Epson WorkForce Pro WF-5620DWF review

£182
Price when reviewed

Think inkjets are only good for low-demand use? Epson’s WorkForce Pro WF-5620DWF shatters this myth, with a monthly duty cycle of 35,000 pages. What’s more, it uses the same PrecisionCore print-head technology as Epson’s commercial printers and its high-capacity cartridges keep it running for longer.

Epson WorkForce Pro WF-5620DWF review: running costs and performance

Epson has a firm eye on costs too. That £235 exc VAT price is no typo, while running costs for the XXL cartridges (each with a 4,000-page capacity) are among the lowest in this class: expect to pay only 1p per mono and 4.4p per colour page.

Epson’s installation software has every angle covered. It provides a tutorial on setting up the printer and, when we were ready, it loaded the drivers, downloaded the latest firmware and installed an E-Web Print browser plugin plus desktop scan and fax utilities.

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The only annoyance was having to run a head-clean cycle before testing, but with the gaps in the nozzle-pattern test now filled in, the printer proceeded to deliver good speeds and quality. In Draft and Standard modes, our 20-page Word document was delivered in one minute (matching Epson’s claims) while the High-quality mode dropped speed to 10.5ppm.

Colour printing is slower: our 24-page DTP test print returned 18ppm in Standard mode and 10ppm for High-quality. Even so, the time to first page was fast – we rarely had to wait more than eight to nine seconds for any of our test prints.

The scanner is a simplex version, but its ADF copies both sides of a document by reversing each page automatically. Speeds are a little slow, though, with a single-sided 15-page mono document copying at 7.5ppm at Standard and 6ppm in Best mode.

It’s best to stick to Standard mode for text printing, since it produces the sharpest results; Best mode leaves a slight dusting on some characters. The latter delivers the goods for printing graphics and photos, however, with bold, punchy reports and sharp, glossy photos without any banding or bleeding at the edges.

Epson WorkForce Pro WF-5620DWF review: features and ease of use

Epson Connect enables remote users to email print jobs as attachments to the printer. After registering, we were provided with a unique email address for the printer and, from the web portal, we created approved-sender lists and decided which features they were allowed to access. Wired or wireless operations are available, as are AirPrint and Wi-Fi Direct, while pretty much every cloud service we can think of is supported.

Nor is cloud support only a feature Epson has casually ticked off: we couldn’t believe how easy it was to enable the scan-to-cloud service. From the Connect portal, we added our Google Drive account; after authentication, it immediately became available in the printer’s control panel as a scan destination.

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LDAP was just as easy to use, as we discovered on adding our Active Directory (AD) server along with authentication details and a search base. From the printer, we could then search for AD users and add them to the address book as email and fax contacts.

The colour touchscreen makes light work of scan, copy and fax functions. With Epson’s software tools loaded on a Windows 7 client, we could also run remote scans, maintain a local fax phone book and upload a speed-dial list to the printer’s address book.

Epson WorkForce Pro WF-5620DWF review: verdict

There’s plenty we like about the WF-5620DWF: it’s cheap to run, has tons of features and is very user-friendly. It puts forward a compelling argument for inkjets in the workplace, and therefore takes a well-deserved place on the A-List.

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