contains two screens: the "Printer List" lists the printers, and the "Status Monitor" shows the specific details about each printer.
  • The GARO Device Setup Utility is a software application that allows you to configure network setup information on the printer remotely from your computer. It is only of use if your printer is connected by Ethernet. You can use this utility on your computer to enter the basic settings such as entering the printer IP address or selecting the network frame type. Note: If your printer is connected by USB rather than by Ethernet you don't need to use the GARO Device Setup Utility.

How can I set the GARO Status Monitor to start automatically and monitor the IPF5000?

  1. Open GARO Status Monitor
  2. Click on the IPF5000
  3. Click on the leftmost icon in the Status Monitor Toolbar (“Startup Status Monitor” Tooltip shows this is the correct one)
  4. A window opens “Canon IPF5000”
  5. In the menu, click Option -> Display Options
  6. Click the checkbox “Start When Windows is Started”
  7. Click “Display Icon in Taskbar” choice under the checkbox in step #6

Note: When you are done looking at the IPF5000 status monitor, minimize it to the tray on the Windows taskbar. If you click on the “X” you will close it and it won't be available in the Windows tray.

What is Remote UI and what can I do with it?

Remote UI is a web-browser based program that is built into the iPF series printers controller firmware. There is nothing to install, the embedded processor talks HTTP over IP. It can be used when the printer is connected via ethernet (not with USB connection).


  • Connect the printer via ethernet and set a fixed IP address and subnet mask from the printer control panel via Interface Settings -> TCP/IP ->
  • Open a browser (Firefox, IE, Safari, Opera, etc.) on a client on the same network, key in the IP address you specified and it should display.

There is a user mode and a password protected administrator mode (the initial password is empty). This is a similar approach as that used with network appliances like routers, etc. You can change setting, view job logs, cancel jobs, etc.

If you click on Administrator Mode, then click Logon, you will be able to see and/or edit the following information:

  • Device Manager
    • Status (Error information, Utility, Device Control)
    • Information
    • Features
    • Network
  • Job Manager
    • Print job (Cancel, etc.)
    • Print log (including information on how much ink each job used)
  • Device Selection (can change some settings that can be changed from printer control panel also)


My iPF5000 is manually configured for an ethernet connection using IP address
If I open Firefox and type this IP address into the URL window, I get the following screen:


Sample Print log:


What is the Printer Driver Extra kit?

The printer driver extra kit is software that is available on Canon web site for download (may be included on current CD also--not known). The printer driver extra kit is a kind of "poor man's Qimage" and allows free hand layout of an image, copying and resizing on the page when printing through the 8 bit OS level driver.

Supported OS: Windows 2000, XP, Server 2003, Mac OS X

Once the printer driver extra kit, follow these steps to use it:

  1. From Photoshop (or other application that you are using to print to the OS level printer driver), open an image
  2. Select File -> Print
  3. Choose the iPFXX00 Printer
  4. Click on Properties
  5. Click on the Layout Tab
  6. Check the Page Layout checkbox
  7. Select Free Layout
  8. Click on OK

When you go to actually print the file, instead of printing the ImagePROGRAF Free Layout program will open.
You can now make additional copies of the image, resize the image, paste in a new copy, etc. I couldn't find
a way to add additional images.

If you are on Windows, you would be far better off spending a modest amount of money and using Qimage to arrange, resize and print multiple photos.

Where can I get detailed information on the printer settings, ink remaining, paper used, etc.?

GARO status monitor -> Information Tab -> Status Display

Here is some of the information that is displayed:

  • your serial number, handy if your printer is up against a wall and you can't easily see the back
  • the ink remaining in each cartridge presented numerically rather than graphically
  • the numbers (offsets?) from the head alignment procedure. May be helpful in diagnosing a problem with your printer.
  • head lot numbers
  • how much you have used the cutter, cassette, roll holder, with a breakdown by media type
  • many of the printer control panel current settings
  • parts status (cryptic)

You can save this information to a file by clicking on "Status Saving" on the Information tab.

How can I determine what version of firmware is installed?

There are several ways:

  1. Turn on printer and when it boots up it will display firmware version
  2. From the printer control panel, press Menu button -> press Right Arrow until you get to Information -> press Down Arrow twice
  3. Using Status Monitor, click on Information Tab, then Status Display

What is the granularity of the ink tank and maintenance tank readings in Display Status portion of GARO Status Monitor?

While the answer to this question is not definitive, it appears that Status Display readings are fairly coarse, with changes of 20% needed to show a change. In other words, the only readings that are displayed are 100%, 80%, 60%, 40%, and 20%. This makes it hard to determine how much ink is being used to do the daily cleanings from sleep mode, as the maintenance tank reading doesn't change and then suddenly jumps to the next lower value (20% lower). According to another poster, the increments are 10% on the printer LCD.

What does Canon mean by the terms Cassette and Tray?


The place where you load a stack of paper and insert into the printer beneath the ouput area. Usually called a tray by most other printer makers. Only present on the iPF5000 and iPF5100, not the larger printers.


A vertical slot at the top of the printer for feeding single sheets. No one knows why it would be called a tray. Present on all iPF large format printers.

What is a Media Type?

A Media Type specifies settings the printer should use to print on a particular paper:

  • How much ink to lay down (total ink limit)
  • Whether to allow use of the cassette, roll holder or both
  • Whether to use Photo Black or Matte Black ink
  • Affects the native (unprofiled) gray balance
  • Media Detail Settings:
    • Roll Drying Time
    • Scan Drying Time
    • Feed Priority
    • Adjust Length
    • Head Height
    • Skew Check Lv.
    • VacuumStrngth
    • NearEnd Rll Mrgn
    • Cut Speed
    • Trim Edge First
    • Cutting Mode
    • Bordless Margin
    • CutDustReduct
    • Nr End Sht Mrgn
    • Tray Source

Note: The Media Detail Settings can be changed from the printer LCD. The following Media Detail Settings can be specified in the driver, which will override the settings in the printer:

  • Drying Time Between Pages
  • Drying Time Between Scans (for each pass of the printhead)
  • Roll Paper Near End Margin (for safety - 3 or 20 mm)
  • Cut speed

What is the Media Configuration Tool and how do I run it?

The Media Configuration tool is a separate program. To run it (example shown for iPF5000):

On Windows: Start -> All Programs -> IPF5000 Media Configuration Tool -> IPF5000 Media Configuration Tool

The Media Configuration Tool allows you to do very specific (and limited) things with with Media Types:

  • Add new Media Types via a Media Description File (.med file extension). New Media Types are displayed in the driver and on the printer LCD. You can't create your own Media Description File, they are supplied by Canon for Canon papers. You may be able to get media description files for third party papers if the paper manufacturer produces them. There are two options:
    • Add a batch of media types (used when the Media Configuration Tool is updated by Canon with a lot of new Media Types)
    • Add new media types one at a time (e.g., for third party Media Types or if Canon comes out with one new paper)
  • Edit Media types
    • Delete media types (but the Canon media types can't be deleted)
    • Show or Hide media types (only applies to the driver, hidden media types are still displayed on the printer LCD)
    • Rearrange the order that existing media types are displayed (for both the driver and the printer LCD)
  • Upload information on the added, deleted or rearranged Media Types to the printer

Summary: Unless Canon releases new Media Types, the only things you can do with the Media Configuration Tool is to hide Media Types in the driver and change the order in which Media types are displayed for both the driver and on the printer LCD.

Update 11/21/10: The Media Configuration Tool for the iPF6300 and iPF8300 allows you to create your own Media Types.

What is Poster Artist?

Poster Artist is included with the iPF5000. As the name implies, it is for creating posters/banners and is probably only of interest to those who have those specific needs. I could find no use for it for those printing photos or fine art reproduction.

For the iPF5100/iPF6100 series Poster Artist is no longer included. It is now a separate program with a list price of about $700.

What are the five modes the printer can be in?


Print jobs are processed immediately. Toggle between this mode and offline mode with the Online button.


Print jobs are held without processing; you can feed or cut roll paper manually; printer goes offline if job can't be processed (e.g., there is some kind of error or media mismatch)

Sleep Mode

power saving mode. Enters this mode if no print jobs for buttons pushed for 5 minutes (default, can be changed in Sleep Timer portion of Menu). Exit this mode by sending a file to the printer, or by pressing any button.

Menu Mode

Menus are displayed on the printer LCD, and you can select, set or execute menu items. Print jobs are held without being processed. Enter Menu Mode by pressing the Menu button. Exit this mode by pressing Online button.

Submenu Mode

Submenus are displayed for ink, paper type, paper size and amount of roll paper left. Enter Submenu mode by pressing the Information button. Exit this mode by pressing any other button, or just waiting for 5 seconds.

What do each of the buttons and LEDs on the control panel do?

LED lamps

  • Data (green) - flashes when the printer is receiving or prcessing print jobs, or when the printer is paused or updating the firmware
  • Message (orange) - On when warning message is displayed on LCD. Flashing when error message is displayed.
  • Roll/Cassette (green, on left) - On when one of these auto feed paper sources is selected
  • Tray (green, on right) - On when manual feed (either top loading tray or front loading paper feed slot) is selected

Left buttons

  • Online (button and green LED) - toggles printer online (steady green glow) and offline (not lit)
  • Feeder Selection - toggles between auto feed and manual feed paper source, and lights the associated LED
  • Menu - displays the main menu of the printer on the LCD
  • Information
    • Toggles between submenus containing information about:
      • Ink cartridges & maintenance tank
      • Paper type
      • Paper size
      • Amount of roll paper left
    • To exit submenu mode, press any other button on the Printer Control Panel, or just wait for 5 seconds
    • Holding Information button down for 3 seconds starts Print Head Cleaning A (duration - 4 minutes; not as long as Head Cleaning B, which takes 6 minutes).

Center "joystick" buttons

  • Up Arrow - in Menu Mode moves up one level on the menu tree. In offline mode rewinds rolls manually.
  • Down Arrow - in Menu Mode move down one level on the menu tree. In offline mode feeds roll paper manually.
  • Left Arrow - Displays previous menu item or setting value
  • Right Arrow - Displays next menu item or setting value
  • OK - in Menu Mode, confirms or executes the selected item or setting

Right buttons

  • Power - turns printer on. Pushing and holding for more than one second turns printer off.
  • Stop/Eject - Stops jobs in progress or clears the menu and ejects the paper.

How do I navigate the menu on the printer LCD?

General instructions

  • Press the Menu button to go into Menu Mode.
  • As you navigate the menu structure, there will be a Right Arrow, Down Arrow or one alternating with the other depending what choices are currently available to explore the current menu branch.
  • The equals sign (=) indicates that this item is the currently active choice.
  • Press the Online button to exit Menu Mode.

Specific navigation

  • Up or Down Arrow - moves up or down one level on the menu tree, respectively
  • Left or Right Arrow - Displays previous or next menu item or setting value, respectively
  • OK - confirms or executes the selected item or setting

What functions are available in Menu Mode?

Note: By default, main menu settings apply to all print jobs. However, for settings that are also available in the printer driver, the values specified in the printer driver take priority.

The following list is for the iPF5000. There may be some additions/changes for the iPFX100 generation printers. For example, printer calibration has been added to the X100 printers.

Text in parentheses shows the possible settings.
Text in square bracket shows non-abbreviated meaning with comments on function if known and relevant.

  • Head Cleaning (Head Cleaning A/Head Cleaning B)
  • Force Cutting (No/Yes) [only visible if roll paper installed or roll paper media selected]
  • Paper Settings
    • Cas Paper Type (Plain Paper/.../Special 5) [Cassete Paper Type]
    • Cas Paper Size (ISO A2/.../13"x22") [Cassete Paper Size]
    • Tray Paper Type (Plain Paper/.../Special 5)
    • Tray Paper Size (ISO A2/.../Manual Setting)
    • Roll Media Type (Plain Paper/.../Special 5)
    • Chk Remain Roll (On/Off) [Check Remaining Roll]
    • Roll Length Set (1 inch ~ 300 feet) [Sets length of roll so you can monitor with Check Remaining Roll]
  • Med. Detail Set. [Media Detail Setting]
    • Plain Paper/.../Special 5
      • Roll Drying Time (Off/30 sec./1 min./3 min./5 min./10 min./30 min./60 min.)
      • Scan Wait Time (Off/1 sec./3 sec./5 sec./7 sec./9 sec.) [Time to wait between each pass of printhead]
      • Feed Priority (Automatic/Band Joint/Print Length)
      • Adjust Length (-0.70 ~ 0.70%)
      • Head Height (Automatic/Lowest/Low/Standard/High/Highest) [Set higher if getting head strikes]
      • Skew Check Lv. (Standard/Off/Loose/High Accuracy)
      • VacuumStrngth (Automatic/Strongest/Strong/Standard/Weak) [Vacuum Strength stronger for thick papers]
      • NearEnd Rll Mrgn (3 mm/20 mm) [Near End of Roll minimum Margin - set to larger 20 mm if desired]
      • Cut Speed (Standard/Fast/Slow) [Applies to roll cutter]
      • Trim Edge First (Forced/Automatic/No Cutting) [Whether to trim the roll for to make a smooth edge before printing]
      • Cutting Mode (Automatic/Eject/Manual) [Applies to roll cutter]
      • Bordless Margin (Automatic/Fixed) [Borderless Margin]
      • CutDustReduct (On/Off) [Reduces dust made by cutting by printing a line before making a cut]
      • Nr End Sht Mrgn (3 mm/20 mm) [Near End of Sheet minimum Margin - set to a safer 20 mm if desired]
      • Tray Source (Top/Front) [Whether to use the top load or the front load for this type of paper]
      • Return Defaults (No/Yes) [Reset to factory default settings]
  • Adjust Printer
    • Auto Head Adj. [Auto Printhead Adjustment, same as Alignment]
      • Advanced Adj. (No/Yes) [Uses one extra page compared to Standard, to do alignment. Difference not known.]
      • Standard Adj. (No/Yes) [The one done when you first set up the printer; requires 5 sheets 11X17 paper]
      • Auto Print (On/Off)
    • Manual Head Adj. (No/Yes) [Manual Head Adjustment, same as Alignment]
    • Auto Band Adj.[Auto Band Adjustment, same as Media Feed Amount Adjustment in GARO Status Monitor]
      • Standard Adj. (No/Yes)
      • Advanced Adj. (No/Yes)
    • Manual Band Adj. [Manual Band Adjustment]
      • Adjust Band (No/Yes)
      • Adj Far Ed Feed (No/Yes) [Adjust Far End Feeding]
    • Adjust Length (No/Yes) [Use if length of elements in line drawings are not exact, but need to be]
  • Interface Setup [Settings for networking if you are using Ethernet connection; using GARO Device Setup Utility is easier]
    • EOP Timer (10 sec./30 sec./1 min./2 min./5 min./10 min./30 min./60 min.)
    • TCP/IP
      • TCP/IP (On)
      • IP Mode (Automatic/Manual)
      • Protocol
        • DHCP (On/Off)
        • BOOTP (On/Off)
        • RARP (On/Off)
      • IP Setting
        • IP Address (0-255.0-255.0-255.0-255)
        • Subnet Mask (0-255.0-255.0-255.0-255)
        • Default G/W (0-255.0-255.0-255.0-255)
    • Netware
      • NetWare (On/Off)
      • Frame Type (Auto Detect/Ethernet 2/Ethernet 802.2/Ethernet 802.3/Ethernet SNAP)
      • Print Service (BinderyPserver/RPrinter/NDSPserver/NPrinter)
    • AppleTalk (On/Off)
    • Ethernet Driver
      • Auto Detect (On/Off)
      • Comm. Mode (Half Duplex/Full Duplex)
      • Ethernet Type (10 Base-T/100 Base-TX)
      • Spanning Tree (Not Use/Use)
      • MAC Address
    • Init. Settings (No/Yes)
  • Maintenance
    • Replace P. head [Replace printhead]
      • L. Printhead (No/Yes) [Left Printhead]
      • R. Printhead (No/Yes) [Right Printhead]
    • Move Printer (No/Yes)
    • Clean Roller1 (No/Yes) {Note: added with Firmware 1.13 or 1.23}
    • Clean Roller2 (No/Yes) {Note: added with Firmware 1.13 or 1.23}
    • Clean Platen (No/Yes)
  • System Setup
    • Warning
      • Buzzer (On/Off)
      • Detect Mismatch (Paue/Warning/None) {Note: changed with Firmware 1.13 or 1.23}
    • Keep Media Size (On/Off)
    • Sht Selection (ISO A3+/ANSI B Super) [Sheet Selection]
    • Roll Selection1 (ISO A3 (297mm)/300mm Roll)
    • Roll Selection2 (10 in. (254mm)/JIS B4 (257mm))
    • TrimEdge Reload {Note: added with Firmware 1.13}
    • Nozzle Check (Off/5 pages/10 pages/Automatic)
    • Sleep Timer (5 min./10 min./15 min./20 min./30 min./40 min./50 min./60 min./240 min.) {changed Firmware 1.23}
    • Length Unit (meter / feet / inch)
    • Time Zone (-12 ...+12)
    • Date Format (yyyy/mm/dd / dd/mm/yyyy / mm/dd/yyyy)
    • Date & Time
      • Date (2000~2050/01~12/01~31)
      • Time (00~23:00~59)
    • Language (English/etc.)
    • Reset MediaType (No/Yes)
  • Test Print (Status Print/Media Details/Print Job Log/Menu Map/Nozzle Check)
  • Information
    • Version (Firm/Boot/MIT)
    • RAM
    • Ext. Interface
    • MAC Address
    • Error Log
    • Job Log (Document Name/User Name/Page Count/Job Status/Print Start Time/Print End Time/Print Time/Print Size/Media Type/Interface/Ink Consumption)
    • Counter
      • Cut Count

How do I set the length of time until the printer goes into sleep mode?

On the printer select the following: Menu -> System Setup -> Sleep Timer -> = XX min.

Recommended to choose a time of 60 minutes or 240 minutes so the printer doesn't keep cycling on and off (which is extremely annoying). According to Michael Reichmann of the Luminous Landscape, iPF5000 won't go into sleep when it's set to Manual feed mode. It has to be set to Cassette / Roll to go into sleep mode.

Where can I find a list of supported Canon media?

There is an updated (10/14/10) Canon Media Guide PDF file, including available sizes and part numbers, located here:

The most updated version of this PDF file should be located here.

The Media portion of the Canon web site can be found here.

There is a Large-Format Color Specialty Media Swatch Kit and a new Genuine Specialty Print Media Swatch Kit described here. Some of the vendors offer one or both of these swatch kits free with the purchase of a new printer. Retail cost is about $9.00 each.

What paper paths are available for printing on the iPF5100/iPF5000?

There are four paths to feed paper to the printer:

Auto Feed

  • Cassette

  • A "tray" for holding a stack of paper. Located right below the paper output tray.

  • Auto Roll Feed

  • An optional piece of hardware that installs at the back/top of the printer. The tray has to be removed when installing the auto roll feed, but there is still a slot available for feeding paper manually.

Manual Feed (one sheet at a time)

  • Tray

  • Also known as Top Load Manual feed - a vertical slot (looks similar to the feed area for Epson desktop printers) visible when opening a panel on top of the printer, toward the back.

  • Front Paper Feed

  • Also known as Front Load Manual feed - used for loading very thick media. Located right above the paper output tray.

