With the majority of the world becoming digital and online, it was only a matter of time before most school homework would also follow suit. Most school age children now have access to a laptop, tablet, phone or other device which connects to the internet. Whilst it’s good that we have the internet, it’s no good if we need something off the internet or computer unless we also have a printer.
It’s my belief that all households should have a printer as we all need something printing at some point, be it homework, postage labels, tickets or something else.
Printers can often be picked up relatively cheaply, many under £100, but the cost of replacement ink is usually much more than the printer value itself with ink cartridges lasting just a few months if that.
Epson is a well known printer brand. I have had several of their products previously and never been disappointed. One of their most recent models aims to change the whole concept of expensive frequent ink changes.
This being the new Epson “Eco-tank” ET-2600.
From the outset this printer looks no different from many other Epson printers. A sleek black simple shell, lift up cover, pull out paper tray, wifi and various other function buttons at the front.
The big difference lies with the ink. Unlike usual rectangular ink cartridges, this one uses special ink bottles instead.
The four primary ink colours – black, cyan, magenta, yellow remain the same (I do wonder how the printers print any colour from these).
The bottles don’t go in the printer like the cartridges would. They need carefully tipping into the printer ink tank.
This shows corresponding ink colours in 4 individual tanks, each one complete with own lid. The ink process needs completing prior to switching on. Once switched on the printer will go through the usual ink charge process and then it’s ready to print.
These ink bottles last a lot longer than cartridges. The first four ink bottles come included and may just last long enough to print a massive 7500 coloured pages. For us that will be about 3 years.
As for printer set up – It is the same as most other printer set ups. This does come with an installation disc, but many new laptops don’t come with a disc drive anymore. Epson realise this too and provide a website link to download set up files. For tablet and mobile device users, again the website in the set up leaflet will allow iprint installation.
This is something we already had and once set up you can print from anywhere if printer is switched on. Epson remote printing allows me to send documents to specific unique address when I am not home and the print outs are usually there once I return.
Wireless wifi printing means no running cables, and can be done anywhere within my router range by mobile or laptop. From my iPhone it’s a simple click and confirm and the printer starts up.
The Epson software menu box gives many printing options. Many of them I don’t use myself. Paper type, quality and size, along with image placement and colour options are the ones I use the most. It also includes an option for test prints and alignment, cleaning etc incase of problems.
This printer is also a 3-in-1 meaning it also copies and scans documents. Scanning is done via the epson software on laptop or the app for mobile devices and again it’s just a button press.
This is a well designed printer, being similar size to previous printers I have owned means it fits where I need it to fit. Printing is fast and with minimal noise. Set up fairly straightforward and extremely easy and fast via mobile devices. The new ink bottle format means we will certainly save pounds on buying ink every few months too.
Now of course there has to be a catch somewhere with all these good features and that is the current price tag. Epson are currently selling this at £229.99 which probably isn’t a price that many normal households want to fork out at this time of year. However if you google around then you may just find this considerably cheaper. John Lewis sell for £179 at the moment and Amazon is always going to be cheaper. Of course for those not in a desperate hurry for a printer may wish to wait a few months and see if the price falls considerably. I believe the price reflects the ink cost saving. If you have a standard cartridge printer and add up the cost of ink over 3/4 years then I’m sure that would end up being a lot more, so maybe it is worth paying that little bit more now.