Epson XP-30

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Epson Expression XP-30 review

Photo-i has been live for over 10 years now and in this time we have reviewed almost all new printers, although the focus has been mainly on top of the range photo printers. In this review I want to take a look at the capability of an entry level printer the Epson Expression Home XP-30, a printer that only cost’s £39.99.

This the smallest A4 printer that Epson has produced to date, it’s aimed at the home user and student who may be short on space (and cash). The printer uses four individual Claria ink cartridges; Cyan, Magenta, Yellow and Black, which are available in Standard or XL sizes. Epson uses images on the cartridge packaging to clearly identify the right ink for each printer model, this ink set uses a photo of a Daisy flower.

The printer has a very small footprint of 390 x 215 x 130mm (Width x Depth x Height) and weight of 2.3kg. But don’t be put off by this small size, Epson have packed some very sophisticated technology into the box including, Epson’s Micro Piezo™ print head which uses 128 nozzles for black and 42 nozzles for each colour with a 3pl droplet size. The printer has a resolution of 5760 x 1440 dpi.

The overall construction is perhaps not up to their top of the range models but nevertheless I don’t get the feeling that Epson have made any drastic money saving compromises on the quality of materials used.

Epson XP-30 ready to load inks

The printer has a two section rear gravity feed media holder with a simple grey slider to hold the paper in position. At the front is a two section tray with a folding flap to prevent printed pages from falling on the desk or floor. On the top are two buttons, Power and print cancel. The printer uses a USB connection, (cable not supplied), a mains cable is included together with four inks. And that is it, a simple no fuss printer.

Installation

Plug in the power cable and press the Power button, open the cover and the print head cradle moves into position ready for you to install the ink cartridges, remove the yellow tab on each cartridge and fit the inks into the printer.

Four ink cartridges are easy to fit

Next insert the Drivers CD and let the Wizard install the printer. The software connects to the Epson web site and downloads the latest drivers and on-line manual, this process also downloaded the latest firmware which requires you to turn the printer off and on again. The update took approx 2 minutes.  Epson’s Easy Photo Print software is also installed. When prompted, connect a USB cable to the printer and computer and that is it, we are now ready to produce the first print. The installation process took approx ten minutes.

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