Epson Expression Photo XP-950
A bit of an in-betweener for print size, this multifunction Epson stretches to A3 rather than A3+
Whereas most desktop photo printers have maximum print sizes of either A4 or A3+, the XP-950 is strictly an A3 (17x11 inches) printer. Physically, it’s barely any bigger or heavier than the Canon A4 printer that’s on test, and it also has a built-in scanner (only A4 in size), SD and MS memory card slots, and an 8.8cm touchscreen for direct control. The XP-950 also rivals both Canons for Wi-Fi connectivity and remote printing apps.
The ink line-up is what you’d expect from a conventional A4 photo printer, with light cyan and light magenta added to the basic CMYK mix to deliver sixcolour, dye-based ink printing. It uses standard (5ml) or XL (9ml) Claria Photo HD cartridges. For A3 printing, however, even the XL cartridges run dry pretty quickly and ink is the most expensive in the group, at £1.22 ($1.89) per millilitre.
Nearly as swift as the Canon MG7550/MG7520 for 6x4-inch and A4 output, the XP-950 also delivers highest-quality A3 photo prints in five minutes 41 seconds. Surprisingly, colours can lack depth when using the ‘vivid’ printer preferences option; the ‘standard’ setting tends to give richer results. Black-and-white prints suffer from a slight green colour cast.