Putting photos on Instagram and Facebook may lead to a bounty of comments and likes from friends, but let’s be honest, you can’t frame a photo on your computer and meticulously place it on the wall. Sometimes you want a physical copy of photographic endeavor – especially if you’re shooting with a high-end camera – and while you could go to the closest convenience store and print them one by one using your smartphone or SD card, opting for a decent wide-format photo printer will allow you to do it all from home, within your specifications. The near-dedicated devices differ from model to model – for instance, some come equipped with Wi-Fi while others automatically switch inks depending on the paper – but most of them can print photos on 13 x 19-inch paper or larger. Below are a few of our current favorites, so you can print gallery-quality images without ever setting foot out the door.
Epson Artisan 1430 ($300)
Simply put, Epson’s Artisan 1430 allows you to print 13 x 19-inch photos with ease. The compact device, which measures 24.3 x 12.7 x 8.5 inches and weighs about 26 pounds, holds up to 100 sheets of regular paper or 30 sheets of fine art paper such as canvas. It can connect to Wi-Fi, so you can send photos from your computer or smartphone, and it has a PictBridge USB port that allows you to connect with PictBridge-enabled cameras – though, not flash drives. The printer’s single-pass duplex scanning and 3-inch color touchscreen are superb, too, as is the simple setup process and the device’s ability to achieve 22 pages per minute (ppm) in black and 15 ppm in color.
Canon Pixma iP8720 ($300)
Canon knows a thing or two about cameras, but it also knows how to make excellent photo printers. Smaller than the Pixma Pro models yet bigger than most inkjets, the iP8720 is perfect for the home photographer. It holds up to 120 sheets of regular paper and 20 sheets of heavier photo paper, and the front-panel even houses a space for a CD or DVD tray. Surprisingly, the iP8720 doesn’t have a PictBridge-compatible USB port, but it can connect to newer cameras or smartphones via Wi-Fi, or shared via a home network. It has excellent output quality, manual duplex printing, and NFC support for quick pairing with compatible Android devices.
Canon Pixma Pro-100 ($500)
The Pro-100 is another great Canon option, even if it is one of the more advanced printers in our roundup. The reasonably-price device is known to produce photos that are nearly on par with printers that cost upwards of $1,000, at a cost that is far better for your budget. The printer is similar to the iP8720 in that it offers a CD-DVD print tray and Wi-Fi capabilities, but it also has a PictBridge USB port and eight ink cartridges to help set it apart. The device is rather slow and a bit cumbersome when it comes to size, but there’s a good deal to be said about accurate color output and its ability to generate first-rate monochrome prints with a little patience.
Canon Pixma Pro-10 ($700)
Another option in the Pixma Pro range, the Pro-10 conveniently comes bundled with My Image Garden software for quickly creating banners, collages, and even calendars. While it’s extremely easy for a hobby photographer to use at home, it’s suited for professional-quality prints. The printer’s output quality is superb – particularly when handling high-resolution image files – and uses 10 ink cartridges, one of which is a clear coat (Chroma Optimizer) designed to level the printed ink surface for a smoother-looking print. The three black inks can also generate quality monochrome prints. It supports either Ethernet or Wi-Fi networks.
Epson P600 ($800)
The P600 is one of the only printers on our list that can support roll paper, meaning it’s capable of creating panoramas more than 10-feet long. It’s adorned with a 3.5-inch color touchscreen, allowing you to set preferences and view instructional illustrations detailing the proper way to insert paper and cartridges. You can also use the panel to pair the printer with compatible mobile devices via Wi-Fi, and given the device’s three-level ink technology, you can rest assured each colored print will showcase the utmost vibrancy and smooth transitions whether printing in color or strictly in black and white.
Epson Stylus Pro 3880 ($1,300)
As the most expensive offering on our list, the Stylus Pro 3880 is built to justify its high-end price tag. The behemoth device takes a bit of time to set up, given it supports a total of nine cartridges, but once done, it manages to produce gallery-quality prints without much need for manual adjustments or color alterations. It also handles 17 x 22-inch prints and showcases a wide color gamut, and furthermore, can handle a vast array of specialty paper other printers cannot. The four blacks let you print exceptional monochrome and sepia images too, especially those that revel in well-defined shadows. The slow print speeds and lack of Wi-Fi are a notable downsides, though.
Canon Pixma Pro-1 ($1,000)
The Pro X-1 is a monster, to say the very least, weighing in at a staggering 65 pounds and measuring 27.4 x 18.2 x 9.5 inches. The printer’s sheer girth leads to massive and beautiful prints, however, allowing you to create professional photos up to 13 x 17 inches in size. The device comes outfitted with a PictBridge USB and a USB 2.0 port, too, along with Ethernet connectivity in lieu of Wi-Fi. It uses 12 ink cartridges, 11 of which are actual colors and the last being the aforementioned Chroma Optimizer, which adds a glossy finish to your prints. The monochrome prints are a standout given the five black inks, that is, so long as you can stand the wait.