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I bought this printer around 3 years ago, and at that time I paid £139.99 for it (purchased from a reputable online store). Today this printer can be bought online starting from around £110.00 - £125.00 (online prices).
This printer will print in colour, has the ability to print photo quality pictures, and allows you to set the print quality according to the type of paper you are using. In addition, this is actually a 3-1 multifunction printer; this means that it has the following 3 functions:
1. Printing (colour or B&W)
2. Photocopying (upto A4 size)
3. Scanning (upto A4 size, scanned documents can be formatted into PDF files)
The cartridges come in fours - Black, Magenta (pink), Cyan (blue) and Yellow. They are actually 4 separate cartridges but you must have them all for the printer to work. The cartridges can be bought online, or from certain high street shops such as W H Smiths for example.
The printer comes with an installation CD to enable you to fully use all of it's features such as the scanner for example. And the connection is via USB, which makes things nice and easy in my opinion.
After 3 years I am reluctant to get a new printer. Why? Because this is a pretty good one! The fact that it is multifunctional is my favourite feature. When I am printing normal documents from Word for example, I can choose whether I want it high definition quality, or draft quality (great for saving ink), and I can choose whether I'd like a black and white, or a colour print (printing in black and white most of the time means I only need to buy new Magenta, Cyan and Yellow cartridges periodically which means some money saved!).
The quality of the photo's printed is fab, and lately all my favourite digital pictures have been printed on paper using this printer - the quality is almost as good as getting them printed professionally if you use photo quality paper and if you optimise the settings for printing pictures on the computer print menu.
The scanner and photocopier are good too. Whilst the scanning speed is not super fast, the quality is good. I have used the scanner to scan many old photo's taken in the 1980's, so that I can have an electronic copy of them, and find that they look almost like the original photo when re-printed! In addition I also scan important documents, such as contracts, and important receipts for example, and store them on my computer as PDF files for safekeeping.
The photocopying function allows you to choose if you want to photocopy in colour or black and white, and you can choose to do up to 10 photocopies at a time. If you want more than 10 you need to come back after it has done the first 10 and just press the photocopy button again - fairly simple.
The only complaints I would have about this printer is that fact that it does seem to go through ink rather fast. And if your printouts are not clear, it suggests you to do an automatic 'head-clean'. This is convenient, but the head cleaning process actually consumes rather a large amount of ink so this is not something you want to be doing quite often. I find that I need to clean the heads around once a month.
The other disadvantage is the speed. Printing economy/draft quality documents is fairly speedy, but a standard quality document takes more time. I am not sure of the PPM unfortunately but in my experience, a 30 page word document (standard quality) takes around 10 minutes or so (rough estimation). If printing a photo, your best result will come from setting it to the best quality that the printer can give you, and a 10x15cm photo will take therefore around 3-5 min, per photo to print. However I guess the quality makes up for this.
This is now quite an old printer from Epson and if I'm honest I would not reccomend it because of all the trouble I have had with it.
As with most printers now the ink levels are controlled by the chips telling the computer how much ink is remaining. I have lost count how many time sI have put a new carteridge in and by the time its finished messing about charging it the levels on the computer come up as two thirds full.
The heads often need cleaning too using yet more ink. This wouldnt be so bad but everybody knows carteridges are very expensive especially when the ink is there but it just tells the computer its empty.
The software that comes with it is easy to use and install.
Be aware that the USB lead that connects it to the computer is not very long at all so you cant have it too far away the tower.