Epson Artisan 1430 Inkjet Printer


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    Photo Review 9
    User Rating: 7/10 (3 votes cast)

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    Epson Artisan 1430 Inkjet Printer

      In summary

      Epson's Artisan 1430 printer arrives roughly five years after the Stylus Photo 1410 model it replaces. The case of the Artisan 1430 is slightly larger and more substantial than the 1410 and the control buttons are on the top panel, where they're easier to access. But little has changed internally, save for the addition of built-in Wi-Fi Certified (802.11n) wireless networking and Epson's new Connect system for printing on-the-go from mobile devices or via email.  . . [more]

      Full review

      Epson's Artisan 1430 printer arrives roughly five years after the Stylus Photo 1410 model it replaces. The case of the Artisan 1430 is slightly larger and more substantial than the 1410 and the control buttons are on the top panel, where they're easier to access. But little has changed internally, save for the addition of  built-in Wi-Fi Certified (802.11n) wireless networking and Epson's new Connect system for printing on-the-go from mobile devices or via email.

      The Epson Artisan 1430 A3+ inkjet printer

      New Features
      Built-in WiFi (IEEE 802.11b/g/n) represents a significant enhancement in the new printer as it enables multiple users to share the printer on a home or small office wireless network.  Epson Connect lets users print from their email-enabled smart-phones, tablets and laptops.

      It includes two built-in 'solutions', Epson Email Print and Epson iPrint App. The former allows you to send documents for printing via email to anyone with an Epson printer, anywhere in the world from your mobile device or computer. All that's required is an email address assigned to the Email Print-enabled printer.
      The Epson iPrint App (available as a free download) supports wireless printing from nearby smart-phones and tablets. You can also scan and save files on your device and send them as emails or upload them to a cloud service such as Box.net, Dropbox, Evernote or Google Docs. Epson also provides links for downloading other mobile printing solutions, including Apple AirPrint (for iPhone, iPad and iPod) and Google Cloud Print for Android phones and tablets.

      Printer Overview
      As the entry-level model in Epson's A3+ range, the Artisan 1430 is targeted at photo enthusiasts and advanced amateur photographers who want to produce large prints, although not in great quantities. Although labelled 'high capacity', the cartridges only contain about 11 millilitres of ink, the same as the 1410's. And since the cartridges of both printers are interchangeable, we assume ink usage is similar in both models.

      Aside from the new features listed above, nothing much has changed since the R1410, although the new model looks a bit smarter and more up-to-date. The table below compares key features of both models.

       

      Artisan 1430

      Stylus Photo 1410

      Printing method

      On-demand Inkjet (piezoelectric)

      Nozzle configuration

      540 nozzles (90 per colour)

      Ink type

      Claria dye inks

      Ink cartridges

      T0811 Black, T0812 Cyan, T0813 Magenta, T0814 Yellow, Y0815 Light Cyan, T0816 Light Magenta

      Fade resistance

      Up to 98 years under glass
      Up to 200 years album storage

      Max. resolution

      5760 x 1440 'Optimised' dpi

      Min. droplet size

      1.5 picolitre

      Power consumption 

      18 W (printing); approx. 1.3W in sleep mode

      Acoustic noise

      43 dB(A)

      47 dB(A)

      Paper handling

      Sheet feed only

      Max. paper size

      User definable up to 13" x 44"

      Paper types

      Plain paper, Bright White Paper, Photo Paper Glossy, Premium Photo Paper Glossy, Ultra Premium Photo Paper Glossy, Premium Photo Paper Semi-gloss, Ultra Premium Photo Paper Lustre, Presentation Paper Matte, Premium Presentation Paper Matte, Ultra Premium Presentation Paper Matte and Ultra Premium Presentation Paper Matte Double-sided

      Colour management

      PhotoEnhance, ICM, ColorSync with Epson ICC profiles

      Ink cartridge capacity

      ~11 mL

      RRP ink cartridges

      $26.99

      ~$20

      Connectivity

      Hi-Speed USB 2.0, Wi-Fi Certified 802.11 (b/g/n) 2, PictBridge

      Hi-Speed USB 2.0, PictBridge

      Dimensions (mm)

      616 x 322 x 215

      615 x 314 x 223

      Weight (kilograms)

      11.8

      11.5

      RRP on release

      $399

      $699

      Readers will note the Artisan 1430's RRP which, at $399  is $300 lower than the launch price the Stylus Photo 1410 when we reviewed it in March 2007. For our overseas readers, Epson America has the RRP of this printer listed at US$299.99, while this printer is marketed as the Stylus Photo 1500W in the UK with a listed price of Â£249. In the USA, but not in Australia, Adobe Photoshop Elements is included in the software bundle (although probably not the latest version).

