Reviewed: printing out pictures with the Epson L355

Call me old school, but I still print out the best of my pictures, and put them into albums. I know that there are dozens of online photo albums and ways to share them, but I still love going back to basics, so every few months I put my fave pictures on a flash drive, schlepp to the nearest photo store, and awkwardly select the prints on a screen while a kind store assistant watches over my shoulder.

I had five months' worth of backlogged pictures, so was ecstatic to borrow the Epson L355 for a bit, after having attended two of their function. Printing out quality pics in my own home without the pressure of people behind me, and without paying around R2.50 per print? Yes please! The details: The Epson L355 is a wireless all in one that excels in printing out glossy pictures at a fraction of the cost of store printing. The L355 can print, scan and copy wirelessly (so it's great for home and office use). Set up the printer once, plonk it anywhere you want and it will be printing from your computer, tablet or even phone.

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The ink: The printer has an the ink tank system that removes the need for a cartridge as they’re already technically built into the machine. Simply refill the ink tank and you’re good to go. It’s cheaper than a normal cartridge and since you can see how much ink is in the tank you never waste. As a bonus there are four ink tanks for the various colours meaning you only need to fill up the tank that is empty rather than throw away an entire cartridge for a single colour being low. From what I could find online ink tank refills cost R500 for all four colours meaning you’re paying about 7 cents per print. When you consider that a store print costs R2.50 per page so not only are you saving a bit of money but you’re also saving in time of having to go to a store to get your printing done. My thoughts: Where this printer really shines is when it comes to photos. We did a comparison with the exact same image printed in a store compared to the Epson and the Epson is not only the same but slightly better in quality. In terms of pricing the cost of the photo paper is about R150 for 70 pages, which comes to R2.14 per page.
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Even pictures taken on the iPhone came out pretty well in print

Another cool feature is the Epson is the first all in one I’ve found that can scan wirelessly as well as print. This is extremely useful otherwise you need to plug the printer into a computer, something that isn’t always convenient. In fact, I found myself one cold night printing out from my bed while I was under the covers, and in the morning I collated my prints. The Epson is compact, has low cost of ownership and also includes all the wireless gimmicks and smartphone apps you need to print your pictures out from across the room. It’s quiet, looks professional and should be part of any major home photographer's arsenal. Whether it’s pictures of your kids, holidays, work or anything in between, the Epson is a great printer for pictures and small offices. Some frame-worthy pics, printed via the Epson:

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The recommended retail price for the Epson L printers ranges from R1, 741.77 to R3, 892.48 (ex VAT) and R89.18 per an ink bottle.

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