• Welcome to the new Mac-Forums. See News and Community Announcements for more details.

Epson printer problems

Joined
Jul 30, 2009
Messages
6,813
Reaction score
127
Points
63
Location
Wisconsin
Your Mac's Specs
Mac Mini (Late 2014) 2.6GHz Intel Core i5 Memory: 8GB 1600MHz DDR3
I have the XP-420 ink-jet printer, which was giving poor quality black prints. I ran the head cleaning and Nozzle Check routines several times. It then reported low ink in successive cartridges, until all four were replaced, black being the final one to "run out" of ink.

It still didn't print well. Then, after running those routines 2 or 3 more times, it once again reported low ink in the same cartridge that it had first reported as low, which had just been replaced.

Best Buy, where I bought it many years ago, no longer services ink-jet printers, at least not these days. I left a message at a nearby office products store that Epson's site identified as an authorized service provider. Being the weekend, I assume they were closed. I should be able to get an opinion from them on Monday.

Does anyone have a relatable experience? Is the printer "dead" or fixable?
 
Joined
Nov 28, 2007
Messages
25,294
Reaction score
402
Points
83
Location
Nambucca Heads Australia
Your Mac's Specs
iMac, i7 4GHz, 32GB memory, 1TB blade drive, OS X.15.5.
Have had great runs from Epson, particularly with the XP-320 and earlier models. Have found not using genuine Epson cartridges causes precisely this problem because of the 'chips' built into the print head.

Look at it this way. Printers are sold dirt cheap to get ink cartridge sales firing. Here Down under one can go to Epson online and buy 'open box' printers that have been display stock returned to Epson from retail stores at prices 50% off retail and a six month warranty compared to twelve month for a new printer. Not really worth the hassle of getting them repaired.
 

krs


Joined
Sep 16, 2008
Messages
1,707
Reaction score
35
Points
48
I don't think it's worth fixing that printer - probably costs you more than a new equivalent one.

I use Epson printers - mostly because I need an A3 scan bed and print capability and there are not many other options.
I found if one always shuts off the printer when not in use - definitely shut it off over night, then one doesn't get the poor quality print problem.

As to non-OEM cartridges - probably depends on the specific brand, I have used those for years with no problems but quality of those obviously varies.
 
Last edited:

chscag

Well-known member
Staff member
Admin
Joined
Jan 23, 2008
Messages
60,433
Reaction score
755
Points
113
Location
Keller, Texas
Your Mac's Specs
2017 27" iMac, 10.5" iPad Pro, iPhone 7+, iPhone 8, iPhone 11, Numerous iPods, Catalina
As to non-OEM cartridges - probably depends on the specific brand, I have used those for years with no problems but quality of those obviously varies.
I agree. I have used refillable cartridges for years with my Epson NX 420 without any problems. It does depend on the cartridges you buy. The same for my HP LaserJet. I can save 50% by buying refillable toner cartridges then that of a new cartridge. And the refillable ones last just as long as the new HP cartridges.
 
Joined
Feb 1, 2011
Messages
2,028
Reaction score
162
Points
63
Location
Sacramento, California
....Does anyone have a relatable experience? Is the printer "dead" or fixable?

My experience is that if you can't clean the heads (either by invoking a cleaning routine, or by removing the heads and soaking them overnight in a cleaning solution), and your printer is out of warranty, then it isn't worth paying to have it fixed.

My experience is also that of the several brands of inkjet printer that are popular for the Macintosh, Epsons are the most common to clog. So I don't recommend Epson inkjet printers unless you need an inkjet printer that handles an unusual paper size or if you are a graphics professional. (Epson has a line of very expensive professional inkjet printers that are unmatched in their output.)

I usually recommend Canon multi-function inkjet printers. They are excellent performers, they are reliable, and they have superb service and support for Mac users. Even better, I know sources for very high quality third party consumables at very reasonable prices.

This multi-function has been extremely popular among Macintosh users. (I have its predecessor, and it’s wonderful.)

Canon PIXMA TR8520 ($100)
PIXMA TS8320 Black | Canon Online Store|Canon Online Store

https://www.usa.canon.com/internet/...xma-tr8520-wireless-office-all-in-one-printer

The Canon PIXMA TR8520 takes the CLI-281 ink cartridges. They come in three different capacities. Genuine Canon cartridges, of course, will be ridiculously expensive. So I recommend purchasing third party replacement cartridges. DO NOT get just any compatible cartridges though, they are likely to be garbage. But these are both excellent and reasonably priced:

Full set of *extra-extra* high capacity CLI-281 replacement cartridges for $50:
Compatible Canon PGI-280XXL & CLI-281XXL Super High-Yield Ink Cartridge 5-Piece Combo Pack | Swift Ink

If you have a choice, I recommend attaching it via USB rather than Wi-Fi, as that will provide better performance.
 
