The 3 Best Photo Printers of 2024 | Reviews by Wirecutter

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After testing more photo printers, we’ve found that the Epson SureColor P700 is the best overall and the Epson SureColor P900 is the best for larger prints. Dtf Ink Best Quality

The 3 Best Photo Printers of 2024 | Reviews by Wirecutter

A photo printer is the final step of your digital-darkroom workflow, capable of transforming your image from an idea into a tangible, gallery-worthy art piece that can last a lifetime.

For photography enthusiasts who are looking to create professional-quality prints at home, we recommend the Epson SureColor P700.

This inkjet printer consistently delivers great results using long-lasting pigment inks. The P700 can print on all types of media up to 13 inches wide, and it was the fastest printer we tested.

This printer consistently delivers excellent prints with long-lasting pigment inks. It also offers a user-friendly color touchscreen. Be aware that it ships with less-than-full ink cartridges.

This cheaper printer produces vibrant prints but uses dye-based inks, which may not last as long as pigment-based inks.

If you need to make very large prints, this 17-inch printer delivers bigger prints that are just as excellent as those of our top pick, using the same pigment inks.

This printer consistently delivers excellent prints with long-lasting pigment inks. It also offers a user-friendly color touchscreen. Be aware that it ships with less-than-full ink cartridges.

The Epson SureColor P700 produces beautiful, high-quality color and black-and-white prints that accurately reflect the original image across many types of media using archival, pigment-based inks meant to last a lifetime.

It also includes two features that you won’t find in competitors: a color touchscreen that’s useful for performing maintenance and observing the printing process, and a see-through panel and an interior light that allow you to watch the print being made, which is truly captivating.

This cheaper printer produces vibrant prints but uses dye-based inks, which may not last as long as pigment-based inks.

If you’re watching your budget, the Canon Pixma PRO-200 creates vibrant prints that are perhaps a tad less color accurate than those of the Epson SureColor P700.

Compared with most printers, it is relatively easy to operate, with handy on-screen operating cues and QR-code links to more complex instructions.

This printer and the dye-based inks it uses are less expensive than our top pick and its inks. However, dye-based inks typically don’t last as long as pigment inks; although they may last through your lifetime, they might not endure for generations to come.

If you need to make very large prints, this 17-inch printer delivers bigger prints that are just as excellent as those of our top pick, using the same pigment inks.

The Epson SureColor P900 offers everything we love about our top pick but can use paper up to 17 inches wide, instead of maxing out at 13 inches wide as the P700 does. It makes excellent color and black-and-white prints that can last hundreds of years. It also has a color touchscreen for printer maintenance or operation, as well as an attractive, relatively compact design that lets you watch the progress of your prints.

Unlike its smaller cousin, our test P900 shipped with full ink tanks, though it consumed a large amount during setup. Also different: For this model, you have to pay extra for the roll-feed adapter if you want to print that way, and the component adds more depth to the printer. However, the P900’s only real competitor—the Canon ImagePrograf PRO-1000—doesn’t offer a roll-feed option at all.

Erin Roberts is a photojournalist, writer, and professional photographer with a wide range of experience in researching, testing, and writing about photography trends, techniques, and tools—including in her former role as mobile-imaging editor at DPReview.

Phil Ryan has been an editor and senior staff writer at Wirecutter since 2017. Prior to his time at Wirecutter, he was a senior technical editor for Popular Photography magazine, where he ran the testing lab and tested all types of photo gear. Before that he was a senior editor for CNET, specializing in photo and video equipment. He has been testing and writing about photo printers for almost 20 years.

Photography enthusiasts who enjoy tinkering with a new piece of gear and plan to print frequently will love seeing their images come to life as large, gallery-quality prints.

But take note: Dedicated photo printers of this scale and scope—not to mention this level of investment—are not for the average shutterbug. Here are a few key points to consider before buying:

Printing can help you become a better photographer. Understanding the entire process—from shutter release to finished print—changes the way you think about your camera settings, your editing process, and how you’ll display your work for decades to come.