Should the side of the sheet paper to be printed be facing up or down? For which paper paths?

  • Cassette - side to be printed face down (use plastic insert if printing on glossy paper)
  • Top Tray - side to be printed face up (Note: the diagram on the top tray is in error)
  • Front Feed - side to be printed face up (Note: the diagram inside the top cover of the printer is in error)

What paper thickness can be used with each paper path?

Top-Loading Manual Feed
Front-Loading Manual Feed
Top-Loading Roll Feed
3.2-11.8 mil
3.2-19.6 mil
19.6-59.0 mil
2.8-31.4 mil
3.2-11.8 mil
3.2-19.6 mil
19.6-59.0 mil
3.2-31.4 mil
3.2-19.6 mil
19.6-59.0 mil
3.1-31.4 mil
2.8-31.4 mil
19.6-59.0 mil
2.8-31.4 mil
2.8-31.4 mil
2.8-31.4 mil
2.8-31.4 mil
2.8-31.4 mil

Note: There seems to be conflicting experience about the thickness of papers that can be fed from the Cassette outside of the stated specifications:

  • Michael Reichmann of the Luminous Landscape says "I feed Hahnemuhle and Entrada 308 g papers from the Cassette all the time, with no problems." (These papers are 19 and 22 mil thickness, respectively).
  • A contrary view is expressed by another poster: "What is more interesting is that we have moved from the European Hahnemuehle papers to American Crane papers --for a couple of reasons. The Hahnemuehle papers don't want to load from the cassette. That goes for the satin, photorag and the A5 cards. The Crane Museo Fine Art paper loads without a hitch and also demonstrates considerable increase in gamut over the European paper."

Note 2: Only a few papers are out of spec for the top tray. Of those, papers that are only slightly out of spec (e.g., Hahnemuhle Museum Etching and Crane Museo Max, both at 23.0-23.6 mil) have been reported to feed from the top tray rather than requiring use of the front loading slot. Thicker papers (e.g., Hahnemuhle Photo Rag 460, 27.5 mil thickness) will probably require the front loading slot.

Which Media Types can be used with which paper paths?

Which black ink do they use?

All media types can be used with the regular "Manual" setting. Using this setting, the trailing border has a minimum size of 0.9 inches. Starting with Firmware Version 1.23 and Photoshop plugin 2.03 there is also a setting for "Manual (3 mm Margins)" for some Media Types. The paper paths are specified as the "Media Source" on the Page Setup tab of the operating system driver or the Photoshop plugin. Summary of likely photo paper settings:

  • Cassette
    • Matte Black Ink - Premium Matte Paper, Matte Photo Paper
    • Photo Black Ink - Photo Paper Plus, Photo Paper Plus Semi-Gloss, Special 1-5
  • Roll
    • Matte Black Ink - Premium Matte Paper, Fine Art (all choices), Canvas Matte 2
    • Photo Black Ink - Glossy Photo Paper, Semi-Glossy Photo Paper, HW Glossy Photo Paper, Heavyweight SemiGlos Photo Paper, HW Satin Photo Paper, Special 1-5

The table below shows a detailed list of which media types can be used with the Cassette, Roll Paper, or both, and whether Photo Black or Matte Black ink is used:

Special Note: These Media Types were available after installing Version 2.50 of Media Configuration Tool and Updating Media Types. According to the imagePROGRAF Media Guide, Premium Matte Paper is the ONLY photo quality paper -supported- for use with the Cassette. The other various photo quality papers checked below for use with the Cassette are officially "Not Supported; setting suggested(use at your own risk", according to the Media Guide. The Media Guide for the 5000 seems to conflict with recommendations for the 5100 Paper Reference Guide. "use at your own risk" may have been an overly cautious commentary. Caveat Emptor.

Media Type
Manual (3mm Margins)
Black Ink
Plain Paper

Economy Bond Paper



Universal Bond Paper



Premium Coated Paper


High Resolution Paper

Heavyweight Coated Paper


Premium Matte Paper
Premium Super Gloss


Glossy Photographic Paper 190 gsm


Satin Photographic Paper 190 gsm


Glossy Photographic Paper 240 gsm


Satin Photographic Paper 240 gsm


HW Glossy Photo Paper


HW Satin Photo Paper


Premium RC Photogloss


Premium RC PhotoMatte


Premium RC Photo Luster


Fine Art Photo


Fine Art Heavyweight Photo


Fine Art Textured


Fine Art Watercolor


Backprint Film



Matte Photo Paper

Photo Paper Plus

Photo Paper Plus Semi-Gloss

Plain Paper (High Quality)

Plain Paper (High Grade)

Coated Paper
Glossy Photo Paper


Semi-Glossy Photo Paper


Heavyweight Glossy Photo Paper


Heavyweight SemiGlos Photo Paper


Synthetic Paper



Adhesive Synthetic Paper



Backlit Film



Thin Fabric Banner 2



Proofing Paper


Fine Art Block Print


Canvas Matte 2



Japanese Paper Washi


POP Board


Special 1

Special 2

Special 3

Special 4

Special 5


Where can I find recommended Media Types for creating a custom profile for specific non-Canon papers?

See this page of the Wiki.

How do I determine the optimal Media Type to use when creating custom profiles for non-Canon papers?

Note: For additional information and recommended media type for specific papers, see also the section on creating current recommendations for media type setting for non-Canon papers for iPF5000 or iPFX100 printers on the Custom Profiles page.

Here are suggestions for 4 different method:

  1. From Scott Martin, you can read instructions and use the Onsight Media Selection Image
  2. Suggestions from Gary Cay:
    • First decide what black you want / need to print with (matte or photo)
    • Read your media guide and match the type of paper and form of the paper (roll or sheet, and cassette or tray feed) with the black you need.
    • From that list pick the one closest to the paper/media type you are printing on.
    • At this point you may elect to print a known target onto the paper with the different settings on your list to exam for information about ink densities, satuaration etc. - to see if one looks better than another.
    • Check here for information about what others say is working for them and consider if that is useful to you or not.
    • Proceed and keep notes about results. Make modifications if and when experience suggests or encourages it.
  3. Select media type by printing grayscale step-wedge with different media selections. Look for some separation in the #5 and #10 squares. Inkjetart has very good instructions (see Selecting the Right Paper Type on their web page) about how to do this using their Density file.
  4. Canon recommended printing a test pattern of pure black box with a pure yellow box in the middle, and determine how how far can go before you see ink bleed. Wayne Fox provided a Canon Ink Density Test file which he created, and described his use of this test file as follows:
    • When profiling a new paper, I will print an 8x10 of the file with color management turned off, one print for each of the 5 Special settings for whichever black ink I want to use.
    • For matte papers, I mainly looking for puddling in the large black section. For PK ink papers I look at the transitions between the yellow/black areas for bleeding/overspray with a pretty good loupe.
    • As I mentioned, this was suggested by David Sparer at Canon when I was testing the 5000. Seems to work OK. Most good photo papers handle Special 4 or 5 density without any trouble. With Museum Etching I used special 8 (same as Special 3 except uses matte black ink; only available on iPFX100 series printers) because I could see some issues in the solid black area.

external image tiff.png

To use the test file, open in Photoshop and enter the Media Type you are using in place of the current place-holder, Photo Paper Plus Semi-Gloss. The file has been cropped to 8 X 5 inches so that you can print with one Media Type on the top half of an 8.5 X 11 inch paper, then turn the paper over once the ink has dried a bit and print again (also on the top half) using a different Media Type.

How can I print profiling targets from Photoshop CS5?

Photoshop CS5 has eliminated the "No Color Management" selection--necessary to print profiling targets--from the print dialog. There are two ways around this problem:

  • Print the profiling targets from the Photoshop printing plugin (File>Export>iPFxx00 Print Plug-in...) using the appropriate media type selection and "none" for the output profile.
  • Print the profiling targets from the driver using the 'Null Transform trick' invented and popularized by Eric Chan of Adobe. The null transform trick is to assign Adobe RGB to the target, then in CS5’s Print dialog, select Photoshop Manages Color and select Adobe RGB as the output color space. It is crucial to select Relative Colorimetric Intent with Black Point Compensation unchecked. Of course, color management in the driver must be set to off and the appropriate media selected.

See also this discussion forum thread.

What are the Media Types marked Special 1-10?

Which black ink do they use?

These are Media Types which are meant for use with non-Canon papers:

Special 1-5

Available on all iPF printers, use Photo Black Ink. Special 1 lays down the least amount of ink. The amount of ink increases with each Media Type with a higher number, Special 5 putting down the most ink.

Special 6-10

Available on iPFX100 series printers only, use Matte Black Ink. Special 6 lays down the least amount of ink. The amount of ink increases with each Media Type with a higher number, Special 10 putting down the most ink.

What are the total ink limits for different Media Types?

According to Steven Katzman in his IPF5000 Field Test the total ink limits for some Media Types are as follows:

  • Photo Black Ink
    • Special 1 - 160%
    • Special 2 - 180%
    • Special 3 - 200%
    • Special 4 - 220%
    • Special 5 - 240%
    • Premium Gloss - 240%
    • Heavyweight Semi-Gloss - 240%

  • Matte Black Ink
    • Fine Art - 220%
    • Premium Matte - 220%

iPFX100 Series Only

  • Matte Black Ink
    • Special 6 - 160%
    • Special 7 - 180%
    • Special 8 - 200%
    • Special 9 - 220%
    • Special 10 - 240%

Which Media Types Allow 32 pass printing (iPFX100 only)?

Updated: 5/10/09 using Media Configuration Tool 2.63.01

Note: These Media Types and the allowed paper paths were checked on an iPF6100, which does not have a Cassette. Thus no information is presented here about whether the Cassette is allowed on iPF5100.

Manual (3 mm)
Glossy Photographic Paper 190 gsm
Satin Photographic Paper 190 gsm
Glossy Photographic Paper 240 gsm
Satin Photographic Paper 240 gsm
Glossy Photographic Paper 270 gsm
Satin Photographic Paper 270 gsm
HW Glossy Photo Paper
HW Satin Photo Paper
Premium Glossy Paper 200
Premium Semi-Glossy Paper 200
Premium Glossy Paper 280
Premium Semi-Glossy Paper 280
Premium RC PhotoMatte
Premium RC Photo Luster
Glossy Photo Paper
Semi-Glossy Photo Paper
Heavyweight Glossy Photo paper 2
Heavyweight Semi-Gloss Photo paper 2
Poster Semi-Glossy Photo paper
Photo Paper Plus Glossy 2
Photo Paper Plus
Photo Paper Plus Semi-Gloss
Photo Paper Pro Platinum
Polished Rag 300 gsm

Commercial Proofing Paper
Commercial RC Proofing 210 gsm
Commercial RC Proofing 270 gsm
Proofing Paper

Note: All of these Media Types use Photo Black ink. In the printer driver, 32 pass mode is activated selecting "Highest" Print Quality, and then checking "High Precision Printing". On older versions of the plugin, the number of passes will actually be listed.

Where can I find the Media Detailed Settings for each Media Type?

You can print a list from: GARO Status Monitor -> Information Tab -> Print Media Detailed Settings

However, don't bother. You will get a 6 page cryptic list which I will summarize for you in half a page. All default Detailed Media Settings are identical for all of the Media Types with just a few exceptions. Here are the settings for almost all of the Media Types:

  • Roll Drying Time - Off
  • Scan Wait Time - Off
  • Cut Speed - Fast
  • Near End Roll Margin - 3 mm
  • Near End Sheet Margin - 3 mm
  • Trim Edge First - No Cutting
  • Cutting Mode - Automatic
  • Tray Source - Top
  • Borderless Margin - Automatic
  • Cut Dust Reduction - Off
  • Skew Check Lv. - Standard
  • Vacuum Strength - Automatic
  • Feed Priority - Automatic
  • Head Height - Automatic
  • Calibration - OK


  • Default Cutting Mode is Eject for: HW Glossy Photo, HW SemiGloss Photo, Backprint Film and CAD Matte Film
  • POP Board has Cut Speed - Slow and Tray Source - Front

Note: The two settings you would be most likely to change, Vacuum Strength and Head Height, list "Automatic", so you don't really know how much stronger/higher to set them if you are getting printhead strikes on the paper.

How can I change the Head Height and Vacuum Strength to work properly with my paper?

You may need to change the Head Height and/or Vacuum strength to work properly, particularly with a non-Canon paper. If the paper is very thin (e.g., 4 mil), you may need to decrease the Vacuum Strength to Weak to avoid printhead strikes. If the paper is too thick, you may need to increase the Vacuum Strength to Standard or Strong. If you are still getting printhead strikes increase the Head Height. A setting of "Automatic" for Head Height causes the printer to physically measure paper thickness and set the height of the printhead accordingly. If you are getting printhead strikes you probably need to try a setting of High or Highest. See also pages 49-50 in printed IPF5000 Reference Guide that came with your printer.

To set the head height, you have to go to the Printer Control Panel and set it under the paper type as follows:

Menu button -> Med. Detail Set. -> Select media type you want to change setting for -> Head Height

Note: you can set Vacuum Strength in a setting adjacent to the Head Height setting. The problem with setting the head height or vacuum strength for a media type in the printer control panel is that it will remain that way until you change it back. In earlier versions of the plugin (before 2.03 anyway) you could set the Vacuum Strength from the Plugin using the "Set Button" on the Main Tab. This function has been removed.

Is there any problem leaving roll paper loaded for extended periods of time?

Yes, according to Bill J: "I went away for about five days and left a roll of Canon Satin Photographic paper (7 mil, 190 gsm) loaded in the printer. I turned off the printer before I left. The first print I made after I came back showed four dents made by the rollers attached to the auto roll feeder unit, exactly 1 1/2 inches from the leading edge. I've also noticed some very shallow dents in the Canon Fine Art Bright White (20 mil, 330 gsm) after just a day or so of non-use. The light has to be at a very steep angle to see them, though. The printer was on, but sleeping, during this time. So, I recommend that you not leave roll paper loaded for very long, or at least plan on trimming off the first 1.5 inches (3.8 cm) if it's been a few days since you used the printer.

Gary Cay agrees: "I had a similiar problem, and even had the tech guy come out. He basically decided it is better to remove roll paper if not printing within about 24 hours because of the dents. Canon Support thought dents should not occur, but the tech did not know anything he could "fix" anything to make it different. So now I eject the roll when finished printing from roll or if turning off the printer overnight or longer. It is easy enough to insert the roll and get going again."

Others have reported no problems: John Hollenberg leaves a roll of Epson Premium Luster loaded all the time and may go weeks between prints. No problems noted.

Where can I find directions on loading the front Paper Feed Slot?

It is in the HTML manual. Try clicking links in this order:

  1. Basic Operation and Instructions
  2. Loading paper for printing
  3. Steps to Load Sheets in the Paper Tray
  4. Follow the listed steps 1-4 on that page
  5. Click on "Put Sheets in the Tray"
  6. Click on the link in this text: "However, if you have specified POP Board, insert the sheet in the Paper Feed Slot."

What are the various paper sizes available when converted to inches?

Common U.S. sizes:

  • 8.5 X 11 - ANSI Letter
  • 11 X 17 - ANSI B
  • 13 X 19 - ANSI B Super
  • 17 X 22 - ANSI C

All sizes:

  • ISO A2+ 17.00 X 24.00
  • ISO A2 16.54 X 23.39
  • ISO A3+ 12.95 X 19.02
  • ISO A3 11.69 X 16.54
  • ISO A3 (L) 16.54 X 11.69
  • ISO A4 08.27 X 11.69
  • ISO A4 (L) 11.69 X 08.27
  • ISO B3 13.90 X 19.69
  • ISO B4 09.84 X 13.90
  • ISO B4 (L) 13.90 X 09.84
  • JIS B3 14.33 X 20.28
  • JIS B4 10.12 X 14.33
  • JIS B4 (L) 14.33 X 10.12
  • ANSI B Super 13.00 X 19.00
  • ANSI B 11.00 X 17.00
  • ANSI B (L) 17.00 X 13.00
  • ANSI Letter 08.50 X 11.00
  • ANSI Legal 08.50 X 14.00
  • ANSI Legal (L) 14.00 X 08.50
  • ARCH B 12.00 X 18.00
  • ARCH A 09.00 X 12.00
  • ARCH A (L) 12.00 X 09.00
  • DIN C3 12.76 X18.03
  • DIN C4 09.02 X 12.76
  • DIN C4 (L) 12.76 X 09.02
  • 14 X 17 14.00 X 17.00
  • 14 X 17 (L) 17.00 X 14.00
  • 12 X 16 12.00 X 16.00
  • 12 X 16 (L) 16.00 X 12.00
  • 10 X 12 10.00 X 12.00
  • 10 X 12 (L) 12.00 X 10.00
  • 10 X 15 10.00 X 15.00
  • 10 X 15 (L) 15.00 X 10.00
  • 8 X 10 08.00 X 10.00
  • 8 X 10 (L) 10.00 X 08.00
  • USPhoto 16x20 16.00 X 20.00
  • Poster300X900 11.81 X 35.43
  • 13 X 22 12.95 X 21.97

Note: There is a Wikipedia article which describes in detail various Paper Sizes

What is the smallest sheet paper size I can print?

8 X 10 inches is the official specification. However, one poster writes, "I have successfully run 6" wide (x 11")stock thru the top 'tray', with the printer thinking that it is using letter stock, without a problem."

What are the smallest margins I can print?

Cassette All Margins
Leading and Left/Right Edges
Trailing Edge Top Feed Except Art Paper
Trailing Edge Top Feed Art Paper
Trailing Edge Front Feed
Roll Feed
3 mm (0.12 inches)
3 mm (0.12 inches)
3mm (0.12 inches)
23 mm (0.9 inches)
23 mm (0.9 inches)
3 mm or borderless

3 mm (0.12 inches)
3mm (0.12 inches)
23 mm (0.9 inches)
23 mm (0.9 inches)
3 mm or borderless

5 mm (0.20 inches)
23 mm (0.9 inches)
23 mm (0.9 inches)
23 mm (0.9 inches)
5 mm or borderless

Note: there is a 3 mm bottom margin setting available for some media types.

What is roll length tracking and how do I enable it?

(Edited) Information from Inkjetart Review:

Roll length tracking labels the roll and keeps track of how much paper is left on the roll. Once enabled it will ask you the media type and the length of any new roll you put in the printer. When you select to eject a roll it will print a barcode (uses up about 2.5 inches of paper) on the end of the roll which encodes the paper type you had selected along with the remaining length. It also prints both the media type and the length it in plain text so you can read it. When you put a roll back in it reads the barcode, sets the media type, and sets the length. This information is also communicated back to the status monitor on the computer.

  • Change the unit of measure if desired, e.g: Menu -> System Setup -> Length Unit -> feet
  • Unload the roll
  • To enable roll length tracking from the control panel: Menu -> Paper Settings -> Chk Remain. Roll -> On
  • Now when you load a new roll, the printer will ask you the media type and length.
  • To eject a roll, press Stop/Eject on printer control panel for more than one second. The remaining length will be printed on the roll.

Sample Bar Code:

Sample Bar Code produced when ejecting a roll from an iPF5100.

