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Printers - too much choice - help!


sarahjacintha

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Hello,

I'm going to have to post a lot of questions on this forum soon, so please be patient with me. I'm about to buy a printer and I've no idea which to choose; I'm constantly being told to back up my files by my computer, but it doesn't tell me how; etc. It's not that I'm unwilling to put in the legwork (as it were) in order to learn about computers, but every time I take the time to read about teccy stuff, I forget it 5 minutes later. I would love to be a geek but I'm afraid it's just not gonna happen.

Anyway, I've done a lot of reading of 'Amazon' reviews of wireless all in one printers (which is what I'm after) and each time I come across one that looks genuinely well rated, some comment about 'ease of set up' etc puts me off.

I'd like one whose wireless capability really does work (I've heard some of them just don't), I need a printer that isn't prone to paper jam issues (had a few of those) and, lastly, I would like to scan some old black and white photos onto my computer, mess with them a bit, then print them out as a surprise for my sister. As I don't have 'Photoshop' (or whatever it's called), can anyone recommend a printer that will be helpful in this respect? Bearing in mind I'm not a millionaire!

Hope to hear from someone soon, thanks, Sarah.

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chub_tor

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frybluff

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Of course, you've got to have the money to have the choice, but try to avoid the cheapest all-in-ones. It's an area where you do tend to get what you pay for.

As I said, I tend to be a Canon fan. Yes, their inks aren't cheap, but they're OK with reputable compatibles, and photo quality is worth paying a bit extra for. Set up isn't difficult, and instructions are very good, as is their Tech support. The only time I've had an issue with wi-fi was when I changed to a Laptop with 64bit Windows, and that was just a case of downloading the correct driver.

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Dragon_Heart

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I have a Epson PX720WD with a 6 ink CISS ( Continuous Ink Supply System ).

It's a wireless all in one and has a duplexer option ( auto double sided printing ).

In my view it has good scanning quality and good, fast photo prints, even in 'quiet mode'.

It has a large 'footprint' even bigger with the duplexer adapter fitted to the back, which can be removed.

Two paper trays A4 & A6.

It has also the option to print directly to suitable DVD's / CD's ( the decider for me ).

Set of the Wi Fi was, in my opinion, very easy.

Paper jams ? My old DX4400 was a 'direct' paper feed system whilst the PX720 turns the paper over inside the printer so COULD lead to paper jams with very poor quality paper. No problems so far !

The PX720 has been updated with a newer model but I understand you can still get the 720 for about £70.

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sarahjacintha

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Thank you all for taking time to give recommendations - I did research all of them! Those Canons do look sexy, but I'm a pauper, so:

An Epson Stylus SX445w is now winding its way to a local supermarket for collection. Should have it on or after the 22nd of this month. I bought it for £49 from ASDA Direct. Just happened upon it looking at reviews. I think it's currently on sale at Amazon for £55.50 So at first I thought I got a good deal.

Then I read the more detailed product info on Amazon's page and noticed the 'What's in the box' bit. It looks like they include print cartridges too - is this normal? Not sure if ASDA are supplying any (couldn't see any mention of it in the product description/specification bits). So my next question is about cartridges! Do I buy Epson cartridges (and if so, do I just need to buy the black/cyan/magents/yellow packs? Or do I need to buy a separate black cartridge and separate colour ones? Been a while since I bought cartridges!) Or can I get away with the popular 'compatibles'? Also, I'm confused as to what 'size' to buy? And is it better to buy 'doubles' (whatever they are).

I have noticed that official/original cartridges cost as much as the printer itself. Madness. But I'm worried about compatibles invalidating my warranty. What would you do?

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Nontek

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I have an Epson SX445W, and yes it should come with a complete set of cartridges. I have never known a new printer not to have new cartridges supplied.

I use Compatibles, and have done so for many years with no problems.

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frybluff

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My Canon originally came with first set of cartridges, but don't know if that's the case with all. Normally a full set of cartridges works out a bit cheaper than buying seperately, but you will probably find that some cartridges run out faster than others. You do need to keep eye out for good multi-buy deals.

Compatibles are not normally a problem, as long as you buy from reputable suppliers. Avoid the temptation to buy REALLY cheap ones. You certainly won't invalidate warranty, by using them, but I would read the "small print". You won't get much sympathy from manufacturer, if you complain about poor printing, and it turns out to be due to rubbish ink.

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Nontek

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BTW, I bought mine new via Amazon! I buy my cartridges from Choice Stationery on-line.

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Dragon_Heart

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I understand if the manufacturer claims the printer was damaged using 'compatible' inks they have to prove it ! Buy in set's, you can sometimes get two of each colour plus three black in one set. Large capacity ones are more economic.

The cost of your printer is about right with ASDA, TESCO and ARGOS offering it at around the same price.

In my experience printers come with a set of cartridges, they may not be the normal full capacity ones, but at least you can get started right out of the box.

Buying a new printer is only half the story. Printer manufacturers supply what they claim to be cheap printers because they recover their development and manufacturing costs via the cost of original cartridges.

That's why I went for a CISS system. Got mine from City Ink Express in Derby and they are, in my opinion, a very good company to deal with ( no ! It's not my brother ! ).

They have a system to suit your new printer, Yes it costs more than the printer did but at £60 plus p & p for a 'full' system it will outlast 5 or 6 sets of cartridges, then you just refill, which is also very simple & easy

http://www.cityinkexpress.co.uk/ciss/epson/sx445w/sx-series

The software that comes with the printer will be a good starting point to 'sort out' your scanned photo's. Get yourself a microfibre cloth to clean your photo's prior to scanning.

Let us know how the wireless set up goes for you ?

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sarahjacintha

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Hello all,

1) It came with cartridges - and I think I installed them correctly!

2) Wi-fi OK (I think!). In that two test pages printed without need of a USB 'A to B' lead thingy. I bought one just in case, but was thrilled to discover I didn't need it (though I don't like to crow too soon).

3) First test page was blurred but second didn't run and was fine. Maybe 'teething' etc?

4) Both pages printed wonky though. This may be due to my not inserting the paper properly - though I fanned the pages as instructed and was gentle with the printer! I've always had trouble with paper feed
mechanisms. Any guide marks are not clearly marked enough, in my view.

5) Thanks for the tips 'Dragon', I will investigate the Ciss thing - and get one of those microfibre cloths tomorrow!

6) If I can master the paper feed business I'll be OK. As far as set-up, Wi-Fi capability etc goes I'm thoroughly relieved to report that things went OK (up to now). If I can do it a monkey...etc.

Ta for now!  Sarah.
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Nontek

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sarahjacintha

Thanks for your feedback, being a fan of Epson I admire your choice, I am sure you will soon get used to the paper-feed, it really is not a problem.

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