      Setting Up
      Setting up the printer is straightforward and takes less than 15 minutes. After removing a numerous strips of packing tape and plugging the power cord (supplied) into the mains, you simply switch on the power, unpack and install the six ink cartridges in their clearly-marked slots and allow about three minutes while the ink lines in the print head are charged. This uses some ink but is a once-only event. 
      Next you install the software. The bundled Epson software includes Epson Driver and Utilities, Epson Network Utilities, Print CD, Epson Online Guides and Photo Printing Software.  This took just over eight minutes and while you're waiting, you're treated to a slideshow of five screens thanking you for purchasing the printer, highlighting its features and directing you to the user manual.  

      The five screens displayed while you're installing the software plus the additional screen inviting participation in a survey.

      You're then asked to choose whether you want to use a WiFi network connection or simply connect the printer via a USB cable (not supplied). If you opt for the latter, you have to wait for a minute or so for the connection to be established.

      Next you're asked whether you would like to participate in Epson's global research program that involves collecting data on how the printer is being used. (The data collection is 'anonymous where possible'. ) Following that, you're invited to register the printer with Epson, a simple one-click acceptance process.

      Icons for accessing Easy Photo Print, Print CD, the user's guide and network guide are installed automatically on your computer desktop and the Artisan 1430 is set as the default printer. Unlike the 1410, there's no need to restart your computer before you can begin to print.

      The paper feeder allows you to load a stack of up to 10 A3+ sheets of Epson's Premium glossy, semi-gloss and matte papers, up to 20 sheets of Ultra Glossy photo Paper or up to 50 sheets of the relatively thin Epson Photo Quality Ink Jet Paper.

      It can handle up to 30 sheets of A4 size or smaller or up to 100 A4 sheets of Epson Photo Quality Ink Jet Paper. Double-sided matte paper, photo stickers, self-adhesive and transfer paper must be printed one sheet at a time. No provision is made for heavyweight fine art papers. Up to 10 envelopes can be loaded at a time.

      You can also print labels on coated CD, DVD or BluRay disks using the supplied tray.  The CD/DVD feed tray is revealed when you pull down the output tray flap on the printer's front panel.

      The disk holder comes with an adapter for printing on 8 cm disks, which must be removed when you wish to print on standard 12 cm disks. Disks are loaded printable side up and the holder is slotted into the right hand side of the feed tray.

      The supplied Epson Print CD software helps you to create labels with text and images and provides an interface to the printer. With this application you can select images to use as backgrounds or individual reference pictures. You can also add and edit text and graphics and save your creations for future use.

      Designing a label for a disk with Epson Print CD.

      Clicking on the Print button in Epson Print CD takes you to the printer driver, which contains settings for CD/DVD printing in the Paper Options panel. Full instructions are provided in the user manual supplied in HTML format with the printer.

      If you've opted to set up the Artisan 1430 as a wireless printer, the set-up wizard should take care of the IP address and firewall settings. The user manual provides detailed instructions for setting up the printer as a network, wireless or Bluetooth printer.

      As long as the printer is attached to one of the computers on your network, all other computers on the network should be able to access it. But you must define the printer as a 'shared' printer for the network as shown in the screen grab below.

       

      Depending on the operating system you're using, you may need administrator privileges and a password  to log onto a Computer Administration account before you can change the Sharing options. After that, it should be easy to send printing jobs to the printer from anywhere in your wireless network or within reach of any Bluetooth device.

      The Printer Driver
      The Artisan 1430's driver is essentially the same as the drivers of other general-purpose Epson inkjet printers. The Main page lets you select from five 'Quality' options (Draft, Text, Text & Image, Photo and Best Photo) and set paper type and size and page orientation. It also displays ink levels.

      The Main page of the printer driver.

       

      The Advanced page

      On the Advanced page you find the Colour Management settings and printing options (Fix Red-Eye, High Speed, Edge Smoothing, Print Preview and Greyscale) plus buttons for saving settings. There's a Shortcuts page with a list of printing pre-sets and a Page Layout page where you can select duplexing, reduction/enlargement, collation and watermarking settings plus the standard Maintenance page with settings for head cleaning, nozzle clearing, etc.

      The Shortcuts page in the printer driver.

