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PictureMate Photo Printer

Review posted 08/10/2004

Epson PictureMate Personal Photo Lab

The Epson PictureMate is a compact and lightweight dedicated 4 x 6" photo printer that works with or without a personal computer. When connected to a computer it can be used with the supplied photo imaging software or any photo editing or graphics software of your choice. In standalone mode the PictureMate can make prints directly from most popular flash memory cards. It can also be connected to any PictBridge or USB Direct Print compatible digital camera. And you can also print wirelessly from cellphones and PDAs with the optional BlueTooth adapter.

The PictureMate is easy and convenient to use. It employs a single, photo ink cartridge that's good for at least 100 prints - guaranteed. The PictureMate uses Epson's 6-color pigment ink system that yields fade resistant prints that last up to 200 years (in photo album conditions). These prints are also water and smudge resistant too and when displayed last 2-4 times longer than photo lab brands. The PictureMate produces brilliant, borderless 4 x 6" prints in about two minutes.

Epson's Film Factory 3.05 software is included and is compatible with PC/Windows and Macintosh computers. It supports Epson's Print Image Matching technology and is also Exif Print-enabled.

PictureMate Features:

  • Dedicated 4x6" photo printer, works with or without a computer

  • Uses convenient PictureMate Print Packs, includes a photo ink cartridge and 100 sheets of 4x6" glossy photo paper.

  • Epson 6-color pigment ink for archival quality glossy photos

  • 5760 x 1440 optimized dpi resolution

  • Builtin slots for most popular types of flash memory cards

  • BorderFree 4x6" prints in about two minutes

  • Low cost printing - about $0.30 each

  • USB connectivity with Windows and Macintosh computers

  • PictBridge, USB Direct Print, PIM and Exif Print compatible

  • Optional BlueTooth wireless printing

Epson PictureMate Personal Photo Lab

The Epson 6-color pigment ink set is designed specifically for photographers and digital artists. This ink set includes the traditional black, cyan, magenta and yellow inks, as well as new red and blue inks to expand the color gamut.

Epson claims that PictureMate prints are fade resistant with a print life of up to 200 years in photo album conditions or 100 years when displayed in a glass frame. The prints are water and smudge resistant too.

Epson PictureMate Personal Photo Lab

Installation is easy. Shake the big ink cartridge and then slide it into the back of the printer. Load up to 20 sheets of paper on the input tray and once the printer finishes its "pump up" cycle - you're good to go. The ink levels can be monitored with the monochrome LCD data on top or via the printer driver on your computer.

Each PictureMate Print Pack includes the photo cartridge and 100 sheets of 4 x 6" glossy photo paper and retails for $30 -- this yields a per print cost of $0.30. Each ink cartridge is guaranteed by Epson to print at least 100 4 x 6" prints.

Epson PictureMate Personal Photo Lab

Compatible with Windows 98SE, 2000, Me and XP and Macintosh System 9.x, OS X 10.2-10.3 platforms, the PictureMate uses a USB 1.1 input port for connection to the host computer.

The EXT/IF is a USB port that allows connection of a CD-Recorder, ZIP drive or USB Thumb drive to be used with the printer's COPY button function.

Epson PictureMate Personal Photo Lab

You can plug the optional BlueTooth adapter into the EXT/IF port and print wirelessly from cellphones, PDAs or other BlueTooth-equipped devices.

Epson PictureMate Personal Photo Lab

The EXT/IF port is also used to connect to any PictBridge-compatible digital camera or camcorder. Shown here connected to the Konica Minolta DiMAGE X50. It's easy to do standalone printing with a PictBridge digicam. You use the camera's color LCD to select the pictures to be printed, no need to print an index page first.

Epson PictureMate Personal Photo Lab

The controls on top of the printer include a monochrome LCD that displays a menu system. You navigate the menus with the 4-way selector and accept selections with the OK button. The big green Print button begins the printing process, the Cancel button cancels it. The Save Photo button lets you transfer photos to an optional CD-R, Zip drive or USB drive if one is connected.

Epson PictureMate Personal Photo Lab

The builtin card slots handle the most popular type of flash memory cards including: CompactFlash Type I & II, Secure Digital, MMC, mini-SD with optional adapter, SmartMedia, Magicgate Memory Stick, MemoryStick (plus Pro and Duo with optional adapter), IBM/Hitachi Microdrive and xD PictureCard.

You can print directly from a flash memory card or use the card slots like an external card reader and transfer images to your hard drive. Using the Save Photo button you can send pictures to an optional storage device (CD-R, Zip drive, USB drive.)

