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Epson Computer Tips: Wide Format Printing

Have you ever heard people talk about wide format printers? What does this mean? You may have been wondering.

Let’s say you’re looking for new photo printing equipment. Maybe you’ve been to a few digital scrapbooking classes, and you’ve heard this term being thrown about, but you’re not quite sure what it means. That term is “wide format”.

Printers are categorized by the width of the paper that fits into them. Most printers fit letter size sheets of paper, like this one. That means it can also print smaller sizes of paper than letter size, but the maximum paper width that can fit between the printer’s paper guides here is 8.5 inches. Some printers can print really long banners as well. The Epson R300 will print sheets up to 44” long, but the paper width can never exceed 8.5 inches. Nothing wider will fit in here.

What if you want to create digital 12x12” album pages? The solution is to get a wide format photo printer.

The maximum printable area of a wide format printer like the Epson 2200 printer is actually 13”. Again, you could print a banner or a sign up to 44” long with this, but your paper width needs to be 13” or less. You could still print photos as small as 4x6”, even with a wide format printer. The term simply defines the maximum printable width handled by each printer.

Now don’t make this mistake. Don’t walk into a huge consumer electronics store and ask for a “12x12” printer.” They’ll look at you funny, and then tell you they have no such thing. A scrapbook store clerk might know what you’re referring to, but chances are slim that they will in other retail locations. You need to ask for and look for a “wide format photo printer” by that term. The album size of 12x12” is just one of the many sizes possible on a wide format printer.

And lastly, remember that you’ll need the right paper to match your desired print size. If you want to print 4x6” size without having to trim, then buy 4x6” paper. If you want to print 12x12,” then buy 12x12” paper. You could always buy bigger paper than the print size you’d like, print on it, and then trim off the excess . . . but that’s time and paper wasted. Buy the size you know you’re printing and you won’t have to bother with trimming. The biggest standard cut sheet size that fits into a wide format printer is 13x17”. That’s pretty big!

Sponsor: Epson America

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