Joined
Jul 30, 2009
Messages
6,813
Reaction score
127
Points
63
Location
Wisconsin
Your Mac's Specs
Mac Mini (Late 2014) 2.6GHz Intel Core i5 Memory: 8GB 1600MHz DDR3
I got to speak with a service tech yesterday. He said the repair charge would be more than a new printer; pretty much what I was expecting. The end came suddenly, but I got many years out of it. It did cost me the price of color ink cartridges to determine that low ink was not the problem, and I have some unused black ones that will now be of no value to me. Oh well.
 

krs


Joined
Sep 16, 2008
Messages
1,707
Reaction score
35
Points
48
A couple of things I did when my printers died:
The Brother printer I put on Kijiji for free - a Chinese fellow came and picked it up and insisted to give me a nice, brand new mouse for that.
Apparently a Chinese tradition I was told that they give something in return.
The Epson one Staples took back and gace me a $50.- credit towards a new Epson which itself was on super sale at the time, so the replacement wasdirt cheap.
My intent both time was try to not have the printers end up in the landfill
 
Joined
Feb 1, 2011
Messages
2,028
Reaction score
162
Points
63
Location
Sacramento, California
...the repair charge would be more than a new printer; pretty much what I was expecting. The end came suddenly, but I got many years out of it....
The thing about inkjet printers, compared to a laser printer, is that they aren't designed to be workhorses that last for decades. If you get three or four good years out of an inkjet printer, you've gotten your money's worth.

On the other hand, inkjet printers are really inexpensive to purchase. Even a good multi-function inkjet can be found for around $100.

However, if you purchase OEM replacement ink cartridges for an inkjet they are a money pit. That's why I've spent decades tracking where users have purchased third party ink for a fraction of OEM prices, yet with identical quality. I usually purchase a huge sack of replacement ink cartridges for about $60 once a year when my favorite ink cartridge vendor has a big sale on top of their already really low prices! So all year long I can print in color with impunity!

One note, I've called Canon tech support for assistance when my Canon inkjet printer was at the end of its life, and after they've told me that it isn't worth paying to have it repaired, they've offered me a like-new refurbished current model for about half the price of a new one. They even sent me an additional set of brand-new ink cartridges with it. This is one of the many reasons I recommend Canon inkjet printers.
 
Joined
Oct 16, 2010
Messages
13,214
Reaction score
206
Points
63
Location
Brentwood Bay, BC, Canada
The thing about inkjet printers, compared to a laser printer, is that they aren't designed to be workhorses that last for decades. If you get three or four good years out of an inkjet printer, you've gotten your money's worth.

On the other hand, inkjet printers are really inexpensive to purchase. Even a good multi-function inkjet can be found for around $100.

I just wish the printer manufacturers would provide a complete comparison listing of features, including prices and specs so that one could narrow their choice down when looking for a new or replacement printer.

I only ended up getting a Canon MX 922 as it was highly recommended here by Randy at the time and it took the same ink cartridges that my old one used and which I had a decent supply of, but the best part was it was on sale for less than half price of around $80 cdn at Staples.

Those features made the selection fairly easy but it would still have been nice to see a comparison sheet for the features that it did have, in order to compare it with other models at the same price etc. I will say that I was rather surprised as to its rather large size, which was much larger than I was expecting.





- Patrick
======
 
Joined
Feb 1, 2011
Messages
2,028
Reaction score
162
Points
63
Location
Sacramento, California
I just wish the printer manufacturers would provide a complete comparison listing of features, including prices and specs so that one could narrow their choice down when looking for a new or replacement printer.

I only ended up getting a Canon MX 922 as it was highly recommended...
Those features made the selection fairly easy but it would still have been nice to see a comparison sheet for the features that it did have, in order to compare it with other models at the same price etc. ...
The MX 922 was a no-brainer. It had just about every feature you could think of. It had so many nice features that it still surprises me. For instance, most printers of any description that have an Ethernet connection (in addition to a USB connection) cost way more than equivalent printers without one. But the MX 922 has one and it was still very competitively priced.

I had my MX 922 for years before I figured out that it could print right onto optical disks!

Have you tried printing photos onto cheap inkjet photo paper yet?
https://www.amazon.com/Canon-7981A004-Photo-Paper-Sheets/dp/B0000721Z3/
The results are often breathtaking!

The MX922 is gone, but the Canon Pixma TR8520 is the spiritual successor to the MX922. And it too is reasonably priced:
https://www.usa.canon.com/internet/...xma-tr8520-wireless-office-all-in-one-printer
At first I was distressed by the number of one star reviews. Then I just found them amusing. Some people are just too stupid to be using computers and they especially shouldn't be writing reviews.
 

krs


Joined
Sep 16, 2008
Messages
1,707
Reaction score
35
Points
48
I read somewhere a while back that Canon ink jets use larger ink drops than Epson, therefore are less prone to have their heads clog.
I wish they would make a model to compete with the Epson WF-7720 so I could try one.

My daughter uses Canon printers and she is quite happy with them.
 
Joined
Oct 16, 2010
Messages
13,214
Reaction score
206
Points
63
Location
Brentwood Bay, BC, Canada
The MX 922 was a no-brainer. It had just about every feature you could think of. It had so many nice features that it still surprises me.