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US visitors PM 290 PictureMate Zoom Photo Printer

$ 229.99 at Epson
$ 229.99 at J&R

PictureMate Specifications

Printing Technology

  • Advanced Micro-Piezo®, optimized for photo printing

Nozzle Configuration

  • 90 nozzles x 6

Ink Type

  • 6-color pigment

Light Resistance / Print Longevity

  • Fade resistant – setting a new standard for archival printing
  • Print life up to 200 years in photo album conditions¹
  • Up to 100 years displayed in a glass frame¹
  • Water and smudge resistant too
  • Displayed photos resist fading as much as 2 to 4 times longer than the leading photo lab brands, and about 4 to 20 times longer than other dedicated 4" x 6" photo printers.¹

Maximum Resolution (dots per inch)

  • 5760 x 1440 optimized dpi, industry leading

Minimum Ink Droplet Size

  • 2.5 picoliters

Maximum Printable Area

  • 4" x 6"
  • True BorderFree™, no perforations required
  • Top/Bottom margin 0" Left/Right margin 0"

Built-in Memory Card Slots

  • Compatible with popular camera memory cards
    • CompactFlash™ Type I and II
    • Secure Digital (SD™) (mini SD card -optional adapter required)
    • MMC
    • Memory Stick™ (including PRO, Duo, MagicGate™)
    • SmartMedia™
    • Microdrive™
    • xD-Picture Card

Special Features

  • Print photos with exceptional control without a computer
    • Color, Black and White or Sepia Toned printing
    • Crop and automatically resize, no computer required
    • Easy One-Touch printing with PictureMate Print Wizard
    • Save Photo button for one touch backup of digital files directly to external CD-R, Zip drive or USB Thumb drive
    • Directly connect PictBridge-enabled or USB DP-enabled digital cameras
    • Wireless photo printing from Bluetooth enabled devices
  • Convenient Print Pack: everything you need together in 1 box
    • Photo cartridge and 100 sheets of glossy 4" x 6" PictureMate Photo Paper.³
    • About 29 cents per print³
  • Compact size and handle make it easy to move

Layouts and Templates

  • Proof Sheets, 4" x 6" borderless, 4" x 6" with classic borders, Wallet sizes, Crop Template

Interface and Connectivity

  • PictBridge and USB Direct Print-enabled digital cameras²
  • USB connection between printer and PC
  • USB connection for external CD-R/RW drives; Zip drives (750, 250, & 100MB); Flash memory (USB Thumb drives)
  • Bluetooth (with optional Epson Bluetooth Photo Print adapter)

Supported Digital Camera Technologies

  • Image optimization
    • PRINT Image Matching (P.I.M.) and Exif Print
  • Connectivity
    • Directly prints from PictBridge and USB Direct Print-enabled digital cameras
    • Reads Digital Print Order Format (DPOF) from digital camera memory cards

Operating Systems

  • Windows USB: Windows 98SE, 2000, Me and XP
  • Macintosh USB: Macintosh System 9.x, OS X 10.2-10.3

Bonus Software Included

  • Epson Software™ Film Factory™ 3.05 (PC and Macintosh compatible, P.I.M. and Exif Print-enabled)


  • PictureMate Print Pack (T5570)
  • PictureMate Carrying Case
  • Epson photo storage envelopes
  • Epson Bluetooth Photo Print Adapter
  • APC Car Adapter4

Paper Capacity

  • Input paper tray – up to 20 sheets of PictureMate Photo Paper

Photo Cartridge Shelf Life

  • 2 years from production date; 6 months from first use

Dimensions and Weight (L x W x H)

  • Storage – 10.0" x 6.0" x 6.4"
  • Printing – 10.0" x 12.0" x 6.4"
  • Weight – 5.5 lb

Environmental Conditions

  • Temperature
    • Operating: 50° to 95° F (10° to 35° C)
    • Storage: -4° to 104° F (-20° to 40° C)
  • Humidity
    • Operating: 20% to 80% relative humidity
    • Storage: 5% to 85% relative humidity (no condensation)

Safety Approvals

  • Safety standards UL1950, CSA 22.2 No. 950
  • RFI FCC part 15 subpart B class B, CSA C108.8 class B

Power Requirements

  • Rated voltage: 120V AC
  • Rated frequency: 50 - 60 Hz
  • Rated current: 0.3 Amp (Max 0.5 Amp)
  • Power consumption: Approx. 13W ISO 10561 (Energy Star compliant), approx. 4.0W in Sleep mode

(Specifications as represented by the manufacturer)

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