I bought this from Curry's for £36.99 as it was the cheapest printer going at the time and that was my main concern. I was very impressed with how easy it was to set up, connecting through the USB and with idiot-proof instruction on both paper and the installation disk. I have bought this printer twice as I find it very easy to use. In addition to this the ink cartridges are cheaper than other models such as Lexmark or HP, particularly if you buy refilled cartridges.
The one downfall was that I found, with both printers, that the print heads got easily clogged (you get black marks on your printing paper and certain colours won't print suddenly). To fix this I was constantly having to use the "print head cleaner" function, which did remedy the problem but uses a lot of ink.
Considering the price and ease of use, I would definitely recommend this item for everydat printing but not for heavy usage ie a home office- you get what you pay for.
I've owned the Epson Stylus C48 for over a year now, I think I was one of the first to purchase it. My old faithful Epsom C20SX died (R.I.P. - that means Rest In Pieces) after many years of loyal service and what better way to show one's appreciation than to go buy another product from the same manufacturer?
I wandered into PC World not really knowing what I wanted but knowing that I didn't want or need to spend a fortune on a printer. I just wanted something that would print me out the odd photo here and there and other colour documents as and when needed. I have a black and white laser printer for general every day use so I didn't want to break the bank on the colour printer.
I settled for the Epson Stylus C48 printer very quickly. It was priced at just under £50 at the time and had a colour and black cartridge included in the box which was handy. Unbeknownst to me there was no printer cable in the box, so I literally had to get back in the car as soon as I'd got home and unpacked the box to get a cable, luckily PCWorld is only about a 10 minute drive from home. I wasn't sure whether or not to be narked with PCWorld for not asking me if I needed a cable at the time of purchase as I had foolishly assumed the cable would be in the box (as it tends to be with most electrical items you buy).
Anyway that little saga over and done with, you want to know about how it works. Well here we go. First thing I have to say is that this little printer is fairly noisy when printing which can be quite annoying. Printing off a standard letter in black ink takes about a minute or so - still noisy though. When printing a page with colour photos on it, this is when the noise factor really bugs, it can take up to 15 minutes to print a page in high resolution and can be quite frustrating having to print several pages. If you're using regular A4 paper this is not an issue as you can leave the printer printing and walk away. BUT if you're using photo quality paper or picture paper (I tend to use Kodak paper because of its superior quality) this printer does not like you leaving several blank pages for it to print itself. It's almost like a child needing reassurance that it's done good work as you have to feed the pages in one at a time or they get stuck AND believe me it's very annoying when they get stuck. I learnt my lesson after the first few times this happened and now I don't leave the printer unattended when printing in colour on special paper.
As to the quality of the colour printing; it depends which setting you use, someone I worked with once said you have to experiment with colour printers and paper a few times to find out the best setting to get the best quality prints. I've tried all the various options and figured the best choice for getting the best colour output is to choose "photo RPM" under Properties on the Main tab when choosing which print mode to use if I'm printing photos. If printing regular documents with some colour or fully mono I just use the default print settings.
Print cartridges vary in price and really it all depends on whether or not you want to use originals or compatible cartridges. The best price I found for the compatible cartridges was at prink.co.uk where you can buy 3 black and 3 colour cartridges for £11.95 (what a bargain)! Prink are selling Epson original black cartridges (T066) for £8.50 and colour ones (T067) for £13.50. Cartridgemonkey.com are selling the T066 cartridges for £5.45 and T067 for £13.49 (although from previous experience their delivery time and after sale services is extremely poor). I guess I should also mention that it can be quite fiddly trying to change a cartridge without using the on screen instructions. Best to stick to the instructions the printer settings offer you or else risk your fingers getting caught trying to catch the cartridge holders!
Technical spec (for those that really want to know) and what you get:
* Well obviously you get the printer in the box (but not the cable)!
* Print driver and utilities software
* Supposedly prints up to 12 mono pages per minute (I've not experienced this little miracle though)
* Colour printing (photos) can be very slow in my experience, (and beware - it's pretty noisy when printing)
* Dimensions: approximately 42cm (wide) x 20cm (deep) x 17cm (height)
* 2880 dpi x 1440 dpi (maximum resolution for mono or colour)
* Weighs approx 3kg
* Can use plain paper, envelopes, transparencies, card, photo paper
* Works with Microsoft 98, 2000, ME & XP
All in all I'm pretty satisfied with my Epson C48 - it serves its purpose well and I've not had any real cause for complaint since I owned it. Once I got used to amending the print settings to print colour photos I'm even happier with it!