When I did a nozzle test, I was surprised to find that there are four sets of black nozzles, and one set each for cyan, magenta, and yellow. It looks like the printer is optimized for black-and-white (as opposed to color) speed. Given my application, that makes perfect sense.
The printer does a credible job printing photographs on Epson Photo Paper Glossy. It takes 4×6 and 5×7 sheets in the back hopper, so I can print on paper too small for my 4900. It’s not a bad printer for family pix, but, if you want a serious small image, you’ll print to the 4900 and cut it down.
After printing more than 1000 pages, I have not had a single paper jam. I have printed 20 and 24 pound bond paper from the cassettes, and up to 300 GSM paper from the rear tray. I have printed on some HP 80 GSM matte stock that never would feed reliably in the 6250, and the Epson handles it perfectly. The 6250 always left card stock curled from its trip around the EP roller and through the fuser. The Epson inkjet printer leaves the paper flat — a big improvement.
I have yet to see my first clogged nozzle. I leave the printer on all the time, and rarely does a day go by that I don’t print something. Since clogged nozzles are usually a problem in printers that sit idle a lot, my conditions don’t provide a difficult test.
When set for high quality, the printer slows down quite a bit and gets much quieter. I have selected high-quality as my default mode, with the ink density cranked up to a hundred percent. If I want a high-speed print job, I change the settings in the driver before I print.
The Epson is a good all ‘round workhorse home and small office printer. However, there are times when you need to bang off 500 or a thousand pages PDQ, and the 4540 is not the ideal tool for that job. I’m going to keep the 6250 around (turned off, to keep the vampire power drain at bay) for the infrequent times when I need to print a big job fast. With that exception, the Epson 4540 has earned its place as my go-to office printer.