The Epson WorkForce Professional WF-C8690 ($1499.99) is a high-volume wide-format all-in-one (AIO) designed for midrange to heavy use in medium- to large-size workplaces and workgroups. It is rapid, extremely expandable, and helps super-high-capacity ink cartridges. Upload to these perks its affordable acquire worth and aggressive operating prices, and it is simple to crown it our Editors’ Selection for high-end wide-format printers.
Transparent a Trail, Make Room
The WF-C8690, which is the sibling to the single-function WorkForce Professional WF-C8190, helps no longer solely the extra not unusual tabloid-size (11 by way of 17 inches) wide-format paper; it additionally prints better super-tabloid-size (13-by-19-inch) pages. The bigger the pages your system can churn out, the larger the system itself will have to be, after all. The WF-C8690, as an example, measures 22.5 by way of 24.1 by way of 34.1 inches (HWD) with its trays prolonged and weighs a whopping 101 kilos, which is somewhat smaller, but greater than 20 kilos heavier, than its predecessor, the WorkForce Professional WF-8590 ($1,499.99 at Epson)(Opens in a brand new window) . Clearly, it’ll require its personal devoted robust stand or countertop and a minimum of two folks to strive against it there.
During the last few years we have reviewed a number of lower-volume, a lot lower-priced wide-format AIOs from Brother, Epson, and HP, however only a few high-volume machines identical in specifications and value to the WF-C8690, which means that, after all, that there are only a few machines in our database to match it to. Epson’s personal WorkForce ET-16500 EcoTank Vast-Structure All-in-One Supertank Printer ($999.99 at Amazon)(Opens in a brand new window) , considered one of that enormous printer maker’s bulk-ink fashions that makes use of bottled ink fairly than cartridges, by way of comparability, is a number of inches shorter and weighs 50 kilos lower than the WF-C8690. It too helps the super-tabloid layout, however its most per thirty days accountability cycle is 55,000 pages lower than that of this brawny giant brother.
Out-of-the-box paper dealing with is composed of 1 250-sheet drawer that holds paper as much as tabloid-size, and an 80-sheet multipurpose tray at the again that holds as much as super-tabloid-size sheets. If that isn’t sufficient paper (or enter assets), you’ll amplify it as much as 1,830 sheets from 4 assets, with as much as 3 500-sheet add-on drawers ($425-list each and every). Epson additionally gives a mixture cupboard/printer stand for $250. HP’s print-only tabloid-size PageWide Professional 750dw ($2,299.99 at Tiger Direct)(Opens in a brand new window) , alternatively, has a default paper enter skill of 650 sheets, expandable to (with two 2,000-sheet trays) 4,650 sheets, and the Epson ET-16500 holds 502 sheets and isn’t expandable.
The 50-sheet computerized record feeder (ADF) helps single-pass auto-duplexing, which means that it scans each side of two-sided pages concurrently, however the ET-16500’s 35-sheet ADF helps solely guide duplexing. With its 75,000-page per thirty days accountability cycle (5,000 pages per thirty days really useful), the WF-C8690’s quantity score is greater than thrice increased than the ET-16500’s and a number of other different consumer-grade wide-format machines, and the similar because the HP 750dw’s.
Along with the usual Epson printer and scanner drivers, the WF-C8690, as its bulky complete identify implies, comes with further drivers for each HP PCL (Printer Command Language) 5 and PCL 6, in addition to Adobe PostScript 3. And the printer itself emulates each HP PCL and Adobe PostScript web page description languages (PDLs), for compatibility with high-end printing presses and prepress imaging apparatus utilized in desktop publishing and graphics design programs.
Maximum enterprises do not require those PDLs for on a regular basis printing and copying, however beef up for all 3 of them guarantees the quite a lot of skills right through your company get entry to to the options that best possible meet their wishes, regardless that. With the PostScript drivers put in, for instance, your record and graphics design departments can use the PostScript emulation to print composites for proofing—prior to sending ultimate record information out to the print store for high-volume print runs.
