Gadget tidbits

Posted: Thursday, January 31, 2008

Epson Stylus Photo R1900

Almost three years after Epson introduced the widely popular Stylus Photo R1800, the company has released the Stylus Photo R1900, which brings along with it a new version of the company's pigment-based UltraChrome Hi-Gloss ink set called UltraChrome Hi-Gloss2. The new inks include an orange cartridge, instead of the blue cartridge used with the R1800, which allows for slightly better skin tones.

Editors' rating: 8.2, excellent.

The good: Excellent color photo printing; big enough for scrapbookers; roll feed capable; long-lived prints; CD- and DVD-label printing; many paper options; new ink set enhances skin tones.

The bad: Large footprint; no card reader.

The bottom line: Epson's Stylus Pro R1900 13-inch-wide photo printer is great for scrapbookers who want to print with pigment ink, or advanced photographers who want to print large, but can't justify the expense of a pro-level printer.

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Microsoft Office for Mac 2008

Microsoft has released "Office for Mac 2008" to brick-and-mortar and online stores, making this the first update in nearly four years. Office for Mac includes Word, Excel for spreadsheets, PowerPoint for presentations, and Entourage for e-mail and time management.

Editors' rating: 7.8, very good.

The good: "Microsoft Office for Mac 2008" offers good looks that encompass deeper features than other Mac productivity software; business users get full Word mail merge, robust Excel spreadsheets, and better tools in Entourage; amateur desktop publishing features better polish documents; runs on Intel-based Macs.

The bad: "Microsoft Office for Mac 2008" is pricey; saves work in new file formats by default; Excel drops Visual Basic support; features don't match the depth of those in Office 2007 for Windows.

The bottom line: "Office for Mac 2008" may be the best pick for business users, but most people can get by with less costlyalternatives.

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