Additional Notes:

  • This is a great feature but it is not perfect. Each time you eject a roll, a minimum of 1 foot will be deducted from the length tracked and printed. For example, I accidentally loaded a roll of Premium Matte which had 9 feet left according to the bar code. When I ejected the roll a moment later, it recorded there was only 8 feet left. Later I went back into the menus and manually set the length.
  • If you turn off Roll Length Tracking while a "tracked" roll is loaded and then eject/unload the roll, the printer will still print the barcode for that "tracked" roll.

What are the three basic types of photo inkjet paper?

In general, there are three types of inkjet photo paper available for your printer: Resin Coated, Nanoporous and Cast-Coated.

Has anyone found a supplier for Canon 17" paper rolls in the UK?

Park Cameras stocks all Canon roll papers and also carries the two currently available Kodak papers, which they strongly recommend for use with the iPF5000. They also have a comprehensive range of inks for the printer.

The following information was provided by Park, who can be reached either via their website, or using the following email address:
Product Name
Roll Length
Premium Rapid-Dry Photographic Glossy Paper
Premium Rapid-Dry Photographic Lustre Paper
Art Paper Extra Smooth Paper
High Glossy Heavy Photo Paper
Satin Photo Paper
Matt Coated Paper
Economy Satin Photo Paper
Economy Glossy Photo Paper
Matt Coated Paper
Matt Coated Paper
Pearl Photo Paper
Water Resistant Art Canvas

Note: all rolls from this Park Cameras list are 17" wide and all prices exclude VAT. Their website has now been updated to show their full stock list. also stocks the iPF5000. Reports are that their support is very good. They have a long list of canon roll papers including 17". also stock Canon large format printers and accessories and will replace for free defective ink cartridges. Prices are competitive.

What are the changes/limitations of the 64 bit Photoshop plugin for the X300 printers?

There are several important changes:

  • The 64 bit plugin can't use the Adobe CMM (which allows for Black Point Compensation), since Adobe hasn't yet released one for 64 bit Photoshop
  • The processing method for monochrome photograph printing has been changed to improve the representation of dark areas. Northlight Images found the main change was an opening up of the shadows except for the 95-100 range where they've been compressed. This change means that a new linearizing profile is needed for those using the Quadtone Rip Linearizing to get good screen to print matching.
  • You cannot apply Favorites, History, or Custom Paper Size created with V5.00 or later with Plug-In earlier than V5.00

You can read more details from Northlight Images Review and User Notes.

How can I linearize Monochrome Mode to get good screen-to-print matching for B&W Images?

Question: How can I profile my iPF printer for black and white using a spectrophotometer?


  1. Select a Canon Media Type that has Monochrome photo mode available in the photoshop plugin
  2. Then use the technique with Quadtone Rip described in this Outback Photo article

Note: Many posters report that they prefer to print B&W photos in color mode using a custom profile. This also allows
for tinting/toning and useful softproofing, without any loss of quality.

What combinations of OS and Photoshop version will work with the Export Plugin?

Here is a table showing plugin support by OS and Photoshop version:

Photoshop 6
Photoshop 7
Photoshop CS
Photoshop CS2
Photoshop CS3
Photoshop CS4
Photoshop CS4 64 bit
Photoshop CS5
Photoshop CS5 64 bit
Windows 32 bit
Windows 64 bit
All Except X000 Printers
All Except X000 Printers
All Except X000 Printers

The plugin will not work with Photoshop Elements, but Elements users can still print through the driver as with any other application.

How many bits of data does the 16 bit Export plug-in send to the printer?

Scott Martin reports being informed by Canon that the iPF printers process 12 bits of data per color channel when printing using the Export plugin:

"To be more specific, Canon's drivers and plug-ins are now both capable of sending 16 bit data but, at least on the x100 printers, the on-board L-COA processor was *processing* that 16 bit data in a 12 bit mode. The other brands haven't come clean as to what bit depth they are processing their data on board. Some well known evangelists are quick to say that even Epson's $100 printers process data at 16 bits but when I ask direct questions about bit depth processing to Epson's and HP's product managers they are quick to say "no comment" with a grin. Processing that data at higher bit depths gets exponentially more demanding and costly. There a point of diminishing returns and Canon choose to go with 12 bits because they felt it was past that point. Personally I think the distinction between 12, 14, and 16 bits is pretty insignificant and I choose to focus instead of 8 bits vs "high bit depth" paths. And above that, I like to let the final print quality speak for itself. On some printers you can send a grainger rainbow in 8 or 16 bit modes and see a real (albeit small) improvement at high bit depth, whereas on some printers you won't see a difference at all - that's valuable info."

Is there a way to turn off the annoying confirmation dialog when exiting the plugin?

  • For the iPFX000 and iPFX100 printers - No
  • For the iPF6300 and iPF8300 printers - Yes, there is a new version of the plugin that allows you to turn off this annoying dialog permanently

Can profiles made for the Photoshop plugin be used for the OS level printer driver?

Yes, assuming the other settings (e.g., number of passes, media type, unidirectional, etc.) are the same. See also the FAQ on 8 bit vs 16 bit profiling targets.

How can I create Favorite settings to remember the combination of paper size, type, etc?

  1. Click on Print History tab
  2. Click Details
  3. Click on a print job from the Print History (upper left hand box)
  4. Preview the Settings on the 3 tabs in the bottom half of the dialog box
  5. Click the large blue right arrow to add it to favorites
  6. Give it a name, add a comment if desired, and click OK

To use this Favorite, click on it, then click "Apply".

How many settings can be saved as Print History Favorites?

According to Tony Bonanno, "For those of you using the Print History in the Plug-In to save your favorite print settings. Be aware that there is a limit of 50 settings or "favorites" that can be saved. At least this is the case on Windows. Once you reach 50, you'll have to delete some to make space for any new settings you want to save. 50 sounds like a lot, but I was surprised how quickly I reached that number using several different papers and different settings for monochrome, color, etc."

What happens if their is a conflict between the plugin and the printer in the setting for media type or media source?

It depends on the value of a setting in the printer firmware (for firmware version 1.23, default shown in bold type):

Menu button -> System Setup -> Warning -> Detect Mismatch -> Warning/None/Pause

  • Warning - system warns of mismatch, but makes print anyway. The media type and media source set in the plugin take precedence over the printer settings
  • None - print is made without warning. Plugin settings take precedence as above
  • Pause - system warns of mismatch and pauses, allowing you to synchronize the settings. This is probably the preferred setting so you don't accidentally set the wrong media type or source in the plugin and not have your error caught.

Note: Confirmation that the Media Type specified in the plugin overrides the Media Type set at the printer LCD can be found in this Luminous Landscape Thread.

Why are prints made through the plugin with Relative Colorimetric intent darker than prints made through the driver?

Problem: When I use softprooofing in Photoshop using relative colometric intent with black point compensation on pictures look one way, but if you use relative colorimetric in print plugin with softproof checkbox on the print looks exactly the same as PS softproofing without black point compensation on.

Resolution: None. This is apparently Canon's design, not a bug. Relative Corimetric intent does not use (or allow) Black Point Compensation. This renders the Relative Colorimetric intent useless when printing through the plugin.


  • Convert to the printer profile in Photoshop with Relative Colorimetric intent and Black Point Compensation on. Then, print through the plugin with Output Profile set to None. This method confirmed by John Hollenberg.
  • Print through the 8 bit operating system level driver instead using Relative Colorimetric intent. Black Point compensation will be applied in Photoshop.
  • If using the iPF6300 or iPF8300, the plugin now supports AdobeCMM (Adobe Color Management Module) which DOES have Black Point Compensation

Is there a difference in gamut between the regular driver and the plugin?

The consensus on the Wiki is that there is NO significant difference in gamut between prints made through the 8 bit operating system level driver and the 16 bit Photoshop plugin. This is based on the following evidence:

1) John Hollenberg created custom profiles for both the driver and the plugin on Canon Heavyweight Satin Photo Paper using the Bill Atkinson 1728 patch target and Profilemaker Pro 5.08. He followed the procedure for creating custom profiles detailed in this Wiki section. While there were slight differences in the measurements for some of the patches, 90% were within 0.5 delta E 94, and the worst 10% had a delta E 94 of 1.2. The patch with the biggest difference between the two targets still only showed a delta E 94 of 2.4. For reference, delta E of 1.0 is the smallest difference that can be reliably seen visually by the human observers. Of course, the resulting profiles showed virtually identical gamut when examined in Colorthink, with a very slight advantage to the profile made through the driver (yup, that is the driver that had a very slightly larger gamut 734,000 vs. 724,000 per Colorthink Pro calculation).

2) Some of those who initially thought that the plugin had a larger gamut turned out to be using slightly different methods to print the targets for plugin vs. driver, or were creating “8 bit profiles” for the driver using Printfix Pro, but “16 bit” files for the plugin. While the number of bits in the LUT (= Look Up Table) of the profile may not be that significant, the 8 bit profiles used a coarser grid (9 grid points vs 33 grid points) for the portion of the profile used for softproofing (or to display the gamut in Colorthink), thus giving a false impression as to the actual gamut of the profile. Prints made through both the driver and the plugin were not compared.

3) One poster who initially thought that the plugin had a higher gamut did more extensive testing and discovered that the number of passes (8 vs. 12 vs. 16) had a significant effect on the gamut. In some of the earlier comparisons, the targets for the driver may have been printed with only 8 passes rather than 16—hardly a fair comparison.

4) It seems likely that Color Management was inadvertantly left on in the driver for some of the people who saw a larger gamut for the plugin. If color management is on, you may be creating a profile for a printer color space already somewhat limited in size. Again, correct procedure is documented in the section on creating custom profiles.

Tentative Conclusion: The gamuts of the driver and plugin appear nearly identical when custom profiles are made for each under highest quality and equal conditions. When printing targets this means:
  • Using 16 bit targets for both driver and plugin
  • Printing targets using 600 PPI
  • Printing targets using 16 passes
  • Making “16 bit profiles” for both driver and plugin
  • Setting unidirectional or bidirectional printing the same for both methods

When making actual prints to compare, the same 16 bit file should be used, and the settings should be identical to those used when the profile is made.

See also the discussion in this forum thread.

Update 9/20/07: Scott Martin of Onsight confirmed that there is no difference in gamut between the plugin and driver.

Do 16 bit targets make better profiles if printed through the 16 bit plugin vs. the 8 bit OS driver?

The 8 bit profiling targets that come with all ICC color profiling packages today will yield identical results when they are printed with the 8 bit or 16 bit modes in the Photoshop plugin or through the OS level driver. Bill Atkinson's unique 16 bit profiling targets (compatible with some but not all profiling packages) have been found to yield slightly better results when printed with the 16 bit option of the Plugin. These profiles can also be used with the 8 bit option of the Plugin and OS level printer driver. This information is from Scott Martin, who writes, "I have tested this carefully and with these printers it does matter if a true 16 bit target is printed in 8 or 16 bit mode. Printing a 16 bit target in 16 bit mode makes slightly better profiles. It's not a huge difference but it is visible. "

Note: Colorvision PrintFix Pro package (now rebranded as Datacolor Spyder3 Print) is a closed system that uses the Datacolor 1005 spectrocolorimeter with proprietary software. It requires you to use the Patch Targets associated with the software in order to make either 8 bit or 16 bit icc profiles. The Datacolor Patch Targets are all 8 BIT TIFF files. Thus Datacolor users can profile either way with their targets (no advantage to printing targets through the Photoshop plugin). Those using other profiling software can consider using Bill Atkinson's 16 bit targets and profile the 16 bit Photoshop plugin for best results.

What differences have been observed between prints made with the driver and the plugin?

While there do not appear to be any significant differences in gamut between the driver and the plugin, the plugin nevertheless does show some subtle improvements in image quality:

  • Smoother gradations in areas of gradual transition in color or tone
  • A very slightly “sharper” appearance to the naked eye, perhaps due to finer transitions that create higher accutance. If you are printing with files that contain at least 12 bits of real data (16 bit conversion of RAW files from a DSLR) and want the highest image quality, printing through the plugin is recommended.

Why is Monochrome Photo mode missing in the plugin?

Monochrome Photo mode is not available with the following media types:

  • Plain paper
  • Synthetic paper
  • Backlit or Backprint Film
  • Thin Fabric Banner 2
  • Canvas Matte 2
  • POP Board
  • Special 1-5
  • Special 6-10 (available on iPFX100 printers)

Select a different media type in order to have Monochrome Photo mode available.

Is there a way to rearrange the order of all the custom media sizes I've added to the Print Plug In size options?


How can I keep file size reasonable, but still get the benefits of printing with 600 PPI files?

Here is a workflow developed by Marc MccAlmont that preserves quality, but saves time:

"I've had an iPF5000 since July, 2006. Here is what works for me after a lot of experimentation. In Photoshop I resize the file to 6"x9", 600 PPI, using bicubic smoother. When all adjustments are complete I use smart sharpen/lens blur. I save this as my master file. I print only with the plugin, 600dpi and let it resize using bilinear interpolation (no sharpening set for the plugin). I have found this to be optimum with a reasonable file size. I tried up-rezzing to a full sized file with bicubic smoother, genuine fractals and Qimage/pyrimid/print to file and am hard pressed to see any difference when compared to the above method (letting the plugin resize a sharpened 6x9 600ppi file). The large files are not worth the hassle for a questionable improvement."

Note: Bilinear interpolation can be set in the print plugin from the Main tab, by choosing Set Configuration.

Update 4/29/09: With the latest version of the plugin, you can now select bicubic interpolation, which should be better.

Does the Photoshop plugin work with version 4 ICC profiles?

Background: Profile-making software such as Profilemaker Pro and Monaco Profiler can make ICC profiles that are compliant with an older specification, version 2, or a newer specification, version 4. Most of the available profiles from printer and paper manufacturers are version 2 profiles.

For all iPF Printers:

  • Mac - version 4 profiles work on Photoshop CS2 through CS4; for iPFX300 printers, Version 4 ICC profiles are no longer supported unless the Adobe CMM is installed.
  • Windows - version 4 profiles don't work on CS2 through CS4 (they cause "Internal Error")

Workaround: Convert to version 4 ICC profile in CS2 or CS3 and then assign an alternative profile (or assign no profile - set to untagged RGB). Print from the plugin without color management. It can look pretty wild on screen, but the numbers are fine as is the print. Update 4/29/09: Workaround confirmed by AtlantisPhoto.

Note: The 8 bit OS level driver works with version 4 profiles on either platform

How can I change the default unit in the plugin from millimeters to inches?

If you are a Canadian user and English(Canada) has been selected in Windows operating system, your default for paper size in the plug-in will be in millimeters. In Windows XP I changed the language to English(United States) and now the default for paper size is in inches.

How do I ensure that prints made with the Photoshop/DPP plugin on roll paper consume the least amount of paper and are correctly oriented?

When printing an image whose longest dimension is 17" or less, you will want to ensure that the printer uses the width of the roll for the longest edge of the image, in order to minimize the amount of wasted paper.

To do this, follow these steps.

Firstly, open your image in Photoshop run the iPF Print Plug-in from the File > Export menu.

Select the correct media type on the Main tab (gloss, semi-gloss, coated etc.)

Switch to the Page Setup tab and set the Media Source to Roll.

The Page Layout Tab

Assuming you are using a 17" wide roll, set the Media Size to ISO A2+ so that the width of the paper is 17". If you are using a 16" roll or smaller, create a new Custom Media Size whose width is equal to the width of your roll, and the length of the paper is approximately 1.5x the width.

Using the Preview control, ensure that Print Area Layout 1 or Print Area Layout 2 is selected, so that you see a representation of your image placed onto a white background in the preview window.

Check that the Orientation control is set to Portrait. Note that this control relates to the orientation of the paper, not the image to be printed. When paper is fed from a roll, portrait orientation instructs the printer to place the image with its top edge parallel to the end of the roll, whereas landscape orientation has the printer place the image with its left edge parallel to the roll end.

The paper orientation should be switched if the image to be printed is taller than it is wide. As a general rule, to conserve roll paper and have the long edge of the image printed across the width of the paper roll, a landscape format image should be printed on portrait orientation paper, while a portrait format image should be printed on landscape orientation paper.

Portrait orientation
Landscape orientation

You should now see your image placed on a vertical sheet, as seen above in the Portrait orientation image.

Click the Roll Paper Options button and tick the No spaces at Top or Bottom (Conserve Paper) box. This will instruct the printer to cut the paper immediately after it has printed the image, rather than spool out an entire A2+ length from the roll.


Check the size of your image against the preview image and either go back to Photoshop an resize it so that it fits the paper properly, or click the Enlarged/Reduced Printing box, select Scaling and then drag your image around to place it on the paper in the correc place and scale it to the correct size.

Scaling the image with the plugin

If you choose to have the plugin scale your image, go back to the Main tag, click Set Configuration and change the Image Enlargement Method to Bi-cubic for the best possible results.

Finally, return to the Main tab, ensure that all your color profile and quality settings are correct, then hit the print button...

How can I be sure that my borderless prints are oriented the way I want from the plugin?

Due to a rather nasty interface oversight in the iPF Photoshop plugin, (still present at the time of writing with plugin version 2.03) it is very easy to mistakenly have a borderless print end up massively too large or much too small by confusing the output orientation in the plugin.

Therefore, when printing an image with a 3:1 aspect ratio and intending the output image to measure 17" x 5.6" with the roll width used for the long edge of the image, it is all too easy to end up with a massive print of 17" x 51" with the roll width used for the short edge of the image.

Normally, switching between landscape and portrait orientation in the plugin alters the preview panel, affording the user a reasonable indication as to how the image will be placed on the paper, as described here.


However, when borderless printing is enabled, the preview panel becomes all but useless, as it simply shows the image in its original orientation with no paper borders or indication of roll direction in the preview. Switching between portrait and landscape output mode makes (almost) no difference to the preview shown.

Fear not, all is not lost. When borderless printing is enabled, a second indication of the output print size becomes available on the Page Layout tab in the Enlarged/Reduced Printing control group.

To ensure that your image will not be printed the wrong way around and end up far too large or far too small, keep a close eye on this size readout. If you expect your image to have its long edge printed across the roll, ensure that the largest dimension given does not exceed the width of the roll. Alternatively, if you want your print to be as large as possible, and have the short edge of the image printed across the roll, ensure that the smallest dimension given is (roughly) equivalent to the width of the paper.

The following images demonstrate this. Note that this print is destined for a 17" (431.8mm) wide roll.


In the above image, the portrait format image is being sent to the printer in landscape orientation. This instructs the printer to rotate the image, causing the long edge of the image to be printed across the width of the roll, resulting in a print of approximate dimensions 17" x 8.6".


This second image shows what happens when the same portrait format image is sent to the printer with portrait orientation specified. In this case, the printer places the short edge of the image across the width of the paper, resulting in a huge print measuring 17" x 33.5".

Why can't I see the number of passes in the Photoshop Plugin?

Early versions of the plugin showed the number of passes, but Canon changed the plugin so that this information isn't directly available. Fortunately, one of the Wiki members, thematrix, spent a lot of time and produced a translation table that will allow you to determine what number of passes are being used to print. Note that "Highest" is only available on the iPFX100 and later series printers.

Here is his research:

After installing PS plugin 3.03, I lost the ability to see pass information, as other members have reported. I thought I'd just go back to 3.02, but it wasn't so easy. After hours of experimenting, I finally deduced the installer for 3.02 doesn't overwrite the new plugin - therefore downgrading requires you to enter your PS plugin directory and manually delete the export plugin.