You’ll configure and observe the AIO, in addition to arrange and start up walk-up duties, similar to making copies or scanning to a community power or cloud website, from the WF-C8690’s spacious and well-laid out keep an eye on panel. The panel is composed of a handful of buttons, standing LEDs, and a bunch pad, all anchored by way of a 5-inch coloration contact display screen.
Along with the keep an eye on panel, you’ll additionally observe, configure, and necessarily organize all settings and controls from a integrated safe (HTTPS) internet server that is living within the WF-8690’s reminiscence. Like maximum trade printers and AIOs, you hook up with this one in the community or over the web along with your browser by means of an IP cope with. In reality, some sides of tracking and configuration, similar to viewing reviews, managing contacts, and surroundings safety choices, are more uncomplicated from the internet portal than the keep an eye on panel.
Connecting and Securing the WF-C8690
Like its predecessor, the WF-8590, the WF-C8690 helps with regards to each connection interface or protocol to be had (apart from Bluetooth), beginning with the fundamentals, Wi-Fi, Ethernet (as much as 1,000 Base-T), and connecting at once to a PC by means of USB 3.0, in addition to the 2 standard peer-to-peer community protocols: Wi-Fi Direct and near-field communique (NFC). The ones closing two allow your staff to glue their smartphones or drugs to the printer with out both it or the cell units being a part of your native field community or being hooked up to an middleman router. NFC is a touch-to-connect protocol that allows you to print from or scan for your cell software by way of merely touching it to a hotspot at the printer, on this case, to the left of the contact display screen, under the ability button.
Further connectivity choices for printing emails and attachments, printing remotely, and beef up for Apple iOS and Android cell platforms, in addition to printing from and scanning to quite a lot of cloud websites, are to be had thru a suite of cell apps (which come with Epson E-mail Print, Epson iPrint Cellular App, and Epson Far flung Print) referred to as Epson Attach. 3rd-party cell printing and scanning is to be had thru Apple AirPrint, Google Cloud Print, and Amazon’s Fireplace OS. And, if none of those gets the activity accomplished you’ll all the time tough it by way of printing from or scanning to a USB thumb power by means of the port situated at the left-front of the chassis.
Prime-volume AIOs like this one are designed to be accessed by way of more than one customers, which, in busy place of business environments, may well be as much as 25 (or most likely much more) people printing, scanning, copying, and faxing paperwork of various ranges of significance and sensitivity—all in your centralized, readily obtainable printer. The WF-C8690 means that you can safe paperwork with non-public identity numbers (PINs). Ceaselessly referred to as Protected Print, maximum competing multiuser AIOs include this safety characteristic.
The Consumer Get right of entry to Regulate lockout characteristic means that you can deny get entry to to customers and/or teams to express options, similar to printing coloration paperwork or making more than one copies, and even getting access to the printer in any respect. When used together with the great reviews to be had throughout the internet portal (or printable from the keep an eye on panel), the power to safe print jobs in the back of PINs and restrict get entry to will will let you stay the WF-C8690 safe.
The place Speedy Starts
As I mentioned in regards to the WF-C8690’s print-only sibling, the WF-C8190, Epson’s 24 pages-per-minute (ppm) score is, for high-volume machines like this, the rate at which rapid printing starts. The HP PageWide 750dw, as an example, is rated at 35ppm, and I have observed a lot higher-end Epson inkjet printers churn out two-sided pages at 100ipm (pictures in line with minute, the place each web page facet counts as a picture). Be mindful, too, that the next take a look at effects are comprised from printing letter-size pages. Tabloid pages (which might be exactly two times the dimensions area-wise as letter-size media) with kind of an equivalent share of ink protection, must take about two times as lengthy to print, and super-tabloid pages a little bit longer nonetheless.
See How We Check Printers
I examined the WF-C8690 over Ethernet from our usual Intel Core i5 testbed PC operating Home windows 10 Skilled. When printing my 12-page Microsoft Phrase monochrome textual content record, I timed it at an excellent 28.3ppm, which is quicker than its 24ppm score and nearly 2ppm quicker than the WF-C8190 print-only style, however 7.2ppm slower than the HP 750dw. (The Epson ET-16500 used to be up to now in the back of in this take a look at that creating a comparability right here would not supply any worth.)
