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Epson Redefines Desktop Printing with Stylus Pro 4000

(December 2003) posted on Fri Dec 19, 2003

Offers larger print size and two-up proofs

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Epson's Stylus Pro 4000 is the first desktop printer that Epson's Professional Graphics group has introduced since the Stylus Pro 5500 21/2 years ago. It has features that will appeal to all creative professionals in the graphics-production chain--from photographers to graphic designers to commercial printing firms.

The most noteworthy change from the 13- x 19-in. Stylus Pro 5500 is a 17- x 22-in. sheetfeed capability that enables graphic-arts pros to output two-up proofs, with plenty of the room in the margins for notations, fold marks, and crop marks.

Also of note is the price. The Epson Stylus Pro 5500 originally sold for around $3500. The Stylus Pro 4000 will have an estimated street price of $1795, while offering a brand-new eight-channel printhead and substantial improvements in print-engine technology, ink longevity, print speed, and resolution compared to the 5500.

The Epson Stylus Pro 4000 is the first to use Epson's new 1-in. wide printhead. Not only is the wider printhead faster, but it also carries eight channels of ink, so that photographers who like Epson's 7-color Ultrachrome inkset can automatically switch between Photo Black ink when using photo papers and Matte Black ink on art papers.

Businesses that want to use the Stylus Pro 4000 for faster output of documents such as engineering drawings and other line art can use two sets of CMYK ink instead of the 7-color inkset for photographic reproduction.

New cut-sheet size aids proofing: Epson senior product manager Mark Radogna believes the Stylus Pro 4000 will completely redefine the standards for desktop printers. Unlike most desktop printers that are 13 x 19 or 81/2 x 11 in., "the Stylus Pro 4000 is the first printer that supports 17-in. wide cut-sheet materials in an enclosed cassette."

Radogna says the 13- x 19-in. size is "too confining" for many creative professionals: "Many graphic-design studios find that they have to output two-up comps at a 90% scale factor, then tape the two pages together." The 17- x 22-in. size allows designers to print everything at full scale, and still have room in the margins for crop marks, registration marks, and client sign-off information.