Epson Workforce Ecotank All-in-one Printer – $499
We love our Epson Workforce Ecotank printer with reloadable ink!
If you’re just starting to “work from home,” because baby is on the way, or you’re preparing a career change, check out this new line Epson printers. They eliminate several bugaboos of home printers past:
- High cost of ink cartridges
- Printer unusable for scanning or copying, even when you’re just out of one color (orange?)
This new line of Epson printers, out for about nine months now, does away with cartridges. This is made easy for Epson versus their competition, because of the way the deliver ink in their print heads. You’ll likely see this in other printers some time in the future, but Epson will own the market for a while.
The concept is easy: when you get the printer, you also get a set of ink bottles. You have to carefully pour these into the printer’s ink wells, but then the printer is ready to print 1000’s of pages before a refill. The process can be a little messy if you’re not super-focused, but it’s easy for most to do. Basically, open bottle, open container on printer, and pour. I’d recommend not doing it while having a glass of wine or if you’re in a hurry.
Once set up, you do have to be careful if you want to move the printer. The ink wells on the printer are sealed but Epson provides a big plastic bag for packaging up the printer in the case of a move.
With ink inserted, the printer is simple to set up. Connect it to your home WIFI and you can print from iPad, smartphone or your desktop, all wirelessly. You will need to use a USB connection if you want to scan however unless you use the free Epson scan-to-the cloud feature.
We were less than wow-ed however with the photo printing of our 4550 even when printing on photo paper. Newer models we understand address this for more home printing flexibilty. Epson makes other printers that are strong for printing pro-looking photos if that is your objective.
These Epson Workforce printers, now starting at $279, are about 3x what you might pay for a small office printer. However, that cost is easily recouped within a year or two if you are doing normal office printing, and the convenience is worth the price if you can afford it.
- No ink cartridges! This of course, is the biggest benefit of the Epson Workforce printers.
- Easy to set up and use over wired USB, ethernet or WIFI
- Far more economical than ink jet or laser jet printers.
- Scanner, fax and print r functions do not quit working if you run out of ink
- Very fast printing
- 2-sided printing
- Only one paper slot. No manual paper slot so you must remove paper to print odd-sized shapes like envelopes.
- Print quality differs from Laser Jet though this may be unnoticeable to readers.
- Original high out of pocket cost.
- Early models not good for photos
I’d highly recommend this scanner for families or home office where you need to print out a lot of copies efficiently. The idea of refillable tanks is a game-changer for this industry.