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HP Designjet 4500 Printer Series - Paper Advance Calibration

Paper Advance Calibration
The printer has been calibrated at the factory to ensure that it advances the paper accurately when using supported paper types in normal environmental conditions. However, recalibration will be required in certain circumstances as mentioned below:
  • Unsupported paper: Different paper manufacturers provide papers with a wide range of properties such as paper thickness or stiffness, which may benefit from calibration. Best print quality can be expected when using HP's recommended papers.
  • Abnormal but stable environmental conditions: If printing is being done in unusual conditions of temperature or humidity, and those conditions are expected to remain stable, recalibration may be worthwhile.
However, paper advance calibration assumes that there is an image quality issue and that the appropriate troubleshooting procedure for that issue has already been followed. If there is no particular issue, there is no need to perform the calibration.
  note:
Calibrations generally only succeed if the printer has been maintained routinely using the User Kit Q1271-60420. This ensures the Printhead contacts and Platen are clean and the Y-Axis is lubricated. The user Paper Advance Calibration is not to be confused with the factory Paper Advance Calibration, which is done using a special menu and a Calibration Media Kit.
Before performing paper advance calibration, use the Image Diagnostics Print to ensure that the printheads are correctly aligned.
  note:
In theory, paper advance calibration should improve print quality. However, if the calibration print is difficult to interpret, a wrong paper advance setting may be chosen and this would degrade the print quality. In this case, the user can restore the original factory settings by selecting the (roll) or (paper) icon at the front panel, followed by Paper advance calibration, Optimize for drawings/text, or Optimize for images, Select Pattern, Factory Default.
Overview of the calibration process
  1. Use the front panel to print a colored pattern stored in the printer seven times, each time with a different paper advance setting.
  2. Decide which pattern has been printed most successfully.
  3. Use the front panel to tell the printer which pattern was best, and therefore which paper advance setting to use in future.
      note:
    There are separate paper advance settings for each paper type name in the front panel. So, each must be calibrated separately. When a particular paper type is calibrated, the settings for all other paper types are unaffected.
    There are separate paper advance settings for 'Optimized for drawings/text' and 'Optimized for images,' each must be calibrated separately.
    Papers from different manufacturers may require different paper advance settings even if they are of the same type. Therefore, the calibration will be useful only for the particular paper that was calibrated. When calibration is performed, any previous paper advance settings for this paper type will be overwritten.
The calibration process in detail
Follow these steps to perform paper advance calibration:
  1. Load the printer with the type of paper that will be used for printing subsequently. The paper must be at least 41 cm wide (16 inches) and 75 cm long (30 inches).
  2. At the front panel, highlight the (roll) or (paper) icon. If an HP Designjet 4500 series printer is being used, and two rolls have been loaded, ensure that the roll intended to be calibrated is ready to print (it should be highlighted on the front panel).
  3. Press the Select key, then Paper advance calibration.
    Figure : Paper menu
  4. Select Optimize for drawings/text or Optimize for images depending on the type of prints required.
      note:
    It is very important to use the same setting that will be used later for printing in the driver, the Embedded Web Server, or the front panel (Optimized for drawings/text or Optimized for images). Otherwise the calibration has no effect.
  5. Select Print Patterns. The printer will print a series of numbered patterns (1 to 7). If Drawings/text is selected, each numbered pattern will look like the one in the following figure:
    Figure : Print pattern when 'Drawings/text' is selected
    If Images is selected, each numbered pattern will look like the one in the following figure:
    Figure : Print pattern when 'Images' is selected
    The 'Optimize for drawings/text' print takes about three minutes, the 'Optimize for images' print takes about five minutes. When the calibration print has finished printing, the printer will cut the paper.
  6. Look at each of the printed patterns (1 to 7) and decide which one shows the best quality. Each pattern has one part on the left that is a continuous color gradient (A), and another part on the right (B). Either part can be used to decide which is the best of the series of patterns. It will depend on the circumstances. However, if glossy paper or canvas is being used, it is recommended to ignore part A and make the selection by looking at part B only.
    In the color gradient, part A, look for light or dark horizontal bands (banding), which indicate that the paper advance is not quite right. Usually, dark bands can be seen across the first pattern and light bands across the last pattern (see examples below). The best pattern is one with no banding. If in doubt, select the pattern in the middle, between the last pattern with dark bands and the first pattern with light bands.
    Figure : Banding (dark horizontal bands)
    Figure : Banding (light horizontal bands)
    If it is difficult to identify the best pattern, the following scenario descriptions can help:
    • Where there is only one pattern which is clearly the best and the ones above and below contain light/dark bands, select this pattern.
      Figure : Best pattern (Pattern 3)
    • Where there are two patterns next to each other which do not show signs of banding (see below). Use the patterns above and below these two to help in the selection. For example, if the pattern above the two equal ones contains less banding then choose the pattern just below it.
      Figure : Best pattern (Pattern 4)
    • Where there are three patterns which show no signs of banding, select the middle pattern.
    Part B of the print appears darker in some patterns than in others. The best pattern is the one that appears lightest, most uniform, and least grainy.
  7. Select the (roll) or (paper) icon, and then select Paper advance calibration followed by Optimize for drawings/text or Optimize for images and then Select pattern.
  8. Select the number of the pattern (1 to 7) that printed best. If it is difficult to choose between two patterns e.g. patterns 3 and 4, then select Between pattern 3 and 4.
    The calibration is complete.
After calibration
If the paper advance calibration has reduced but not eliminated the print quality problem, try step 7 again and select a different number. If light bands are seen, try selecting a lower number than the original selection. If dark bands are seen, try a higher number.
Later, if it is decided to cancel the calibration and restore the paper advance setting with which the printer left the factory, select the (roll) or (paper) icon, and then select Paper advance calibration, Optimize for drawings/text or Optimize for images, Select pattern, Factory default.

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