Review Date: April 4th 2005
(out of 5 stars)
The Epson PictureMate is a printer that has a very specific purpose - printing 10x15cm glossy prints that rival traditional photo labs in an accessible and easy to use way. Unfortunately Epson have not really succeded in either aspect. Although the prints from the PictureMate look and feel great, are waterproof straight out of the printer and have a claimed lifespan of over 100 years, under closer scrutiny the quality is not there, with a clear horizontal banding effect and roller marks present. In terms of ease of use, the lack of a colour LCD screen that lets you see and select your photos is a real handicap when printing directly from a memory card. More minor complaints are the lack of paper choices - its either glossy or glossy with this printer - and the very slow print speeds. Around 2 minutes 30 seconds for a 10x15 inch print, even when connected to a computer, is too long if you are printing a batch of photos at once. The HP Photosmart 375, although around £40 / $30 more expensive, is in my opinion a better choice, with a colour LCD screen, more intuitive interface, faster print speed and crucially better image quality. Its only downsides are a lack of waterproofness and prints that need to be left to dry for a while before handling. The Epson PictureMate may meet the requirements of its target market, the general consumer, but it won't satisy the photographer in you.
UK - Epson PictureMate
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