Epson Stylus Photo R800

The Windows driver has two modes available; Basic (shown here) or the Advanced user screen (shown below). Compared to the older Epson drivers it has been greatly simplified with the addition of the Quality selection icons at the top of the MAIN page. Most users only need to select the Quality, Paper Type and Size and Orientation before hitting the OK button.

Selecting the Borderless option limits the Paper Size choices to: A4, 3.5 x 5", 4 x 6", 5 x 7", 8 x 10" or Panoramic 8.3 x 23.4"

Available Paper Types: Plain Paper, Photo Quality Inkjet Paper, Enhanced Matte Paper, Matte Paper - Heavyweight, Premium Glossy Photo Paper, Premium Luster Photo Paper, Premium Semigloss Photo Paper, or CD/DVD.

Click on the "Show Settings" button and this information window will be displayed alongside of the driver window.

With the Stylus R800 you have three different Paper Sources possible: the normal sheet feeder, roll paper or manual feed of thick media.

Clicking on the Advanced button from the Main page presents you with this almost mind-boggling array of settings. You have the ability to set or override just about all the printer settings; paper source, borderless, paper type, output quality, paper size, orientation, reverse order, gloss options, high speed on/off, edge smoothing, print preview, color management and color controls galore.

The PhotoEnhance option lets you adjust settings for digital camera images. The Tone settings are: Normal, Hard, Vivid, Sepia and Monochrome. The Effect options are: Sharpness, Soft Focus, Canvas and Parchment, the level of these effects is controlled by the Low-High slider.

Color management is handled by Windows ICM or you're free to manually "diddle" with everything if you select Color Controls option.

The Page Layout options control the way the printing is done on the media. You can Rotate 180° or use the Mirror Image option if printing on inkjet back light paper. Reduce/Enlarge, scale by percentage, select multi-page options, add a visible watermark, number of copies, poster printing or double-sided printing, adjust the borderless expansion.

The Maintenance page lets you manually start the Status Monitor (see below), run a nozzle check, perform head cleaning, align print heads or change the Speed & Progress settings.

Selecting the Print Preview option will display this visual preview -before- the printing starts. This gives you a last chance to abort in case you've selected the wrong orientation so you don't waste a sheet of expensive photo paper. You can also see how the printing will be placed on the media, i.e. the borders. Obviously missing from this preview is a vertical and horizontal ruler to indicate the paper size - this is a MUCH needed thing Mr Epson, please add it !

This Status Monitor will popup whenever you start printing. Here you can visually see the current ink levels, the selected media type and a progress bar to let you know how much longer the printing will take. You can also read various "how to" printing tips.

When any cartridge is getting close to running out of ink (20% or less remaining) this popup alert will be displayed to let you know which cartridge(s) need to be replaced. And if you're online when it comes up you can order them by just clicking your mouse. I had printed about 36 - 8.5x11" bordered (about half were Matte and the rest were Premium Glossy), 8 - 8x10" 6 - 5x7" and 12 - 4x6" borderless PGPP prints before receiving the cyan low ink warning screen shown here. (Keep in mind that this was the original cartridge set so a good deal of ink was used for the initial "priming" of the feed lines and print heads.) Notice also how the other colors are being used, we printed a variety of "average" photos with standard outdoor blue+green color scenes and I printed a number of photos that had very bright red objects prominently filling the frame. Unlike the current 6-color CcMmYK (Cyan, Light [photo] Cyan, Magenta, Light [photo] Magenta, Yellow, Black) printers that go through the "light" or photo inks faster, the R800 consumes the primary Cyan, Magenta and Yellow colors faster than its secondary Red and Blue colors.