I don't think the omission of "technical details" was an accident - Canon might have concluded most users weren't used to seeing pass information, or decided them to be detrimental to marketing since at first glance the numbers appear "lower" than Epson.

I compared the available options between the two plugin versions, and can say with pretty high certainty that this is what they mean:

Plain paper, low resolution mediums:
1200 x 1200 (2 pass) = Draft
1200 x 1200 (4 pass) = Standard

Photo paper, high resolution mediums:
1200 x 1200 (8 pass) = Standard
2400 x 1200 (12 pass) = High
2400 x 1200 (16 pass) = High (High Precision)
2400 x 1200 (32 pass) = Highest

How do I turn the printer off?

Hold the Power button down for more than one second. However, first:

  • Check to make sure that the data lamp isn't flashing. If it is, the printer is receiving a job to print and turning off the printer during printing could damage the printer.
  • Check to make sure that the Message lamp isn't flashing. If it is, attend to the problem before turning off the printer.

How do I calibrate the printer (iPFX100 generation only)?

Question: What is calibration?

Canon Answer: "A newly implemented and easy-to-use automatic colour calibration tool utilizes a newly developed built in multi-sensor that rivals any commercial densitometer, and allows users to adjust for colour differences caused by ageing, individual print heads, or between different printers in order to obtain stable colour reproduction. And to ensure productivity and efficiency, the calibration process can be completed in approximately 10 minutes, much faster than competing models."

Calibration is not part of the setup routine for iPF6100 (and presumably the 5100 and 8100). You have to perform the calibration separately as follows:

  1. Before color calibration, ensure the printer is not exposed to direct sunlight or other strong sources of light.
  2. Load paper compatible with color calibration. When using sheets, load paper A4 (210.0×297.0 mm)/Letter (8.5×11 in) vertical, or larger. One sheet is required. When using a roll, load a roll 10 inches (254 mm) or wider.
  3. Press Menu button, then select Adjust Printer -> Calibration -> Auto Adjust -> Yes

Note: Canon manual states you need to use a "compatible" paper for calibration. Recommend using Canon Premium Matte (one of the compatible papers) if a roll came with the printer. A sample roll of Canon Premium Matte is included with the iPF6100. Other approved types listed below. It isn't known whether using another brand of paper would cause an erroneous calibration. For those with exacting needs, one Wiki member recommends using a proofing paper such as ColorGATE ISOproof 275 gsm.

Canon papers compatible with calibration:

Matte Coated 90
HW Coated
Premium MatteP
Matte Photo
GlossyPhoto 190
SatinPhoto 190
GlossyPhoto 240
SatinPhoto 240
Glossy Photo
HW GlossyPhoto2
HW SemiGlPhoto2
Photo PaperPlus
FineArt Photo
FneArt HW Photo
Comm Proofing
RC Proofing 210
Proofing Paper

Is color calibration always active after running a calibration?

Question: Is the color calibration always active now that I ran the calibration from the printer panel? Or do I have to tell the driver/plugin to use the new calibration settings?

Short Answer: Yes, it will always be active unless you change a setting at the printer LCD or in the driver or PS plugin.

Long Answer:

  • The color calibration setting can be enabled or disabled from the printer LCD as follows: Menu button, then Adjust Printer -> Calibration -> Use Adj. Value (Enabled/Disabled)
  • In the photoshop plugin, the setting can be accessed from Main tab, Advanced Settings. Here are the possible settings (from the manual):
    • Printer Default - The value set on the printer operation panel takes priority.
    • Use Value - The calibration results are used for printing.
    • Disregard Value - The calibration results are not used for printing. Select this option to avoid changes to image color tones during printing due to color calibration.

Note: the "Printer Default" uses the setting on the printer LCD described above. Thus if you have done a calibration, the setting will be Enabled and both Printer Default and Use Value will give the same results.

I told the printer to print from the tray when I meant the cassette. How do I cancel this request?

Just press and hold Stop / Eject on the top panel for more than a second.

How can I print from the Cassette? It is not listed as a paper source in the Photoshop plugin.

You have probably selected a Media Type that is only allowed for Roll Paper. Check the FAQ on Media Types for help in determining if this is the problem, by checking to see which media types are associated with the Cassette and which are associated with Roll Paper.

When not printing, should I leave the printer on (sleep mode) or off to conserve ink and avoid clogs?

See also the FAQ on Ink Used for Cleaning

Update 5/2/09: The latest recommendations from Canon support techs and impressions from knowledgeable individuals:

  • 10/1/08: The latest consensus according to the tech I spoke to is to keep it plugged in, but powered off. Then, once a week turn it on and let it do its thing and then turn it off again. If left on, every 72 hours it will do a deep cleaning that uses a lot of ink. Every time you turn it on it will do a head check and if anything is starting to clog it will do a light cleaning. Thus, by turning it on once a week you can help avoid serious clogging issues, but also avoid big time ink usage from automatic, but probably not needed, major cleanings.
  • 9/2/08: According to Scott Martin, "Even with the latest firmware updates these printers use a whole bunch of ink when left in sleep mode. A Canon tech told me that in a temperature/humidity controlled environment it should be fine to turn it off when not used in more than 48 hours. So far that's worked great for me and the printers are using quite significantly less ink which is really helpful."

Previous recommendations before update:

  • The official Canon recommendation is to leave the printer on continuously according to Michael Reichmann at the Luminous Landscape. Of course, it will go into sleep mode in 5-240 minutes depending on the setting entered from the printer LCD. It is said that the printer will awaken from sleep mode about once a day and run a small cleaning cycle, which will keep the printhead free from clogs.
    • According to a poster on the Wiki, "the printer will go through a 5 minute cleaning cycle if turned off for 2 to 3 days. Not sure yet on that exact number or days or hours that triggers the longer cleaning cycle. If used every day, then the cleaning cycle is 1 minute long."
    • Another poster reports, "The support tech who came out to fix my roll feed unit recommended leaving the printer's power on at all times- -and he is not a Canon employee. He said the nozzles can clog very easily, and it's just not worth the tiny ink savings you would get by turning it off."
    • Kier Darby states "I'd be inclined to leave the printer on standby unless you know that you won't be printing for a week or more, in which case the longer cleaning cycle will probably use less ink than the short daily cycle."
    • John Hollenberg changed to turning the printer off, but it seemed to be using up a lot more ink when it was turned on each time. He went back to leaving the printer in standby mode; ink usage appears to be less.
  • There are several reports from individuals that knowledgeable techs at Canon support have recommended leaving the printer OFF rather than on (=sleep mode). Apparently, the daily cleaning cycles can add up to a significant amount of ink over time, such that those who print infrequently may use less ink by keeping the printer off.
    • TomH reports: "I just spoke with a Canon tech support rep this morning who told me to absolutely turn the printer off. He stated the printer may automatically initiate a cleaning cycle every few hours and not just one time per day. He further stated the iPF5000 adjacent to his desk has been used to print only a couple of sheets of paper over the last two months. He has kept the machine on 24 hours a day for that period of time. Two of the black ink tanks have been drained in that period of time just by use of the auto cleaning cycles."
    • Gary Cay states: "My observational (not measured) experience is that turning the printer OFF uses less ink and avoids unnecessary cleanings which in fact do add up, albeit they are small. Until one of us figures out how to measure ink use and actually does it, this is a working hypothesis only and not a fact. However, this is my working hypothesis after 5.5 months of living with this printer." The downside of this approach is that sometimes upon turning printer on it would clean for 5 minutes.

Summary: Some users report less apparent ink usage if printer is turned off, while others found that leaving the printer on (in standby mode) worked better for them. You may need to experiment to find what works best for you.

Update 9/22/07: A report by Tom Huxley suggests it may be best to leave the printer turned on. For his iPF5000, he found 2.9 ml per day was used when the printer was in standby mode, but the printer used a much larger amount when turned off for a couple of weeks. The figure of 2.9 appears to be fairly accurate, and was confirmed by another poster in an FAQ on ink used for cleaning. Don't be alarmed by the amount of ink used when the printer was turned off, as many are not reporting anything like this kind of ink usage.

How much ink does the printer use per square foot of paper printed?

There is no good answer, as it really depends on the nature of the images you print (and probably the Media Type as well). There is a forum thread with various usage figures. However, here is what I consider a good estimate and fits with my own experience:

"I just made 2 prints on the iPF5000 (glossy photo) both 11 x 17 (actual image aprox 10 x 15 = about one square foot). One was almost white (0.3 ml of ink) and one almost black (1.5 ml of ink). I would use an average of 0.9 ml per square foot so at full retail for the inks I calculate ink cost at about 55 cents per square foot."

JGentry reports using 6,401 ml to print 7,911 square feet of media. This works out to 0.81 ml per square foot.

In comparison, most estimates of ink use I have seen for the Epson 4800 are around 2 ml per square foot, which with 220 ml cartridges at cheapest street price would run about 78 cents per square foot.

DJ Garcia estimates the following ink costs for various print sizes:

  • 8.5x11: $0.71
  • 11x17: $1.42
  • 13x19: $1.88
  • 17x24: $3.10

DJ Garcia has produced a spreadsheet that allows you to calculate ink cost based on your own usage. His figures are included as a start, and show the estimated cost of ink to produce various size prints. Note that this cost figure includes the cost of ink used for cleaning, but not the ink used for initial priming with the starter ink cartridges:

There is also a cost analysis PDF produced by Canon which gives estimates for 3 different images on cost of ink and media:

John Hollenberg used the Canon data to calculate ink usage for each of the three images on ANSI C. The calculation is ml/square foot of printed media (white borders around image not included in figuring square footage of print):

  • Bicycle Image - 0.40 ml/square foot
  • Flower Image - 1.46 ml/square foot
  • Clouds Image - 1.01 ml/square foot

A similar cost analysis PDF produced by Canon is available for the IPF8000 and IPF9000:

What Print Settings Produce the Finest Quality?

Marc Almont: I had little luck finding information specific to the iPF5000 in the forums so I took time to do a little testing and although the observations are subjective I am pleased with the results. All tests were done with the following constant. 17"x22" Ilford smooth gloss, 16 bit 600ppi, 8.5x11" file.

  1. Printed with the Canon windows print driver, Qimage and the Canon 16 bit plug in (16 bit, high accuracy, 16pass 2400dpi); the 16 bit plugin was superior.
  2. Used canon profiles and custom profiles (Cathy's Profiles); The custom profiles were superior.
  3. Sent the 16 bit plugin a 300 ppi 17"x22" file, a 600ppi 8.5"x11" file (let the plugin size to fit) and sent the plugin a 600ppi 17"x22" file upsized twice in CS2 using bicubic smoother; the latter was superior.

Summary: Use the plugin, a custom profile, upsize the file in photoshop to 600ppi resolution and actual print size using Bicubic Smoother. The difference between the drivers, rendering intent and profiles was more than subtle, the difference in upsizing method was slight but noticeable. My conclusion is sending the printer 12 bits of data makes a difference.

John Hollenberg initially confirmed Marc's findings, but after viewing the Luminous Landscape Tutorial From Camera to Print went back and re-tested. He now believes that if the PPI will be between 180 and 480, no resampling should be done in Photoshop, and the file should be set to 600 PPI (without resampling) and then re-sampled in the Photoshop Export plugin using Bicubic. Detailed steps follow, starting with a duplicate of master file:

  1. Capture sharpen with EasyS from Outback Photo (I usually use Low with Halo Control, and may set the opacity of the sharpening layer to 50-90% depending on how much sharpening has been done by the raw converter)
  2. Flatten the image
  3. Resize to my desired output size without resample (let the PPI float)
  4. Output sharpen with Photokit Sharpener for the proper media and using the proper PPI (e.g., Inkjet glossy 180 PPI)
  5. Resize to 600 PPI without resample (let the size float)
  6. Print from PS Export plugin using 600 PPI, highest number of passes, unidirectional, proper media type, and resample to desired size (same as in step 3) using bicubic in the plugin.

For more details, see this Forum thread and this Luminous Landscape thread.

What factors affect the gamut attainable on a particular paper?

Besides the characteristics of the paper itself, the main factor is:

  • What Media Type was selected when the profile was made - there are a number of reports that the gamut can vary significantly depending on the Media Type selected. It is crucial to select the optimal media type, yet limited information is available (for non-Canon papers) on how to best do this. Known information is summarized on the Wiki page Creating Custom Profiles for Non-Canon Papers. For Canon papers, use the Media Type specified in Supported Canon Media

How much difference is there quantitatively between the Cool and Warm settings in Monchrome mode?

To assess the difference quantitatively, step wedges were printed on Epson Premium Glossy Photo Paper using perceptual intent. Step wedges were printed for Cool Black (X of -36) and Warm Black (X of 36), and measured with an Eye-One spectrophotometer. The results are plotted against %K for L* a* and b* in separate graphs. White point for the paper was 95.0, -0.3, -4.0. The a* channel was so close that any variation between the two settings is most likely due to measurement error. Note that the highlights are on the left, deep shadows on the right in these graphs. Charts follow:




What method of interpolation do the printer driver and 16-bit Photoshop Export Plug-in use?

Both the printer driver and the printer itself use nearest neighbor interpolation (the least accurate). The 16 bit Photoshop Export plugin defaults to nearest neighbor, but can also be set to bilinear or bicubic on the Main tab by choosing Set Configuration. Preferred method of interpolation for best quality when upsizing is to bicubic.

Does Unidirectional printing provide better quality than Bidirectional? How do I select it?

According to the folks at ColorHQ, Unidirectional printing produces higher quality in deep shadow areas, which may show banding with Bidirectional printing. They strongly advise selecting Unidirectional printing. Others have found little difference. According to Canon Tech Support, the main difference is that there will be a different "angle" or "lean" to the droplets depending which was the head was moving, and that in some cases the reflectivity may vary enough from this to be perceived as banding.

According to Steven Katzman in his IPF5000 Field Test for Rangefinder magazine, "A bidirectional mode decreases printing
times but can compromise the integrity of the color since the inks aren’t being sprayed in their proper sequence." He uses unidirectional printing.

To select Unidirectional printing in the Photoshop plugin, select the Main tab, then click on the Set button under the Media Type dropdown box. There is a checkbox in the lower left corner of the dialog box where you can select Unidirectional printing. For optimal color accuracy when making custom profiles, it is probably best to select Unidirectional when printing out the target, since these subtle changes have been reported to affect colors on other printers.

For Canon-supplied ICC profiles, what do Standard, High and Highest in the profile name mean?

Note: According to one poster, the Canon-supplied ICC profiles are ONLY for the 8 bit operating system level driver and should not be used with the 16 bit plugin. This is also true for almost all of the third party paper generic profiles, with the exception of Crane Museo Silver Rag and profiles created by Booksmart Studio for some Innova and Hahnemuhle papers. If you want to use profiles with the 16 bit plugin, they will have to be custom profiles for most papers.
  • Standard - 1200 X 1200 dpi, 6 pass
  • High - 2400 X 1200 dpi, 8 pass
  • Highest - 2400 X 1200 dpi, 16 pass


For optimal quality with Canon-supplied profiles, use ICC profile with "Highest" in the name. Use corresponding printer output resolution and number of passes as described above. For ultimate quality, use only the 16 bit Photoshop plugin with custom profiles--Canon does not currently supply generic profiles for the 16 bit plugin.

Which inks get used the fastest?

According to reports from several posters to the Wiki, Gray (GY) and Photogray (PGY) are used the fastest, with the light colors close behind. One of the posters was printing all color. Full strength magenta and black are the least used colors according to one poster.

How accurate is the ink consumption data in the Print Log?

Answer: Probably not very accurate. There are a number of reports of inconsistencies. Here is one from Chromix on 11/2/07:

"The information about ink consumption in the printers job protocol list seems to be not very accurate. Here is an excerpt from my printers protocol:

Job 3
Doc Name: Kalender01_05.tif User Name: Administrator
Page Count: 22 Job Status: Comp
Print Start Time: 30/10/2007 11:40 Print End Time: 30/10/2007 13:34 Print Time: 6842
Print Size: 297 mm x 420 mm 124740 sq Media Type: Premium MatteP I/F: USB
Ink : 14.8 ml

Job 4
Doc Name: Kalender01_05.tif User Name: Administrator
Page Count: 1 Job Status: Comp
Print Start Time: 30/10/2007 11:19 Print End Time: 30/10/2007 11:24 Print Time: 322
Print Size: 297 mm x 420 mm 124740 sq Media Type: Premium MatteP I/F: USB
Ink : 0.1 ml

Job 5
Doc Name: Kalender01_05.tif User Name: Administrator
Page Count: 1 Job Status: Comp
Print Start Time: 30/10/2007 11:08 Print End Time: 30/10/2007 11:13 Print Time: 321
Print Size: 297 mm x 420 mm 124740 sq Media Type: Premium MatteP I/F: USB
Ink : 0.1 ml

Job 6
Doc Name: Kalender01_05.tif User Name: Administrator
Page Count: 1 Job Status: Comp
Print Start Time: 30/10/2007 11:01 Print End Time: 30/10/2007 11:06 Print Time: 327
Print Size: 297 mm x 420 mm 124740 sq Media Type: Premium MatteP I/F: USB
Ink : 0.1 ml

Job 4, 5 and 6 were 2 test prints. Job 3 was the final print of 22 copies of the same file. Job 4,5 and 6 show an ink consumption of 0.1 ml. But in Job 3 14.8 ml were used for 22 prints. Now, 14.8 divided by 22 makes 0.67 - quite a difference compared to 0.1!! Job 3 and 4 were absolutely the same. In Job 5 and 6, I only shifted the print a little (between 1 and 2 mm) to get the borders right, other than that everything was the same like in Job 3 and 4.

Conclusion: "I think this is important information for those who use the protocol to calculate the cost of printing. This might also cause some mistakes when calculating the amount of ink used for cleaning cycles. Maybe the ink was in fact used for printing and not for cleaning and only the numbers in the job protocol were incorrect."

What is the shelf life of the Canon Lucia inks? How long are they good after installation in the printer?

The shelf life of the Canon Lucia inks used in the IPF5000 is 18 months, according to the expiration date which should be on the package of each ink cartridge. The Service Manual states that the inks should be replaced 6 months after they are installed. However, many people have had cartridges installed for a year without any noticeable change in quality.

How can I make Sepia Toned Prints?

I experimented with sepia toning using an action set from Digital Outback Photo. I was quite pleased with the results. I'm not an expert at B&W printing since my 5000 is the first printer I've owned that can make one without an ugly color cast. Take a look at these articles for more information:

Here's the article about (nine) "Classic Tones" and a link to a free Action download from ePaperPress:

I printed mine from CS2 using the 16-bit export module.

Creating a Test Strip

Question: How can I print a test strip or other very narrow print on roll paper without wasting a lot of paper?

Answer: (from Jim Harrison)

  1. Create a test strip in Photoshop to be a bit under the roll's width and, say, 1 inch tall (as an example). Let's assume we're using a 17" wide roll of paper for this example.
  2. In the print plug-in, under the "size options" button, create a custom paper size of 17" X 8" (for whatever reason, Canon limits us to 8" as the minimum length even though we know that the printer can print narrower and trim anyplace it wants). Then select that custom size in the Media Size menu.
  3. Set the orientation (portrait or landscape) to place the strip running across the 17" width of the sheet. The preview shows it centered up in the 8" long, 17" wide sheet, but have no fear!
  4. Click the "Roll Paper Options" button and in that menu, check the "No Spaces At Top Or Bottom (Conserve Paper)" check box. Make sure "Automatic Cutting" is set for "Available".
  5. The printer will then print the test strip with the minimum border (3mm) on the top and bottom and will cut it off automatically.

