Epson SureColor SC-T2100

Editorial Type: Feature Date: 2020-10-05 Views: 1,200 Tags: Hardware, CAD, Printers, Printing devices, Epson, Epson SureColor SC T2100 PDF Version:
Epson's new wireless A1 printer provides a perfect solution for architects and engineers who work in a small office, from home, or on-site, writes David Chadwick

It is alarming how many different types of cable we acquire over the years - and how reluctant we are to dispose of them when the equipment they power up becomes obsolete or gives up the ghost. I was delighted, therefore, to remember that the new Epson printer, the SureColor SC-T2100, is billed as a wireless printer, supplementing the usual USB and Ethernet connections.

I was doubly delighted, as I didn't have to move out my trusty Stylus Photo 2880 printer which I have used successfully for the last 4 or 5 years, and I could place the A1 printer on a convenient table in the next room without having to worry about finding a cable long enough to reach it.

Setting up the Epson SureColor SC-T2100 couldn’t be simpler. Once unpacked I uploaded the latest drivers from the CD provided and set its installation routing in motion. The online blurb mentions how easy and intuitive it is to install and I can only second that.

The printer comes with a small LCD screen on the top panel which mirrors or reiterates the onscreen instructions, explaining how to load inks and insert the A1 roll of paper by manually feeding the leading edge of the paper into the rollers under the platen until they engage, leaving the printer to take over and correctly line up and tension the paper prior to printing, as well as how to set the unit up for WiFi operation. This only requires the network name and password, an onscreen keyboard providing you with the means. Alternatively, you can use the WSP (WiFi Protected Setup) button on your router if you have one.

The Epson SureColor SC-T2100 is the latest in a long line of SureColor printers aimed at technical users in the CAD/AEC market. Using just 4 pigment-based inks rather than the umpteen they need for their graphics printers, it can print up to 24 inches wide and is aimed at those who need an easy to use, professional level printer with a low cost of ownership.

The SC-T2100 is aimed at freelance architects or engineers, students and for use in on-site offices where reliability, simplicity and a small footprint are of benefit.

It's also low cost, with a VAT inclusive price around the £650.00 mark, and although Epson describe it as the smallest footprint printer in its technical printer range, it is a lot of printer for the money, even when you factor in the fact that it doesn't come with a stand - a simple addition which, however, is sold separately. Its roll of paper is fed in through the top and is automatically loaded into the printer, and it sits behind a sheet feeder which can take up to A3 sheets, both of which can be accessed from the printer menu.

Having both types of paper - roll and single sheet fed - in such a configuration means the printer can be shunted up against a wall to save space, and you don't need to find space for a second printer to print out documents. Drawings produced from the paper roll are automatically guillotined after printing.

There's just a small caveat regarding the paper feeds. Saving space is admirable, but you will have to add the single sheet stacker tray to your purchase to catch the A4 sheets as they emerge from the front of the printer. However, a tray for collecting A1 drawings comes with the optional printer stand.

The 4.3 inch touch panel with its LCD display enabled me to set the printer up quickly and configure its WiFi connection to enable it to be run directly from a PC or workstation, or from a smartphone or laptop - just one of the suite of apps and features that makes the printer so easy to configure and run. I was initially taken aback by the Epson Printer Preview which loads after you have confirmed the SC T2100 as your output printer, as it depicts the page to be printed upside down - but that's another feature that seems quite natural when you think about it, as that's the way you will see it appear after printing, and you can flip the page if you want to. The rest of the preview allows you to check whether all printer attributes are set correctly before you print.

Epson supply quite a few different types of paper for the SC T2100, from photo quality single sheets up to A2 in size and archival matte paper up to A3 format to rolls of different thicknesses, including enhanced adhesive synthetic rolls 24 inches in width by 30.5 metres in length.

Although it is technically not a graphics printer, photo quality images produced by its 4 colour pigmented inks together with Epson’s archival quality papers can produce artistic prints and graphics with exceptional colour quality that will last for many years to come.

The SC-T2100 has been designed to work at an optimum rate of 100 pages per month, an average rate for a busy architect working on a couple of projects, and prints at a resolution of 2,400 x 1,200dpi with its 800 nozzles for each print cartridge.

It uses a unique method of nozzle verification called NVT - Nozzle Verification Technology - to prevent misprints and reduce downtime. After switching the printer on it can produce its first page, either in monochrome or colour, in 43 seconds.

The SureColor SC-T2100 doesn't quite do edge-to-edge printing but can print within a margin of 3mm all round. It also has 1Gb of memory and can handle the usual CAD emulations (ESC/P-R, HPGL-2 and RTL). It will run on the latest Windows platforms from Windows 7-10 and Mac devices using a range of interfaces: USB 3.0, Gigabit ethernet interface, Ethernet Interface (1000 Base-T/ 100-Base TX/ 10-Base-T), Wireless LAN IEEE 802.11b/g/n and, of course, WiFi Direct.

Epson's SureColor SC-T2100 is available through ArtSystems dealer printer channels, who can provide a complete service supplying consumables and advice through their online help service.