Monday, April 3, 2017

I Love My Printer!

How is everyone doing this morning?  After a beautiful weekend, it is now storming here in Northwest Georgia with tornadoes just south of us. 

I just wanted to share with you a review of a printer I purchased last year.  I'm in love with it!  I am a "hard copy" type of person.  Even when I create a 700-800 page product for my store on Teachers Pay Teachers, I always print off a hard copy of the product when I start the editing process.  There's just something comforting to me in having the printed version to look at.  Needless to say, I go through  a lot of ink.  I have made the mistake more than a couple of times of purchasing a cheaper printer and then spending a small fortune replacing ink cartridges.

Last year, at the end of March, my printer stopped printing so I headed to the office supply store to buy another printer.  I dreaded it since I knew I would also be buying all new ink cartridges that would more than likely cost as much or more than the new printer.  When I entered the store I noticed a printer sitting on the end of the isle with an advertisement that you could print over 11,000 black/white copies with one bottle of ink and 8,500 colored copies.  (Yes, I did say "bottle" instead of cartridge.)  The sign above the printer also claimed the bottled ink cost much, much less than ink cartridges.  The "bottle" thing didn't interest me.  So, instead of paying much attention to it, I let a very talkative sales associate almost persuade me to buy a unnecessarily large printer that was on clearance.  My husband kept mentioning the fact that I did not have enough space in my office for the dinosaur of a printer.  I didn't care.  It was on sale and had all kinds of fancy buttons and displays!  In fact, I had pretty much made up my mind to purchase the printer until my husband asked the sales associate a most important question, "How much is the ink and how many copies can be made with the ink cartridges?"  I wish I could tell you what the sales associate answered but, I can't.  The price of the ink cartridges was so outrageous and the amount of copies that could be printed was so low, that all thoughts left me!  I do know that one set of ink cartridges cost more than the printer did.  I also realized that I would be buying cartridges quite often.

I think we irritated the sales associate.  He went from being very involved with us and our purchase to suddenly having to go check on something.  As we continued to look, another sales associate came up to us and wanted to show us the printer we had initially looked at when we walked into the store (the one that used "bottles" of ink).  It was an Epson ET-4550.  It was quite a bit more than the gi-normous printer that I originally thought about buying and apparently has more plastic parts that other printers (I was told by the first sales associate that plastic means the printer is not made as well as other printers made with less plastic.)  I never knew this fact and I really didn't care.  The printer was originally $499.00, but was marked down to $487.98.  (That type of savings is almost an insult.)  However, the ink to fill the ink tanks was so reasonable that I made the sales associate walk me to the ink bottles and show me the price.  For a large bottle of ink, it costs $19.99.  The bottle of ink is more than is needed to fill the ink tank.  So, you can use it again, although it may not be enough ink to fill the tank completely the second time around.  My husband and I did the math and let me tell you, we decided that even if the Epson printer didn't last but a couple of years (because of the dreaded plastic buttons) we would still be better off buying it than any other printer in the store!  The only thing that scared me was filling ink tanks instead of quickly replacing a cartridge.

I have used and abused this Epson printer for over a year now and it is going strong!  I have never had one issue with it.  I don't know for sure if it makes as many copies as it advertises because I have never counted the copies, but I doubt it does.  I do know, however, that it makes copy after copy and I rarely have to refill the ink tanks.  The other really good thing about this printer is that it does not use any of the colored ink when you print in black/white.   This is a big savings on ink also.

I think the Epson ET-4550 is a good-looking printer and the size doesn't overwhelm the room.  

The plastic parts the salesman pointed out are primarily the buttons on the front.  I have never had one problem with the plastic buttons.  

This a receipt from purchasing a bottle of black ink.  
I rarely have to buy ink for this printer.  

My printer came with a starter pack of ink bottles.  You will be surprised how long these starter bottles last!  

This large bottle of ink costs $19.99, 
and lasts and lasts!

The ink tanks are on the side of the printer.  
You add ink to the fill line and you are done.  
This is the worst part of owning a ink tank printer though.  It is messy.  The printer even comes with plastic to lay down when filling the tanks.  I usually only have to fill the black ink tank though.  I wear plastic gloves and place a towel underneath the printer and surrounding areas.  (My shelves are white and I want them to stay that way. :) )  Actually, it was much easier and less stressful to fill after the first time. 

I also like the fact that I can visually view the ink levels at anytime I want.

      I purchased my Epson ET-4550 from Office Depot. The item number from Office Depot is 222692.  It still costs $499.00.  However, if you are an Amazon kind of person, they sell a couple of types of Epson printers similar to the one I bought.  Office Depot also has some less expensive Epson printers now that claim many of the same advantages as this printer.  However, I have not tried those printers and do not know if they are as good as the one I purchased.    

  • Ink is much less expensive
  • Ink lasts much longer than expensive ink cartridges
  • Connects wirelessly from a smartphone, table, or computer
  • Copy, scan, and fax directly from the control panel (You know, the control panel with the "plastic" buttons.) lol
  • 150 sheet tray  (I have owned printers in the past that didn't hold very much paper at all, making 150 sheet tray a definite pro for me.)
  • Good size, not overwhelming

  • Printer costs more than many other printers
  • Filling the ink tanks can be messy...and a little stressful
  • More plastic than some other printers (I don't personally count that as a con.)
I do love this printer!  It has been extremely dependable and easy to use!  The printer has already more than paid for itself with savings from ink cartridges.  

Just for the record, I am not associated with Epson or any of the stores listed in this blog post.  I simply bought a printer that I love and wanted to share this information and opinion with others.  Have a great week and happy printing!