Monday, October 24, 2016

Printers: Epson vs. Canon

Lets take Epson XP-810 and Canon MX870 or MP560 as examples.

Epson is not refill friendly

The Epson uses sponge-less cartridges. I searched hard but could find only one place where sells refillable sponge-free cartridges for Epson and that company is located in FL.

There is no resetter worth of buying. If you're lucky to find one that works, you must reset a cartridge before it reaches empty or the cartridge is game over.

This refill issue alone is a deal breaker. With canon, you can clearly see how much ink is left and refill it easily anytime, empty or not.

Epson is ink eater

Ink goes down fast, really fast! Never had such a feel in the past 10 years with Canon printers.

Last week I replaced all cartridges except the photo black:

After only few test pages:

And after I take out the BK and C cartridges and then put them back:

Once any one of the cartridges runs out, the printer won't do any work for you other than telling you to buy ink. For example, if just yellow runs out while even if you are printing pure black text, you're still screwed. Canon is never this rude.

With Epson, you have to clean all cartridges altogether even if you know exactly which color(s) really need:

With Canon, you may clean only black or other colors, in addition to all:

The rear tray of Epson is second to useless

It takes only one piece at a time; so it is only for printing a single photo or envelope:

There is a second tray above the standard cassette, but it is for small photo papers only:

With Canon, I can fill 150 sheets in both the rear tray and the bottom cassette, respectively, and pick up freely between them.

Paper Handling Sucks

If the computer is set to use letter papers (8.5x11) and you print with a filler paper (8x10.5), printing will stop with an error. With Canon, the printing will always go through fine regardless what paper you tell the computer and what paper you actually use, smaller or larger.

Furthermore, auto duplex is limited to letter size at the minimum. If you use smaller papers such as filler paper, it refuses to do auto double-side printing. Although Canon have such a limitation too (on theory), but you can still duplex with filler papers just fine as long as you fake your computer with letter size.

Lacking of a multi-page rear tray, manual duplex printing is not practical, - it is a big hassle to reload papers in a cassette. So forget about duplex, auto or manual, if you need to use papers smaller than letter size such as filler papers sold unbelievably cheaply - 150 pages for 10 cents by Fry's Electronics during each and every back-to-school season.

When loading paper into the cassette, it is face down for single side and auto duplex, but face up for manual duplex. What a lousy engineering.

When printing starts, the output tray slides out automatically. Nice ha? Well, they forgot a button, neither hard nor soft, for sending it back! Man, even a 30 years old CD drive has a button so you don't have to push the tray and suffer from gear roaring.

Epson software is like malware

Once installed, there is no option to uninstall, like Chinese software. It adds some background stuff running on your computer - a monitor service and two scheduled tasks that run hourly (I disabled them all):

Canon software always play nicely.

The Epson is far more compact and neat though, while Canon are all bulky and ugly. The quality of scanned images is superb - extremely sharp with accurate colors while Canon's is quite poor and never get colors right. These are the only two things attractive and pretty much all other aspects are disgusting.

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

LeapDroid no audio fix

Windows PC used to be the main source of entertainment, but no longer, Android now dominates. LeapDroid is a great way to bring that back to your computer and enjoy vast music and video while you work.

If you ever experience no audio from LeapDroid, here is the fix: right click on the little speak at the bottom right corner and select "Playback devices":

Click on the device you are using and click on "Properties" and then "Advanced":

Uncheck "Allow applications to take exclusive control of this device:

That's it and enjoy!

Related articles:

LeapDroid, finally a practical Android on PC