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EnChem-BK
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HP Designjet is printing Purple in place of Blue and Grey

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HP Designjet 500
Microsoft Windows 7 (64-bit)

A few weeks ago my office purchased a designjet 500 from a friend of the owner.  I had already printed on this plotter before so we knew it worked well.  We set it up on our network and it printed with no problems for the first week or so.  Then about 2 weeks ago it started printing anything blue, a dark shade of blue, or grey in purple.  I am the only one in our office that uses the plotter as I am the only one using AutoCAD and no one else has need for it.  Therefore, I know I did not make any changes, and though it is on our network I am the only one that has access to it.

 

Now, as I mentioned this started happening a week or two ago.  Since our prints are internal use only I have been using spare time to attempt to find solutions to this issue.  I have searched this forum, and others and found various fixes, none of which worked.  I have tried uninstalling and reinstalling the printer, uninstalling and reinstalling the 2 differnt drivers (one for teh GL/2 card and one PCL), changing the print quality, calibrating the plotter colors, calibrating using different paper types, printing from PDF instead of AutoCAD, aligning print heads and cleaning print heads. None of this has worked.

 

One thing that I have seen in a few forums and on this Hp support page is updating the firmware, this i cannot do.  I was able to update the I/O firmware to the current version, but the firmware on the plotter is listed as Formatter firmware: A. 02. 05.  From a couple of forums I have read the firmware update A 02.08 and above fixed the color problem, however I can find no site from which to download the firmware, the HP download support center only has the drivers.  A couple of the forums, and the HP support page (linked above) have taken me to this site which, if you have looked at the support page i linked, is a completly different url than the one mentioned.

 

So, is there a fix to this? Is there a way to get the firmware update? Is there a different fix? As far as I can tell this plotter was built circa 2013(?) so I would thik it would still be supported, though it is out of warranty.  Any thoughts or insights would be greatly appreciated.  Also please forgive the book I wrote, i just did not want to get the "did you try searching the forum" response, or waste anyones time instructing me to do things I have already tried.

 

Thanks in advance for your help.

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Valsimot
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Regarding firmware, it can be downloaded from HP, but only if you choose Windows XP, later operating systems do not support firmware update.

 

To update firmware to latest version A04.02 you will need a computer with XP on it

 

https://support.hp.com/hk-en/drivers/selfservice/HP-Designjet-500-Printer-series/25301/model/1834668




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gringod12
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hi if it is not your printheads, then it could be paper settings.

the old firmaware had extra paper setttings.

If you scroll down the papper list you would get to an enhanced section,

under this section you would find Plain-EC and Bond-EC. 

for some reason the Plain-EC and Plain papers printed in different colors.

 

 

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Valsimot
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Do you have information when printheads were replaced last time ?

 

 

It looks like they need to be replaced with the new ones:

https://support.hp.com/lt-en/document/bpp03062

 

 

If you start printhead alignment can you take a photo o scan alignment page that comes out from the printer and post it here? On the alignment page, missing colours will confirm that one or more printheads need to be replaced.

 




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Valsimot
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Regarding firmware, it can be downloaded from HP, but only if you choose Windows XP, later operating systems do not support firmware update.

 

To update firmware to latest version A04.02 you will need a computer with XP on it

 

https://support.hp.com/hk-en/drivers/selfservice/HP-Designjet-500-Printer-series/25301/model/1834668




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EnChem-BK
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Grin - That is one of the things mentioned in one of the forums (I forgot to include in OP), I think the enhanced color options are a result of the firmware update as our plotter does not show them as options.

 

Vals - Print heads are near new, only 3-4% usage on them.  The guy that sold us the printer had recently had it serviced.

 

We dont have anything running XP. This sounds like a wonderful MS incompatibility problem, plotter still works but cant update the firmware without a machine that runs an obsolete program.  There is a time travel story about something similar, lol.

 

What happens if i download the firmware for the XP OS, it's really for the pirnter, right?  I'm a little fuzzy on the relationship here.

 

Thanks for the quick responses!

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Valsimot
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Can you print alignment page scan it and post here? I don't trust the guy that sold you the printer I want to see printout by myself? What is expiration dates on each printhead?

 

 

Designjet 500 in on market since 2000, so 18 years ago first 500 series came out, and end of service date was sometime around 2010. If you want to update obsolete device you will need to use an obsolete program. 




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gringod12
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re the firmware: i run the winXP firmware software on my Win 10 notebook for firmware upgrades.

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EnChem-BK
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Thank you for suggesting this! i reprinted the plotter service info sheets, i misread it.  I was looking at Printhead info, and when i scrolled down i crossedover (unknowingly) to the ink levels, and saw that they were in good shape and disregarded the Printheads as a problem.

 

I printed the alignment page this morning and it was pretty bad.  I went through the whole advanced calibration, then specifically went to the printhead menu.  The color alignment page for the print heads was also not great, and repeated cleanings did not improve them, nor did the realignment.  Looks like it is time for new print heads.

 

Thanks for the help and suggestions.  I will let you all know if this works.

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EnChem-BK
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Sorry for the delay, I have been busy the last week and haven't had time to fiddle with this.

 

Unfortuantely changing the print heads did not help with the color problem.  Well, that might not be ENTIRELY true as our company logo (has shades of blue) does now print correctly. So partial success!  Unfortunately Blue still prints as purple.

 

At this point I cannot even begin to imagine what the issue may be.  I am not too knowledgable about printers as is, though this experience has opened my eyes to the world of drivers and firmware.  I think the most frustrating part of this is that the first few prints i did had no issues with the the color blue and then everything went to hell and hasn't been the same since.

 

I continue to appreciate any and all suggestions, and in the I will also look for things I may have missed.

 

Thank you!!

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EnChem-BK
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OK, it is FIXED! I had downloaded the firmware update looking for the XP downloads as suggested, but after applying it and printing there was no change. Then I remembered that one post had suggested looking at the page settings on the front panel.  With the updated firmware i now had access to Enhanced Colors. I set the paper to Plain-EC and recalibrated the color and now everything that is blue prints blue!

 

Thank all of you for your suggestions, in the end it really helped.

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