All of the reviews I read (CNET, PC Mag, Consumer Reports) about the Epson photo printers rave about the quality and durability of prints. However I have not yet seen output head to head versus the competition (they should ban the sample print pages!) or used one in a day to day situation.
Can anyone comment on the Epson Stylus P870, please??
I went to BestBuy with my flash and printed one of MY 2.2Mpixel pix on an HP P1000, Lexmark/Kodak Personal Picture Maker 200 (neat built in LCD!) and a Canon BJC-8200. NONE of these were acceptable in my book, but the HP was better than the others. Unfortunately the best buy flunky wouldn't let me use photo paper (should have brought some of my own!) so my comparison was on a decent 'ink jet' paper.
Anyhow, the Lexmark/Kodak (worst of the bunch) had colors which were far too saturated and lost much of the picture's details. The Canon showed too much striping (you could see separate passes of the print head in several areas) and $100 a cartridge, come on!!! The HP was better, but still didn't look to be anything the "quality" of their demo page.
Called Epson support and they had decent and prompt response to some questions - ranging from trivial to rather technical pc and photo related. Epson does a 1270 printer (2x price of 870) which does 11" x 17", unfortunatley for me I think this size would best be used by 3M pix or better. They also have a 2000P professional printer $900 which I am drooling over - they guarantee the prints for 200 years (versus 20). But again, I have yet to actually see the output.
I have 4 friends with Epsons (3-850s, 1-900) and we all think they are the best overall printer you can buy for home use. Pics need to use rather expensive photo gloss paper.. the only negative. If you are a spec nut, look at the Epson droplet size! Nothing can touch it and it shows in your color prints. B/W printing decent and as good as Ill ever need.
Good initiative with taking the camera with you, but you made a very critical mistake.
Paper is as important as the actual printer! A 2 year old printer with high quality photo paper can produce better output then the latest and greatest printer using regular (inkjet/laserjet) paper!!!
Next time, but a package of paper (~1$ per page) and take it with you.. and then tell us the output quality.. you'd be shocked..
P.S. I still own an HP DeskJet 540 and am looking to get a good inkjet printer for my photo outputs from my Kodak DC-280.. I'll be either buying the Canon-8200 or Epson 870.
I got the Photo Stylus EX 2 yrs ago and it's still printing great...in the past printed maybe a bit red...but that's probably because I'm red-green color deficient, or because the monitors weren't very accurate...now I'm on a Micron\CTX\Sony FD trinitron monitor so that should improve...good luck...Kit
Sorry this is a bit late, but just in case this post is still relevant, I to have and Epson, (a stylus 440 to be exact, the cheap early 98-99 model) And i have no regrets at all, we have HP printers at my work, and i find that the ink jet types are normally expensive to run, clunky, and extreemly unreliable. Un top of this they do not offer print quality anything like the Epson range.
Epson printers are not fast or quiet. But if you wan't those things get a canon. For quality, Epson all the way.