Note: Be sure to uncheck that box before you try to print real prints which you want to have borders.

From The 8 Bit Windows Driver

(By Bob Coss)

Here is how you achieve the same results for the 8 bit Windows driver. Again, you have to use the shortest height of 8 inches, but the driver allows you to cut off a stirp without wasting paper. I used Qimage as my printing application. I will provide notes about Qimage after the driver setup.

Driver Setup:
  1. From your application, open up the "Print Setup."
  2. Click Properties button
  3. Set your media type and color settings the way you want.
  4. Click on the Page Setup tab, set your "Media Source:" to "Roll Paper". Specify the roll length (I'll use 17 here). Orientation is "Portrait". I selected "Borderless Printing".
  5. In "Page Size:" select "Custom Size" and enter 17" x 8" for a single time, or
    Click on the "Size Options" button, and create a new named custom size. I made mine 17" x 8" (the smallest number for the settings allowed). I named mine "Test Strip". Select that in the "Page Size" list.
  6. Click the "Auto Cut" button and make sure it is set to "Yes".
  7. Click the "Layout" tab. Check the box labled "No Spaces at Top or Bottom (Conserve Paper).
  8. Click the "Ok" button to apply these settings. When you return to the "Print Setup" dialog box, make sure that the Size and Source values match what you just setup in the "Properties" dialogs. Click Ok.
  9. You are now ready to print your strip.

Qimage Setup:

  1. After the driver setup above, you should see the Page: values like 17.235 X 8.235 in. (600x600).
  2. Create a custom print size in "Print Properties" of 17" x 1".
  3. Make sure the crop scissors button is depressed.
  4. Drag your test image to the page area (it should display centered in the long strip)
  5. Enter the page editor Ctrl-E and slide the image to where you want it displayed in the strip.
  6. Click the print button, and you will have an aproximately 1 inch strip of header, and a 1 inch printed test strip.

If an ink cartridge runs out in the middle of a print, can I replace it and continue?

Yes. There are reports of perfect prints when doing this. However, it is important to note that time is of the essence when ink runs out during printing. If the cartridge is not replaced fast enough the printer will cancel the print and eject the unfinished print. You may want to be around the printer when printing and ink levels are low so you can swap out carts if one runs out without losing the print.

Are Profiles Made for iPF5000/iPF5100/iPF6100 Interchangeable?


  • Profiles made for iPF5100 and iPF6100 are interchangeable; they can be used on either printer.
  • Profiles made for iPF5000 and iPF5100 are NOT interchangeable, since the iPFX100 printers use different black inks

What is the museum and gallery standard for matting and framing a print?

While not specific to the IPF5000, this question from the discussion forum was succintly answered by Kirk Thompson:

The usual way to print, mat, & frame a fine-art print is first of all not to print close to the edge of the paper. Leave at least 3/4" of white paper so that when you're famous & your print is sold to a long series of collectors, the image area won't get banged up when they remove, re-mat, & re-frame it.

For exhibitions, mat board is not colored, it's archival white mat board; and there are no black or colored layers between the overmat & the image. (Colored mats disqualify you from exhibiting anyplace but the rural county fair.)

You normally use a 2-ply backing of archival mat board, called the 'undermat' - & a 4-ply 'overmat' (or8-ply if you have someone else cut them with a pro cutter). Westminster Bright White (for example, from Light Impressions) is the archival standard. The 'natural' white color is too yellow to match inkjet papers, except maybe Ultrasmooth. If the print is large, use 4-ply archival mat board for the undermat.

The foam board goes behind the mat in the frame & is not attached to the undermat. Acrylic/'plexi' has tended to replace glass as the preferred outer 'lens,' because of it's dropped, it doesn't cut the artwork. Plexi has to be thick enough so that it won't bow in the frame; larger frames need thicker acrylic.

Fit the mat to the image - not the image to a standard size pre-cut mat. The preferred format is a 'reveal' mat, cut to fit the print with a mat cutter (cheapest useful one is Logan Compact - see Light Impressions catalog, but you can probably get a better price elsewhere). A 'reveal' mat reveals about 3/8" of the white inkjet photo paper around the borders of the print (1/2" for large prints) & allows you to sign the print in the lower right-hand corner with the year the photograph was made & the year of the particular print, e.g. "animusman 2004/2007". This is preferable to signing the mat, because mats get changed over time as the print goes in different exhibits/collections; the 'provenance' of the print is established by the signature on the front (or backA) of the print. If you sign on the back, do not sign in the image area, sign in the border (another reason for wide borders). If you're making a limited edition of the image, the number goes on the lower left, e.g. "1/25". Fine-art prints don't usually have titles written on them.

The undermat & overmat are held together at the top with linen framer's tape, & nothing at all is attached to the print itself. You use mylar framing corners, so that the print can be slipped right out of the corners without any tape residue or damage. If it's a large print, you put mounting blocks - mylar strips with a 'step' that the print rests upon. This stuff is avilable in art stores or from Light Impressions.

The standard photo frame is a thin metal one, slightly rounded on the front, normally black - though some galleries use white, or blonde wood. If the print is going in a group show, black is normal.

Additional information from TVShooter:

Great explanation and accurate info from Thompsonkirk. Keep in mind this is for gallery/museum quality hanging. For commercial sales there are many other variables regarding mat color, multiple mats, etc., that qualify for far more end results than just the county fair. Many folks are matching wall decor and often the total finished work needs to be considered as the artwork and not just the image or photograph. (I know the image is EVERYTHING, but if the lighthouse shot sells in a pretty frame with an ocean blue mat, then maybe the whole presentation is important too) A couple of the local art festivals will only accept and judge the "entire presentation" around my neck of the woods.

Here's a quick example of our method that takes in techniques from museum quality and salable framed prints:
-as dcra4 wrote, let is breath. The print needs to outgas, especially if it is glossy and you can also help it along by laying some stardard printer paper on top of the print. I usually do it after 24 hours of air dry. In a day or so you'll notice it gets wavey. It absorbs some of the cooties that will fog your glass/acrylic cover later.

-I cut the back mat or undermat the size of the frame (not the opening size, the frame size) and place the photo on the back mat. I mark the edges, then build a linen tape hinge to the top of the photo and stick it back down over the marks. In other words, the photo is hinged to the undermat so that it floats except where it is attached at the top edge of the photo.

-the cover mat is then cut to size (I cut my own, ever since college, and there are inexpensive cutters available, practice is the key) You can cut to 'reveal' or cut to cover the edge of the image, both styles are nice. If double matting the covered edge is usually preferable. Either way the top mat will hold down the photo beneath it, and so, getting back to your original question, it is important to have an edge that the mat can hold down. The more the better as there will be less chance of the floating picture to warp and curl especially if the artwork is hung in a moist environment. I then use acidfree double sided tape to stick the backmat and the overmat together. Not on the picture but just holding the mats together like a sandwich. Once everything is layered in the frame it should do the same thing but backboards and foamcore can warp over time so the tape between the mats keeps the print flat but free to expand and contract between the mats.

-then it all goes into the frame. Backing up for a moment, be sure to put your mounting hardware on the frameback before putting your precious photograph in the frame, hammers and screwdrivers slip, this is speaking from experience of course.

Of all the images I have sold this way, the only one to be returned was for fogging of the glass a year later and a quick disassemble and windex took care of that one.
Just another way of doing things, hope it is helpful.

Where Can I Find Evaluation Images to Check the Quality of a Printer Profile?

Here are several sources:

Scott Martin:

Bill Atkinson:

Outback Photo:

Northlight Images:

What is the Kyuanos Ambient Light Adjustment function?

Canon has introduced a function on the iPF5100/iPF6100 printers that allows the user to adjust the print for the ambient light conditions so that it will display properly. Windows only. Works only on selected Canon papers. Read their PDF to find out what Media Types are supported, and how to use this function. You may also need the Light Source Check Tool and the Light Source Measure Tool (available on Canon USA under iPF6100 downloads).

How long can the printer be left off without causing clogging problems?

There are many reports on the Wiki of the printer being left off for several weeks to many months (5 months is the maximum reported) without problems. When the printer was turned on, in all cases it worked perfectly, although often after running a lengthy cleaning cycle. While this worked well, it may use less ink to turn the printer on regularly (even daily) to keep the printer from running a strong cleaning cycle after a long time of being turned off. See the FAQ on ink used for cleaning, in which 0.35-0.81 ml per day was used for cleaning. The former figure was with the printer mostly kept on, the latter figure was when the printer was left off for months at a time, then turned on once every couple of months. Furthermore, a recent test of an iPF6100 with firmware 1.38 found just 0.1 ml of ink used per day when the printer was turned on once per day then turned off. This was repeated daily for a period of two weeks.

On the other hand, if you will be gone for several months and your only two choices are to leave the printer on the whole time or turn it off, it is probably better to turn it off, since worst case cleaning after that is probably using about 70 ml ink. Left on the whole time, it might use considerably more, although amount is unknown.

For example, ldkronos writes:

"My photography work is all done in the spring/summer. After finishing the season in September, I spent a few months working on new material. Then in early December it tried to do a cleaning and complained about 3 cartridges being out of ink. I figured I was pretty much wrapped up for the season, and I didn't want to bother replacing them then, so I just shut down and unplugged my ipf5000.

Last week I ordered all of my replacement cartridges, and they arrived today. I powered it up and replaced the cartridges it said were empty. It spent a bit more than 5 minutes cleaning, but when it was done I printed a nozzle check and everything was perfect."

How can I set up my system to automatically print an image every few days to help avoid major cleanings?

Question: Does anyone know of a script or program that will send a user selected file to the IPF every couple of days? Looking at ways to save ink for my not-frequently-enough-used IPF5000, as I expect this will help avoid major cleanings?

Answer: PC and Mac versions of MIS Autoprint available here

How long should I let printer targets dry before reading them to create profiles?

Short answer from Lou Dina:

Matte Papers using matte black ink ~ 24 hours minimum.

Photo Papers using gloss black ink ~ 8 hours minimum (preferably 12 hours).

Short answer from Valdas:

I usually waiting 24 hours for all papers at least. Measurements after a few days I still get color changes of about 0.1-0.3 delta E compared with measurements after 24 hours.

Long answer (original research by Lou Dina):

I did some testing to see how long it takes Canon inks (iPF6100) to cure and become stable. I did this mainly to help me decide how long to wait before reading test targets for profiling. I chose a smooth matte fine art paper, and also a luster photo paper, since they behave differently and use a different black inks. I used an Eye One Pro UV spectrophotometer and read numerous patches over a period of time.

1. Matte Fine Art Paper (matte black ink)- it takes awhile for inks to cure on matte papers, but the good news is that they continue to darken for better Dmax over time. This is a good thing, because matte papers generally have a weak Dmax compared to Photo papers. The paper tested was a weak paper, which I knew up front, so these results are not representative of better papers. Right out of the printer, the blackest black recorded was 1.55. It took about 24 to 30 hours to stabilize, and the Dmax reading climbed to 1.61, which is quite an improvement. I have seen similar trends with other matte fine art papers. Simply drying overnight (ie, 8 to 12 hours) wasn't adequate time to stabilize.

2. Luster Photo Paper (gloss black ink) - photo papers seem to cure faster, in about 8 hours, though 12 hours would be safer. Photo papers actually LOSE Dmax as they dry and get slightly lighter. This isn't just the blacks, but also colors that don't have any black ink, so it more how the paper reacts with the ink. I don't find this troubling, since photo papers generally have a very black Dmax to begin with. In fact, I like it, because it means those bright light colors become brighter for extended dynamic range and help in those lighter pastels, which are so hard to reproduce in print. Right after printing, I got a Dmax of 2.34, and after 8 hours, it read 2.27. This is not spectro error, since I read every hour or two and saw a gradual, consistent lightening.

I didn't do it on this test, but in the past I have used hair dryers, microwaves, or both to speed the drying process. While that does accelerate the drying cycle, it doesn't replace time. In fact, that is why I ran this test....I reread some of my old targets (dried impatiently with a hair dryer or microwave) and found that they had dried down even more, which concerned me. (I generally write many readings down on my charts, so the original reference data were still there).

I usually print a test strip with 8 or 10 different media settings to pick the best one for printing my profiling target. I noted is that different ink loads tend to dry at different rates, so you really do need adequate time to let them all dry before assessing which one gives you the best performance. It can sometimes change over time, and what looked like the best media setting after 3 hours no longer is after 24 hours. This isn't always the case, but I have seen it.

So, my personal guidelines for ink drying time before profiling (or even settling on a media setting) are:

Matte Papers using matte black ink ~ 24 hours minimum.

Photo Papers using gloss black ink ~ 8 hours minimum (preferably 12 hours).

How do I find out what versions of firmware and software are installed?

  • Firmware
    • From printer LCD - Menu -> Information -> Version
    • From GARO Status Monitor - Information Tab -> Status Display
  • Printer Driver
    • Windows - Printers and Faxes -> Click on IPF5000 -> Right click and choose Properties -> Device Settings Tab -> About
    • Mac OS X - select the application Printer Setup Utility. A window called Printer LIst will open and show the name iPF5000 (and any other printers you are using). Select iPF5000 and click on the Show Info icon. A new Printer Info window will open, showing Printer Name, Location, Queue Name, Host Name, Driver Version and PPD File Version.
  • GARO Status Monitor - Help from top menu -> About
  • Media Configuration Tool - Click About
  • Photoshop Plugin (must have an image open first) - File -> Export -> IPF5000 Print Plugin -> Print History Tab -> About

What do I need to do after installing a newer printer driver to make sure the Media Types are up to date?

Quick Answer: Install and run the latest Media Configuration Tool.

Long Answer: After installing a new printer driver, the "CLIP" file may not be correct. The Clip File is a look-up-table (LUT) of data on the installed media types (printer head height, vacuum setting, which black ink to use, etc.). Apparently, the Clip File can easily get out of sync with the firmware / software.

On Windows, you can find the version of the CLIP file that you have currently installed by either:

  • Start Menu -> Printers & Faxes -> iPF5000 - Right click and select Properties -> Device Settings Tab -> About.
  • Photoshop -> File -> Export -> IPF5000 Print Plug In -> Print History -> About

After installing a new driver it is a good idea to make sure your media types are up to date. Here is how to do it:

  1. Uninstall the old Media Configuration Tool: Start -> All Programs -> iPF5000 Media Configurtion Tool -> Uninstaller (PC)
  2. Download and Install the Latest Media Configuration Tool
  3. Run the Media Configuration Tool and Select "Update Media Types"
  4. Select your printer and click "Next", then click "OK"
  5. The program will take 1-2 minutes to update your printer firmware, printer driver and photoshop plugin with the new media types

As a final check, see that the version of the CLIP file has been updated using the either of the methods described above.

How do I run do a Nozzle Check and what size paper do I need?

Before running a nozzle check, load paper that is 11X17 or larger (note that the manual says letter size paper but printer LCD insists on paper larger than A4 or letter). Plain paper will work fine. To run a nozzle check:

  • From the Printer Control Panel:
    • Menu button -> Test Print -> Nozzle check -> OK
  • From the GARO Status Monitor:
    • Maintenance tab -> Nozzle Check Print

When I run a nozzle check, the horizontal lines slant down as they go to the right. Is this normal?

Yes, this is the standard nozzle check pattern. As long as there aren't gaps in the slightly sloping horizontal lines, the nozzle check is OK.

What functions are available in the firmware to adjust the printer for optimum print quality?

There are two types of adjustments available in the firmware to optimize image quality: Printhead Alignment and Banding Adjustment. Printhead Alignment adjusts the timing of the firing of the nozzles so that straight vertical lines are actually straight. Banding Adjustment adjust the paper feed mechanism precisely so that there is no horizontal banding with the multiple passes made by the printhead as it moves back and forth to print a section. Remember that the highest quality setting in the Photoshop plugin involves 16 passes of the printhead to print any area (32 passes for iPFX100 printers with Canon Media Types); if the feed amount between passes isn't exactly right you will get some degree of banding.

Note: According to Canon Tech Support, the banding adjustments are per media type. The last adjustment done (either manual or automatic) will over-write the previous adjustment for that media type. Posters to the Wiki have found that this is clearly true for the Far End Feed Adjustment, but don't know if it actually applies to the more general Manual Adjust Band. The question remains: if you do a Manual Adjust Band using one media type, do the other media types use that same adjustment if no Manual Band Adjustment has been performed for the other media types, or do they have no adjustment at all? In general, one would expect far less difference between media types for the Manual Band Adjustment than for the Far End Manual Feed, because the Far End Manual feed handles the transition from rear rollers to front rollers for the paper transport. However, this has not been tested by posters to the Wiki.

In the firmware there is an option to do each of these adjustments either:
  • Automatically - the printed patterns are read by a laser while the paper is still in the printer OR
  • Manually - a pattern is printed on the paper and read by eye using a loupe to get the best visual match

The adjustments available are listed below with a description of the process for each type of adjustment. The currently recommended adjustment procedure is shown in bold type:

  • Auto Head Adjustment
    • Standard - prints 5 pages (11X17 minimum paper size) and reads automatically
    • Advanced - prints 6 pages (11X17 minimum paer size) and reads automatically
  • Manual Head Adjustment - prints 2 pages of columns (portion of first page shown below), each column using a different color of ink, including the type of black (photo or matte) that is used with this media type. There are a total of 11 columns (one for each ink). Each column is divided into an upper and lower section, for a total of 22 sections. The sections are labeled D-1 through D-24. D-6 and D-12 were missing from the manual adjustment page I printed. Since the media type I used was Photo Paper Plus, these missing labels are presumably for matte black ink, which isn't used on this media type. For each section there are 11 patterns, labeled 0, 2, 4, ... 20. The pattern labeled 0 is slightly concave to the right, while the pattern labeled 20 is slightly concave to the left. Somewhere around 10 (depending on how far off the alignment is) will be a pattern which looks perfectly straight. You will definitely need a loupe to make an accurate determination. In the enlarged example below 12 is the straightest pattern. If you can't decide between two adjacent numbers, you can use the number in between (e.g., 11). Write down the number of the pattern which looks the straightest, then go on to the next section. When you have finished reading all 22 sections, go back to the printer LCD and enter each number using the arrow keys and the OK key. When you are done entering the numbers, there is one more choice just past section D-24 which is "Save Settings". If you think this sounds like a lot of hassle, you are right. The manual method appeared fairly precise; when I repeated the alignment all of the values were within 2 of the previous alignment value. However, it isn't clear to me that there is any benefit to using the manual method over the automated method.



