The Stylus Photo R1900 is a £369 inc VAT B-size (13in by 19in) desktop printer with pigment-based inks, advanced paper-handling capabilities and productivity features aimed at serious amateurs and professional photographers.

Unlike the pricier Stylus Photo R2400, which is best known for its black-and-white printing capabilities (and its voracious appetite for ink), the Epson Stylus Photo R1900 is designed primarily to produce optimal colour prints.

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First look: Epson Stylus Photo R1900

In place of the R2400's light black and light light black inks, the Epson Stylus Photo R1900 has a gloss optimiser cartridge that sprays a clear overcoat on top of glossy media, producing a "superglossy" print that lacks the bronzing or dullness found in glossy prints made with most pigment-based printers.

The Epson Stylus Photo R1900 uses a reformulated inkset, called UltraChrome Hi-Gloss 2, consisting of eight individual inks: the gloss optimiser, matte and photo black, and cyan, magenta, yellow, red and orange.

Epson claims that the orange ink, which replaces blue in the original Hi-Gloss inks, increases the printer's overall gamut and provides improved flesh tones, while the new formulations of magenta and yellow inks improve the blues and greens, respectively, in most prints.

In conjunction with the new inks, the Epson Stylus Photo R1900 incorporates a new colour-imaging technology, Radiance, co-developed by Epson and the Rochester Institute of Technology's Munsell colour Science Lab. According to Epson, Radiance provides an advanced colour gamut; better ink efficiency; reduced grain; and minimised metameric failure, which results in "improved colour constancy under different lighting conditions".

In a nod to HP Epson also says that the Epson Stylus Photo R1900 will be colour-calibrated at the factory, a process that will produce consistent colour from unit to unit. (This has been something that Epson has long done during the manufacturing process for its Stylus Pro printers.)

The Epson Stylus Photo R1900 will also come with a set of ICC profiles for most Epson media types, including glossy, matte, and fine art papers and canvas.

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