Kip Letter

Below is a commentary by photographer and Mac user Kip Peterson regarding the Epson 1270 printer. Reprinted with permission.

The package is very impressive, with excellent documentation and a decidedly neutral approach towards platform choice. The included CD contains Epson’s latest printer driver, and it installed flawlessly on all five of my Macs, ranging from an iBook and iMac to a Power Macintosh G4.

I chose to attach the printer directly to my G4 via one of its USB ports. One of the most delightful discoveries I made during installation is that even though I run my five machines on a 100 Base-T Ethernet network, the printer driver software allows simultaneous access to the 1270 from each machine via the "Printer Share" feature of AppleTalk. I could even spool print jobs wirelessly from my AirPort-equipped iBook anywhere from my home!

More good news: The print quality, as has been previously mentioned by UK reviewers, is stunning. I have not had the time to explore the myriad printer dialog box options, so I cannot comment on how much better the results may get, but so far, I am elated. The printer ships with Epson’s latest papers in a sample Media Pack; the Photo Glossy paper is truly amazing in this printer. Also, the printer is extremely quiet in operation. Finally, my favorite print job this week was watching a 11X17 inch, 117lb-paper poster being sucked through the printer effortlessly (this is my first Tabloid-size printer).

Some bad news: The RAM requirements to print a job with no glitches is prodigious. To get a 6Mb Adobe Photoshop file to print successfully required assigning the Epson Monitor3 application 14Mb; I also had to assign more memory to Photoshop. Also, I’ve found that the printer dislikes Mac OS 8.5.1–it crashed a machine with that OS version several times in the middle of a print job. OS 9 seems to fair much better. Also, on the 4X6 inch Photo Paper, I noticed thin, slight, horizontal streaks across the print about every 1/2 inch. These streaks were clear, that is, no color was lost in these areas–the streaks looked more like a roughness on the surface. Epson support said this should not occur, and I will continue to research this effect on various settings and papers.


NB: Mac users should note that the 870 and 1270 printers donothave serial ports and therefore a USB connectionisrequired.