If you take photography seriously, either as an enthusiastic amateur or in a semi-professional or professional sense, you need a printer which can reproduce colour and greyscale images with high quality. Epson’s Stylus Photo R3000 sits at the top of its range of dedicated, medium format photo printers and can handle paper up to A3 .
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Given the size of paper it can handle, the machine is not that big and although more convenient on a separate desk, is relatively easy to set up and use. It’s black and silver case has a fold-over-and-extend paper feed tray at the back and a pull-out and extend output tray at the front.
Paper from 15 x 10 cm to A3 can be loaded in the rear tray, but there’s also a flat feed from the front, for art media, posterboard and CD/DVD direct print, the last using a supplied disk carrier. Also provided are two end mounts for roll paper which slot in at the back.
For some while we’ve mentioned in reviews of larger photo printers that it would be useful to have an LCD display at the front, providing for control and status messages, and in this printer Epson has provided them. It shows status of the ink cartridges and provides easy to read menus for setup.
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There’s a front panel USB socket supporting PictBridge, for cameras which also use the standard, and can be connected directly. There are no memory card slots, though, which is a shame. Even professional photographers occasionally like to take a quick proof from a camera card and the LCD screen could have been pressed into service for thumbnail viewing.
At the back are sockets for USB and network and, in another departure for Epson, this machine also supports wireless connection and direct wireless printing from portable devices and wireless cameras.
Lift the top cover and a smaller internal cover and you have access to the nine ink cartridges. Yes, we did say nine, as this machine includes light cyan and magenta inks in addition to vivid shades and four blacks, with both photo and matte, plus light and light light black, or as we call them, greys. These extra shades make the Epson Stylus Photo R3000 particularly good at reproducing greyscale portraits.