Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Epson Artisan 810 on Linux (Ubuntu)

We purchased a new printer for the house last night to replace the windows-only Dell printer that ran out of ink (and would cost almost as much as a new printer for replacements).

First, some advice: plan ahead, order online, don't buy from Staples. We paid $170 for this when Epson is offering them direct for $130 with free shipping. If we were not in need of immediate replacement we could have saved $40 and waited a week. Further, the rep at the store lied when he told us the printer was going to the back to get a unit "fresh off the truck", it was a unit another customer had returned with ink spilled and dried on the inside and some of the packaging torn open. Buyer beware. Otherwise, they seemed to clean it up and repackaged it well. I have half a mind to order the printer online and return this one within 14 days for refund to save the $40.

The printer itself is fairly impressive. Two paper trays (letter/legal plus photo/cardstock) and a built-in CD printing tray that slides out when you select CD printing, scanner with auto-document feeder, and built in 10/100 and wifi so we don't need to depend on any computer in the house to properly "share" the printer. All I had to do is select our access point on the front controls and give it a static IP on our router.

Ubuntu 9.10 detects the printer over the network in seconds and I was printing the Ubuntu test page in under a minute, so more than half the systems in the house were easy. Windows setup was not hard, but time consuming as loads of bundled software installed from the CD. The only complaint I have is the color seems a little off; printing the same image in both Linux and Windows shows a fairly radical difference in quality. The prints from Linux are still much better than printing from Windows to our older printer.

Next I tried to use the scanner function. Using GIMP to launch SANE (Scanner Access Now Easy), the printer was automatically detected and let me select either the flatbed or auto-document feeder. Both options work fine until I start the scan, at which point the Epson Artisan 810 locks up and needs to be rebooted.

There is a scan function from the front panel, not supporting anywhere near the scanner's full resolution and storing in JPEG format with obvious artifacts around text/etc, but at least we don't need to use a Windows system for basic scans until SANE is fixed. Since I have a stand-alone Epson scanner that works beautifully this isn't a huge issue for me, though it would be great to be able to use the auto-document feeder from Linux and be able to put this older scanner into storage.

6 comments:

Chris said...

And they have CUPS drivers:

http://www.avasys.jp/lx-bin2/linux_e/spc/DL1.do

Unfortunately, the scanner drivers only work if the 810 is connected to a workstation, rather than standalone.

Arc Riley said...

CUPS (Common Unix Printing System) is just printer, SANE (Scanner Access Now Easy) is scanner.

So "Image Scan! for Linux" doesn't work with the all-in-one printer connected to the network? That's a fairly severe flaw.

Daniel said...

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Steveco said...

I was able to scan over the network without difficulty, after I followed the steps to tell the system the IP address of the printer.
http://avasys.jp/eng/linux_driver/faq/id000652.php

I haven't tried all the features by any means, but the basics steps of a preview scan followed by a high-resolution scan worked fine.

johenkel said...

I just installed 10.10.
Epson 835 printer setup was easy. Then I just installed xsane 0.997 and it worked without any flaws.
Printer is being accessed through wireless network.

erik said...

I was able to get the Epson Artisan 810 to work via network (wifi) connection on Linux Mint 14. I used SimpleScan. Worked great actually.