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Epson Stylus Office BX300FW review

Kat Orphanides
16 Apr 2009
Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
42
inc VAT

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Specifications

colour inkjet MFP, 31ppm print speed, USB, 235x460x411mm

Epson's Stylus Office BX300F is a stylish inkjet MFP that has a built-in fax machine.

The individual ink cartridges are also a luxury at this price, as most budget MFPs use combined tri-colour cartridges. Unfortunately, while individual ink cartridges usually save money, the BX300FW has relatively high print costs.

We were impressed by the standard-quality mono test, which produced clear, well-defined lettering that rivalled that of the laser printers. Print speeds of 3.7ppm were less pleasing, as was draft-quality text, which was too pale.

The BX300FW can produce stunning colour prints in its Text & Graphics mode. Our complex colour test document looked great, with rich areas of solid colour and fine shading. Unfortunately, high-quality document printing was slow, with our test print emerging at just 0.4ppm. Colour documents printed at Text quality were faster, but still printed at an unacceptably slow 0.7ppm and suffered from slight but visible streaks. Photo prints had smooth shading, sharp detail and vivid dark tones, but some bright colours looked muted.

Scan quality was excellent on photos and documents, with smooth and accurate colour and shading in our photo scans and clear, legible lettering on 150dpi document scans. A 1,200dpi 6x4in scan took over two minutes, but scans at lower resolutions were fairly quick.

The BX300FW has an ADF for multi-page scans and faxes, but it jammed constantly during our 10-page test, so we were unable to obtain either meaningful speed figures or correctly scanned samples.

We'd like to be able to recommend the BX300FW, but it's undermined by relatively high print costs, a jam-prone ADF and slow colour print speeds. If you're looking for a cheap MFP, Canon's Pixma MP240 is better; if you're going to do a lot of printing, the HP Officejet Pro 8500 Wireless's low print costs will save you money in the long run.

Basic Specifications

Rating**
Maximum native print resolution5,760x1,440dpi
Max optical resolution1,200x2,400dpi
Output bit depth48-bit

Quoted Speeds

Quoted speed, mono A431ppm
Quoted speed, colour A415ppm

Tested Print Speeds

Time for two 10x8in photos 1.020m 2s
Time for six 6x4in photos 1.058m 23s

Physical and Environmental

Standard printer interfacesUSB
Optional printer interfacesnone
Size235x460x411mm
Weight7.2kg
Noise (in normal use)39dB(A)
Power consumption standby3W
Power consumption idle5W
Power consumption active12W

Paper Handling

Maximum paper sizeA4/legal
Maximum paper weight225gsm
Standard paper inputs1
Standard paper input capacity150
Maximum paper inputs1
Maximum paper input capacity150
Duplex (code, cost if option)No

General

Printer technologypiezo inkjet
Supported operating systemsWindows 2000/XP/XP-64/Vista, Mac OS X 10.3.9 - 10.5
Other inkjet featuresnone
Other inkjet optionsnone

Buying Information

Price£42
Consumable parts and prices260 page black T0711, 535 page cyan T0712, 295 page magenta, 500 page yellow, £6.68 each
Price per colour A4 page4.9p
Quoted life of supplied black cartridge260 pages (ISO/IEC 24712)
Quoted life of supplied colour cartridge(s)535 cyan, 295 magenta, 500 yellow pages (ISO/IEC 24712)
Quoted life of supplied photo cartridge(s)N/A
Warrantyone year RTB
Supplierhttp://www.lambda-tek.com/componentshop
Detailswww.epson.co.uk

Print Quality

Number of ink colours4
Number of ink cartridges4
Maximum number of ink colours4
Maximum number of cartridges4
Quoted photo durability40 years
Quoted photo durability sourceWilhelm Imaging Research

Tested Scan Speeds

Full scan area preview10s
A4 document at 150dpi21s
A4 document at 300dpi30s
6x4in photo at 600dpi41s
6x4in photo at 1200dpi2m 12s

Tested Copy Speeds

Time for single A4 mono copy 1.044s
Time for single A4 colour copy 1.01m 9s
Time for 10 A4 copies using feeder 2.0Fail

Photo Features

PictBridge supportYes
Borderless printingup to A4
Direct (PC-less) printingYes
Supported memory cardsnone
CD printingNo

Copy Features

Maximum number of copies99
Max mono copy resolution1,200x2,400dpi
Max colour copy resolution1,200x2,400dpi

Fax Features

Max mono fax resolution200x200dpi
Fax memory (maximum mono pages)180