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Compatible Epson Cartridges: New Epson Firmware blocks compatibles

von Florian Heiseübersetzt von Ulrich Junker

If you buy a new Epson-Printer just to use compatible ink-cartridges, you are in for a big surprise. After installing the compatibles the printer may refuse to accept them.

Rumors have it that Epson made some changes in their firmware. Starting April 2007 printers like the Epson Stylus D78 or Epson Stylus Photo R265 came with a new firmware.

Epson didn’t tell us what changes they have made, but truth is that most compatibles aren’t working with this firmware.

DRUCKERCHANNEL has tested several compatibles in two Epson Stylus Photo R265, one with the old, one with the new firmware. Result: The printer with old firmware accepts every compatible cartridge, the one with the new firmware doesn’t. You will find details in the table below.

Compatibles in Epson-Printers with new firmware
Cartridges sold byCost per set (appr.)Works in printer with old firmwareWorks in printer with new firmware
Epson original cartridgeswww.epson-store.de54,00 Euroyesyes
Color-Ink-Cartridge
"Ink made in U.S.A"
Computerdiscount 300024,00 Euroyesno
Compatible Ink CartridgeFerdi's Online-Kaufhaus (KabelTV-GmbH)23,00 Euroyesno
Jettecwww.jettec.de39,00 Euroyesyes
KMPwww.ink-center.de36,00 Euroyesno*1
Pearl iColorwww.pearl.de31,70 Euroyesno
© Druckerchannel (DC)

With six compatibles installed the status monitor only shows light-cyan as not compatible.

The rest of the compatibles are wrongly shown as "EPSON original".

Jettec is the only company who has designed a smartchip yet that enables its compatible cartridges to function with the new software. All cartridges beeing delivered now have the latest chip that works with both versions of firmware.

Conclusion

Epson again caused successfully a lot of confusion in the compatible market. DRUCKERCHANNEL doesn't want to assume the firmware change was made only to disallow the compatibles. On the other hand Epson didn't give us any reason for the firmware change.

Bag of tricks:

  • We don't know a way yet to find out if a new Epson printer is equipped with the old or the new firmware.
  • It's not clear yet which Epson printers are involved. We could prove it on the Epson Stylus Photo R265 we had in our testlab Some Epson Stylus D78 series printers apparently have the same behavior.
  • Affected are only some Epson printer models which are in the market since April 2007.
  • If you want to buy compatible cartridges for your Epson printer make sure your dealer confirms in writing that these actually will work in your printer.
  • If you have a new Epson printer and you are not sure, if you have one with the old or the new firmware installed, first buy only one cartridge to check if it works properly before you buy a whole set.
  • If the compatible cartridge does not work in your printer, you should insist on your legal right to have it either replaced with one that does work, or your money back.

Further information

*1
After consultation with Ilona May, spokesperson at KMP-AG, KMP works whith pressure on an own developement of a chip for the news Epson firmware. KMP will trouble-free change all cartridges, which won't work.
26.05.08 14:53 (letzte Änderung)

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