Let me say this, we use our cartridges in R&D every single day, we have every model printer we support. We use the R3000, 3800, 3880 & R2880 very regularly, they are "Put through the Ringer" with our refillable cartridges and our inks (CCPRO, ITPRO & Piezography), we see very little problems with cartridges in any of our printers. In fact we have cartridges in our 7880's in the studio that have been in use for more then 3 years. The R2880 I use for testing ALL of our inks and I use on a minimum 3 sets of cartridges a week while testing, I very very rarely have a problem with a cartridge, they are bomb proof, solid & in my opinion, as good as OEM cartridges. The ONLY time I have any problems with the R2880 or R2400 cartridges is when our printers get old, neglected and simply worn out from use (and believe me they get used). Normally I maintain the printer I have on my desk to the up most standards, simply because I need it to work flawlessly 100% of the time, with little to no down time. These printers are made to be disposable, that is what Epson intended for them, if you can get a full 2 years out of any desktop printer, then you are doing something very right! Once I start having problems with a channel mixing ink, I try the Head Cleaning Kit, Cleaning the Capping Station & Wiper Blade and the bottom of the print head thoroughly. I also replace the cartridge, if this doesn't solve the problem, then I use the printer as a GO printer and start with a new re-furbished that may last 2 yrs or 10 yrs, one never knows. We had a very old, worn out, neglected R2880 that was 6+ years old running flawlessly, then BAM the LLK channel stopped working. I cannot speculate how, why and what reasons caused the lightest color to drop out, all I could do was say "Thank you for your services trusty friend" and put it to sleep until the day I need it to test a theory such as this topic.
My point to this whole story is this, don't expect these "Disposable" printers to last for years, if you get 2 years out of one, then YAHOO you're doing well! The R3000 & the 3880 on the other hand are FAR less disposable, you get what you pay for with these printers. The only thing they will NOT tolerate is sitting around unused for extended periods of time, anything more then 3-4 weeks on these printers is going to cause head clogging and misfiring channels. This is not something that is easily fixed with Piezoflush either, it can only do so much cleaning! You should always store your printers with Piezoflush if you aren't going to be using it OR print a test print once a week and make sure you maintain a good nozzle check weekly and they will last for years to come.
Hope this helps you in your decision making process, Cheers-Kelly