Epson Stylus Photo PX810FW review

Epson's latest inkjet MFP prints brilliant photos but its other features aren't good enough to justify the price.

20 Apr 2010
Epson Stylus Photo PX810FW
Our Rating 
3/5
Price when reviewed 
250
inc VAT

Specifications

40ppm print speed, USB, 10/100 Ethernet, 802.11b/g, PictBridge USB, 198x466x458mm

The PX810FW is the latest A4 MFP in Epson's Photo Stylus range, with a memory card reader, touchscreen and full fax, print, scan and copy capabilities. It's aimed at users who are serious about their home photo printing and uses a set of six Epson Claria photo inks. Unlike many A4 inkjets, high capacity cartridges are available in the form of Epson's T079 Owl inks, which can lower your print costs to 7.5p from around 13p per mixed-colour page using the T080 Hummingbird inks. Another feature likely to endear the PX810FW to photographers is its dedicated photo tray for 6x4in, 7x5in or 16:9 paper.

A large front panel combines a touchscreen display with several touchpad buttons. You can use it to send faxes and carry out PC-less printing, scanning and copying options. Unfortunately it looks ugly and feels unresponsive. Many of the menus are poorly designed, like a copy enlargement screen that requires you to tap a button over-and-over to change the size.

The Windows installer lets you select which components you want, which can save a little time and disk space. You can connect the printer via USB, 10/100 Ethernet or WiFi. Wireless configuration is unnecessarily complicated. You can select your network using the touchscreen, but the only way to enter your password is by laboriously scrolling through a list of letters. You can also configure the wireless settings by connecting a USB cable during installation, but this is still unwieldy

Document printing isn't outstanding but it's better than that of some models in the same range. Draft text is pale but solid - and it's quick too at 17.6ppm. Normal text is a bit fuzzy around the edges but dark, legible and reasonably speedy at 8.1ppm. Colour documents printed at 5.5ppm - we used the printer's standard Text quality setting to achieve this speed. Colour illustrations looked a little pale but quality was usable. This MFP is at its strongest though when printing photos - all our prints looked gorgeous, with bright, accurate colours, excellent contrast and no visible dithering in shaded areas. A 6x4in print at the highest quality setting takes around one minute and 19 seconds.

Epson's scanner interface is brilliant, with various modes making it easy to use whether you want to control every detail or just click and scan. Scan speeds are quick, too - a 600dpi 6x4in photo scan took just 13 seconds. However, the 4,800x4,800dpi scanner isn't the best we've seen from Epson. It captures fine detail accurately, but some subtlety of colour and shading is lost. Colour copy quality is also a little inaccurate but we were happy with mono.

The PX810 prints stunning photos and costs surprisingly little to run but scan quality and plain paper prints are merely usable, rather than outstanding. For £250, you could easily buy better stand-alone printers and scanners, or a more well-rounded photo MFP like Canon's similarly priced Pixma MP990.

Basic Specifications

Rating ***
Maximum native print resolution 5,760x1,440dpi
Max optical resolution 4,800x4,800dpi
Output bit depth 48-bit

Quoted Speeds

Quoted speed, mono A4 40ppm
Quoted speed, colour A4 40ppm

Tested Print Speeds

Time for two 10x8in photos 1.0 4m 8s
Time for six 6x4in photos 1.0 7m 54s

Physical and Environmental

Standard printer interfaces USB, 10/100 Ethernet, 802.11b/g, PictBridge USB
Optional printer interfaces £21
Size 198x466x458mm
Weight 11.3kg
Noise (in normal use) 34dB(A)

Paper Handling

Maximum paper size up to A4
Maximum paper weight 225gsm
Standard paper inputs 1
Standard paper input capacity 120
Maximum paper inputs 1
Maximum paper input capacity 120
Duplex (code, cost if option) Yes

General

Printer technology piezo inkjet
Supported operating systems Windows 2000/XP/XP 64-bit/Vista/7, Mac OS X 10.3.9+
Other inkjet features 8.9in colour LCD touchscreen
Other inkjet options £41

Buying Information

Price £250
Consumable parts and prices £10.79; 700
Price per colour A4 page 5.7p
Quoted life of supplied black cartridge 340
Quoted life of supplied colour cartridge(s) 925 cyan, 445 magenta, 640 yellow, 330 light cyan, 635 light magenta
Quoted life of supplied photo cartridge(s) N/A
Warranty one year RTB
Supplier http://www.amazon.co.uk
Details www.epson.co.uk

Print Quality

Number of ink colours 6
Number of ink cartridges 6
Maximum number of ink colours 6
Maximum number of cartridges 6
Quoted photo durability 98 years
Quoted photo durability source Wilhelm Imaging Research

Tested Scan Speeds

Full scan area preview 6s
A4 document at 150dpi 7s
A4 document at 300dpi 10s
6x4in photo at 600dpi 13s
6x4in photo at 1200dpi 49s

Tested Copy Speeds

Time for single A4 mono copy 1.0 16s
Time for single A4 colour copy 1.0 37s
Time for 10 A4 copies using feeder 2.0 2m 11s

Photo Features

PictBridge support Yes
Borderless printing up to A4
Direct (PC-less) printing Yes
Supported memory cards SD, SDHC, CF, MicroDrive, Memory Stick PRO, MMC, MMCplus, xD
CD printing Yes

Copy Features

Maximum number of copies 99

Fax Features

Max mono fax resolution 200x200dpi
Fax memory (maximum mono pages) 180