Epson Stylus Photo R3000 Review

4.5
April 25, 2011 | Mark Goldstein | Printer Reviews |

Introduction

The Epson Stylus Photo R3000 is a new professional A3+ / 13-inch photo printer. Positioned above the older R2880 model, the R3000 features bigger ink cartridges, improved media handling, a redesigned print head and Ethernet and wireless-N connectivity. Retailing for £699 / $849, is the Epson R3000 a worthy successor to the popular R2880? Read our expert Epson Stylus Photo R3000 review to find out...

Way back in 2008, Epson released the Stylus Photo R2880, a 13-inch / A3+ printer using its latest UltraChrome K3 inkset. This model offered a few improvements over the older 2400 printer that it replaced, thanks to new Vivid Magenta and Vivid Light Magenta inks which increased the color accuracy and gamut of the printer, and direct printing to CD/DVD media.

The R2880 still didn't offer what a lot of photographers had been asking for, though, namely support for Photo and Matte Black inks being installed at the same time. This led to a lot of swapping of black cartridges when going from one type to the other, and therefore a lot of wasted time and effort if you routinely printed on different media. Thankfully the R3000 has both the Photo and Matte black inks installed at the same time, just one of the major enhancements that it offers, although they still share the same ink path and therefore require an automatic swap routine that flushes the ink out of the system (wasting up to 3ml of ink each time).

Chief amongst the R3000's other attractions are the much bigger 25.9ml ink cartridges, compared to the R2880's 11ml cartridges, and the greatly improved media handling for fine art media up to 1.3mm thick and roll paper up to 44 inches long. The R3000's redesigned print head has a maximum resolution of 5670x1440 dpi and variable-sized droplets as small as 2 picoliters (versus the R2880's 3 picoliters), and there is also Ethernet and wireless-N connectivity in addition to USB 2.0. The Epson Stylus Photo R3000 costs $849 / £699, with individual ink cartridges costing $25 / £25. The older R2880 is still available as the next model down the range.

Note that this is a review of a full-production version of the Epson R3000, not the early pre-production samples that several other websites have tested, and is therefore indicative of the final shipping quality.

Setup

Setup is relatively quick and very straight-forward. After unpacking the R3000 from the large box and removing all of the tape and packaging materials, which took around 10 minutes, you plug the printer in and follow the instructions to insert the 9 ink cartridges. While the R3000 charges the print head (another 10 minutes), you can install the software, including the printer drivers, user guides, ICC profiles, Epson Print CD, Easy Photo Print and and Epson Net programs. You can choose not to install Epson Print CD and Easy Photo Print. The software installtion took, yes you've guessed it, a further 10 minutes.

During the installation you'll be prompted to connect your computer to the printer. The R3000 has a USB 2.0 port which provides the most traditional connection, and also a very welcome Ethernet port, just like Epson's larger printers, which allows the R3000 to be shared across your network. Perhaps even more useful for the R3000's target user, Wi-Fi connectivity is offered, which is the option that we chose during installation. Setup was very easy, with the ability to enter your wi-fi settings directly via the printer's LCD screen, removing the need for any physical connection to your computer.

In total, the setup process took around 45 minutes from unboxing the R3000 to establishing a connection and sending the first print on its way. The brief printed instructions provided enough information to get us up and running with no problems at all.

The R3000 is quite a large printer at 24.2" x 14.5" x 9" (W x D x H) and 35lbs, with an extra 10 inches of space required at the rear if you use the front speciality paper feed, so you'll need a large, sturdy desk or surface to support it.

Printer Setup

Epson Stylus Photo R3000
Figure 1 - Unboxing

Epson Stylus Photo R3000
Figure 2 - Unboxed

Epson Stylus Photo R3000
Figure 3 - Trays Extended

Epson Stylus Photo R3000
Figure 4 - Control Panel

Epson Stylus Photo R3000
Figure 5 - Print Heads

Epson Stylus Photo R3000
Figure 6 - Ink Cartridges (empty)

Epson Stylus Photo R3000
Figure 7 - Power Leads / Inks / CD-Roms / Printed Instructions

Epson Stylus Photo R3000
Figure 8 - Switched On / Select Language

Epson Stylus Photo R3000
Figure 9 - Install Cartridges

Epson Stylus Photo R3000
Figure 10 - Cartridges Installed

Epson Stylus Photo R3000
Figure 11 - Initializing the Ink Cartridges

Epson Stylus Photo R3000
Figure 12 - Printer Ready!