  • Auto Band Adjustment - only adjusts for main part of page; does not adjust far end feed, which must be done manually
    • Standard - prints one page and reads automatically
    • Advanced - prints two pages (one darker, one lighter) and reads automatically


  • Manual Band Adjustment
    • Adjust Band - used to adjust feed optimally to prevent banding in all parts of the print except the trailing end of cut sheets. Prints "Paper Adjustment Pattern A" with strips number 0, 2, 4, ... 16. You choose the one that shows the least banding (probably 8) and enter that number on the printer LCD. Then prints "Paper Adjustment Pattern B" with strips numbered 0, 1, 2, 3, ... 8. You choose the one that shows no banding (in my case, 3; note the subtle horizontal banding in pattern 4 in the enlargement below) and enter that number on the printer LCD. This adjustment is easy and very precise. You know you won't get any visual banding because you did the adjustment visually.



    • Adjust Far End Feed - used to adjust feed optimally to prevent banding in the trailing end of cut sheets. Prints "Paper Adjustment Pattern C", two rows, C1 and C2, at the trailing end of the sheet of paper. Patterns in each row are numbered 0, 2, 4, ... 32. Take a loupe and find the pattern in each row that shows no visual banding. In the enlarged example below, 28 is the best choice, as 26 still shows subtle horizontal banding. If you can't decided between two adjacent pattersns, choose the number in between, e.g., 27. Enter the numbers for C1 and C2 on the printer LCD. Note: This is the adjustment used to resolve the problems with [[#BandingProblem|Banding in the trailing 1.25 inches of sheets fed from the Cassette]]. See image below:


How do I run a printhead alignment once the printer and software have been installed?

Use 6 sheets of good quality paper so you won't get ink bleed or poor reflectivity causing problems with the alignment. A printhead alignment can be performed:

  • From the Printer Control Panel:
    • Menu button -> Adjust Printer -> Auto Head Adj -> Advanced Adj (Note: Advanced recommended)
  • From the GARO Status Monitor:
    • Maintenance tab -> Printhead Adjustment

What is the difference between Standard and Advanced printhead alignment?

Standard Alignment is the alignment done when you are first setting up the printer. Advanced alignment prints 6 pages instead of the 5 printed with Standard. The first page is unique to Advanced, the remaining 5 pages appear identical to the Standard alignment pages. According to Canon Tech Support, it is best to use Advanced Printhead Alignment, as it does the alignment per color, but be sure to use a glossy type paper to get a very exact alignment. The Manual refers to the Advanced Head Alignment as adjusting the nozzle, ink tank, and printing direction.

During the initial printhead alignment I got Printhead (r) Check Printhead error and Printhead Nozzle Error--check nozzles.


I started my printer setup and during the printhead alignment it came up with the Printhead (r) Check Printhead error and Printhead Nozzle Error--check nozzles. Checking the manual it says to reload the printhead. With hesitation (because of lost ink) I ran the replace right printhead in the maintenance menu. That did not work, the same error came back.


I talked with canon support today and they are going to send out a new printhead. I also asked if they can cover ink loss during printhead replacement and they are going to check on that. On the printer my left print head ink (all ink) shows 4 bars, the right printhead ink after printhead remove/reinstall shows 2 bars. I think right side showed 4 bars prior to printhead removal/reinstall. Another poster reports: "I had a similar issue and they sent me a new full set of inks." It may be a good idea to request a replacement Maintenance Tank as well, since loading the new printhead used up the Maintenance Tank for one user.

What do the ink tank lights indicate?

There is an ink tank light for each of the 12 inks. Here is what they indicate depending on their status:

  • On - ink cartridge installed correctly and enough ink
  • Off - no ink cartridge installed or ink level detection function disabled
  • Flashing slowly - ink cartridge is low on ink (20% left per Canon support)
  • Flashing rapidly - ink cartridge is empty

How can I see the remaining capacity of the maintenance tank on the iPF6100 printer LCD?

Press the Information button on the printer to cycle through a total of 3 information screens. One push of the button gets you to the Maintenance Tank capacity.

What is the capacity of the Maintenance Tank?

Update 9/22/07: The iPF5000 Service manual lists a figure of 957 ml (based on counting ink drops).

The Maintenance Tank when full weighs 1 lbs 11 7/8 oz. (790 grams) according to Tony Bartlett. An unused Maintenance Tank weighs 500 grams (different scale). So the Maintenance Tank holds approximately 290 grams (= 10.25 ounces) of ink. According to Dan Wells, "A materials safety data sheet Epson kindly supplied for UltraChrome ink (Lucia is going to be very similar) claims that it is less than 8% pigments by weight, 5-10% "proprietary organic materials", 15-20% glycerols (lighter than water), and the rest water. The Epson data sheets claim a density 1.07 times that of water, and I'd be shocked if the Canon ink (which smells like it has more glycerol or whatnot in it) is anywhere outside the range of 0.9 to 1.1 times the density of water." Using the Epson figure of 1.07 as a guess at the density, the Maintenance Tank capacity would be approximately 270 ml.

Addendum: Jim Harrison has pointed out that the above figure should be seen as a lower limit:

It seems to me that weighing the used maintenance tanks will not give us any useful information due to varying levels of "dryness" in peoples' tanks. If we assume that the water and other liquids will evaporate away over time, then what are we really measuring when we weigh a maintenance tank? Among the issues are that at various temperatures, you drive off different things. So the drying time and temperature profile must be repeatable to assure that you're not driving off different components one time and not the next, etc. Some components of the ink must volatilize at different temperatures than do others.

I could imagine Canon setting things up for a worst-case scenario where a person would do several head replacements in short order and the maintenance tank would need to be able to hold not only the solids, but also the liquids from a very rapid "filling". On the other hand, for most cases, the ink would have ample time to dry out between "fillings" so the Maintenance tank might end up appearing to be very little used since (if it later hand time to dry out) it'd only have solids in it when removed. Of course, clever printer firmware could anticipate this all and allow for more ink to be put into the Maintenance tank if it was placed there gradually over a longer period of time.

Appearance of Full Maintenance Tank

Tony found that the Maintenance Tank did not appear to be even close to full, raising the question about whether Canon was too conservative in their calculations and if a firmware update could allow more ink to be deposited in the tank before it is discarded. Here is a photo that he took of the "full" tank:


Where can I find directions on changing the maintenance tank?

In the html manual click as follows:

  • Printing Functions and Applications
  • Replacing Consumables
  • Replacing the Maintenance Cartridge

How often does the printer run cleaning cycles and based on what factors?

Here is information from the iPF5000 Service Manual that gives a general idea of what cleaning cycles are run and when. To get this information from your printers, see the example under FAQ on Entering Service Mode. Perusing the information suggests that using the printer more often than once a week (168 hours) may decrease cleaning cycles:


How can I enter Service Mode, and what can I do there?

WARNING!!! If you change anything while in this mode you could screw up your printer royally! Use at your own risk.

How to enter Service Mode:

  1. Turn off the printer
  2. For the next step, follow the directions for your printer
  • For iPFX00 printers: Turn the printer on while holding down the Feeder Selection and Information buttons until you see "Initializing" on printer LCD
  • For iPFX100 printers: Turn the printer on while holding down the Feeder Selection and Information buttons until you see "Starting Up" on printer LCD
  • For iPFX300 printers: Turn the printer on while holding the Navigate and Load buttons
  1. "S" is displayed in the upper right corner of the LCD display (middle right side for iPFX300 printers)
  2. Message light will continue flashing while in service mode

How to exit Service Mode:

  1. Turn off the printer

Accessing Service Mode on Printer LCD after entering Service Mode above: (all arrow buttons below refer to printer control panel)

  1. Press Menu button
  2. Press Right Arrow until you see "SERVICE MODE"
  3. Press Down Arrow

The most interesting information, as shown in the Service Manual is as follows:

To see how many cleanings of each type have been performed:

  1. Press Right Arrow until you see "COUNTER"
  2. Press Down Arrow
  3. Press Right Arrow until you see "PURGE"
  4. Press Down Arrow
  5. Press Right Arrow to cycle through various CLN readings

Results for John Hollenberg:

A1 (normal cleaning) – 15 [probably Head Cleaning A, about 10 ml]
A2 (Ink level adjustment cleaning)– 1 [amount unknown, may be 20-30 ml]
A3 (initial ink filling) – 1 [estimate 30-40% of starter carts, or 324-432 ml]
A6 (normal strong cleaning) – 9 [amount of ink used unknown, perhaps 15-20 ml]
A7 (aging, after replacement of head) – 1 [presumably part of initial install]
A16 (precipitated ink agitation) – 49 [amount of ink used unknown]

TTL - 76

To see the total amount of ink used for each color:

  1. Press Up Arrow until you see "PURGE" again
  2. Press Right Arrow until you see "INK-USE1"
  3. Press Down Arrow
  4. Press Right Arrow to cycle through the ink use for each color

Results (ml) for John Hollenberg:

Y – 120
PC – 130.4
C – 109.5
PGY – 144.9
GY – 148.5
MBK – 102.4
PM – 142.8
M – 106.8
BK – 101.6
R – 104.6
G – 103.8
B – 104.5

TTL – 1419.8

For a sample analysis of ink used in cleaning and printing, see Discussion Forum topic Some Musings on Ink Used for Cleaning.

How can printhead cleaning be run manually, and how much ink is required?

A printhead cleaning can be performed:

  • From the Printer Control Panel:
    • Menu button -> Head Cleaning (Head Cleaning A or Head Cleaning B)
    • OR Hold Information button for 3 seconds for Head Cleaning A
  • From the GARO Status Monitor:
    • Maintenance tab -> Printhead Cleaning (Printhead Cleaning A or Printhead Cleaning B)

Differences in Head Cleaning Routines:

  • Printhead Cleaning A - 4 minutes; reportedly the printer goes through a cleaning cycle, then tests the heads (uses approximately 10 ml of ink per data from Tom Huxley)
  • Printhead Cleaning B - 6 minutes; reportedly the printer goes through 3 cleaning cycles, then tests the heads. John Hollenberg measured 72.6 ml ink used for the "strong" cleaning (in Service Mode), presumed to be the same as Head Cleaning B.

How much ink is used when changing the printhead?

According to Trevere, "The ink usage for filling the new printhead (and aligning, which used a trivial amount) was about 10-11 ml per color." Total ink used was about 60-71 ml (each printhead handles 6 of the 12 colors), or one half of a regular size ink cartridge worth. Cost would be approximately $38.00.

On average, how much ink is wasted on cleaning the nozzles to keep them clear?


Starting with firmware 1.35, Canon claims reduced ink used for maintenance in the iPFX100 printers (which have the PF-03 printheads with teflon-like coating). Support for this claim comes from two posters to the Wiki:

  • Data in this thread in which one poster found an average of 0.35 ml per day for cleaning appear to support that claim.
  • A second poster, who had barely used his iPF6100 over a period of 16 months (but had turned it on a few times to do a very small amount of printing) used somewhat more, 0.81 ml per day. This was probably almost all with firmware before 1.35 (not sure), and was accounted for by long periods of having the printer off, then turned on again leading to a total of 6 strong cleanings compared to 2 from the first poster.

Conclusion: Leaving the printer OFF may be worse than leaving it on with firmware 1.35, as those strong cleanings eat up A LOT of ink (at least they did with firmware prior to 1.35).


We don't know for sure, but have data reported for the iPF5000 from two different low volume printing environments:

  • Tom Huxley reported approximately 2.9 ml ink per day used for cleaning when he left his iPF5000 in standby mode for 45 days. He got his data by carefully weighing the ink cartridges on an analytical balance before and after the 45 day period. His final report with firmware 1.25 is shown in the PDF file below:

  • John Hollenberg used a different method and came up with an average of approximately 2.4 ml per day ink used for cleaning over 307 days. He entered Service Mode and got the data from the Ink Counter about the total amount of ink that had been used by the printer. He then looked at the Purge Counter and found out how many cleanings of different types had been done. Estimates were made for the Initial Fill and Aging Cleanings (one time each). Finally, the estimated amount of ink used for printing (based on known number of square feet printed and estimated ml/square foot) was subtracted:

Total ink used - 1419.8 ml

Ink used for initial fill - estimated 40% of starter cartridges - 0.4 * 12 * 90 = 432 ml

Ink used for aging (after new head put in) - estimated 25 ml

Ink used for printing - 200 square feet * estimated 1.13 ml per square foot = 226 ml

Ink used for cleaning - 1419.8 - 432 - 226 - 25 = 736.8 ml

Number of days in service - 307

ml ink used for cleaning per day - 2.4

Cost of ink - 58 cents per ml

Cost per day - $1.39

Cost per month - $41.70

Here is a sample Microsoft Excel Spreadsheet with some estimated numbers plugged in to try to fit the known data. The amounts for various cleaning cycles are estimates/guesses. However, the overall conclusion is expected to be accurate, because the approximate amount of ink used for initial fill is known based on the amount of ink remaining shown on the GARO Status Monitor after the initial fill:

See also this thread.

Note: These low volume printing environments may not accurately show how much ink will be used for cleaning. If printer is used more frequently (say every other day) the absolute amount used for cleaning might be significantly lower.

Can the Maintenance Tank Be Reset?

Question: Is there a way to reset the maintenance tank?

Answer: Yes. However, you have to perform the reset before the Maintenance Tank is completely full.

Once it is marked full, the printer won't start, even in Service Mode, until you replace the Maintenance Tank. If this happens, you can still reset the tank by inserting a new Maintenance Tank, start in service mode, then put the old cart back in and reset it.

Note: It isn't generally recommended to re-use a Maintenance Tank for a long period of time. This is more of a stop-gap measure when the tank is getting low, you don't have a replacement handy, and you need to continue printing. It isn't recommended to try to clean the Maintenance Tank, due to concerns about the environmental impacts of washing ink down the drain.

Disclaimer: Proceed at your own risk!

Be aware Canon *may* have a counter to count the number of clearings!

After digitally flipping though the iPF5000 service manual, I deduced how to reset the maintenance cartridge (called "W-INK" in the manual) usage count for my 6100. For those who wonder, the 6100 will no longer operate once the maintenance cartridge hits 10%. I verified this by reading the W-INK usage counter after the printer insisted on a new maintenance cartridge.

1. Start the printer in service mode

2. Press "Menu". There will be a new entry called "SERVICE MODE" with a different menu structure and navigation system.

3. Familiarize yourself with the following facts while in this menu:
  • Left and right change the categories.
  • Down and up go into, and out of (respectively) submenus.
  • From what I've read, the service mode is very powerful - lots of opportunities to really mess things up. Be careful.

4. Select "Service Mode" as you normally would, i.e. scroll down, then press OK.

5. Press the right arrow until you see "Initialize".

6. Press the down arrow.

7. Press the right arrow until "W-INK" is displayed. (Note: be sure you select "W-INK" from the "Initialize" choices instead of "W-INK - CHG CNT" which sounds like just the thing, but doesn't work.)

8. Press OK.

9. The display should show "=W-INK" for about half a second, then plain "W-INK".

10. Press up until you get back to the main menu. Press information until the maintenance cartridge capacity is displayed.

11. The maintenance cartridge capacity is now 100% (aka empty).

12. Press and hold Power to turn off your printer.

13. Turn it back on normally.

14. Maintenance cartridge capacity (not usage!) should still be at 100%.

Note: Reported to work so far with Canon iPF5000, 6100, 8000, 9000 and iPF700. Other models have not been reported yet, but are presumed to work.

NOTE: There is a single report by a Wiki poster that the reset caused a refill of all ink lines, wasting $180 worth of ink. However, in the two years since that report there has not been any other reports of this problem, so it is very likely that the repeat initial fill was unrelated to the reset. Many people have performed the reset without problems. See this thread for discussion on this topic if interested.

COMMENT FROM TGOMEARAJR: Here is what I found when I went to reset the maintenance tank. The "full" waste tank was not NEARLY full. As a matter of fact, the left side partition was almost completely empty. The (larger) right side was where all the waste ink was. A brand new waste tank for the ipf6100 weighs 751 grams. The tank the printer said was "full" weighed 1247 grams. That is 496 grams of waste ink captured in the tank.

That is hardly any ink at all compared to the huge tank capacity. :( Some of the absorbent pads were hardly touched by ink at all.
There were no ink "puddles" anywhere, meaning the absorbent pads were still doing their work.

It appears that for people that do not want to do the messy job of cleaning and re-using a tank, all they have to do is re-set it once just as it is. There is NO WAY a second use cycle can put anywhere near enough in in the waste tank to make it overflow. So just re-set the tank and use it again as if it were new. Then for the next cycle, either clean the tank or put in a new one if cleaning still does not appeal to you. At least that way you have cut in half the cost of waste ink tanks forevermore.

ADDENDUM: If in spite of the environmental concerns you still want to clean the Maintenance tanks, here are a few hints about cleaning the five absorbant pads after getting the top off:

1. DON'T GET THE CARTRIDGE ITSELF WET - remember the electronic chip in the backside right "horn"! And don't touch the contacts.

2. Keep the pads in some order you will remember for re-installation.

3. Makes a huge mess, but cleans up with water.

4. The goal is not the unobtainable lily white, or anything near, just to thin the "black lagoon" slime to aqueous consistency so the pads can be dried as much as possible.
I used the soak-fold-compress method, but a rolling pin or equivalent would have made a much quicker job of it. Too late smart...

5. Re-install the first three pads in order on the underside of the TOP, as it has registration tabs for slits in the pads, studs, etc, and the ink outline of the cutouts to guide you. Then put the two remaing pads in the bottom, replace the top, and you're done.

6. When you replace the MC in the printer, be sure it is seated all the way back for the ports and chip to register properly. Mine had a need for an extra push to feel it seat.

Where can I find details on ink cartridge construction?

In this Wiki Discussion Forum thread.

I can't install a firmware upgrade. The installer reports the printer is offline, but it isn't

Problem: I am having trouble installing the firmware 1.10 file on my iPF8300. For some reason the installer reports the printer being offline, but it isn't. I can print to the printer, the display is on, and everything seems to be awake. Additional details: Mac 10.5.8, updating firmware from 1.07 to 1.10 using Ethernet connection.

Resolution: Just having the printer online isn't enough. I had to load paper for the update software to work.

"Roll" does not show up as a media source in the plugin or driver.

This could be due to one of two problems:

  • The software does not recognize the roll feed unit (see below)
  • You have selected a Media Type that is not compatible with Roll paper. See the Media Type Compatibility Table.

How can I get the software to recognize the auto roll feed unit?

  1. Open up the "Printer Properties" dialog box. You can do this by right-clicking on the printer icon, or from the printer menu if the printer is open.
  2. Click on the tab that says "Device Settings." It should be the rightmost tab.
  3. Click "Acquire Status" fon this tab. If this is successful, the the checkbox that says "Roll Feed Unit" will be checked for you automatically. Another possibility is to just click on the checkbox yourself. However, using "Acquire Status" ensures that the driver "sees" the Roll Feed Unit.
  4. Click on "Apply" then "OK"

Note: I suspect that there is a check made when the driver is installed and if there is no roll feed unit present this option is left unchecked. Since the roll feed unit is built into the iPF5100, this problem is likely unique to the iPF5000.

If this doesn't fix the problem, you may have selected a Media Type which does not allow Roll as a Media Source. Check the Media Type Compatibility Table.

Printing is slow and there is lots of banding when printer is connected by Ethernet.

Problem: I just got my printer setup and configured it to print with TCP/IP. When I send a print job to the printer it takes a really long time to spool. The printer starts printing and then stops and pauses while the data is downloaded. When the printer first starts printing the picture looks good but, when the pausing starts I get lots of banding where it looks like its not laying down as much ink as it should.

