Web Epson Stylus DX4400 Multifunction Printer - Review

Web Epson Stylus DX4400 Multifunction Printer - Review

Entry-level price, but what about the performance?

Pros: Cheap, easy to set up and inexpensive, separate consumables

Cons: Very slow print speed. Noisy paper feed. No memory card slots.

Bottomline: The Stylus DX 4400 is cheap to buy and run but has print speed and noise problems

Price: £40

Producing a printer for £40 is quite a feat.

Producing a combined printer-scanner for this amount is exceptional. Epson’s Stylus DX4400 may be a budget model but most of the essentials are in place, including some extras not found in rival machines.
Coloured dark, slate grey with conventional, rounded styling, the device has a simple control panel with just five buttons and three lights.

This is enough for all main functions, though, as the Stylus DX4400 doesn't have memory card slots for direct photo printing, nor does it have a USB port for connecting cameras. Up to 80 sheets of paper can be loaded into the rear tray and this feeds out to a tray at the front. The flatbed scanner adds very little extra height to the machine, which is generally impressively small.

Lifting the scanner section of the machine allows the user to clip the four pigment ink cartridges into place. It's unusual to have separate cartridges in a printer at this price and it helps keep the running costs down, as you can buy each cartridge as that colour runs out.

Having said that, the cheapest way to buy cartridges for the Stylus DX4400 is in a four-pack, which gives a cost per page of just over 2p for a black page and just under 5p for a colour one. Both these costs are good and mean that Epson isn't making up for the low purchase price by charging through the nose for consumables.

Where the machine isn't as hot is on print speed. A five-page text print took more than two minutes in normal print mode, giving a real-world speed of under 2.5ppm. A similar five-page colour text and graphics job produced a speed of under a page per minute. These speeds are poor, even for a cheap printer.

Added to that is the fact that the Stylus DX4400 is noisy – we measured its peak sound output to be 70dBA when it was feeding paper; which is noisy enough to ban it from most living rooms and study areas.