I was a bit surprised to see the Canon MX922 still listed as one of the top printers at several rating sites:

#1 here:
Which Printer Has the Cheapest Ink Cartridges 2020
Which Printer Has the Cheapest Ink Cartridges 2020

But some stores may still have some stock available.




- Patrick
======
 
Joined
Oct 16, 2010
Messages
13,214
Reaction score
206
Points
63
Location
Brentwood Bay, BC, Canada
I read somewhere a while back that Canon ink jets use larger ink drops than Epson, therefore are less prone to have their heads clog.

Except for maybe the cheapest of printers, I think you will find this technology has changed drastically and was almost akin to the
Digital Photography megapixel myth.

The nozzles used in inkjet printers are hairbreadth fine and on early models they became easily clogged. On modern inkjet printers this is rarely a problem,
Inhttp://www.image-specialists.com/ink_int_injet_printer.aspx






- Patrick
======
 
Joined
Feb 1, 2011
Messages
2,028
Reaction score
162
Points
63
Location
Sacramento, California
But some stores may still have some stock available.
The MX922 was discontinued about six months ago. It's an obsolete product. There is no reason to purchase one since, as I stated, Canon has a logical successor, the Canon Pixma TR8520. The Canon Pixma TR8520 is practically the same machine, only with a larger touch screen display and the option to use larger ink cartridges. The Canon Pixma TR8520 is also just as inexpensive as the MX922 was. At $100, it's a steal.
 
Joined
Oct 16, 2010
Messages
13,214
Reaction score
206
Points
63
Location
Brentwood Bay, BC, Canada
Hahahaha! Yeah, right.

Well yeah, now either some of the ink just dries up with a big dried up glob to plug some nozzles or some of the nozzles go goofy or just quit working...

Has anyone noticed, even with the replacement printheads being used in so many inkjet printers, that it is almost next to impossible to purchase a replacement printhead for a reasonable price, or at any price???

That seems rather strange to me. Especially when some printers are advertised as having a replacement printhead.





- Patrick
======
 
Joined
Jul 30, 2009
Messages
6,813
Reaction score
127
Points
63
Location
Wisconsin
Your Mac's Specs
Mac Mini (Late 2014) 2.6GHz Intel Core i5 Memory: 8GB 1600MHz DDR3
I have a new XP-4100 to replace the XP-420. I'm going to search, but does anyone know if the old 220 cartridges will work in the new printer that came with 212-1 cartridges?

They look much the same in size and detail. Even the chip looks the same. Seems a shame to open these new ones when I have the old ones that were just recently installed.

Should I uninstall Epson software and then use the disc that came with the new printer to install new software?
 
Last edited:
Joined
Oct 16, 2010
Messages
13,214
Reaction score
206
Points
63
Location
Brentwood Bay, BC, Canada
I have a new XP-4100 to replace the XP-420. I'm going to search, but does anyone know if the old 220 cartridges will work in the new printer that came with 212-1 cartridges?


Unfortunately, they don't seem to appear on the same Compatible Printer List:

https://www.123ink.ca/p-373566-oneb...rtridge-combo-high-yield-bkcmy-economical-box

And/Or
https://www.123ink.ca/search?utf8=✓&q=XP-4100&commit=

Epson Expression Home XP-420 Small-in-One All-in-One Printer Ink | Ink | For Home | Epson Canada

But maybe check some other sites as well, just to double-check.


Should I uninstall Epson software and then use the disc that came with the new printer to install new software?
Their support site should give you some indication of the proper method, but I would be inclined to do an un-install of the old and then an install of the new Printer Software and make sure it is compatible with the Mac OS version you are using.

PS: What was wrong with the older XP–420???





- Patrick
======
 
Last edited:
Joined
Jul 30, 2009
Messages
6,813
Reaction score
127
Points
63
Location
Wisconsin
Your Mac's Specs
Mac Mini (Late 2014) 2.6GHz Intel Core i5 Memory: 8GB 1600MHz DDR3
XP-420 Stopped printing, kept reporting cartridges low until all were new, and then reported the first one replaced as low. When it says it's out, you're done. Replace the cartridge or don't make any prints. So I stopped running the head cleaner utility and tried to find out about repairs. That was a dead end too.

The old printer will be recycled, once I figure out where to take it. Please don't offer solutions for getting it running again. That's water (ink?) under the bridge.

Epson responded to my e-mail and said the different cartridges were not interchangeable. That's what I would expect them to say.
 
Joined
Oct 16, 2010
Messages
13,214
Reaction score
206
Points
63
Location
Brentwood Bay, BC, Canada
The old printer will be recycled, once I figure out where to take it.

Any of these suggested Recycling hits close to your area???:

Google

Do you have a "UsedWisconsin" type Website in your area where you could offer it for a free pick up, and some people like tinkering and/or are looking for parts. Maybe they could use the still useful ink cartridges as well.





- Patrick
======
 
Top