Resolution: I would like to report it was a duplex mismatch and speed setting on my printer. I was set to 10 MBS and half duplex and went to 100 full and solved the problem. I also noticed there was an auto setting and it also worked there. I am not sure how it got set to manual.

My printer prints part of a photo then stops.

If your printer is hooked up through USB hubs (e.g., one poster had a 16 foot Active usb hub to a 10 foot usb cable from the machine) this may be the problem. Try plugging the printer directly to the computer with one cord.

I got an error installing updated firmware and now I can't print.

Problem: I went to upgrade the firmware and I got an error during the install and now I can't print. The printer says version 1.23 is installed but whenever I print, even test prints from the printer, nothing happens. I've sent prints from the plugin and the data light flashes but again, nothing else happens.

Resolution: There is a utility to allow reinstalling the firmware or installing an older version. Canon sent me a new logic board, but then the service guys sent me the utility to reinstall the firmware and it worked.

Update 9/26/07: The name of the utility, referred to in the Service Manual, is apparently the "L Printer Service Tool". An owner in Australia who had a failed firmware update managed to find an ingenious workaround that fixed his failed firmware update without getting this utility. The workaround is necessary because the firmware upgrade tool cannot overwrite the same version number. His method is as follows:

  1. Create firmware version 1.26 (which does not really exist) by renaming the .jdl file from the version 1.25 Firmware update tool.
  2. Edit the the .jdl file--on the second line just after ipf5000 change the number 01.25 o 01.26 using bbedit (a very secure plain text editor in MAC). Never use a formatting text editor like Word, just a very plain ASCII text editor otherwise you'll screw up for sure!
  3. Bring the printer into Service Mode. There I noticed I could print! So the firmware apparently was installed but only in the last stage of upgrading something went wrong.
  4. Use the Firmware upgrade tool, which now sees firmware 1.25 is installed, but firmware 1.26 (the fake version created above) is available. The upgrade button is now active, so click it!

Now the printer was online and the firmware upgrade process finished as it was supposed to do. Restarted the printer, ran several print and paperfeed tests and it feels like a new printer. Nicest of all, the printer tells me that 1.25 firmware version is installed. See also this thread.

I get "Carriage Motion Error" every time I turn on the printer.

Problem: Every time I turn on the printer, I get "Carriage Motion Error" right after the "Initializing" message on the Display Screen. The printer tells me to "Power Up Again". Holding the power button down for several seconds has no effect. I had to unplug the machine to shut it off, but when I plug it in and start it up again, the same thing happens.

Resolution: Look for a thin mylar strip running behind the printheads which should be sitting in a little guide tab, but has probably fallen out. Put the mylar strip back in place. Recommended by Canon support, one poster reports permanent resolution of the problem. The Canon tech said he gets about three calls a week for this problem.

Update: This did not resolve the problem for one poster. The Canon Support Techs came out, tried the initialization, got the same message and proceeded to take the printer apart. They quickly zeroed in on the culprit: one of the blue plastic lids on the print head carriage had somehow opened -- probably in shipment, they said -- and it had been keeping the carriage from moving past the plastic lip over the left chamber where it rests. Kind of like a semi truck too high to fit under an overpass.

Addendum: A third poster had a slightly different experience: I had the very same problem. I called Canon Support and they told me to gently pull on the mylar strip to attempt to "re-seat" it. This didn't work and in fact, the mylar strip hung limp after that. Since it would be several days until the tech could get to me (it was late Thursday) I asked if there was anything that I could try to fix this problem. I'm pretty comfortable with mechanical things, so I thought maybe they could talk me through a solution. They agreed and off we went! I was on my bluetooth headset so I had both hands free while I talked to the repair guy.

We began by taking off the top panels on the left side to determine if the mylar strip had disconnected on that side. We found out that it was fine on that side. Then we set out to dissassemble the covers on the right side. After doing that, we determined two things:

1. The cover that snaps down over the print heads had popped up in shipping and wasn't allowing the print head carriage to travel out to the middle of the printer. That answered the question of the "Carriage Motion Error".

2. The limp mylar strip problem. Turns out that it attaches to a flexible metal portion of the housing that acts as a spring to hold it in tension. When they had asked me to gently tug on that strip during my first phone call, I had inadvertently bent that metal piece, thus not allowing it to hold the mylar strip in its proper tension. I re-bent that metal piece, resulting in proper tension on the mylar strip and voila! We were in business.

Then just about 20 more minutes to re-assemble the casing and I was ready to move on with my setup.

A few thoughts about this process... first, I was really bummed to receive my printer and then have a problem that was going to cause me a 4 day delay before I could see a print. I don't exactly blame Canon - their closest repair guy was 9 hours away and it was going to take some time before he could come to my home.

Second, I'm actually amazed that the repair tech was willing to talk me through a fairly difficult process of dissassembling much of the casing of the printer. Boy, was I glad he was willing to do this! At the end of the call, he joked that he would have to send some service calls my way if anyone else in my area (Northwest Arkansas) had problems...

I can't install the software on my Athlon 64 processor based computer.

Problem: If you are installing an iPF5000 on an Athlon 64 based PC, you may discover that the software won't install. There is a major compatibility problem with “Demo Shield” and some 64 bit processors. On my computer DemoShield crashed a half dozen times.

Workaround: "Autorun" on the distribution disk calls "DemoShield" that in turn runs and displays the main menu screen allowing the enduser to start the install. DemoShield is a product of Macrovision is licensed for use to software developers like Canon. InstallSheild, a product of InstallShield Software Corp., is called by DemoShield and actually dose all of the leg work in setting up the drivers. A simple if somewhat time-consuming work-around is to manually install via the old tried and true “InstallShield” facilities found on the distribution “User Software” CD. Go to /DSE/EUS/winxp and click on SETUP to start the process. If you are installing in non English language substitute the directory for your language in place of "EUS".

Note: Another poster reports, "For what it's worth I had no problems installing on a Athlon 64 X2 Dual Core on Windows XP Media edition. I just put the CD in and ran the installer."

How do I get the AutoLayout program working on Mac OS X?

Problem: I've installed a Canon iPF8000 in our studio and would like to know how to get the "AutoLayout" feature to work. The printer is connected via ethernet to the studio's LAN, which is an all Macintosh/OS X environment. The printer has a static IP address and is printing well from all computers - but only one image at a time. We'd like to gang images using the AutoLayout feature but can't get it to work. What happens is when the Canon "ExtraKit" is booted, and the "Add" button in AutoLayout is clicked, we get the prompt: "The printer is not registered in the driver. Add the printer in the driver."

Solution: Poster had renamed the printer to "iPF8000". Leaving IP address as the printer name fixed the problem and the AutoLayout feature functioned as it should.

What Do the Various Error Codes Mean?

Error codes are provided very rarely, but as they appear and we receive explanations we will post them here. See also the iPF5000 Service Manual to look up error codes for that printer.


(iPF9000 Only) Confirm the connection of the HDD, and if it is the HDD failure, replace the HDD.

The roll unit makes a noise and I get the message "Check Roll Paper unit!" and "Power up again.".

Problem: When I turn the machine on, it goes through the initilization process, then the roll unit makes a bit of noise and I get the messgage "Check Roll Paper unit!" and "Power up again.".

Resolution: The Canon support tech came on-site. It turns out that there is a loose gear in the roll holder unit. It was held on by a spring, which the technician removed, as it doesn't seem to fulfill any particular purpose. He re-ordered the faulty part, but so far the roll unit works.

I get "Paper Jam" or "Can't Detect Paper" error every time I try to load paper from the top Tray while Roll Feed Unit is attached.

Solution: You probably have a defective roll feed unit. This is a common problem for the iPF5000 (has not been reported for iPF5100) described in Known Bugs.

When I try to print to Roll, I sometimes get a "Paper Jam" error.

This may problem may have more than one cause, with sleep mode or a firmware problem perhaps linked to the problem. Probably the best answer was given by a poster on a Luminous Landscape Thread:

"I was having a terrible time using roll paper, and it turned out to be two mechanical problems:

(1) a white roller down inside the printer that was stuck down, due to a burr or some other snag, which a technician corrected by sticking a screwdriver down the back paper feed slot and pressing the side of the roller. It popped up, and he thought the problem was solved, since he had seen this before, and hadn't been called back.

Solving Problem 1 worked OK for the Canon Matte Coated paper and the Fine Art Bright White (after a struggle), but I couldn't get Canon Waterproof Canvas to load AT ALL. I tried to feed it in as far as it would go, but the paper wouldn't move or go into its back-and-forth roll paper load routine. Then the roll feeder would retract the paper completely and the printer had the audacity to say "Can't detect papr" [sic]. I called back the service technician, and he came out again. He determined that:

(2) the forward feed mechanism on the auto roll feeder wasn't working. The paper would retract, but not advance the paper. He took the auto roll feeder off, and we could hear something sliding around inside. I suggested perhaps a screw loose; he said it sounded more like a spring. He took it apart, and sure enough, it was a spring that was supposed to keep a gear in place that had come loose. He put the spring back in place, and it seems to be working fine so far.

All this was very frustrating, since I had already printed 20 or 30 feet on Canon Matte Coated roll paper without any problem. Then one morning I sent a print job and got the "Paper jam" message, then the "Can't detect papr" message when I tried to reload the paper. As soon as I inserted paper, the feed rollers on the auto roll feeder would clamp down and not move.

If it's working properly, you only have to feed the paper in just enough for the roll feeder rollers to grab it and the printer should take it from there. According to the technician, there is a slight curve in the paper path which might cause a problem if the roll paper has too much curl near the end of the roll.

I asked the technician about what happens if the leading edge of the roll paper isn't exactly square and he said the printer doesn't care too much about the leading edge -- that when it's checking paper alignment to prevent possible paper jams, it's checking the side edges of the paper."

I get a paper jam when trying to print from the Cassette

Possible reasons:

  • The paper is too thick to feed from the Cassette. The official specification is up to 11.8 mil thickness. Workaround: feed from the top tray.
  • The rollers are dirty. A build up on the rollers from paper coatings can occur, resulting in slippery rollers causing the jam. Clean all of the rollers with distilled water and brown coffee filter. See this thread for directions.

I get "Paper Loaded Askew" error every time I try to load a roll of paper

Problem: When loading 24" wide roll paper in a 6100, I continually got a message on the printer panel saying "Paper Loaded Askew" after selecting the media type. Also, the printer rewound the roll from the printer.


1) First, try loading again, and be sure you actually do feed the paper into the printer straight, and align the right paper edge (when facing the printer from the front) with alignment mark scribed into the metal to the right of the rollers. It helps to be sure the paper is tightly wound around the roll before feeding into the printer slot. (best done with cotton gloves to avoid getting oils on the face of the paper).

2) If this doesn't work, you can try changing the "Skew Tolerance" on the printer so it isn't quite as picky about alignment. Menu - Paper Details - Media (select the appropriate media type here) - Skew Check Lv - and try setting it to "Loose". This may not be a good option if printing long panoramas or banners, since a little misalignment over a long distance can result in jamming or frayed paper edges. Check the manual for cautions on setting this to Loose or Off.

3) Check the roll media to be sure the core (the cardboard tube around which the paper or canvas is wound) is flush and square with the right hand end of the paper and that the paper is evenly wound. If not, gently try to get it square and flush (like evening out the end of a deck of cards). Be careful not to damage the edge of the paper, since the printer sensor checks alignment using the right edge of the paper, not the leading edge.

In my case, the core was too long and measured 24-1/4", while the canvas measured 24", and the core protruded about 1/4" past where the paper was wound on the right hand side (where the alignment sensor reads). This caused the paper to be fed into the printer about 1/4" to the left of the alignment mark. Even setting the Skew Check Lv to Loose didn't work, since it was beyond acceptable tolerance. I took a sharp utility knife and carefully cut the 1/4" core back so it was flush with the tightly wound canvas, being careful not to damage the canvas. This solved the feed issue immediately.

4} If even that does not work, try loading another roll to see if it loads properly. If it does, then the printer loading mechanism is probably okay. If not, call Canon Tech support for assistance.

Hahnemuhle Photo Rag 308 sheets cause Paper Jam every time I try to print.

Problem: I have begun to have a paper jam using Hahnemuhle Photo Rag 308 on my iPF5000. I am printing to 11 x17 paper, and the right side (facing the printer) of the leading edge of the paper gets stopped somehow, buckling the paper. If I don't stop the print job, the print head runs into the paper and stops. It jams with every sheet. It is winter here in upstate NY now, and I am guessing that there might be some moisture differential leading to paper curl.

Resolution: I left the paper box open overnight to see to allow it to equilibrate with the current much drier air. This fixed the problem.

Note: If this is not the issue, you can also try adjusting Head Height and Vacuum Strength.

I keep getting paper alignment failures when inserting paper in the top tray feed.

  • If the paper is completely blank, try loading the other end to see if it will work better.
  • If the paper already has something printed on it, this may cause a high rate of failure loading the paper. The printer can be seen analyzing the paper with a red and green laser but I don't know what it is checking. If you are trying to print four different 3x5 photos on the same sheet, for example, it can be a lot quicker to keep putting the page in the cassette feeder, as the cassette feed doesn't seem to have this problem at all.

Update: Brad writes, "I've found the best solution is to change the Skew Check to the Loose setting. Also, I read somewhere that the printer does analyze the upper left-hand corner to see if something is already printed on it and will reject the paper if there is."

Note: Since most users haven't reported problems, you may want to call Canon service to see if your printer requires a service call.

How Can I Repair a Defective Roll Feed Unit on a Canon iPF5000 myself?

If your iPF5000 is out of warranty and you can't get Canon to fix the Roll Feed Unit for you, fixing the unit yourself may be an option. There are two threads in the Discussion Forum by Wiki participants that address this job:

Post by Ron Woolhether

Post by Jim Harrison

I am getting large areas outside the image that are slightly darker than paper white

Problem: I have a complete print with large slightly darker area outside the image (size of darker margin varies according to image cell size settings in Lightroom). My picture prints complete.The darker margins are only on the top and sides of the picture; which in this case are the left and right margins in Lightroom (since the print is rotated by Lightroom to fit in the page). The prroblem is described in this Discussion Forum thread and shown below (enhanced in Photoshop to be easily visible):


Description: This is the so-called "scum dot" problem. Scum dot is an offset printing term where you have a small amount of ink that differentiates it from paper white. Possible causes:
  • Using Version 4 profiles on Mac OS X, as discussed at length in this Luminous Landscape thread
  • Problem occurs with some profilemaking software, not with others. Occasionally seen with version 2 profiles.
  • Printer is a a different state of calibration than when the profile was made (especially likely to be a problem for third party paper profiles if either their printer or yours wasn't calibrated)
  • Media Type setting doesn't match the Media Type used when the profile was made

Resolution: A custom profile with printer calibrated and using the same media type as when the profile was made solved the problem.

My printer produces coarse output/has banding.

The printhead is likely out of alignment. Running an alignment of the Printhead from the GARO Status Monitor may fix the problem. If the banding occurs when printing from the Cassette and is confined to the last 1.25 inches of the trailing edge of the paper, see below.

There is subtle banding in the last 1.25 inches of paper on cut sheets when fed from the Cassette.

There have been multiple reports of banding in the last 1.25 inches of paper on sheets fed from the Cassette. If the print has a trailing margin of at least 1.25 inches, none of the print will be in the "banding zone" which starts at 1.25 inches from the trailing edge of the paper and ends about 0.6 inches from the trailing edge of the paper.

There is a Banding Test File and exact instructions for reproducing the banding referenced in this forum thread. Some posters have done their own testing and found NO banding when printing as described above. However, when they used the Banding Test File all most have seen some level of banding on close inspection in the trailing 1.25 inches of paper. Banding is generally visually apparent in scenes with soft transitions in the highlights with little detail present to obscure the problem (e.g., monochrome landscape with clouds in sky). Banding has been seen on both resin coated papers and matte papers, and on Canon and non-Canon papers. The level of banding observed appears to vary significantly between different units.

Problem Resolution: Several posters to the Wiki have been studying this problem and looking for solutions. Jim H WY posted the solution that solved his nasty banding problem. The fix was tested by John Hollenberg, who also found that banding was completely eliminated for him. Jim's procedure follows:
  1. Install Firmware 1.23 or later (firmware 1.25 is best)
  2. On the printer LCD menu choose: Adjust Printer -> Manual Band Adj -> Adj Far Ed Feed and set to "Yes"
  3. You can use letter size paper in the Cassette. Printer will print a sheet (assuming you have paper in the Cassette and have the Cassete selected)
  4. Examine the rows C1 and C2 with a loupe and find the column in each row that shows no banding. If you can't choose between two adjacent columns, use a number between them.
  5. Enter the number determined above for C1 and C2 by using the right and left arrow keys and choosing OK.

You need to make this adjustment for every media type you'll be using, and you may need to make it again if you switch to a significantly different paper while still using the same media type. The printer saves these parameters separately for each media type (confirmed by Canon engineer). Thus is you perform the adjustment with Photo Paper Plus media type and then print with Photo Paper Plus Semi-Gloss media type (presumably on a different paper), you will still see the banding (unless you have previously done an adjustment for Photo Paper Plus Semi-Gloss). You can record these values for each paper type and if you have to re-enter them, just print the pattern on a blank sheet 20 lb. bond paper so you can get to the part where you enter the values for C1 and C2. See also the FAQ topic on Firmware Adjustments.

Per Canon Tech Support, both the Automatic banding adjustment and the manual banding adjustment work per media type. The last one (either automatic or manual) performed over-writes the previous setting for that media type. It isn't known how different the values may be for different media types or different papers and the same media types. John Hollenberg found that values for both C1 and C2 of 28 eliminated banding for both Epson Premium Luster and Lexjet 10 mil Gloss (which were printed with different media types, thus separate calibrations were done for each). For additional information, see this forum thread.

Note the coarsening of the dots in this band:


The colors are off using a generic profile.

A generic profile is a profile which is either supplied by Canon, or by a paper supplier for their own paper. Possible causes of color problems:

  • You are using a profile made for the 8 bit operating system driver, but printing with the 16 bit Photoshop Export plug-in or vice versa. You need a different profile for each of these two different methods of driving the printer. Note: According to one poster, the Canon-supplied ICC profiles are ONLY for the 8 bit operating system level driver and should not be used with the 16 bit plugin. This is also true for most all of the third party paper generic profiles (except Crane Museo Silver Rag and profiles for Innova and Hahnemuhle papers from Booksmart Studio). For other papers, if you want to use profiles with the 16 bit plugin, they will have to be custom profiles for optimal color.
  • Your printer differs significantly from the one used to make the generic profile. Andrew Rodney (AKA The Digital Dog) reported signficant variation between two printer targets he measured from different printers. While too small a sample to draw conclusions, there was a suggestion that the Canon printers may have more variance than the Epson printers. You can read the details on the Luminous Landscape Discussion Forum here. If this is the problem, you probably need a custom profile.

Auto Color from the Photoshop Export plug-in doesn't look right to me.

According to C.D. Tobie of Colorvision:

"The export module does not use the correct gamma when printing via the default color (i.e., Auto Color) or grayscale settings, so it must be used with a custom ICC profile."

I am getting head strikes.

