Phatte Black FAQ
What advantages are there to printing in Phatte Black Mode?
With Phatte Black mode, you don’t need to purge inks when switching between printing that requires
the matte black ink and the photo black ink. This saves money, as any purge results in the wastage of
ink (as much as $70.00 worth for each such switch). Purging also takes time--fifteen minutes or so.
With Phatte Black mode, switching between Matte and Glossy printing is just a matter of loading the
How does Phatte Black Mode work?
To utilize this feature, a modified Matte Black cartridge is used in the “light-light” cartridge slot of your
printer. Once loaded, you’ll need to print a “purge” file that will clear the ink lines of remaining light-
light ink. For detailed instructions, see the second part of this section, Phatte Black Quick Start.
Will not having the light-light black ink affect print quality?
Not at all.
The light-light black offers no advantages when printing with ImagePrint, as our advanced ink mixing
and screening already provides the improved tonality that this new ink was put in place to provide
While this ink may help avoid the deficiencies of other less sophisticated printing methods,
ImagePrint’s technology doesn’t need it to get results far superior to the output of any other driver or
What is a “modified” Matte Black cartridge?
All Epson K3 ink cartridges utilize “smart chip” technology that allows the printer to read each ink
cartridge to determine it’s ink type, capacity, remaining ink levels, etc. A modified cartridge is one
whose smart chip has been altered to appear different to the printer.
Modifying the cartridge means that the smart chip will be changed, or replaced, to make it look like a
light light black cartridge to the printer. It may also be necessary to snip off the small, plastic fin on the
top of the cartridge that “keys” the cartridge to the proper slot on the printer.
How do I obtain a modified Matte Black cartridge?
Your ColorByte ImagePrint dealer may stock modified Matte black cartidges, which you can then
purchase as you would any other ink cartridge.
Will this void my Epson warranty?
This process uses Epson inks and Epson cartridges, and is not modifying the printer in any way. That
said, ColorByte doesn’t speak for Epson. If you have concerns, you may want to contact Epson
before using modified cartridges.
Can I still use my Epson driver with Matte and Photo black loaded?
No. With both the Matte and Photo black cartridges loaded, the Epson driver will not print correctly as
it has no support for that combination. You can only use this mode with ImagePrint. (The Epson
status monitor should work fine however.)
Will I need new profiles?
ImagePrint will provide profiles for Phatte Black mode for both color and grayscale printing. These
profiles will be designated with the letters “DK” instead of the normal “pk” or “mk” in the title. Since the
profiles are made at the same time as the “standard mode” profiles, there should be a Phatte Black
profile for every standard profile we provide.
How do I switch to Phatte Black mode within ImagePrint?
Switching to Phatte Black mode in ImagePrint is as simple as picking a Phatte Black (DK) profile as
the Printer/Paper profile. When the software senses such a profile has been chosen, it will switch to
Phatte Black mode automatically.
Can I go back to the standard K3 ink configuration after using Phatte Black?
It’s easy to go back to the standard K3 ink set after using Phatte Black. Just put the light-light black
cartridge back in the light-light slot, and print the purge file again to clear the excess matte ink from
the lines (you will find you need to print more this time though, as the matte black is heavier and takes
longer for the last traces to clear the lines).
Do you still support the standard mode of printing with K3 inks (including light-light)?
Of course. Printing with the K3 inks in their standard configuration is still the “default” way of printing
with ImagePrint, and is fully supported.
Phatte Black Quick Start (Epson 4800, 7800 and 9800)
Follow the below steps to setup your printer and ImagePrint for printing with Phatte Black
Step 1 Load the modified Matte Black Cartridge into your printer
Your modified matte black cartridge should be inserted into the light-light black slot of the printer.
Make sure that, in the regular black slot, the Photo Black cartridge is currently loaded.
Step 2 Acquire the Purge profile and Purge TIFF file
Once the modified Matte Black Cartridge has been loaded in the printer, it is necessary to clear the
remaining light-light black inks from the tubing of the printer. (This is a one time only step). To
accomplish this, two files are needed: a special TIFF file and a special color profile. The TIFF file will
be printed with the profile in place as the Printer/Paper profile--this will ensure that only the light-light
black ink is used when printing this file, so no other ink is wasted.
The purge TIFF file and the special printer profile needed for printing it can be downloaded from
ColorByte’s web site. To get these files, use a web browser to go to:
You’ll find links on the SUPPORT page for the Phatte Black Purge file, and the Phatte Black Purge
• The purge TIFF file (x800_llk_purge.tif) can be downloaded to your desktop, or any other
• The purge profile (x800_llk_purge_profile_720.icm) must be saved into the COLOR folder
within your ImagePrint folder.
Step 3 Print the Purge File
To print the purge file:
Choose the proper page size
To properly purge the inks, it’s necessary to print about 1700 square inches. To accomplish this, you
may need to create a user defined page size in ImagePrint that fits those dimensions (about 20 letter
size sheets). You can set up your custom page size in whichever way best accommodates your
media. A few common configurations are:
• For 44 inch wide roll: A custom size of 44 wide, 34 inches high
• For 24 inch wide roll: A custom size of 24 wide, 70 inches high
• For 8.5x11 sheet: Use letter as the paper size, and print the purge file 20 times.
Choose Image from the ImagePrint main menu, then choose Color Management.
In the “Printer/Paper” field, choose the profile called “x800 Ink Purge 720”
Step 3 Print the Purge File (cont.)
In the Bitmap section of the Color Management window, select NONE in the RGB field of the Missing
Color Profile section. (Make a note of what the previous setting was so you can go back to that
Close the Color Management window.
Using the ImagePrint file browser, or via the File->Open command, locate open the previously
downloaded “x800_llk_purge.tif” file. The file will appear red and black or blank on the screen--that’s
normal--it will print with the light-light black ink.
Choose “FILL”, from the ImagePrint floating tool palette, to ensure the Image fills the page
Print the file.
Once done, the ink lines will be purged, and you will be ready to print using Phatte Black mode.
When the print is done, remember to return the Bitmap->RGB setting of the Color
Management window to the setting it had before you changed it to NONE.
Step 4 Set up ImagePrint for Phatte Black Mode printing
Printing in Phatte Black mode with ImagePrint is just a matter of choosing the proper Printer/Paper
profile in ImagePrint’s Color Management window.
Phatte Black mode profiles will have a “DK” in their titles (instead of “pk” or “mk”). These profiles can
be downloaded from ColorByte’s profile repository, located on the Downloads page at:
Click the Access Latest Profiles link on the Downloads page, choose to Access Profiles, then click the
Phatte Black link. Profiles should be downloaded to the Color folder within your ImagePrint folder.
(For more information on downloading profiles, see chapter 6 of the ImagePrint user’s manual).
Once a profile is in the Color folder, you can choose it as your Printer/Paper profile in ImagePrint’s
Color Management window. When a profile is picked in this way, ImagePrint will automatically switch
to Phatte Black Mode. No other changes need to be made. You can now switch between Photo
Black, and Matte Black, printing by picking the right Phatte Black (DK) Profile for the Media you plan
to use, and loading the desired paper in the printer.