Now that photography has gone digital, we often forget how important it is to have hard copies of our images. Remember the nostalgia you used to experience by looking through photo albums or scrapbooks? How about photo-themed craft projects? Remember, if you print out your pictures instead of leaving them on the computer, you’ll still have a box of memories no matter how many times your hard drive crashes.
Stop making costly trips to photo labs and start printing pictures in your own home. These top ten printers for amateur photographers will get you started on preserving those memories.
1.) Canon Selphy CP780 ($99)
The Canon Selphy CP780 is the best budget photo printer on the market today. Reviewers say the printer is only slightly behind top-notch photo printers and still produces remarkable lab-quality prints. Unfortunately, the printer is slower than higher-priced models, but the printer uses a dye-sublimination technique that eliminates pixelation in prints. Experts have noticed that occasionally prints will come out looking pale or with a soft focus effect.
2.) Epson PictureMate Charm PM 255 ($150)
The Epson PictureMate Charm is the highest-reviewed photo printer around. Its superior photo quality and fast printing speeds are unmatched by anything else on the market and the printer won the coveted PCMag’s Editor’s Choice Award. While the initial cost is higher than the Canon Selphy CP78, the Epson’s per-print cost is lower in the long run. The printer also features an easy-to-use interface. For amateur photographers looking to take their equipment on the road, the Epson PictureMate Charm may not be a good choice; the printer is much bulkier than the lightweight Canon Selphy.
3.) HP Photosmart Premium Fax All-in-One ($139.99)
With all the capabilities modern printers have today, it sometimes becomes difficult to justify an expensive photo printer when you also need a fax and scanner. Luckily, HP rolled out the HP Photosmart Premium Fax All-in-One. The printer delivers lab-quality photos as well as fax, scan, copy, and print capabilities. With an additional low per-print costs, this multifunctional printer is hard to beat.
4.) Lexmark X7675 Pro ($129)
Wireless printers are notoriously difficult to install. Thankfully, Lexmark has streamlined the install process to offer a painless Wi-fi set-up. In addition, the generous five-year warranty definitely outshines all it’s competitors. For a solid performance, easy-to-use design, and great print quality, the Lexmark X7675 Pro is a great basic or family printer. Beware of the printer’s sluggish print times, however.
5.) Canon Pixma iP2600 ($49.99)
The lowest-priced standard printer on this list, the Canon Pixma iP2600 offers solid pictures for a great value. The minimalist, lightweight design is easy to store or transport. Unfortunately, the printer lacks external upload ports and does not come with a USB cable. Still, for basic or beginning users trying to print good-quality photos and personal documents, this is an ideal printer.
6.) HP Photosmart C6380 All-in-One ($95)
Looking for a multifunctional printer, but don’t need the fax machine? Enter the HP Photosmart C6380 all-in-one. The printer is a cheaper alternative to the HP Photosmart Premium Fax All-in-One and does not include the latter printer’s auto-document feeder. With a six-ink cartridge bay, this printer still delivers good quality photos in an all-in-one format for beginning photographers.
7.) Epson WorkForce 610 ($85)
For those looking for a printer for a business or home office, the Epson WorkForce 610 delivers a thoroughly professional performance. The Workforce 610 offers a sleek design and a comforting dependability. The printer also offers comprehensive fax, copy, and scanning capabilities. Unfortunately, consumers will have to combat slow printing times for high quality photos.
8.) HP Photosmart A526 ($89)
Maybe you just want a basic plug-and-play printer for family photos. The HP Photosmart A526 Photo Printer offers handy in-printer editing tools that adjust color balance, brightness, and contrast levels and remove red eye. Not the best printer on the list for more advanced users, but this printer could be just what a beginning photo printer wants.
9.) Canon Pixma iP100 ($179)
Starting an amateur photography business? Need to take your photo printer on the road? The Canon Pixma iP100 is the best portable printer on the market. It’s lightweight, compact, and provides superior photo quality. The iP100 also won CNET’s Editor’s Choice Award for a transportable printer.
10.) Polaroid PoGo ($39)
The Polaroid PoGo is an adorable transportable printer that is ideal for casual printing on-the-go. The battery-operated printer allows photographers to provide basic prints instantly, making it a perfect portable photo booth for family gatherings, outings, or themed events.
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