A photographer’s most important tool is their camera, however in order to have a copy of your pictures you will need a printer that will do them justice. But how do you know which one to choose? There are so many different makes and models out there to choose from but before you start looking you need to think about the features that are most important to you.
You need to ask yourself what size prints will you be printing, will you mainly be printing in black and white or colour and are you limited to the physical size of the printer, or does it not matter. Other things to consider are how you are going to connect your computer to your printer, speed of output, output quality levels and finally the cost of replacement ink cartridges. To help you decide, have a read through this useful guide to the best printers for professional photography with low ink costs.
Canon Selphy CP800
At only 177x134x69 mm, this dedicated photo printer will fit on any desktop and is easily portable for printing on location. Supporting SD, MS, PictBridge, Bluetooth (higher spec. model only) and USB, the Canon Selphy CP800 can produce photos from “ID” sized up to postcard. Not a massive range however one print cartridge will print approximately 36 prints which works out at around 19p per print. Postcard size prints take approximately 46 seconds to print and are said to last for 100 years. The 2.5” LCD display also lets you make minor adjustments to photographs before printing.
Epson Stylus Pro 3880
Raising the proverbial bar of photo printing is the Epson Stylus Pro 3880. The new AccuPhoto HD2 technology ensures the best highlight and shadow detail and near perfect colour transitions which result in the most real life looking photographs to date. Although you are able to change black inks depending on paper type, in order to get the best usage of your cartridges, it is best to keep to one type of paper if possible. Not that fastest printer on the market, however it will print over 50 prints per cartridge! With a maximum resolution of 2880 x 1440 DPI and light fastness for black and white photos up to 200 years, the Stylus Pro 3880 gets 5 out of 5 from user reviewers who say it cant be beaten on the finished product.
HP Officejet Pro 8500A Plus
Despite being one of the more expensive desktop printers, you will certainly recoup the costs on what you DON’T spend on ink costs. A standard black ink cartridge costs around $29.40 printing 1000 sheets, which means each sheet only costs 2.9 cents per page. The three-colour cartridge at $25.72 produces similarly impressive stats at 900 pages meaning 2.8 cents per page. Users have found little difference between default and high quality settings and paper quality is negligible as to the high quality of photograph prints. The Pro 8500 is ePrint enabled allowing you to send photos by email directly to the printers unique email address meaning your prints will be ready when you get back home to the office or home.
Canon PIXMA Pro9500 Mark II
The Canon PIXMA Pro9500 Mark II produces prints that are long lasting and high quality meaning that photographers can keep their printing in-house. The black cartridge can last up to 3320 (approx.) pages with colour cartridges such as grey lasting up to 2905 pages and cyan 2025 pages. It will take up to nine different types of media and will even print directly onto CD’s and DVD’s. The PIXMA Pro9500 Mark II is also PictBridge enabled meaning that photos can be printed directly from the camera without having to dock it.
Lexmark Interact S605
The Lexmark Interact S605 is one of the fastest printers on the market printing 33 black and white sheets per minute and 30 colour sheets per minute. Printing is available wirelessly and with Vizix printing technology it will always produce high quality looking photos. Reduce your printer’s carbon footprint by approximately half by using the duplex feature and use the card reader function and you don’t even have to turn your computer on. The black cartridge boasts up to 170 printed pages and the three colour cartridge (cyan, yellow and magenta) 200 pages. To extend the life of your cartridges, you can choose whether to use black ink only, colour ink only or both.
Mark Pickering is a gadget and tech nut, as well as writer at PrinterInks.com – suppliers of toner and ink cartridges, as well as other printing products from leading brands, including Kodak, Canon, HP, Dell, Samsung and Epson.