To proceed checking out, I revealed a number of PDFs, Microsoft Excel spreadsheets with full-page graphics, and a couple of full-page colourful PowerPoint handouts with darkish forged fills and backgrounds. Then, I blended the ratings from printing the former 12-page textual content record with the effects from printing those extra complicated coloration record pages. Right here, the WF-C8690 controlled a extremely first rate 18.8ppm, which is traditionally a number of the easiest ratings I have observed from a system churning our complete suite of take a look at paperwork.
PrecisionCore Print High quality
All of as of late’s WorkForce printers and AIOs deploy Epson’s PrecisionCore printhead generation. A number of the a number of print pace and output high quality tweaks, PrecisionCore depends upon printheads with ink chips populated with considerably extra and smaller, tightly condensed ink nozzles that follow ink to paper with larger accuracy than conventional printheads. Consistent with Epson (and my very own enjoy reviewing PrecisionCore printers over time), this leads to larger element and extra correct, colourful colours.
The WF-C8690 renders near-laser-quality, well-shaped, and extremely legible textual content greater than horny sufficient for many interior and exterior paperwork. And the different charts, graphs, and different graphics I revealed have been most commonly spot on, with forged fills, calmly flowing gradients, and well-delineated borders and hairlines. The few ink distribution flaws I discovered have been noticeable solely after I began on the lookout for them. Except for for desktop publishers, graphics designers, or printer reviewers, the recipients of your printer’s output will in all probability care extra in regards to the content material than the intricacies of the system that produced it.
PrecisionCore machines, whilst no longer picture printers, do an excellent activity of printing color-rich and detailed pictures, on this case as much as 13 by way of 19 inches. Then again, not like its WF-8590 predecessor, the WF-C8690 cannot print without borderlines pictures and pages, regardless that maximum of Epson’s lower-end inkjets can. The former style’s skill to print, or bleed, to the very fringe of the paper, is a bonus over its laser and HP PageWide competition. Then again, the shortcoming to print without borderlines is a limitation of laser and PageWide applied sciences—they only cannot do it. Inkjet printers, alternatively, would not have that limitation. Epson will have to have had any other reason why for proscribing the WF-C8690’s output this manner.
Somewhat Affordable Ink
The WF-C8690’s operating prices, its per-page value of the ink required to stay it printing and copying, is similar with the per-page value of midrange to high-volume laser printers, which is somewhat affordable, however no longer the most efficient you’ll do these days. While you use Epson’s easiest yield—11,500 monochrome pages and eight,000 coloration prints—ink cartridges for this AIO, relying on the place you purchase your consumables, each and every black web page must run you about 1.6 cents and each and every coloration web page about 6.7 cents. That is somewhat increased than the HP 750dw’s 1.1 cent monochrome and 5.6 cents coloration, which is able to upload up considerably the extra you print and replica.
Then again, one of the most wide-format, lower-volume fashions mentioned right here have printing prices two times as excessive and better. If you wish to have a high-volume printer that may churn out wide-format pages, particularly super-tabloid, comparably, the WF-C8690’s operating prices are not unhealthy.
Options Meet Efficiency
My solely actual criticism in regards to the WF-C8690 is that its default supplement of paper skill is an insignificant 330 sheets, which, given the dimensions of its ink cartridges and its quantity scores, turns out like a lopsided mismatch designed to promote add-on paper trays. I am additionally no longer satisfied in regards to the lacking borderless-printing skill. Differently, like its predecessor, that is an excellent, feature-rich and built-to-perform wide-format laser choice. The WF-C8690 prints effectively and rapid sufficient for many environments, and it is feature-rich. Its beef up for quite a lot of media permits your company to design and print a number of several types of paperwork. The Epson WorkForce Professional WF-C8690 is a logical substitute for its predecessor as our present best select for high-end wide-format all-in-one printers.
Epson WorkForce Professional WF-C8690 A3 Colour MFP With PCL/PostScript
The Backside Line
The Epson WorkForce Professional WF-C8690 is a high-volume wide-format inkjet all-in-one that prints briefly and appropriately for medium- to large-size workplaces and workgroups.
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