Epson Stylus Photo R3000
Figure 13 - Wi-Fi Connection Enabled

Software Installation

Epson Stylus Photo R3000

Figure 14 - Install Options

Epson Stylus Photo R3000
Figure 15 - Full Software List

Epson Stylus Photo R3000
Figure 16 - Connection Options

Epson Stylus Photo R3000
Figure 17 - Printer Setup

Epson Stylus Photo R3000
Figure 18 - Connection Type

Epson Stylus Photo R3000
Figure 19 - Wi-Fi Setup

Epson Stylus Photo R3000
Figure 20 - Wi-Fi Setup Begins

Epson Stylus Photo R3000
Figure 21 - Wi-Fi Setup Complete

Entry Tags

review, photos, test, photo, professional, printer, a3, a3+, 13 inch, stylus photo, UltraChrome K3, r3000.epson, Epson Stylus Photo R3000

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Your Comments

39 Comments | Newest Oldest First | Post a Comment

#1 Dylan Roberts

OMG i so need a printer like this!, but i so don’t have the money.

11:10 am - Monday, April 25, 2011

#2 David Henry-Myers

Sorry Epson but I’m not buying ANY of your printers that are STILL not fitted with both Matte and Photo Black with cartridges that are ‘online’ all the time with no shared feed and no ‘flushing’.

Epson inks are one of the most expensive fluids on the planet and it is a disgrace that thousands of dollars are vanishing into the bowels of ‘maintenance’ tanks every year!

David Myers, Sydney, Australia

10:14 pm - Monday, April 25, 2011

#3 Dylan Roberts

Hey David thanks for that comment i guess i wront be saving for this printer after-al, im going to uni taking photography, got any small good Pinters that will do a great basic job? (inc ‘non-expecive’ ink)

2:08 am - Tuesday, April 26, 2011

#4 laith

i found it so expensive and i prefer 3 in one with scanner and copier.

5:34 pm - Tuesday, April 26, 2011

#5 rob

As much as I like the improvements on this machine over its predecessor, I will be saving my money for the new equivalent from Canon (should be coming out pretty soon).

12:17 am - Wednesday, April 27, 2011

#6 rob

Oh, I almost forgot, what’s up with all those missing images, Mark? Since a couple of months ago, all I see is one product image on top of the page in each article. All consecutive images after that one are replaced by blue squares with question marks, followed by a caption.

12:21 am - Wednesday, April 27, 2011

#7 Mark Goldstein

Rob, we are running anti-hotlinking on our images server to prevent theft of our images.

Your browser is not providing a referrer, so our images server has no way of knowing you are viewing our site (as opposed to someone else linking to our images directly from their own blog/site/form etc).

This is likely to be because your browser, computer or network security settings are configured to not send a referrer with the request for the image.

9:03 am - Thursday, May 5, 2011

#8 rob

Thanks, Mark. That explains the situation. Indeed, I have set my browser so that it does not send the referrer info (privacy thing). That also probably is the reason why my posts always get the error message, saying “Computer thinks that you may be a spammer”, or something to that effect…

Regards,
Rob

10:28 pm - Thursday, May 5, 2011

#9 Mark Goldstein

Hi Rob,

Glad to be of help!

Just out of interest, which browser are you using, and what was the specific setting that you’d set?

6:07 am - Friday, May 6, 2011

#10 rob

Mark, I have misinformed you. Sorry for that. It is not my browser that’s been set to not send the referrer info. Rather, it is one of the settings in the INTEGO VirusBarrier X6 for Mac.

Click the ‘Surf’ category button, then ‘Information Hiding’ tab and finally check the ‘Hide information about the last web site visited’ checkbox. The program even warns me that that setting may prevent me from accessing certain websites. I forgot about that since the time I have installed and configured the program. :)

If you are not using this application, I recommend it highly. It is not just a protection from viruses but also a very comprehensive web security tool. As far as I know, there is also Windows version, but don’t quote me on that…

10:57 pm - Friday, May 6, 2011

#11 Epson print head

Hello, Thanks for the support of the post!I share all of these same thoughts! The fact that you means someone is reading and liking it!