If you’re used to choosing and editing an image meant only to be consumed in a fleeting moment on a tiny smartphone screen, this shift may be revolutionary to your growth as a photographer.

And if you’re feeling stuck in a rut with the type of photography you’ve been doing, a dedicated photo printer may open up a world of new possibilities and perspectives as you explore how your work looks when printed on various media types and sizes.

We’ve tested dozens of online photo printing services, and we’ve consistently found that Nations Photo Lab is the best place to get prints.

We spent hours and hours researching inkjet photo printers for this guide. We read reviews from reputable sources such as Digital Camera World, Northlight Images, PCMag, and TechRadar, and we scoured the internet to read customer reviews on Amazon and other retail sites.

Here’s what we looked for in a dedicated photo printer:

To test the best printers available, we printed dozens of images, considering several variables:

This printer consistently delivers excellent prints with long-lasting pigment inks. It also offers a user-friendly color touchscreen. Be aware that it ships with less-than-full ink cartridges.

The Epson SureColor P700 consistently produces beautiful, high-quality color and black-and-white prints worthy of hanging in your home or any art gallery.

It outputs impressively accurate color and contrast. Time after time, the P700’s prints most closely matched the source images on our color-calibrated computer screen.

Color prints displayed impressive detail and accurate skin tones, while black-and-white prints exhibited a full range of tone, without unwanted color cast, more consistently than those of the competition.

The color touchscreen makes printing more convenient. The 4.3-inch tilting touchscreen is useful for performing maintenance and for observing the printing process as it displays your image during printing.

Using the touchscreen makes changing the paper type and sizing feel more seamless than on competing printers, which still offer only physical buttons for such tasks. And this screen’s graphic instructions provide step-by-step assistance and explanations.

The see-through panel is unnecessary but entrancing. The P700 features a transparent window and an interior light that together allow you to watch each print in process, an experience that we found as absorbing as seeing an image emerge in a darkroom tray.

It prints well on all kinds of paper. The P700 is capable of printing on media up to 13 inches wide and up to 1.5 mm thick.

Though we found that the primary paper feed could be finicky, the results were gorgeous across each paper type we used in testing, from the shiny, silvery Moab Slickrock Metallic to textured fine-art matte papers like Hahnemühle’s Photo Rag Bright White.

The P700 can also accept roll paper for potentially superwide panoramic prints.

Its pigment ink is stunning but definitely not cheap. Epson’s pigment ink is impressive, but it’s also expensive.

At this writing, each 25 mL ink cartridge costs about $38 to replace, for a per-milliliter cost of $1.52. With 10 cartridges in total, you spend almost half as much as the total price of the printer for that first full set of ink.

That said, the cartridges should last twice as long as those of our budget pick, the Canon Pixma PRO-200, which has a per-milliliter ink cost of $1.11.

It has wide software compatibility. You can print from either Adobe Photoshop or Lightroom, but Epson also offers its own free software; Epson Print Layout works as a standalone program or as a Photoshop or Lightroom plug-in.

Although downloading more software and getting the hang of yet another interface may seem daunting, Epson’s software offers more printer-specific language than Adobe’s and might help you ensure that you’re selecting all the correct settings so you don’t waste time or paper.

It works well over USB, Ethernet, or Wi-Fi. This was the fastest printer we tested, though printing over Wi-Fi was generally slower than doing so over a physical connection.

It’s compact but heavy. While the P700 was the smallest photo printer we tested, it was also one of the heaviest at 35.3 pounds. (Only the wide-format Epson P900 and Canon PRO-1000 were heavier.)

“Small” is relative here: Measuring 20.3 by 14.5 by 7.3 inches, the P700 is a substantial addition to any home desk. You should also anticipate leaving another foot or so in the front to extend the output tray and about the same space in the back to accommodate paper output from the front paper feeder or to use the roll-paper feeder.

This cheaper printer produces vibrant prints but uses dye-based inks, which may not last as long as pigment-based inks.

