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 user 2003-12-06 at 11:40:00 am Views: 130
  • #8111
    Epson Launches Five New Printers, 14 New Ink Cartridges

    In A flurry of activity during the last two weeks of October, Epson America launched three new desktop photo printers, a new multifunction photo printer, and a new wide-format printer. Epson introduced a total of 14 new ink cartridge SKUs to support the new printers, Including cartridges containing red and blue pigment-based inks and a cartridge containing a gloss optimizer that is used as an overcoat on certain colors to make their gloss equal to that of other color inks.

    The Stylus Photo R300 and R300M are the first Epson consumer-level photo printers with individual ink tanks. According to Steve Semos, product manager for consumer ink jet printers at Epson America, the new photo printers will replace all models in Epson’s consumer photo printer line, including the Stylus Photo 820, 825, and 925, once Epson sells its existing inventory of those products. The new printers contain card readers that support 11 different memory card formats for direct photo printing. The only difference between the R300 and the R300M is a 2.5-inch color LCD screen on the R300M that can be used for viewing and editing photos.

    According to Semos, the print engine used in the R300 series is the same basic mechanism used in the recently launched Stylus C64 (Journal, 10/03) and C84 (Journal, 9/03). “The R300 prints on CDs and DVDs and has an automatic platen gap adjustment [unlike the C64 and C84], but there are many common parts in the engines,” explains Semos. We noted that Epson has once again changed its model-numbering system and wondered if the R in the model number was indicative of anything special. “It means absolutely nothing,” laughs Semos, who explains that the firm had just about exhausted all the numbers with its previous Stylus Photo series of printers and decided to start over with the letter R as a prefix.

    The R300 series takes an all-new set of six dye-based ink cartridges. According to Semos, the composition of the ink has been changed to provide improved gas-fastness compared with previous Epson dye-based inks. Several years ago, Epson reported a fading problem caused by ambient ozone when using certain ink and media combinations, and the firm has worked actively to correct the problem. “We are continually making great improvements in our inks over the years,” claims Semos.