Imagine opening up a box and being able to pull out a printer that not only prints but scans, copies and faxes as well. Now, imagine printing and photocopying in stunning, true-to-life colour. It would be great if this printer performed all of these tasks quickly, too, no? “This sounds too good to be true,” you’re probably saying to yourself. Epson argues that it isn’t. It claims that its WorkForce Pro WF-4630 All-in-One printer will make your printing, scanning, photocopying and faxing dreams come true. This review tests out whether the claims live up to the hype.
The WF-4630 relies on Epson’s new PrecisionCore technology. PrecisionCore uses a high density print chip that can generate up to 40 million precise dots per second. In addition to the advanced printing technology, the WF-4630 also makes use of wireless connections, so people can print from their mobile devices.
The technological boost enables the WF-4630 to print extraordinarily fast, claims Epson. It has ISO print speeds of 20 ppm in black ink and 20 ppm in colour. And when it comes to ink, Epson aims to beat the competition on the cost of the stuff. The company says its high yield cartridges allow customers to print professional quality documents at up to 50% lower colour printing costs in comparison to colour laser prints. The maximum print resolution is 4800 x 1200 dpi.
Epson also touts the WF-4630’s workhorse nature. It has a 30,000 page monthly duty cycle, a 330 sheet page capacity, an auto two-sided print/copy/scan/fax function and a 35 page two-sided automatic document feeder.
In addition, the built-in scanner has a maximum resolution of 9600 x 9600 dpi interpolated.
The User Experience
The WF-4630 is billed as a workhorse, and it’s built like one, too. It weighs in at over 31 lbs (14.2 kg), and it is 18.1 inches (approximately 46 cm) wide, 25.8 inches (65.5 cm) deep and 15.1 inches (38.4 cm) high. This printer has a rather large footprint. Epson is marketing the WF-4630 to small businesses and people with home offices, but its size might be a drawback for these potential customers.
What will attract customers is the print quality. During my test run, I printed a number of photographs on the specialty paper Epson provided. The results were identical to printing pictures out at a photo shop. And, it’s faster, too. You get professional-looking colour prints quickly.
I also tested out the Epson Connect wireless print technology. With an iPad, I was able to print out a web page. It was a fairly simple process. I downloaded the Epson iPrint app from iTunes. After the app was installed, I entered the URL of the webpage I wanted to print. Once the site loaded, I clicked “Print” at the top of the screen, and the WF-4630 produced the hard copy of the page.
If you don’t have an iPad or another type of tablet, don’t worry. The Epson Connect wireless print technology works equally well with a laptop, which is what I used to print out photos.
The copies came out well, too. I made a colour copy and a black-and-white copy. The colour copy actually came out better than the black-and-white version of the same document – the B&W had pale white stripes running vertically every few inches or so. I wouldn’t say that the stripes were a serious detraction from the document, but they were noticeable, and I wasn’t sure what caused them. The colour version, on the other hand, was virtually flawless.
Scanning was similarly easy. The WF-4630 offers several ways to save your scanned documents. I chose to save mine to a USB stick (there’s a USB port alongside the control panel). Saving the document was a simple process – I followed a few command prompts, and I was done. The image quality was very high.
I was very impressed with the WF-4630. It prints quickly, and the results are high quality. The colour copies are of the same caliber. Scanning is foolproof. The wireless printing was very convenient.
This printer is meant to compete directly with colour laser printers. The printer is cheaper than its competition, but expect to spend more on ink cartridges. While you might be paying more for ink, you’ll get excellent value because of the WF-4630’s scanning, copying and faxing features. I would recommend this printer for small businesses and home offices alike.
The Epson WorkForce Pro WF-4630 All-in-One printer retails for $299.99.