If you’re looking for a printer capable of producing vibrant colors that pop off the page, at a lower price than our top pick, the Canon Pixma PRO-200 is a great choice.

Its colors are punchier, but less accurate, than our top pick’s. The printing expert we consulted concluded that this model had the best color gamut—that is, the fullest color range—of the printers we tested. That said, the colors were often oversaturated and warmer than in the original image.

It prints well on most papers. The PRO-200’s results were beautiful across all the media types we tried, if less consistent than those of the P700.

It has fewer paper-feed problems than our top pick. The rear and front paper feeds never jammed or struggled to pull paper, unlike on our top pick, which had an especially hard time with glossy media. The PRO-200 is therefore a better choice if you know that you’ll regularly print multiple copies of an image on glossy paper.

Setup is relatively easy in comparison with the competition. The written instructions include QR codes that direct you to online setup videos.

Though the non-touch color LCD feels outdated, the overall interactive experience is fairly intuitive. Helpful graphic videos give directions for tasks such as loading paper, and during certain procedures the screen also displays QR codes that quickly pull up help videos.

It offers lots of connectivity options. Like the P700, the PRO-200 offers Wi-Fi, USB, and Ethernet connectivity.

It was slightly slower than the P700 in our testing, and it was slower over Wi-Fi than USB, but not so much that we would have noticed if we hadn’t been running a stopwatch.

It’s cheaper to buy and operate than the P700. At this writing the PRO-200 costs $280 less than our top pick, and after generating more than 50 prints, many in the large 13-by-19 format, we still haven’t had to replace the ink cartridges.

The 12.6 mL cartridges hold less ink than the P700’s 25 mL cartridges, so you have to replace them more frequently, but at a cost of $1.11 per milliliter versus $1.52 per milliliter for our top pick. This printer also has only eight cartridges to replace, versus 10 for our top pick.

Its dye ink is vibrant but won’t last as long as pigment ink. One of the biggest drawbacks of the Canon Pixma PRO-200 is that it uses dye-based inks, which will not last as long as the archival-quality pigment inks of the Epson SureColor P700.

A dye-ink print can certainly last decades if properly cared for (stored under UV glass and using a protective coating), but if you are concerned about longevity, or if you’re planning to sell your prints and want archival quality as a selling point, look to our top pick.

Canon’s software is just okay, but you can use Adobe apps instead. Canon offers free printing software that works standalone or as a plug-in for Adobe Photoshop and Lightroom. It offers more printer-specific nomenclature than Adobe’s printing panels do, but it can’t open raw files.

Though Adobe’s apps are better options for editing your images, Canon’s Professional Print & Layout program offers a handy pattern print option that’s useful for considering tone and cast in black-and-white prints and determining how a print will appear under specific lighting conditions.

If you need to make very large prints, this 17-inch printer delivers bigger prints that are just as excellent as those of our top pick, using the same pigment inks.

If you plan to sell your prints frequently, need your work to stand out more, or just want the extra impact of a large print on the photos you make, the Epson SureColor P900 edges out the competition.

It’s easier to use than other wide-format printers such as the Canon ImagePrograf PRO-1000, and its 17-inch-wide prints match the excellent quality from our top pick. It also has the same beautiful design, and it’s compatible with all of the same paper types.

Its wireless printing is just as fast as its wired printing. No matter how we sent data to the printer— Wi-Fi, Ethernet, or USB-B—our prints finished at the same speed. At equivalent print-resolution settings, the Epson P900 was regularly faster than the 17-inch Canon PRO-1000, though depending on the paper, sometimes only marginally. Over Wi-Fi that Canon model slowed further, while this Epson printer maintained its speed.

When we used Wi-Fi with a 8423×12633-pixel crop of NASA’s Pillars of Creation image from the Webb Space Telescope to make a 12-by-18-inch image on 13-by-19-inch luster paper, the P900 finished in 16 minutes 33 seconds, while the PRO-1000 took 24 minutes 10 seconds.

