Buyer's Guide 2008: Photo Printers
Make your best prints in your favorite sizes faster and more easily than ever before
One of the latest standard-sized desktop printers from Canon, the PIXMA iP4500 is a basic inkjet model that offers four dye-based color inks and a pigment black cartridge. But the affordable and stylish iP4500 comes with two paper trays, so you can easily switch between two types of paper; duplex printing is available as well. Estimated Street Price: $129.
The Epson Stylus Photo R280 won't put a dent in your budget and it may dazzle you with its ability to print directly onto printable CDs and DVDs. This six-color, dye-based inkjet printer is equipped with individual ink cartridges and Automatic Photo Correction for no-muss, no-fuss adjustments. Estimated Street Price: $99.
The new HP Photosmart D7460 is a little pricier, but with its media card slots and three-inch LCD, this printer offers solid stand-alone capabilities along with its USB computer connection. Better yet, the D7460 has built-in networking capabilities-wireless and Ethernet-so you can easily share the printer. It's also equipped with two paper trays, one for 8.5x11-inch paper and one for 4x6-inch photo media. Estimated Street Price: $179.
The wide-format, dye-based Canon PIXMA Pro9000 is equipped with eight individual ink cartridges (CMYK, photo cyan, photo magenta, red, green and photo black). The top auto feed holds up to 150 sheets of plain paper, but you'll have to load fine-art or photo paper one sheet at a time. A front feed slot can accept single sheets of paper up to 1.2mm thick. The Pro9000 measures 26x7.6x14 inches and weighs a little more than 30 pounds, but the printer comes with a rear set of wheels, so it's easy to adjust its position when you need to. Connectivity is via USB, and there's a direct print port on the front for hooking up a PictBridge-enabled camera. Estimated Street Price: $499.
The Canon PIXMA Pro9500 is the company's most affordable pigment-based, wide-format printer. The Pro9500 is a few pounds heavier than its dye-based sibling, but is otherwise quite similar, with the same footprint, connectivity and dual paper feeds. The Pro9500 utilizes 10 individual pigment-based cartridges-the same eight colors as the Pro9000, plus matte black and gray. The two extra cartridges give the Pro9500 enhanced black-and-white capabilities. Estimated Street Price: $849.