Epson have a lot of the headspace of printers for photographers, and so any new photo printer from them gets noticed. Here we review the R3000, an A3+ nine-colour printer.
The R3000 prints up to 13″x19″ on sheet or 13″ x 129″ (that’s 3.2m long) on roll media, making it great for panorama photographers. It uses nine inks, Photo Black or Matte Black, Light Black, Light Light Black, Cyan, Vivid Magenta, Yellow, Light Cyan and Light Vivid Magenta. It has USB, Ethernet and Wi-Fi connections.
Ok, so what is it like to use? Print quality is stunning. I used a range of papers, matt, semi-gloss and high gloss and the resulting images were simply amazing. It is also pretty fast, even when printing over Wi-Fi. Ink cartridges are large, so you certainly don’t change them often when printing smaller images and even with the big ones ink changes are nicely rare. Since they are all individual colours you only change the ones you need.
Wi-Fi setup was easy and it maintained the connection well. USB and Ethernet are likewise easy. You need to set the printer up with space behind it, either for a roll or because the top sheet holder angles back. That said, it is not a large printer and finds its place quite nicely in a smaller space. I tend to use a small trolley for such printers, so they are really easy to access.
My one gripe with this printer is that, though it has nine inks, it only has eight sets of print heads, so the matt black and normal black share the same heads, necessitating ink flushing when you change media. For some photographers this will not be an issue, as you will load up your preferred paper type and just use that. But in our case we had three people sharing it using the Wi-Fi connection and this became a pain. As I said, for most photographers and even studios this is not going to be an issue. For those who like to change their paper type from print to print, though, this is a real hassle and will increase the running cost over time. More importantly it wastes a lot of time that should not happen on a printer of this level.
Over the fairly extended time we had it in the studio here we put a lot of paper and ink through it and it worked flawlessly, with no paper miss feeds, something I have had problems with Epsons with in the past (only with larger sheets).
Providing you do not need to change paper types frequently, I can happily recommend the Epson R3000 as a great printer.