4:45 am - Thursday, June 2, 2011

#12 Juma Mwesigwa

Hello,
Am juma Mwesigwa living at Kahama district in Tanzania, I have been looking to your product op Epson R3000 I likely to have it for photo printing, how can I get it? Is it possible to get materials after fining it here in tanzania.

Thank you I would like to here from you soon.
Juma Mwesigwa
Kahama-Tanzania.

12:48 pm - Tuesday, June 21, 2011

#13 Irma Prunesquallor

@Mark Goldstein

> we are running anti-hotlinking on our images server to prevent theft of our images

Why do you think anyone would bother, and if they did, why would your care?  In any case, it is a trivial matter to get round your “protection”.

You just seem to be annoying people!

11:19 pm - Sunday, July 3, 2011

#14 Natalie

Uhoh… I just bought one of these (literally yesterday) and was so excited until I read others comments here… now have some concerns! I guess there are always good and bad comments on all products anyway, but didn’t read any good here (although the review itself sounds pretty good)... guess now only time will tell… here’s hoping!

2:52 am - Thursday, July 14, 2011

#15 rob

Hey, Natalie, don’t feel bad about your purchase. That is a solid (some may even say: “good”) printer from one of the top companies. It’s just that Epson is rather careless about wasting the precious ink (in their own self-interest). Besides, if you use anything other than Windows, you may find their software user-unfriendly.

10:20 pm - Thursday, July 14, 2011

#16 Dale

Does this printer normally ship with full set of inks or do they rip you of by including sample inks.

Dale

8:30 am - Saturday, August 27, 2011

#17 les wollam

my R1800 just broke. i’m looking for something a little less expensive than this. the k3 inks are wonderful, though. i really liked the output of the r1800, though it was really expensive to operate. this was especially true when i moved to mexico and they werent readily available

5:43 pm - Saturday, August 27, 2011

#18 LAURA

HELLO,
Now I have a new Epson Stylus Photo R300, but the impressions are very few color… There are any people have the same problem in this machine? What can I do ?

1:30 pm - Saturday, October 8, 2011

#19 paul iwala

would it be worth my while getting a photo printer such as the epson described above. i still work with film and have recently purchased a high-end flat bed scanner for purposes of archiving and web disposal (only). i think that for exhibition art work the quality from a printer, other than an expensive professional model, or, preferably traditional enlarger printing, simply would not reach the mark.

comments are welcome.

paul iwala

8:34 pm - Sunday, October 30, 2011

#20 rob

Paul,

If you want the exhibition quality, this printer certainly is capable of producing it. However, the flatbed scanner you’ve mentioned (and the software that came with it) may be, or may be not, more of a problem. You need a REALLY high-end flatbed scanner to be able to output scans that can compare to ones obtained with a dedicated film scanner.

If you wonder how the printer’s output quality compares to a traditional enlarger-printing, I think you could be in for a nice surprise. Today’s technology is way above and beyond the one from the 20th century.

Just take into consideration that if you are not familiar with scanning, post-processing and computer-printing, you may be disappointed with your initial results. These procedures have an inherent steep learning curve and take time and practice to be mastered.

10:12 pm - Monday, October 31, 2011

#21 sushil kUmar Agarwal

if anyone want to reduce the runnig cost of any epson printer with quality enhancement and print head life extended fro 4 times more, can contactme on .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Already proven in 3 years and more head life extended.

8:37 am - Tuesday, December 27, 2011

#22 Tom Didona

Ink cost aside if your aim is the best looking print buy this printer the image quality will amaze you

3:45 pm - Tuesday, February 28, 2012

#23 HSJ

I have the R 2880 printer and have found it to be the most expensive and frustrating tool—it eats ink cartridges IF it can recognize them, which often is not the case.  If the R 3000 does not provide major improvements in the ink cartridge design and cost it will be just another expensive gadget that prints beautifully once in a while—-more often than not only after replacing many very expensive ink cartridges.

9:46 pm - Monday, April 2, 2012

#24 Sushil Kumar Agarwal

Well We can make your Epson 2880 Most Economic Machine of the world for you.. If interested please call us on 9830064331 or email .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) .I am from Kolkata. S. K. Agarwal.

12:25 pm - Tuesday, April 3, 2012

#25 Pamela Holt

Is the Epson 3000 a good printer for black and white silver-gelatin-like prints?  I know the 7800 is the best, but it is quite pricey.  Thanks so much!