You need to adjust Head Height and/or Vacuum Strength to avoid printhead strikes. There is conflicting information on how to best accomplish this:

  • According to Eric Bullock: "The vacuum strength does not seem to have much to do with the head strike problem. Its a head height issue exclusively. You can either set the head height on the Printer Control Panel manually, or choose a media type suited for thicker papers."
  • Another poster adjusted the vacuum to "strongest" and head height to "high" and has had no further strikes.

If you adjust the head height throught the Printer Control Panel, be sure to set it back to Automatic (or whatever previous setting was) so it works as expected with other papers.

This problem has been reported especially with Hahnemuhle Fine Art Pearl paper and Harman FB Al Gloss. The fix for Harman FB Al Gloss fed from the top manual tray was to set head height to "Highest".

The problems has also been reported with Hahnemuhle Fine Art Baryta: I encountered head strikes while using this paper in roll form on my 6100, and was able to correct the problem by changing the head height to "High" and the vacuum strength to "Highest". Media selection was "HW Semi Gloss Photo Paper 2" and the icc profile was from HM.

Another poster encountered head strikes with Kirkland Glossy Paper, which were resolved as follows: I tried vacuum strength to strong and it decreased head strikes a little more than half. So I set it back to auto and adjusted head height to standard (middle range) and the head strikes were gone.

How can I correct printhead misalignment problems causing head strikes with Canon paper and correct Media Type?

Problem: I use Canons own Photo Paper Plus Semi Gloss (10.2 mil thickness) and get stripes at the broders of the image and sometimes more in the middle. Seems like the print head 'gets stuck' and hits the borders of the paper and then scratches on the surface. I also hear it, does not sound good.

Resolution: This suggestion from Canon Tech Support fixed the problem:

On printer LCD - Menu button -> Maintenance -> Clean rollers

Apparently, this forces forces the printhead to move up and down and resets it. Then reload cassette, and double check/set the paper type and size.

Update: The problem recurred within one day; a service call has been scheduled by Canon.

I get banding or smearing on my prints

Possible causes:

  • Manual Banding Adjustment not done as described in this FAQ topic
  • Head height was set too high for a media type to avoid head strikes and hasn't been set back to automatic.

See this thread for a description of the problem and a link to an image showing the banding the poster encountered.

When printing the first side of a blank page I am getting a mark on the rear side.

Problem: When printing the first side of a blank page I am getting a mark on the rear side about 1/2 inch from the right side and on the trailing edge. It seems to line up with the exit roller (which is clean).

Cause: I have figured out what is causing the problem--it is not dirty rollers as I first suspected. The problem occurs when I print right up to the 3mm border and the printer is printing on the side opposite the papers natural curvature. When the paper gets to the trailing edge the vacuum pulls the edge down slightly into the borderless ink grooves near the printhead rest position. This causes the underside of the paper to drag on the edge of the groove and that is where the mark is coming from. I am guessing the vacuum is dragging in ink mist and it collects on the edge of the groove.

It appears to me that Canon could improve the platten design to stop this happening. If I build up the ridge between the two grooves with some tape it improves things. Changing the vacuum strength does not significantly change the severity of the mark.

Solution: Make sure you feed the paper the right way up (curvature-wise) so the vacuum does not pull it in and cause the mark. My recommendation is that if you want to do double sided printing dont print up to the 3mm margins (I have to at the moment).

I am trying to print on microceramic glossy paper and the inks are running.

Solution: "The solution was idiotically simple: place paper in cassette print side down." (in other words, printing on the non-coated side of the paper caused the problem)

The last half inch of my print on Hahnemuhle Fine Art Pearl fades to white.

Problem: My iPF5000 has suddenly developed a problem printing on Hahnemuhle Fine Art Pearl (8.5x11). It isn't printing the last half inch of image. the iamge starts to fade a half inch up from the bottom edge of the image and that quickly fades to paper white. I am seeing banding in this transition area.

Resolution: I had switched the paper type on the printer from Special 5 to Special 1. Switching back to Special 5 solved the problem. Special 5 is Canon's recommendation for Hahnemuhle Fine Art Pearl.

There is an odd artifact on all my prints that looks like "ghosting"

Problem: Jim Harrison encountered a strange artifact on all of his prints. The problem is a strange "shadowing" of dark black areas. There appears to be a "ghost" image displaced from the original dark lines. In the jpeg image shown below the left side is the Banding Test file at actual pixels (100%), while the right shows a photo of the print containing the artifact. There is a red line above the branch that shows the "ghost image" directly BELOW this branch:


Resolution: The service tech first tested to be sure that the problem was reproducible from his laptop to eliminate any possibility that it was an issue with my computer or the communications. He connected via USB while I normally connect via Ethernet. These tests showed the same issue was present, so that eliminated pretty much everything associated with the data being sent to the printer and the method of data transfer. Next, the main controller assembly was replaced. This is the "main board" for the unit and must perform all of the intricate calculations determining ink-droplet generation and placement. This, unfortunately did not resolve the issue either. The third step was to swap out the carriage relay PCB assy which seemed like the logical next step. It was clear that the heads would need to be removed in order to do this so we pulled them out. However, once the heads were out it became clear that replacing this board would still require that the carriage be completely removed from the printer and disassembled separately--not a trivial matter.

Since there was nothing to lose and everything to gain, the heads were reinserted. We then printed one of my test grids and it looked even worse than before! In a way, that was encouraging because it showed that the heads don't necessarily go in exactly the same each time. We ran an advanced automatic head alignment and then printed a test grid. Perfect! So we ran a few more tests, and the "ghosting" had been totally eliminated.

The conclusion seems to be that the heads don't necessarily go in exactly the same each time you install them, which is to be expected. In my case, it appears that the way they went in when I first set the machine up had one or both positioned such that the head alignment procedure simply could not accommodate their relative positions. There simply must not have been enough "range" in the alignment system to compensate for the mechanical error that existed. Oddly, before the heads were removed and reinserted, the manual head alignments appeared to be fine when you ran them, yet the result still did not get the alignment of all of the colors with respect to each other to be correct.

A print came out with a 3/8 inch wide cyan strip in the white border on the long dimension on one side.

Problem: A print made via the 16-bit plug-in--of an image with with wide white borders around the image area--came out with 3/8 inch cyan stripe right down the middle of one of the long-dimension borders.

Workaround: Turning the printer off briefly and then back on again cleared up the problem, at least temporarily.

My Prints Have Washed Out Colors and a Purple Hue

Problem: My prints have washed out colors and a purple hue.

Resolution: Poster reported fixing the problem by uninstalling Photoshop and reinstalling it. A friend of his had seen similar problems before where uninstalling one printer driver and reinstalling another may over-write or remove/rename a photoshop or a shared file and cause nearly maddening problems.

Prints made through the Export plugin are dark and muddy and have a color cast

Problem: Prints made through the Export plugin are dark and muddy and have a color cast. Prints made from Photoshop through the regular 8 bit driver are fine.

Comment: It appears that the prints are missing either the red/green (a*) channel or the yellow/blue (b*) channel of the L*a*b* color system.

Resolution: None.

Workaround: Convert image to printer profile in Photoshop before starting Export plugin and print with output profile set to "None (No Color Adjustment)".

Small White Specks Randomly Placed Show Up on Every Print

Problem: I am having a problem with small white specks randomly showing up on almost every print. I am feeding from the tray but fed one from the manual feed and a few still showed up.I am assuming the unit has accumulated dust or paper fragments. Any ideas on how best to go about cleaning the machine or eliminating the dust?

Resolution: Unclip the rear cover and pull it off, you will probably find it is full of paper dust. You can also see into the cassette feed mechanism and see if there is dust that needs vacuuming out. With one of the papers I use I have make sure I brush any paper dust off the edges of the stack of paper before putting it in the cassette. Otherwise I get major 'white speck' issues.

What options are there to fix a "Clean Printhead" Message?

1) First, run a manual printhead cleaning

2) If this doesn't fix the problem, or if the problem recurs again quickly and doesn't respond to another manual cleaning, as a last resort you can try removing and physically cleaning the printhead. Here is a description from Scott Martin:

"When we couldn't get a head to clear after several cleanings we called Canon and they suggested buying a new head. Since it was "trash" I decided I might as well remove the head and try to clean it manually. That's when found this lovely dried "goober" on it. Normally I would wet a microcloth and wipe the head with it. On this occasion a paper towel was the only thing I could find (I know) so I wet it and ran it once, firmly over the print head. Looked like new afterwards - the dried goober was completely gone. I put it back in the printer and it's worked fine ever since.

For anyone that gets a print head error message I'd suggest removing and wiping any head with a wet microcloth before replacing it. It's worth a try (and maybe $550)"

3) If steps 1 and 2 both fail, you will have to purchase a new printhead

Here is a photo showing the printhead with "goober" on the left and the cleaned printhead on the right:


How do I fix "Internal Error" messages when trying to print from the Photoshop plugin on Windows?

Answer: This is probably due to trying to print with a version 4 ICC printer profile (which is not currently supported on the Windows version of the plugin) rather than a version 2 profile.


  • Use only version 2 printer profiles
  • Print using this sequence of steps:
    • Convert to the version 4 profile in Photoshop using the desired rendering intent before starting the Export plugin
    • Set to Untagged RGB in Photoshop using Edit -> Assign Profile -> Don't Color Manage This Document
    • Print from the plugin using profile set to "None (no color correction)"

What Causes a Multi Sensor Error?

There is one report of this error on an iPF8000. The resolution was as follows:

Looking at the printer I realized that the sun, which was really low in the sky, was streaming into the room and hitting the platen at the head home position. The sun was reflecting onto the sensors and blinding them. Pulled the blind and tried loading & unloading many times and it was fine!

Won't Print to Manual Source from PS Plugin

Problem: From Lightroom it will print from Roll Paper or Manual, just as it should. But from the PS plug-in it will only print from Roll. When I select Manual feed in the plug-in, everything is fine until I press "Print" - then the printer beeps and gives a message - roll paper selected, and demands I remove the manual media and load the roll paper!

Printer: iPF6100

System: Mac 10.5.6, CS3

Resolution: When I did as the printer said, it promptly printed out a duplicate of a roll print I made a couple of weeks ago when I last used the Plug-in. How or why, I have no idea - it must have been sitting in memory somewhere (I don't think it showed in the PrintMonitor) and once the 6100 got its way and printed it, all returned to normal.

The remaining capacity of one of my ink cartridges suddenly dropped from 60% to 0%.

This is almost certainly a defective ink cartridge. There are multiple reports of starter ink cartridges (=90 ml) with this defect. Canon USA now replaces these defective ink cartridges without question. There have been a few reports of refusal to replace the defective cartridges in other countries.

Possible Workaround: Some have reported that removing the cartridge and re-seating it fixed the problem (at least temporarily). This has not worked for others. There is also one report of another temporary fix: "Figuring I had nothing to lose I removed the cart and hit the chip section with canned air. A lot of canned air. For some reason the printer recognized the cart after the air blast. It's done this at least four times now and hitting it with the canned air has worked each time."

When I print from the plugin to the roll the paper is cut too short.

Problem: When I print from the plugin to the roll the paper is cut too short.

Solution: Uncheck "No Spaces at Top or Bottom (Conserve Paper)" in the Roll Paper Options Dialog Box on the Page Setup Tab.


See also this thread.

I get almost an extra inch of space before each print

Problem: During the initial few days of using my new iPF5000 I changed a setting which results in the roll advancing the paper about half an inch before printing starts. This results in an uncentered print. How can I fix this?

Solution: Probably the setting you changed is "Near End Roll Margin". It can be changed either:

  1. In the PS plugin - Main Tab, click on the Set button right under Media Type. The setting is called "Roll Paper Margin for Safety". I leave mine set to printer default.
  2. In the Printer Driver, similar to #1 above
  3. Media Detail Setting on a particular Media Type - set from Printer LCD. See Menu Functions

I had a power failure and now my printer is dead. It won't turn on at all.

Canon customer service recommended unplugging the printer for 10-15 minutes "so that the capacitors will drain". This worked for the poster who encountered the problem--much to his surprise. Apparently this is in place of a reset button.

The Photoshop plugin crashes Photoshop frequently.

Problem: One report of Photoshop frequently crashing when Export plugin is started. Depends on size of file--at over 400 MB, will likely crash first time plugin is invoked. With smaller files, repeatedly starting the plugin and then closing it (without printing anything) will crash Photoshop within 10 starts of the plugin--often much less. Application Error log in Windows shows Event ID 1000, Faulting application Photoshop 9.0.2, faulting module either ntdll.dll or unknown. Note: The plugin for DPP 2.2 works fine, does not produce this error.

System details:

  • P4 3.0 GHz, 3 GB RAM, Matrox P750 dualhead with 2 analog monitors
  • Win XP SP2, latest critical updates, 3 GB fixed size Windows paging file
  • 25 GB free disk space on both system disk and Photoshop scratch file disk
  • Firmware 1.23, Plugin version 2.03, GARO driver version 3.41
  • Photoshop CS2, CS3 beta (both versions of PS cause same problem).
  • Printer connected by Ethernet.
  • Export plugin works fine from DPP 2.2

Resolution: Finally traced to profiles in the Windows directory c:\windows\system32\spool\drivers\color. It turns out that profiles with an internal name that is very long (between 64 and 128 characters), or perhaps containing characters such as space, underscore and hyphen, cause a problem for the operating system. Problem eventually observed in Lightroom and Profilemaker Pro as well as Photoshop, so this is not a bug in the plugin. Once the internal profile name was shortened with Colorthink, problem was resolved.

The Photoshop Plugin Doesn't Show the Number of Passes on the Main Tab

Reported by two posters who updated the iPF6100 Photoshop Plugin from version 3.0 which came on the printer CD to 3.03.

Solution: Uninstall 3.03 plugin and reinstall version 3.0.

The Photoshop plugin prints with the wrong orientation when using roll paper.

Comments from Wiki Discussion Section:

Prints unnecessarily waste roll paper

The Photoshop plugin can print the wrong way on a roll without ever telling the user or noting it in a preview (11x17 going the long way on a 17 inch roll with 6 inches of white space, for example). The page preview for this can look identical to the preview going across the roll!

In order to avoid this, always use the Print Area Layout 1 preview mode, and follow the instructions provided here:
Conserve Roll Paper

Borderless prints are too large / too small - how do I check the orientation before printing?

[The problem] occurs for me when the borderless button is checked in the plugin. I see that when I check that button the previews stop shifting from portrait to landscape and back, but they do shift when you've got the button unchecked.

This is a problem of bad interface design, but it can be overcome when you know where to look. A full description of what to look for and what to do is available here:
Borderless Print Orientation

How do I get prints centered when printing to roll from the Export plugin?

The person who reported a problem had an iPF5100 and was using Photoshop CS3, but we don't know if the solution applies to other iPF printers or earlier versions of Photoshop. The resolution to his problem can be found on this thread.

When the printer is in sleep (power saving) mode, sometimes it will not wake up when a file is sent to it.

Problem: I have installed an ipf 5000 as of two days ago, on a LAN with the TCP/IP connection. It works fine if the 5000 is "awake", but if it has timed out to go to sleep, it will not wake up from the PC. I can "ping" it OK when it is awake but it basically takes itself offline in the sleep mode.

Solution: I rebooted the printer (turned it off, waited one minute, turned it back on) and now the sleep mode is just as advertised. I have had no more problems since rebooting the printer. It's gone to sleep, woken up, etc. for several cycles.

Workaround: The printer can be brought out of sleep mode by pressing any button on the printer control panel. If you press the power button, hold it down only briefly, as holding it down for longer than one second will turn the printer off instead.

The GARO Status Monitor says there is a paper jam, but no problem is reported on the printer LCD.

One user reported success by unplugging the printer for one minute and then plugging it back in, as suggested by Canon Tech Support. The printer was printing OK even before this erroneous report from the Status Monitor was corrected.

The GARO Status Monitor crashes when I try to start it.

One user reported fixing the problem on Windows as follows:

  1. Start Menu -> All Programs -> GARO Status Monitor -> Uninstaller
  2. Uninstall the Status Monitor
  3. Reinstall the latest version from the Latest Drivers page

The GARO Status Monitor says "Cannot Acquire Status" of the printer while the printer is turned on.

USB Connection

According to Canon Support, this is probably due to the IPF5000 having more stringent requirements for the USB voltage than some other devices. If your USB port does not fully comply with those standards, the computer may lose communication with the printer. Apparently, there is nothing in the USB protocol to allow the computer to reacquire communication. Cable was about 15 feet, but Canon said length of cable was not the problem.

Workarounds: One of these will probably work for you.

  • Unplug the USB cable for a couple of seconds and plug it back in. This worked for one poster, which according to Canon probably confirms that the voltage on the USB port is the problem.
  • Rebooting the computer may solve the problem (worked for same user).
  • Change connection to Ethernet.

Note: Canon recommends not using a USB connection in conjunction with Standby mode (readme for windows printer driver 3.41).

Ethernet Connection

One poster reported still having the problem occasionally even on Ethernet connection. The only solution was to temporarily turn off (power cycle) the printer. Simply rebooting the computer did not fix the problem. It could also be the router, assuming you are using a local router. Sometimes the cabling is bad or intermittent. I would advise also cycling the power on the router if one is used.

I selected "Center Print" in the Plugin, but the print is off center by about an eighth of an inch printing from the Cassette.

Problem: Printing from the Photoshop plugin with "Center of Output Media Size" selected , landscape images have right margin 1/8 inch greater than left margin. Portrait images have bottom margin 1/8 inch greater than top margin. Due to a bug in the Export plugin (confirmed by Canon Tech Support). One poster reported that the problem occurred on super B paper (13 X 19) with one inch margins, but did not occur when printing on letter size paper with 1/2 inch margins. Does not occur when printing through regular 8 bit printer driver. Reported not to occur when printing from the top tray.

Update 9/28/07: Bug appears to be fixed in Windows version 2.04 of plugin.

Workaround: In the Photoshop Export plugin, go to the Page Setup tab and find the Layout section. For Landscape oriented images, add 0.07 inches to the Left Margin calculated by "Center of Output Media Size". The "Specify Print Start Position" will be automatically selected. The small preview pane will show the image slightly off center, but it should now print correctly. Same correction for Portrait oriented images, but add 0.07 inches to the Top Margin instead of the Left Margin.

My prints from the top Tray aren't centered.

Problem: Prints from the top Tray on Canon Photo Satin 8.5 X 11 aren't centered (reported for Mac OS). The print is landscape orientation, cropped to 11 X 8.5 (W x H) before printing. Printed through Photohsop Export plugin, page setup ANSI etter, fit to media, and orientation to landscape.The left margin is 1/8in, the top and bottom is 1/4in and the right margin is 1.75inch.

Resolution: Uninstalled all the canon IPFf5000 drivers, went into spotlight and searched and deleted all ipf5000 references. Restarted my Mac, installed all the printer drivers and voila, my prints are centered.

Where Can I Get the iPF5000 Service Manual?

Right here:
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Comments by Alaska: Looks like some parts are only good for 25,000 sheets of paper (pg 141). The wiper unit (pg 52) is good for 50,000 wipes. Interesting service codes (pg 153) and what information is stored in the EPROM. The head cleaning descriptions (pg 50) are interesting. Too bad that typical times are not given for each of these cleaning operations. This sure gives one an appreciation of what it takes to make a printer work properly. Lots of engineering and science.