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Epson R3000 Review

October 2011 | By Vincent Oliver

Review based on a production Epson R3000

It's now almost 10 years since Epson launched the Stylus Photo 2100. The SP2100 was an instant success due to its use of long lasting UltraChrome pigment inks which claimed a life of 200+ years. Many photographers were now ready to move out of the darkroom and fully embrace digital photography. The SP2100 set a new benchmark for digital photo printing. The quality of photos that this printer could produce was excellent: traditional wet chemistry process now had a serious rival. The SP2100 remained the de-facto choice that every serious photographer wanted. This was replaced some three years later by the R2400, followed by the R2800 and R2880. Other dye-ink based printers were also launched during this time, but for archival printing the only option is to use a pigment ink printer.

Epson has added another A3+ printer the R3000. This is not a replacement to the much-loved R2880, but comes in addition to Epson's professional line up that includes the R3880 A2 printer. The R3000 is aimed both at the professional and advanced hobbyist photographer who may want to produce a short print runs or limited edition prints.

The R3000 uses Epson's tried and tested UltraChrome K3 ink set, which consists of 9 inks including the new Vivid Magenta and four blacks. Although all the inks are loaded into the printer, you still have to perform a Matt & Photo Black swap routine. However, this has been greatly improved over previous models and now a very small amount of ink is used in the flushing process. Each cartridge has 25.9 ml of ink, not sure why Epson couldn't have splashed out on the extra 0.1 ml and made it 26 ml, I'm sure they have a reason. One of the major differences between the R3000 and previous models is that the ink cartridges now remain in a static position. On previous models the entire ink/heads cradle travelled up and down the print bar which limited the cartridge size and capacity.

What's in the box?

  • R3000 printer
  • Rear roll media holders
  • CD/DVD printing tray
  • X9 ink cartridges
  • Power cable
  • Installation disks

Foreword / notes

If you're new to digital photography you may wish to read some of our Digital Photography Glossary before diving into this article (it may help you understand some of the terms used).

Conclusion / recommendation / ratings are based on the opinion of the author, we recommend that you read the entire review before making any decision. Images which can be viewed at a larger size have a small magnifying glass icon in the bottom right corner of them, click to display a larger image in a new window.

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Dpreview use calibrated monitors at the PC normal gamma 2.2, this means that on our monitors we can make out the difference between all of the grayscale blocks below. We recommend to make the most of this review you should be able to see the difference (at least) between X,Y and Z and ideally also A, B and C.

 
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Comments

Total comments: 4
manchesterunited
By manchesterunited (1 month ago)

wat do you think of an r2000. Have you ever tried an R2000

Comment edited 30 seconds after posting
0 upvotes
Peter Wallburg Studios
By Peter Wallburg Studios (8 months ago)

Below is the letter I sent Epson support after my 4th R3000 printer broke within a year:
Hi, I can't believe I am writing to you. I have been a loyal Epson client for years. I have used every Gemini printer and then some. I have a portrait studio in Summit, NJ (www.peterwallburgstudios.com)and last year purchased an R3000 printer. In the past two months I have been sent 3 replacement printers. Today the last one stopped working properly. When I called tech support they informed me that I am now out of warranty and that I have to take it to a repair center. This is wrong on numerous levels. I just received this printer within the past month and to desert me at my busiest time of year is ethically and morally wrong. I could understand this if it were the original printer but it is not. I am very distressed at Epson and would appreciate your reconsidering the situation as I am desperately trying to get prints to my clients.

0 upvotes
Miike Dougherty
By Miike Dougherty (8 months ago)

My first R3000 had to be replaced 3 months ago because of relentless ink clogging due to the printer switching black inks to make matte prints. The replacement won't recognize the VM cartridge which is genuine Epson. While the glossy prints are outstanding, the printer is problematic. If you don't like to be frustrated, buy something else. I'm now researching what printer to replace it with.

0 upvotes
Robert Learner
By Robert Learner (5 months ago)

My 1800 clogged a few times, now my 1900 has a black jet clogged and I'm out of warranty. I go thru an absurd amount of ink too, the necessary cleaning just eats it, though these two printers have smaller cartridges than the 3000 so this might be less of an issue.

Am looking at a Canon Pixma 10 -- have either of you tried this? About had it w/Epson, every other time I try to use it there's a problem.

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Total comments: 4