Most of the functions are identical to those of the P700. All of the things we love about the P700—the long-lasting inks, the vast paper compatibility, the large touchscreen interface, and the gorgeous design with an entrancing see-through window to watch the printing process—are the same in the P900.

We were able to print on Red River’s Polar Gloss Metallic and Palo Duro SoftGloss Rag papers, as well as on Hahnemühle’s FineArt Baryta Satin, Canson’s Infinity Baryta Photographique, Awagami Factory’s handmade Japanese paper, and a variety of papers from Epson’s Professional Media line, including its Legacy Fibre. All produced beautiful results.

Its roll feed lets you print very long images. While the P900 limits you to 17 inches in one dimension, it can keep going for up to 129 inches (nearly 11 feet) in the other dimension if you add the optional roll-feed adapter. If you want to display a vertical print, that’s higher than most home ceilings. It’s also a lot longer than the Canon PRO-1000’s maximum of 47 inches.

If you’re considering roll printing, keep in mind that the P900 does not have a built-in cutter, so you need to do that yourself with a sharp pair of scissors (photo paper is thicker than regular printer paper) or a nice paper cutter.

The main paper feed can be finicky. The main paper feed (Epson calls it the rear feed, even though it feeds down through the top of the printer) sometimes pulls in two sheets of paper instead of one. During our tests, we ended up with a misprint that ruined two pieces of paper. It doesn’t happen regularly, but you may want to feed one sheet at a time when using particularly expensive paper.

The other paper feeds worked well. We didn’t have the same kind of trouble with the P900’s roll feed that we did with the P700’s. Perhaps the P900’s purpose-built, add-on roll feeder makes things easier than the built-in component on the P700.

Epson has slightly updated the P900’s front paper feed compared with the one on its predecessor, the P800, and while feeding thick media is still a slower process than using the main feed, it worked perfectly for us. Though the feed time of 1 minute 30 seconds might seem like a lot, loading thick paper is always an awkward process for photo printers, and this feels like an appropriately careful and safe way to handle expensive paper.

If you want a 17-inch printer that uses larger cartridges: In our tests, the Canon ImagePrograf PRO-1000 made prints that matched the quality we saw with Epson’s SureColor P900, though they tended to look a little warmer. Setup was not as smooth as with the Epson model, and this Canon printer doesn’t offer the option to add a roll feed for a continuous source of paper, but it can print on sheets as long as 47 inches.

We also found that the PRO-1000 was about three minutes slower than the P900 when printing the same files at comparable print resolutions. It also slowed when printing over Wi-Fi, while the Epson model was just as fast printing wired or wireless. In addition, the PRO-1000 is physically larger, has a smaller control screen, and uses button-based controls; we found the P900’s more elegant, larger touchscreen easier to navigate.

Canon’s large, 80 mL ink tanks last a bit longer than Epson’s 50 mL tanks, but the Epson tanks lasted long enough in our tests that they weren’t a problem for us. Canon ink is also cheaper by 15¢ per milliliter when you purchase individual cartridges and by 19¢ per milliliter when you buy bundles. That can add up if you print a lot, as we expect that owners of a large printer like this would, but we still believe that the Epson P900 is a better wide-format choice overall.

This article was edited by Ben Keough and Erica Ogg.

Erin Roberts is a freelance writer reporting on cameras and camera accessories at Wirecutter. She started her career as a photojournalist working in newspapers—shooting film—and was the mobile-imaging editor at DPReview. She is also a professional photographer who has made her living photographing everything from rock stars to humpback whales.

Phil Ryan is Wirecutter’s senior staff writer for camera coverage. Previously, over 13 years he covered cameras and other photo-related items for CNET and Popular Photography. As the latter's tech editor and then senior tech editor, he was responsible for maintaining and refining the lab testing for cameras, and as the main camera tester,  he used and wrote reviews of many of the cameras released in that timeframe.

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The 3 Best Photo Printers of 2024 | Reviews by Wirecutter

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