11:07 pm - Tuesday, April 10, 2012

#26 Tom Didona

Same ink smaller size paper I does as good a job as resin paper in a wet darkroom

12:51 am - Wednesday, April 11, 2012

#27 Pamela Holt

I just got a response to my question. I’m new to this site, so I don’t know how to say “thanks.”

1:27 am - Wednesday, April 11, 2012

#28 vinz

A new friendly user all in 1 printer has arrived. Epson Stylus NX420. It is compatible with office, school and business works. There are so many reasons to love about the Epson Stylus NX420. First off, it’s utterly inexpensive in terms of purchase price, considering it has WI-FI connectivity. Then it is designed with many attractive features any printer user would want in a printer, such as a 1.5 color LCD display, built-in memory card slots, Auto Photo Correction, and separate ink tanks - to name a few.

9:05 am - Thursday, May 24, 2012

#29 Spike Thompson

dont pay full price for ink. if you shop around you can always find original epson ink half price somewhere on web,  I have bought 2 full set of 9 inks just this week for less than £120 a set

At this price printing works out very economical and so much better than cheap ciss kits

10:12 pm - Monday, May 28, 2012

#30 JP

Our club has bought a Epson stylus r3000 and from brand new we’ve had problems, the colours were wrong and far too dark, pizza lines on some pictures bleeding on picture edge and more. Took it to their service centre in Frankston vic australia (as under warranty)who at first aggred that there was something wrong but then changed their mind and produce as proof that the machine was ok 2 of the same pictures, unfortunately for them one of the 2 pictures (they had not noticed before showing us) that the second picture was bad. They still refused to admit a problem citing that quite a bit of variance had to be expectedf fron this not very expensive printer???. If we can’t get satisfaction from higher up we will have to go to the umbudsman as this printer is definitely not fit for our purpose.

4:20 am - Thursday, October 18, 2012

#31 Sushil Kumar Agarwal

Dear Sir, for your epson 3000 printer. if u r in Kolkata city of India, bring it to my office and i wil solve your problem in 5 minutes. Sushil Kumar Agarwal. Itek Solutions. Kolkata . India. 033-22186404

5:27 am - Thursday, October 18, 2012

#32 Professional Photography

This is really a great device and the quality of pics printed out is also awesome.

12:39 pm - Friday, October 19, 2012

#33 Kips

I love this printer, easy to install in my Macbook Pro, print quality is awesome, but on occasion I get an error message that the installed ink cartridge does not match the settings. Not sure why, but a quick trouble shoot and all resolved. Love it, prints on all media and various sizes. Best of luck, Kips

6:30 pm - Thursday, December 20, 2012

#34 Freddie

Is there anyone out there using Photospeed Inkflow System with the Epson R3000 if so what do you think ?

1:25 pm - Friday, February 15, 2013

#35 Mel Brown

DO NOT BUY THIS PRINTER! I have used Epson printers for 18 years and have been happy. My most recent the Stylus Photo 1400 is terrific. I was very excited to buy the R3000 thinking it would make my prints even better. Wrong. They are washed out the blacks aren’t black there is no saturation unless you move the sliders to the far end of the scale. Everything is worse. I spent the morning testing every possible setting and have finally given up and am putting the GREAT DISAPPOINTMENT back in its box. Even if I don’t get a refund I don’t want to be reminded of my poor purchase.

8:17 pm - Saturday, February 23, 2013

#36 Jim Martinson

I purchased the r3000 after my r1800 injets plugged up. After a year and a half the r3000 did the same thing. I pumped over one hundred dollars worth of ink through it trying to unplug the ink jets. The nearest service center told me that a new set of heads for it costs more than a new printer. Get a three year warrantee or plan on buying a new one every couple of years (or less).

8:43 pm - Tuesday, April 16, 2013

#37 andrew.k kagiri

can i have some information on Epison xp 600 and artisan635 i see them around in kenya but cant see any information on the printers blog.

8:36 pm - Tuesday, August 13, 2013

#38 Anna Searle

Hi, I just bought this printer and i am busy setting it up. I noticed on the cartridges the yellow pull off tab, but I also noticed there are little clear tabs on the nozzle head. Do I take them off as well?

11:49 am - Wednesday, September 17, 2014

#39 Pamela Holt

I’m sorry, it’s been a long time since I used it. I think I remember having instructions for most of it.

4:19 pm - Wednesday, September 17, 2014