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Printer Primer, Expression ET-2550 EcoTank AIO
October 16, 2015
Announced back in August with a slew of other new Epson printers the Expression ET-2550 EcoTank™ AIO is a 3-in-1 (print, scan, copy) device aimed at home users. It is part of a new series of Epson inkjets with the purpose of driving value through what many consider the most expensive part of operating the printer—the ink. We will discuss this in further detail below. While printing speed is not its primary attraction, it still offers users a reasonable 9.0 ISO ppm for black output and 4.5 ISO ppm for color pages. Because of the ink system the unit is a bit larger than other similarly functioning units with a footprint of 19.3" x 20.7" 11.6" (W x D x H) when printing, though it weighs only about 10 lbs.COMPARE HP INSTANT INK WITH EPSON SUPERTANK
The Expression ET-2550 has a solid set of features that should certainly match up to the needs of its intended home audience. For starters, with its 1.44” display, users can access machine menus and functions as well as preview photos before printing. There are also memory card slots which allow photos to be printed without ever turning on a computer. As with many new printers these days, Epson has been sure to include several options for both wireless and mobile printing. Print to the unit from any room in the house with support for Wi-Fi printing or connect your mobile devices directly to the printer with a Wi-Fi Direct connection. Mobile printing options include Epson Connect which allows users to print to and scan from compatible devices from almost anywhere and access or create files in your cloud storage services like Dropbox and Google Drive among others. It is easy to print from iOS devices with Apple AirPrint™ while on the same local network or from virtually anywhere when connected via Google Cloud Print. The Expression ET-2550 has also been certified by Mopria, an organization dedicated to providing a simple and intuitive mobile printing experience.
Paper handling on this unit is about what you?d expect for standard home use. Users can load up to 100 sheets of plain paper at once, or opt for up to 10 envelopes or 20 sheets of photo paper. There is no dedicated second tray available on this unit as you may find on other more expensive ones. The device also lacks automatic two-sided printing, which may or may not be an inconvenience depending on how users opt to print.
As we noted above, the EcoTank Epson models take aim at a hotly debated topic in printing: the cost of printer ink. EcoTank is Epson’s solution to the problem which gives users an astounding amount of ink upfront with the promise that it will last for up to two years or 4,500 black and 6,000 color pages. Once the ink needs to be replaced, users buy replacement bottles which run $13 a piece, or $52 for a full set—certainly not too shabby for two years of printing. Doing the math, users could print about 188 pages a month of black text only, and 250 color pages each month without running out. That should be more than enough for most homes. Epson says the yields are equivalent to roughly 20 sets of ink cartridges that would otherwise have to be purchased over the time period.
It is worth pointing out that HP has adopted a slightly different model for providing value in printing pages with their Instant Ink program. In that program, users select a plan that best suits their estimated number of printed pages: 50 pages @ $2.99, 100 pages @$4.99, and 300 pages @$9.99. Unused pages (up to the original monthly allotment), can be rolled over each month, or if you go over, it cost a $1.00 for an extension of 15, 20, or 25 pages (depending on which plan you subscribe to. With HP, the original eligible units will cost less than the EcoTank models, but you are paying for ink more frequently, though it does not require trips to the office supply store as the printer ink is shipped straight to your door.
At any rate, the Epson Expression ET-2550 AIO is available from the company for $399.99. For more information on the unit, visit the product page on the Epson website.