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Old Jan 4, 2005, 3:30 AM   #1
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Hieveryone! I have an opportunity to get a great deal on two different printers, but feel I don't know enough about printers to make a decision.

My first digital camera, a Panasonic fz20 should arrive tomorrow. From everthing I've read it's an excellent although not inexpensive camera. I had planned on getting an Epson r200 printer for now, then eventually (in several years) upgrading to a really excellent printer. There's one on sale here for about $80, plus tax.

My other opportunity is from a friend. She is getting rid of her Epson Stylus Color 980 in favor of an all-in-one printer/copier/fax etc. She's offered to sell me her 980 for $50, including extra cartridges and some paper. Epson's description of the printer says it has 4 colors, and doesn't mention anything about photos.

My question--Is the r200 $40 better than the 980? (Our tax is almost 10%, so the r200 will cost me almost $40 more than the 980.)

If the r200 is a lot better, should I hold out and try to find one with a monitor (r200m) or pay less and give up the monitor?

These questions may sound like I'm stingy with my money. After all, $40 isn't a lot in thephotography world. The truth is that the fz20 costs more thanI really should spend now. I think I'll find it worth the extra money though. I willing to spend more for a better product (printer), but I want to be sure that it IS a better product.

Oh, the other piece is that my regular printer has died so I do need some sort of replacement printer. If I'm going to get another printer anyway, I might as well get one that prints great photos.

Thanks!
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Old Jan 4, 2005, 6:38 AM   #2
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I read this review of the Epson 980, http://www.epinions.com/cmd-review-2...39D78CF5-prod5Which suggests that it is a competent photo printer, but................bear in mind this review was in October 2000 !! Which makes the model at least 4/5 years old. That's not to say that your friends machine is 4/5 years old but the technology has moved on in leaps and bounds since then and that the review was comparing to the standards of the day. I, personally, would be a little concerned with buying second hand, you can't be sure how old it is, or how much it has been used. It could be coming to the end of it's useful life. And a big factor : How strong is your friendship ? You buy the 980, use it for a week, month, maybe a year, what happens when/if it dies on you ? You are definitely not going to fall out with, miss them or anything else if you buy new and ever find the need for warranty issues with Epson or the retailer. If your friend is a FRIEND and not just an acquaintance then I would shy away from that option.

All that said, I have had an Epson R300 for about four and a half months and really cannot find fault with it. It is a dedicated photo printer with 6 colours (separate tanks) and I am Very happy with the results. The Epson R200 you are considering is pretty much the same printer without the bells and whistles. While I know that you can get an optional monitor for the R300, i'm fairly sure that this is not an option with the R200, at least not here in the U.K. This is not something I considered anyway as I always do and always will post process with the computer.

As you said, cost is an issue, (isn't it with us all), and although the R200 isn't anywhere near as fast as some others, as long as you don't need to print non stop to get your prints off yesterday, then I heartily recommend the R200

Regards,

Stevekin.

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Old Jan 5, 2005, 2:33 AM   #3
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Stevekin, thanks. You make some very good points about the printers. As far as my friendship goes, for a number of reasons I don't think there would be a problem, even if the printer dies soon. On the other hand, I think I would be much happier with a higher-tech printer. In fact, the store selling the r200 for $80 turns out to be selling it for $90. I don't remember what store had the great price, but in my search to rediscover it I saw that Office Max has the r300 for $129 after rebate. I have to admit that I like the bells and whistles, and am leaning towards getting it, especially after your high praise of yours. Thanks!

Suzaberg
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Old Jan 5, 2005, 5:08 AM   #4
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You are welcome Suzaberg. I know some people are not concerned with the "bells & whistles" and I must admit I haven't used them all yet. I've not printed on a cd or dvd, nor directly from my camera or memory card, but the R300 does have usb2 transfer, which I sometimes use. It's nice to have the extras for whenever you may want/need them and if you can get the right deal, why not ? Although, as I said, for performance the R200 is essentially the same printer, I bought my R300 because at the time it cost me £99.00 ($185.00)whereas the 200 would have cost £86.00 ($161.00) Yes, you get better deals than us

Of course, please don't just take my word for it, read Steve's review, the only difference is the optional monitor. http://www.steves-digicams.com/2004_...son_r300m.html

Enjoy your R300.

Stevekin.

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Old Jan 5, 2005, 11:23 AM   #5
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Suzaberg wrote:
Quote:
Hieveryone! I have an opportunity to get a great deal on two different printers, but feel I don't know enough about printers to make a decision.

...
My other opportunity is from a friend. She is getting rid of her Epson Stylus Color 980 in favor of an all-in-one printer/copier/fax etc. She's offered to sell me her 980 for $50, including extra cartridges and some paper. Epson's description of the printer says it has 4 colors, and doesn't mention anything about photos.

My question--Is the r200 $40 better than the 980? (Our tax is almost 10%, so the r200 will cost me almost $40 more than the 980.)

If the r200 is a lot better, should I hold out and try to find one with a monitor (r200m) or pay less and give up the monitor?

These questions may sound like I'm stingy with my money. After all, $40 isn't a lot in thephotography world. The truth is that the fz20 costs more thanI really should spend now. I think I'll find it worth the extra money though. I willing to spend more for a better product (printer), but I want to be sure that it IS a better product.

.......
Thanks!
Quote:
to answer two of your questions ..
Quote:
as the R200 uses 6 colors and the 980 uses 4 I would go for the R200. You will get better color photo prints using the 2 additional colors. Also, as each color runs out, you can replace it .. instead of throwing away all the rest. It may look more expensive to spend $15 + each for carts .. but in the long run you will save money, especially if you use 3rd party inks as I know do.
Quote:
I have the R300M, and I have to say I rarely use the monitor. If you want to print straight from card, and can stand viewing the picture on a screen no larger than the camera's one (and you can tell how detailed that is .. not) then grab the monitor. Personally, I thought it was a good idea at the time, and it actually cost me little in money and effort to obtain one .. but I rarely use it.
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Old Jan 5, 2005, 3:43 PM   #6
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In about an hour I'm going to go back to Staples and by the r300. Thanks! Planning on getting the printer makes me even more excited about using my new camera. What fun I'll have playing! Thanks everyone.
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Old Jan 7, 2005, 6:06 AM   #7
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Suzaberg. Did you get one yet ??
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