- Full duplex copying
- Very high capacity cartridges
- High print speed
- No print from USB drives
- Noisy when feeding paper
- Flimsy output tray
- Review Price: £187.00
- Very low running costs
- Full fax with 60 quick dials
- Wireless support with WPS setup
- Twin paper trays as standard
- Very easy maintenance
This isn’t the first time a printer company has tried to move inkjets into the low-end laser printer market, but these machines, including the Workforce Pro WP-4535DWF reviewed here, look the part, as well as out-performing equivalent lasers in several important respects. Epson has a vested interested in getting this project right, as it doesn’t make its own laser printers.
This is a robust machine, bearing a striking resemblance to colour laser and LED printers in the same price bracket. A couple of things distinguish it, however, as there’s an 80-sheet secondary paper tray at the rear, as well as the 250-sheet cassette at the front. This can be used for photo paper, something you’d be unlikely to need on a toner-based printer.
The output tray is a three-stage telescopic slide which pulls out from the front of the machine, making it rather flimsy and too easy to knock. In contrast the near horizontal Automatic Document Feeder (ADF) is surprisingly sleek, particularly when you realise that it’s a duplex device, which can scan both sides of a page in one operation.
The control panel includes a 63mm colour LCD display and a numeric pad for fax dialling and there are 60 quick dials available, too. The front-panel USB socket just below the controls is only available for USB drives, not PictBridge cameras, and then only for scanning too. Despite the LCD display, there is no facility for printing from this source.
The machine can be connected via USB, 10/100 Ethernet or wireless and it supports WPS setup, making WiFi very painless. The four ink cartridges slide in behind the pull-down front panel and click into place in what must be the quickest, simplest maintenance operation on any printer.
Epson has included all the necessary support software, including a copy of Epson Scan and a driver which includes useful print presets, covering tasks such as duplex and two-on-one print.
Epson rates the Workforce Pro WP-4535DWF at 26ppm for black print and 24ppm for colour and these figures are as silly as on previous Epson models. However, our real-world test showed a black speed of over 10ppm even on a short, 5-page document and up to 12.8p on a longer, 20-page one. More than this, a 20-side document printed as 10 duplex pages returned 8.5 sides per minute, far and away the fastest duplex speed we’ve seen on a sub-£200 printer.
A single page colour copy took a surprisingly long 28s, but a five-page black copy from the ADF completed in 52s and a 10-side duplex copy still took only 1:46. These are all, again, very good speeds.
We’ve always had provisos in reviews of Epson small business inkjets when it comes to print quality, but the new engine in these Workforce Pro machines shows that it is possible to get clean, well-reproduced text from a piezoelectric printhead.
The documents we printed were very good and this extended to the graphics in our colour test document. Even the colour photocopy produce good results, with little colour fade. Finally, a full-colour photo on Epson glossy paper produced an excellent image, more than good enough for any business use.
There are three different cartridge yields available on this machine: the standard capacity Big Ben set, the high-capacity Eiffel Tower set and the very high capacity Pyramid set. Using the Pyramid cartridges gives a page cost for a black page of 1.8p with colour costing 5.0p, both including 0.7p for paper. These are very low costs, way below those from a laser or LED printer and very competitive with something like HP’s https://www.trustedreviews.com/hp-officejet-pro-8000-enterprise-a811a_Printer_review Officejet Pro 8000 Enterprise A811a.
Epson’s Workforce Pro WP-4535DWF is something of a bargain. For under £200 you get a colour multifunction printer which can genuinely print at over 10ppm, or 8.5 sides per minute duplex, can produce full duplex copies, includes fax and can print a full-colour photo much better than any laser. With its highest yield cartridges, it can also print up to 3,400 pages between changes and at a cost of under two pence per black page. What’s not to like?
Score in detail
Print Speed 9
Print Quality 9
|Connection Type||Ethernet, USB|
|Extra Features||Duplex print and copy, fax, high yield cartridges|
|Number of Catridges||4|
|Sheet Capacity||250 sheets + 80 sheet tray|
|Print Resolution (Dots per inch)||4800 x 1240dpi|
|Rated Black Speed (Images per minute)||26ipm|
|Rated Colour Speed (Images per minute)||24ipm|
|Max Paper Weight||256g/sm|
|Print Without PC||Yes|
|Scan Resolution (Dots per inch)||1200 x 2400dpi|