I guess it depends on what kind of paper you are working with. I prefer the Epson Enhanced Matte for most prints. When I do print on Epson glossy i use some custom tweaking for the 2200 that i found on redriverpaper.com.. Also the Epson forum in dpreview.com is great.
Tough call. I print in 2880 and I think that I get a better print but that is quite subjective. It may be that I expect it to look better so therefore it looks better. Several reviewers have said that the 2880 is a bit sharper. The bottom line is that what you like is what you should use.
I have not had my 2200 long enough to make many valid observations but speed at 2880 is adequate for me and I am surprised at the milage I am getting from ink. I am not in a hurry. I am not printing commercial so I don't much care how long it takes to print and I don't mind at all spending a bit more for ink if I like what comes out.
Once again, this is all very subjective but I am very happy with this printer and I am sure my son will be just as happy with my old 1270
I'm inclined to print at 2880 for the same reasons you've included. I'm not in a rush and I like the best quality possible. So if it turns out I'm 'over-killing' a bit (vs, say, 1440), and even wasting a bit of ink, I can live with it. I just hope I'm not wasting TOO MUCH ink!... Maybe someday I'll actually take the time to do a comparison.
I've run tests on especially detailed scans and 2880 will show more detail than 1440 under close inspection, 1440 is certainly fine for most images, but I'd always use 2880 for smaller prints that people look at more closely.
I don't find the ink consumption to be significantly higher (if at all). It really shouldn't be much higher, since your prints would be too dark if a lot more ink actually went onto the paper. Mostly, the droplet size will be finer, so tones should be smoother and details a little more refined.