      Duplexing (double-sided printing) is available for Windows only and two formats are supported: standard and folded booklet. Paper choices are restricted to plain paper or Epson's Bright White Ink Jet or Double-Sided Matte papers. The standard setting lets you  print the odd-numbered pages first and then re-load them to print the even-numbered pages on the opposite side of the paper.
      The folded booklet setting lets you create single-fold booklets. The pages that will appear on the outside (after the page is folded) are printed first. The inside pages are then printed after you reload the paper into the printer. The printer driver allows you to set binding margins from 0.3 cm to 3.0 cm.

      The Page Layout page.

      Printing in colour involves Epson's built-in colour management tools, PhotoEnhance, ICM and ColorSync, all of which are located on the Advanced page. ICC profile support seems to be limited to Epson's papers. When printing images captured in the Adobe RGB colour space, a dedicated setting is available via Colour Controls by selecting the Adobe RGB  colour mode.

      Because it only uses one black ink, the Artisan 1430 lacks the Advanced B&W Driver found in Epson's more up-market printers. However, like its predecessor, it is capable of monochrome printing (see below) and provides a Greyscale setting for this purpose in the driver interface.
       

      Print Quality
      We found it difficult to fault the quality of colour prints made with the printer we reviewed, when high-quality images were printed with the optimal printer settings. Colour prints on Epson's Premium Glossy Photo Paper were difficult to distinguish from prints of the same images made with a 10-colour printer costing more than three times the price of the Artisan 1430.

      We also found very little difference in output quality between prints made with the printer driver handling colour management and those where colour management is handled by Photoshop. Interestingly, selecting 'Photoshop Manages Colours' in Photoshop and inputting the paper profile sometimes set the driver to ICM mode and checked the Off (No Colour Adjustment) box, both essential requirements when you want Photoshop to control colour management.

      The dialog boxes for printing with Photoshop controlling colour management. (The example shows a B&W image set up for printing but colour images use the same settings.)

      The greatest effect on output quality was the Quality Option setting, which also influenced the time it took to make prints. Not unexpectedly, the best results were achieved with the Best Photo setting.  The table below shows the average printing times we obtained at the different quality and speed settings.

       

      Average Printing Times

      A4

      A3

      Best Photo

      7 min. 35 sec.

      12 min. 22 sec.

      Best Photo + High Speed

      4 min 19 sec.

      6 min. 53 sec.

      Photo

      3 min. 30 sec.

      5 min. 44 sec.

      Photo + High Speed

      1 min. 44 sec.

      3 min. 46 sec.

      Swapping to the Photo setting reduced sharpness and tonal subtlety and prints lost some of the vibrancy we found in prints made with the Best Photo setting. Checking the High Speed box in the printing options list reduced printing times but there wasn't much difference between colour prints made with and without the High Speed box checked in the Photo mode.

      While glossy papers yielded prints with the highest impact, the Artisan 1430 also delivered excellent results on the matte papers we tested. Colours were richly rendered and tonal nuances were elegantly preserved. Blacks appeared rich and deep, while whites were clean and pure.

      Printing black and white originals was less successful because only one black ink is available. Consequently, the coloured inks are required to create subtle tones, which meant B&W prints were seldom caste-free, even from monochrome originals.

      Selecting Greyscale in the Print Options section of the Advanced page gave us a reasonable simulation of neutral grey. However, although the B&W prints were more consistent in colour with the Greyscale setting, they were never completely neutral black.

      When experimenting with some of the toning settings in Photoshop it was impossible to maintain a consistent colour balance from print-to-print, even when starting with image files with the same colour balance. This lack of predictability makes the Artisan 1430 unsuitable for producing colour-matched sets of monochrome prints.

      Printing speeds also influenced the quality of B&W prints. Best results came from the Best Photo setting with High Speed unchecked. Darker areas in images tended to block up more when they were printed at high speed and, to a lesser extent, when the Photo quality setting was used. Selecting Photo quality plus High Speed resulted in prints with reduced tonal subtlety.

      We found no evidence of gloss differential (surface irregularities) in prints on Epson's  Premium Glossy Photo Paper but metamerism (colour changes under different lighting conditions) was common in B&W prints, particularly on matte papers. This was true of both Epson's papers and papers from Ilford and Longbottom and occurred to the same degree with all papers we tried.

      On the whole, we found the Artisan 1430's paper handling capabilities to be quite good - but it has some limitations. We found traces of ink on the edges of many A4 prints during a run of 30 pages on 140 gsm double-sided matte paper of a type suitable for printing photo books. A paper mis-feed during this run left faint lines of ink across three following prints.

