Epson Stylus SX610FW
Capable and quick
Review On the ‘looks the business’ scales, this machine will take quite a counterweight. Big and glossy black, it has a wavy top concealing its 30-sheet ADF. Open the input tray and the output tray drops away – very neat.
The front control panel, which can be swung out to several different angles, holds a bright, 63mm LCD and large, easy-to-use navigation and number pads. Set into the front-left face are memory card slots for most types, including CompactFlash.
Paper feeds in from a 120-sheet paper tray at the back, where it can get dusty, to a telescopic tray at the front, which increases the footprint considerably when open. The four ink cartridges snap into the head carrier easily enough and software support includes ABBYY Finereader 6 Sprint, as well as various utilities.
Epson quotes draft print speeds of 38ppm for black and colour and although these are wishful, as always, the Epson machine was a good way ahead of any of the other machines in the group, achieving 5.4ppm in colour and an impressive 14.2ppm in black. You pay for this extra speed in noise, with one of the noisiest paper feeds in the group.
Plain paper print quality is fair, while not up to Canon or HP standards. Text is a little more uneven and colour graphics are a bit over-bright, but photos are excellent, with smooth colour textures and accurate tones.
The Stylus SX610FW can take Epson’s larger capacity 'rhino' - the animal printed on the pack - ink cartridges, as well as the normal 'cheetah' ones, giving average economy of 2.2p for black and 6.7p for colour.
A capable, fast machine, with a good feature set, though text print can be jagged. ®
Next: HP Officejet 6500
The estimate for cleaning it was about the same price as new one "We have excellent deals on Epson printers at the moment." The printer was 18mo old and I'd had a previous Epson go titsup within two years, so I wasn't too keen on throwing more money at them. Reconnected the older HP which sprang to life and started printing just as well as it had done before, and used the Epson for scanning, CD printing, and scrap printing. After about 6 weeks the smudges went away and its back as the printer for photos.
But it shouldn't be like that. I shouldn't need to take the thing offline for several week, or take it to a service engineer in order to wipe the rollers with damp cloth, and perhaps I'm old fashioned but I've yet to accept the mindset of "slight problem throw away and get a new one".
CIS selling on Amazon
I've seen a CIS as an 'upsell' link on Amazon - just go to the 710 (or 610) product page and have a look at the related items.
I'm not a fan of CIS but that is mainly because my kids are liable to knock it over.
Did you try a local Epson service centre?
I had a similar issue with an older 300-series printer and my local Epson service centre managed to sort this out. Yes it cost, but still quite a bit cheaper than a replacement.
About the only thing that makes my Epson printer at home economical is the Continuous Ink System I got off someone on Ebay. It's great on my R200.
The problem with these enclosed all-in-ones is how I could squeeze something like that in there.
Anyone know of any efforts in this area?
The 710 is also a great printer. Has a paper tray that is fully internal and also prints CDs. Does not have the sheet feeder on top. But fantastic value at £110 on Amazon, and currently you can also order OEM ink at £30 a set instead of the RRP of £56.