How would you like a compact and affordable bulk-ink all-in-one printer? The Epson EcoTank ET-2820 All-In-One Supertank Printer can be the perfect choice for your small business or home-based office. Even though it doesn’t boast impressive printing speeds or fancy looks, this printer is able to deliver the high-quality prints you need at a very low cost per page. Here are a few of the reasons why the EcoTank ET-2820 is a great choice.
Compact And Lightweight
This is one of the smallest AIO printers on the market. Measuring only 375cm by 347cm by 179cm (Width x Depth x Height), this printer doesn’t take up too much of your desk space. It is smaller and lighter than the Canon G6020 or the Epson ET-4760. Its features and size are very similar to the Epson ET-2860.
You may ask yourself why is there a €120 price difference between the ET-2860 and ET-2820. This higher price brings you SD card support and voice-activation features made possible via IFTTT scripts. These services work with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant among other similar voice-activation apps. The ET-2820 doesn’t support any of these.
The EcoTank ET-2820 features a basic non-touch control panel with a colour display and several buttons and arrow keys. If you need multipage scans or massive printing jobs, you may need to choose another printer model such as ET-3760 and ET-4760, also from Epson. However, if you only want to tackle one-sided prints of less than 10 pages, you’ll love the ET-2820.
There’s only one model of Canon Mega Tank bulk-ink printer that features an ADF, namely the Pixma G4210. The Editors’ Choice OfficeJet Pro 9015 also has it, as well as the HP OfficeJet Pro Premier. Furthermore, the ET-2820 can’t print or copy two-sided pages unless you manually flip them.
Like almost all EcoTank printer models from Canon, the ET-2820 has its ink tanks on the right side of its body.
In terms of connectivity, the printer sports Wi-Fi Direct with Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n and USB 2.0 compatibility. Thanks to the Direct Wi-Fi protocol, you can connect any mobile device to this printer without the need for adding it to a local area network or router. The ET-2820 works with all the most popular wireless connectivity apps such as Fire OS, Apple AirPrint, Google Cloud Print, and Epson iPrint for both Android and iOS. The printer comes with all Epson Printer drivers, as well as with a full-fledged scanner interface software programme, the Epson Scan 2. This bundle isn’t the best you can get, particularly if you think about the huge set of utilities Canon Pixma printers come with.
The ET-2820 features a paper tray that pulls the paper up and out from the rear side of the printer. This tray can hold up to 100 sheets. In addition, you can load the paper tray with ten envelopes (no 10) or with 20 sheets of special photo paper. That’s rather poor by comparison with many printer models in this market segment. The theG6020, for instance, boasts two separate paper sources and can hold up to 350 sheets. HP’s OfficeJet Pro Premier and 9015 can hold up to 250 sheets, as does the ET-4760 from Epson.
The maximum duty cycle of 3,000 prints is outstanding for such a compact printer. According to the manufacturer’s ratings, the G6020 has a duty cycle of 5,000 pages per month, while HP Premier and 9015 have a duty cycle of 22,000 pages.
Epson rates both the ET-2820 and the ET-2860 at 10.5ppm for monochrome pages and 5ppm for colour. I wanted to check this claim, so I ran a few tests myself. I used an Intel Core i5 machine and a USB 2.0 connection. I managed to get a speed of 10.2ppm, which is quite close to the official rating by Epson.
This result is better than the one delivered by the ET-2860 but lower than the entry-level speed of the Epson ET-3760. Both the Canon G6020 and the HP OfficeJet Pro Premier and 9015 were better than the ET-2820.
Then I extended my tests by clocking the printer as I printed out lots of colourful documents, complex spreadsheets, graphs, charts and PowerPoint presentations in a wide array of sizes and colours.
By combining the results of these tests, I got a speed score of 4.5ppm overall. This was as good as the score I got on Pixma G6020 and the ET-2860. However, it was lower than all other printers in the test by values between 6ppm and 10ppm.
The last part of my test included the printing of our special, lovely test snapshots. I repeated the test several times and I got a speed of about 30 seconds for each trial. This result falls in line with most other AIO printers mentioned in this article, but it is about half slower than the above mentioned OfficeJet models.
Epson Inkjet Quality
Modern models of inkjet printers feature an excellent quality output. The ET-2820 surely does, too. The text in all of our tests was perfectly legible, with properly shaped characters and good spacing. The accuracy was excellent for most home-based office needs, so we can safely say this printer has passed the quality test with flying colours.
The Excel charts, graphs and tables, as well as the PowerPoint slides and the complex graphics came out almost perfect, aside from a slight streaking on darker backgrounds. These ink distribution flaws weren’t too obvious. I noticed them only because I was actively seeking to spot such problems.
I was also pleased with the quality of the photos in terms of colour brilliance and accuracy. The details were nice but not as good as I’ve seen from more expensive printers from Epson and Canon. Nevertheless, I found them to be perfect for family photo albums and memories.
Printing For Cheap
Just as all other EcoTank AIO models, the ET-2820 prints at about 0.3 cents per b&w page and 0.9 cents per full-colour page. The ink reservoir capacity is enough for about 7,500 monochrome printouts or 6,000 colour ones. This capacity is similar to the one offered by MegaTank printers from Canon that hold three bottles of black ink, enough for printing out 18,000 b&w pages. The colour ink of these models can provide about 7,700 pages.
The only printers that are able to deliver such inexpensive prints are the ones in Canon’s EcoTank and MegaTank product lines. By comparison, HP’s Instant Ink machines deliver prints at about 2.9 cents per page, in the best-case scenario. Similarly, the HP OfficeJet Pro Premier programme adds the value of the annual subscription to the actual cost of the printer. This makes it an expensive solution.
The Ideal All-In-One
We agree that the Epson EcoTank ET-2820 is a rather Spartan device, with no special functions and added benefits. However, it caters to the needs of any home-based office or small business, as well as to families willing to print their holiday photos. All family members can use it to print photos and documents straight from their smartphones. This printer is the best choice for low-volume, one-side printing, thanks to its fair printing speed and low cost per page. However, if you need higher-volume printing, you may want to check out Canon Pixma G6020, the Editor’s Choice, a machine that boasts a more comprehensive set of functions and holds more paper. The ET-2820 suits best the occasional print jobs at home or at your small business.