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Epson Stylus SX600FW review

Verdict:

You get what you pay for. Excellent features and output in chunky form.

Review Date: 14 Nov 2008

Price when reviewed: inc VAT

Reviewed By: Colin Barrett

Our Rating 4 stars out of 5

The Stylus SX600W was the most expensive machine on test, but we could see why.

You get wired and wireless networking, automatic document feed, an LCD screen, a memory card reader and fax functions. It's an impressive specification, and the relatively high price is still affordable.

Photo prints from the SX600FW were very strong, with vivid and accurate colours. Our prints really did have that 'photo lab' look and feel. Output speeds were more than respectable, too.

Text reproduction was mixed. At best quality it stood out from the crowd, with sharply defined characters and a deep, solid black tone. But draft mode was poor, with a purplish grey finish that, although readable, wasn't something you'd ever want to use for documents anyone else would see.

Scanning was quick, and we found the Epson software driver one of the clearest and easiest. The 1200x2400dpi scanning engine produced a sharp and detailed image with no visible faults.

The onboard menu system took a bit of getting used to, but with so much to control it was hardly surprising it wasn't as simple as some. The SX600 is well constructed, with better quality plastics than most. Thanks to Ethernet and WiFi connections, it'll play nicely with other PCs on any home or office network. The most popular wireless security protocols are supported, so you won't have to compromise your protection to hook up the Epson.

Replacing all the inks will cost you an eye-watering £56. That's more than for any other machine on test, but as you'd expect the tanks are bigger, so running costs work out lower than average. Even taking into account the higher purchase price, you're getting good value here, and print quality is really very good. This is a chunky office machine rather than a compact home accessory, but there's a lot of technology packed in.

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