My dream printer charges me half of his current rates, uses a PC instead of a Mac, and can speak a language I can understand... Oh, sorry, different kind of printer!
Personally, it's a Frank Lloyd Wright thing - Form Follows Function.
I do all my own in-house printing (well most of it), and have an Epson 1280 (wide print). My color output and resolution are excellent for the images I produce. I could have gone with more colors (2200 series), but frankly, it doesn't help me for my particular application.
So my point is, I have my perfect printer, and it's not the absolute best in its class.
The three things that one must balance are the following, and as far as I know there isn't a single printer that is the best at all:
* Color Gamut
* Paper Handling
Usually, you get two out of the three.
I would advise though, the following. True or not, HP is categorized as a business printer, Epson is a graphic professionals printer. I like Epsons consistency and paper handling and predicable color rendering. Not everyone will agree.
That's my two cents.