back to article Ten... A3 inkjet printers

The most probable reasons for printing A3 documents are 1) posters or folded A4 newsletters, and 2) large photos. The types of printer needed for these two requirements are different. For posters and newsletters you want a machine intended primarily for plain paper print and it will save time if it can print duplex. For photos, …


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  1. Paul Crawford Silver badge

    Missing info

    All very well, but:

    (1) How are they supported on various OS? Linux in particular for me, but also MacOS versions, etc.

    (2) Any offer postscript?

    (3) Do they allow 3rd party ink as well, or like the Epson I got rid of, throw a wobbly and reject its *own brand* cartridge after a few pages were printed?

    1. Gene Cash Silver badge


      Or reject *any* cartridges after a dozen or so, claiming it "needs cleaning" because a cartridge counter ran out.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        there is an app for that

        a Russian techy has developed a tool that can read the chip content to show the counter stats and even reset them so that the Epson printers will work again. Saw this on a TV show about sustainability but didn't note the URL or name. You'll have to search ...

    2. Marvin the Martian

      and (4)

      Does cost per page refer to A3, or to A4 to make comparisons with other printer ranges feasible?

      /So the skintone-optimisation-orange makes the R2000 the best photo printer? So your typical picture consist of mostly skintones? Say no more!

  2. Steve Davies 3 Silver badge

    How about comparing costs with OnLine?

    I've been doing A3/A3+ printing for years. My venerable old Epson 2100 kicked the bucket last summer.

    After some careful research, I found that using Online companies such as PhotBox was more economical than doing it myself.

    How about telling us what the real costs per page for an A3 photo print on Glossy or SemiMatt paper? IT is certainly not going to be only a few pence.

    We also need to know how much replacement inks cost. Sometimes these cost nearly as much as the printer in the first place.

    Finally, we do need to know if the ink carts shipped with the printer are FULL or only half full.

    Come on El-Reg, you can (and must) do better.

    For that, you get an 'F'.

    1. Danny 14 Silver badge


      if you are doing lots of A3 then my first priority is looking for a good lyson bulk ink system. I have an R2400 (colour) and 1900 (used for mono) in daily use. They both run on bulk ink perfectly.

  3. John Smith 19 Gold badge

    I wonder if it has HP's "legendary" build quality?

    In *legend* HP's build quality was excellent.

    Whereas today I've always found it a bit s**t with a real nasty tendency for cartridges to report empty when half full and not permit re-fill.

    1. Christian Berger

      It used to be

      HP LaserJets use to run for decades. But you cannot expect that from an ink jet. You cannot build an ink jet which works, maintenance free for a decade, first the print-heads will clog, then the mechanics will wear out from that constant back and forth movement of the print head.

      A Laserprinter on the other hand mostly has smooth movements. (unless it's a Konica Minolta) You have your mirror drum which spins at a constant rate (unless it's an OKI which uses a fixed line of LEDs) and you have your paper transport. If you are using sheet paper, as so many printers do, the pickup will be a bit problematic, but that only occurs once per page.

  4. Steven Gray

    I imagine

    Lord Vader would find the dark lines of the Brother MFC-J5910DW all-in-one most impressive.

  5. nichomach


    should check the pricing of the kit prior to publishing; those Brothers are somewhat less than quoted. Actually, they're very popular with staff at our construction sites, but we pay a LOT less than £479 for one of the 6910s.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    K8600 - just don't.

    I've installed two of these in long term locations, and both have had massive problems with Windows 7 drivers and physical problems with the head assembly/train, and HP business support have been utterly useless.

    Long story short, both printers were replaced - one with an A3 colour laserjet, and one with an A3 Brother B+W laser (the customer never bothered using colour in the end - the colour cartridges running out stopped him from printing black though...), neither of which have been any bother, really.

    There's an Officejet 7500 on another site that comletely refuses to deal with envelopes, either - constantly multifeeds and jams regardless of the stock used, on it's second replacement printer within warranty now as a result.

    I realise one persons experience is not representative of everyone, but personally it's going to take a metric fuckton of convincing to make me recommend that one of my customers get an Officejet - especially after fiddling with a Canon Pro 9000, which felt like it was solid as a rock in comparison to the flaky, cheap feeling Officejet K8600, even though (without discounts) they both rock up at around the £300 mark.

    Posting Anon as my management may recognise these patterns of events and read here....

    1. nichomach

      As I said

      we've used a few of the A3 Brother machines, various models and so far (touch wood) they'e been steady as a rock, and that's on building sites. Might be worth a punt?

  7. banjomike

    Danger: Epson ink pad police

    The Epson Stylus Photo R2000 might be a brilliant printer but it also has the famous built-in system which kills the printer when it THINKS the ink pads will, possibly, be full. You will have a fully operational printer one minute, the next it will be dead and the official fix involves a trip to the official repairman and LOTS of money. You have been warned.

    In the USA, Epson will GIVE you a tiny piece of software to remove the error message and get your printer working again. In the UK the only fix Epson offer is a trip to the repair shop and loads of money (£80 according to my closest Epson repairer). In the US they email you a piece of software.

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    The Brother J6910Dw is incredible

    I got the brother J6910DW on sale for < $250 just before Christmas at newegg

    amazing printer:

    - can use "3rd party" cartridges (<$2 each on amazon)

    - prints AND scans at the same time (found out by accident -- expected one to wait until the other was done)

    - will print in black and white if the one or more of the color cartridges is out (try that with any of the other printers)

    - paper path makes it easy to clear a jam (remove paper tray/open door on back and access the entire paper path)

    - the duplex scanner scans quickly and would probably scan a brick if you could get it to fit (I haven't been able to make it jam, even with odd-size and odd-weight originals that were in "less than perfect condition") Since it scans both sides "at once" it doesn't have to feed the paper back and forth to scan the back, it works so much better at scanning odd-size/weight paper

    - does everything (duplex printing, duplex scanning, ledger-sized flatbed for scanning, etc...)

    I have a canon PIXMA Pro 9000 mark II that I got just for printing large photos (and it was on sale for < $200 after rebate) and it prints gorgeous pictures (on the canon paper), but the capabilities and speed of the brother beat it to death for anything else

    I used to use hp officejets, but i'm done with them -- the build quality, the pickiness with cartridges (sometimes they won't even take original HP cartridges) and the "trust us--it's empty" attitude to rip you off on ink

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    What about Epson WorkForce WF-7525?

    Hi, all,

    There is also an A3 all-in-one from Epson. It's called Epson WorkForce WF-7525. Can you review that one, too?

  10. The Calvinator

    I've been looking to digitise my life

    but the price of A3 scanner is horrendous. On the other hand these Brothers look impressive - less than half the price of an equivalent standalone scanner and an A3 printer as well. Being a naturally skeptical type I'm wondering if there's a catch. Is the scanner quality up to snuff? Or is this a case of the ink subsidising the hardware? Anyone who's used one care to comment?

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