I’ve really enjoyed working from home for the past two years, even if it has sometimes meant I’ve had to invest in equipment that I would otherwise take for granted if I worked in a real-life office. So today I want to talk printers with you. Bear with me … this is revolutionary!
For the last six months, I thought I could get away without having a printer at home. I know, I know … but I was just getting so annoyed at having to sell my kidneys just to be able to buy ink cartridges all the time, so I figured there must be a way around it. However, after spending six months going to my Dad’s and best friend’s houses to use their printers every time I needed to print a boarding ticket or email from a client, I decided that I was, in fact, a moron and that I couldn’t actually live without a printer.
Epson’s timing therefore was impeccable, because they recently got in touch to see if I would like to try out the new EcoTank ET-4500 All-in-One Wireless Inkjet Printer with Fax.
My Dad and best friend are delighted.
The main premise of this new style of printer is that it doesn’t use ink cartridges. Amazing stuff! Instead, it has an ink tank built into the printer. You are given four bottles of coloured ink with your new printer, snap off the top of the plastic bottle (if you dye your hair like I do, you’ll know the type of thing I mean), and then you just pour the ink in. Simple.
The ink bottles are supposed to last for two years before they need replacing – I would imagine this is for domestic users like me, and even once they have run out, a replacement bottle only costs £7.99. So there is no cartridge to replace, you just top up the ink tank when it runs low. I think if you are a heavy printer, it would be worth buying your ink bottles in bulk so that you can save yourself even more money.
This is the ink tank on the side of the printer – just pour the ink from the bottles into the tank and voila!
The included ink bottles allow you to print up to 11,000 pages in black and colour, and I can’t see myself printing that much in five years, let alone two!
The printer was easy to set up, and one of the best features about it is that it is wireless, which means you can print from your phone and tablet as well as your laptop (you just need to download the Epson printing app). It also has a fax and scanner built in, although I think the last time I faxed anything was 1992. But still, it’s there if you need it.
As you can see, it comes securely packaged!
The printer was a lot smaller than I imagined – I had pictured a big hulking beast that was like the printers I used in offices in the ‘90s, but it’s actually rather petite (as far as printers go.) I noticed that the quality of the printing was also a lot better than my previous printer, but I really need to get out of the habit of buying cheap paper! I think from now on I will invest in something worthy of this new printer.
One thing I am excited to try out is printing photos – I currently have over 3,000 on my phone that haven’t seen the light of day (believe it or not, I’ve deleted 2,000 this week – mainly dating messages and photos of food), but it would be lovely to have some more photos around the house, so I’m looking forward to trying that out.
I’ll address the elephant in the room … this isn’t a cheap printer, BUT think about how much money you’ve spent on ink cartridges in your life and then do the maths – I’m pretty sure that over time, you’d recoup your outlay and more. Also, it doesn’t do double-sided printing, and you manually have to turn the page over yourself. So I just wanted to point those two things out.
Having said that, overall, I was really happy with the Epson EcoTank ET-4500. The quality of the printing was great and I think over time, I’ll save myself a lot of money on ink.