Epson’s SureColor photo printer series gets 17-inch model, but inks still pricey

epson adds 17 inch model to new surecolor series of photo printers p800 front
For the past few years, Epson’s entry-level, 17-inch professional printer has been the Stylus Pro 3880 (an Editors’ Choice printer). Well, no more: Epson has announced a successor, the SureColor P800. As with the Stylus Pro 3880, the SureColor P800 can handle paper and roll media (with the optional roll paper adapter) up to 17 inches in width.

The SureColor P800’s media-handling capabilities include a front-in, front-out paper path for printing on heavier fine art papers and poster board. When using roll paper, prints can extend up to 10 feet for banners and panoramas.

New to the P800 (and the previously introduced 13-inch SureColor P600) is Epson’s UltraChrome HD pigment technology ink, which delivers outstanding color with improved black density and print permanence. Nine 80ml ink cartridges offer high capacity, and the printer automatically switches between Photo and Matte Black inks. The P800 also has an advanced Black-and-White print mode for professional-level neutral or toned black-and-white prints. Connectivity options include USB 2.0, Ethernet, Wi-Fi (802.11n), Wi-Fi Direct, Apple AirPrint and Google Cloud Print.

The SureColor P800 will be available in June 2015. The SureColor P800 is priced at $1,295 (MSRP); the optional Roll Paper Adapter is $200 (MSRP), and UltraChrome HD ink cartridges are priced at $60 each.

Until we get our hands on a unit, we have an idea of how the SureColor P800 will perform by looking at the SureColor P600. In our review, which we awarded the printer our Editors’ Choice award, we found the new ink system to provide excellent color accuracy and saturation. We liked the various media-handling options, and the black-and-white performance. We thought 13 inches was limiting, so the SureColor P800 solves that problem. However, it’s a significant premium, as inks are still very expensive.

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