updated 11:25 am EDT, Mon September 25, 2006
Epson Stylus Pro 3800
Epson today launched the Stylus Pro 3800, its new professional photography, graphic design and prepress proofing printing solution. It features a new compact, 17-inch wide printer design, a new "breakthrough" screening algorithm and Epson UltraChrome K3 Ink technology as well as a new auto-sharing black ink technology that allows for automatic switching between photo and matte black ink modes to maximize image quality on a wide variety of media types. Epson's UltraChrome K3 Ink technology leverages eight individual cartridges that use high-density color pigments for overall color gamut and fidelity along with a high-gloss Microcrystal Encapsulation resin chemistry to create prints with greater scratch resistance and reduced gloss differential. In addition, the technology uses a three-Level black ink system that simultaneously uses black, light black and light-light black inks to produce professional quality black-and-white prints, which it says rival traditional silver halide. (The company has a page dedicated to Intel-based Mac support.)
The new Stylus Pro 3800 features new screening technology that "consistently places droplets precisely, producing smoother tonal transitions and greater detail from highlights to shadows. In addition, Stylus Pro print engine delivers a 16"x 20" photo lab-quality print (using 1,440 x 720 dpi - High Speed mode) in as fast as five minutes, 32 seconds -- more than 20 percent faster than the Epson Stylus Pro 4800.
Accommodating a variety of media in cut-sheet form between 4"x6" and 17"x22", the printer offers three different ways to load media, including a high-capacity paper tray (120 sheets), top-loading manual tray optimized for fine art media and a front-loading, straight-through path capable of handling media up to 1.5 mm thick.
Epson said that prints created with the Epson Stylus Pro 3800 are predicted to resist fading up to 108 years for color prints and more than 200 years for black and white prints on specific Epson papers.
Weighing in at 43 pounds, the Epson Stylus Pro 3800 features a new compact design and narrow depth: compared to the Epson Stylus Pro 4800, the dimensions and weight are reduced by 30 and 51 percent, respectively.
The Epson Stylus Pro 3800 will begin shipping in December 2006 for $1,300; a Professional Edition will ship a high-end PostScript Language Level 3 compatible RIP by ColorBurst for $1,500. Both models include the standard Epson Preferred Limited Warranty, a one-year program that includes toll-free advanced telephone access during the week and usually next-business-day full unit exchange service.