Epson Artisan 1430 Inkjet Printer
Review by Dave
Let me start by saying the Epson Artisan 1430 is a giant printer. The box it is packed is big. It is heavy. It takes up half of my desk. You will likely want a second set of hands to help you unbox and set up. It really is that big of a device. Plan ahead on where you will place this unit as the paper feeder and output catch bin add to its footprint.
Despite its large size and weight, its a breeze, for the most part, to set up. Unboxing was a snap with the usual plastic wrap and tape to remove all the doors and trays etc. The unit ships with 6 standard ink cartridges, software drivers, a copy of PhotoShop Elements 9 (a $79 value), a power cord and a quick start guide in English and Spanish. The software disk includes a more detailed manual in PDF format but we didn’t find the need to access it.
As with most new printers, this unit is able to be used with wifi. I have set up many wifi printers and the typical struggle is using the limited printer controls to key in your wifi passcode. (you do have your wifi secured, right?) The Artisan 1430 makes this step easier, or more difficult, depending on your point of view. Because it doesn’t have its own display you can’t set up wifi from the unit itself. Instead, you have to make a one-time connection to your computer via USB cable. Because Epson doesn’t include a USB cable, you need to hunt one down, at what is usually the most inconvenient time. Keep in mind you must use a USB cable designed for printers and not one you may have for your camera or smart-phone. After you have gotten your hands on one, the process takes just a few moments. The setup software will ask permission to access your wifi network and then it assigns the password to your printer. The entire process takes 90 seconds. At this point, you can relocate the printer anywhere within your wifi network’s range. As with any setup directions, I like to read the entire process first to be prepared and then start.
The printer has a front USB port for compatible PicBridge cameras. This feature is seldom used as most will seek to edit their photos before printing. The software includes a built-in utility to view ink levels as well as a click to order ink button. This takes you to Epson’s site. The prices seemed fair but make sure to shop around.
So, now that you have your software installed, wifi setup (it also works just fine using standard USB connection if you do not have wifi) and paper loaded its time to get down to business.
This unit is able to print from 4×6 all the way up to 11×17 as well as CD/DVD using a supplied insert.
Because you have six dedicated ink colors (which run around $20 bucks each) and multiple paper sizes that are able to be loaded at the same time, you can queue up multiple print jobs and walk away for a cup of coffee knowing they will print as desired. The drivers do a great job of walking you through selecting paper and size for each job.
We tested both 4×6 and 8×10 photos as well as standard text and web pages.
You buy this to print photos so…..lets just say they look awesome. As good or better than a photo processor if you use Epson photo paper. The colors are vivid, the details are as crisp as the photo you print. In multiple, back to back prints we couldn’t make the 1430 stumble. Know, keep in mind that for close-ups and photos that have significant detail and color, the file you start with contributes to your success. The greater the density of pixels in your file the more detail your printer has to work with.
Our test shots were taken with a Nikon DLSR and the files were each more than 7MB of data.
The downside is that the 8×10 prints took nearly 5 minutes each. Again, we were printing large files and your mileage will vary with smaller files and smaller prints. I will gladly wait 5 minutes for a print that can be dropped in a frame and set on your credenza as a lasting memory.
If you use Epson paper and ink you are assured archival quality and fade resistance.
Text documents and web pages printed quickly and standard paper and came out dry to the touch with no smudging.
At $299 MSRP, the Epson Artisan 1430 Inkjet Printer is designed for photo enthusiasts or professionals seeking the ability to print presentation-ready prints for themselves or clients. It is a large machine, necessary to print 11×17 shots but the prints are stunning. Find the space for this and you will have a photo studio in your home or office.
Buy It: You can purchase online or visit the Epson Website
Disclosure: I was provided with product for this review. All views and opinions with regard to the products or the company are my own and were not influenced by the company.