      Aside from these incidents, the A3 prints we made were blemish free, as were A4 prints on 167 gsm matte and 250 gsm glossy papers. We therefore conclude this printer is best used with heavier papers.

      Printing Costs
      It's difficult to provide accurate printing costs for the Artisan 1430 because Epson doesn't publish ink capacities for its cartridges. In addition, we were unable to calculate how much of each cartridge was used to prime the print head.

      We can, however, state with some confidence that this printer would be uneconomical to run when high output volumes are required. With each cartridge priced at just under $27, a full ink set costs almost $160 if you pay full RRP. 

      Shopping online will save you money. The lowest price we found was around $105 for the Value Pack containing all six cartridges with genuine Epson inks. The lowest price we found for individual cartridges was $21.18 and you may need to add freight costs for orders less than $50.

      The cost of individual cartridges should be factored in if you plan to purchase this printer because the inks don't run out at the same time. The first ink cartridge to be depleted was Light Cyan and, at the time, the Black, Magenta and Cyan cartridges were at least half full and the Yellow ink a little below that point, as shown in the screen grab below.

      The Light Cyan cartridge ran out after we had made six A3 prints (all with borders of between 15 mm and 25 mm) plus 20 borderless A4 prints. The Light Magenta ink ran out after a further three A3 prints and the Yellow cartridge needed to be replaced after an additional six A3 prints.

      The replacement Light Cyan cartridge ran out again after a further 32 A4 prints and three A3 prints. The levels in the Black, Magenta and Cyan cartridges (which hadn't been replaced) were at approximately one quarter of capacity, according to the ink monitor display at this point. When we weighed the depleted cartridges they were between 17 and 18 grams lighter than the new cartridges.

      Although the Artisan 1430 is set up to print on standard cut sheet sizes, it allows you to set your own 'User Defined' paper sizes as well. As defined in the User Defined dialog box, the largest sheet of paper this printer can handle is 329 mm wide and 1117.6 mm long, which should be adequate for most banners and large panorama prints.

      Conclusion
      At $399, Epson's Artisan 1430 represents very good value for money for enthusiast DSLR photographers who would like to make big prints of their best colour pictures. However, its expensive, low-capacity cartridges make it a relatively poor choice for anyone who makes lots of prints and photographers who want to print their own photo books. Nor is it the best option for photographers who make monochrome prints.

      Quiet to run and with relatively low power consumption, this printer will suit families and small offices who can benefit from its wireless and Bluetooth interfaces. And there are plenty of downloadable apps to facilitate printing from the cloud and with mobile devices like tablets and smart-phones.

      Buy this printer if:
      - You're looking for a solidly-built A3+ printer that can be used on a network and for printing from mobile devices.
      - You'd like to be able to print labels on CDs and DVDs.
      - You'd like to be able to print panoramas or banners up to 1.1 metres long. 

      Don't buy this printer if:
      - You want fast printing speeds or require high-volume production performance. 
      - You're looking for an A3+ printer that provides full support for ICC profiles.
      - You want to produce monochrome prints that are free of colour casts.
      - You require facilities for roll paper printing. 

      Specs

      Printer type: On-demand Inkjet (piezoelectric)
      Resolution: 5760 x 1440 Optimised dpi using Resolution Performance Management (RPM) Technology
      Paper sizes: A3+, A3, A4, A5, A6, Letter, B5, Legal, Envelope, Half Letter, user definable up to 13 x 44 inches
      Max. paper weight: Ultra Premium Photo Paper Glossy or equivalent
      Ink cartridges: Cyan (T0812N), Magenta T0813N), Yellow (T0814N), Light Cyan (T0815N), Light Magenta (T0816N), Black (T0811N)
      Ink yield: Approx. 470 A4 pages (CIPA standard)
      Interfaces: USB 2.0 Hi-Speed for PC/Mac, WiFi (IEEE 802.11b/g/n), PictBridge
      Power consumption:  Normal mode: Approx. 18 W; Ready mode: Approx. 7 W
      Acoustic noise: 43 dB(A)
      Dimensions (wxhxd): 616  x 215  x 322 mm 
      Weight: 11.8 kg

      Rating

      RRP: $399

      Rating (out of 10):

      • Build: 9.0
      • Features: 8.0
      • Print quality (colour): 9.0
      • Print quality (black and white): 8.0
      • Paper handling: 8.0
      • Print speed: 7.5
      • OVERALL: 9.0

      BUY

        No