[Tig] Still photo printer on a budget

Andrew Webb andrew at seriousretouching.com
Tue Mar 15 21:19:25 GMT 2016

The Lambda printers are a different technology from a common color laser printer. They use RGB lasers to expose photographic paper, which is then chemically developed into a chromogenic print; common color laser printers deposit colored toner in response to a charge (just like their black-and-white brethren), and are much more limited in color gamut.

Common color laser: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WB0HnXcW8qQ
Durst Lambda/Lightjet: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Durst#Lambda_and_Theta_photographic_printers

These days, a fine inkjet print on glossy paper can rival the Lambda. 

andrew webb


www.niftypitchers.com | www.seriousretouching.com

On 15 March,2016 at 11:23:51 AM, Rob Lingelbach via Tig (tig at colorist.org) wrote:

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On Mar 15, 2016, at 11:57 AM, Daniel Henríquez Ilic via Tig wrote:  

> A side-note: Few years ago, I did contact a Durst representative. He  
> showed me the latest UV ink printers and I compared to prints that I had  
> done with a Durst Lambda (laser exposure to photo-chemical paper). Even if  
> the UV ink print was quite good, there was a significative difference in  
> quality; the Durst Lambda print being clearly better.  

Thank you for that very specific information Daniel.  

The most recent information I have, which may not apply to the quality of the Durst Lambda, is that laser printing is generally inferior to ink-jet printing, in several of the references I find:  

Color Inkjet Vs. Laser Printers for Photographs  

by Elizabeth Mott, Demand Media  
Choose your output hardware to suit your business workflow.  

When you compare the output from digital presses to the pages that emerge from your color laser printer, the disparity between their respective abilities to reproduce photographs may seem puzzling, especially given that both devices use toner. Set side by side with pages from an inkjet device, however, the laser printer's photos lose out again in the faithful-reproduction sweepstakes. The difference lies in the output methods and consumables of the two technologies. Understanding the strengths and weaknesses of both types of hardware can help you make an informed choice when you select equipment for your business.  

> Hopefully Durst will one day update the Durst Lambda so that it can handle  
> a 16-bit output instead of 8-bit.  

I would also like not to limit the depth to 8-bit.  

Do you think the Durst Lambda laser can compete well with inkjet printers, for faithfulness?  

Rob Lingelbach roblingelbach at icloud.com http://lingelbach.us  
Literacy Tutor, Minnesota Reading Corps  
Andersen United Community School  

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