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Any experience with portable photo printers?

Discussion in 'Accessories' started by melanieylang, Apr 18, 2019.

  1. melanieylang

    melanieylang Mu-43 Top Veteran

    723
    Jun 23, 2017
    Hello all,

    I've been thinking that a portable photo printer might be a neat way to get snapshots back into my life in a physical form. Have you had any experiences with these you can share? (I did a search on the forum but didn't find much.)

    Thanks,
    Melanie
     
  2. TNcasual

    TNcasual Mu-43 Legend Subscribing Member

    Dec 2, 2014
    Knoxville, TN
    I have used a Canon Selphy cp1200 for an event that I volunteer for the past two years. It puts out decent snap shots in only a couple of minutes. They aren't print shop quality images, but the quality coupled with the quick turn around always makes the attendees happy.
     
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  3. pdk42

    pdk42 One of the "Eh?" team Subscribing Member

    Jan 11, 2013
    Leamington Spa, UK
    I have a Selphy 1200 too. Great little printer for quick postcard-sized images. The printer is pretty cheap, but the media works out at around 30p per shot (I guess around 40c).
     
    • Like Like x 1
  4. Michael Meissner

    Michael Meissner Mu-43 Veteran

    A few years ago I had a HP Photosmart printer. The pictures were decent, and I did photo printing from my Linux laptop. However after about 6 months the paper feed system broke, and it would no longer print anything.

    When it was working, it was on the slow side. It worked when I brought it out with me to do Christmas photos with the family, but if I wanted to print a bunch of pictures, it probably would have been cheaper and faster to upload the pictures via the hotel wifi to the 24 hour Walgreens across the street from the hotel and have Walgreens print them (and in fact in later years, that is what I did).

    Generally for home printing (not pictures, just normal documents, etc.) I've been using HP printers for a long time, so I feel in that market they are a good value. But the Photosmart was a bust.
     
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  5. Bushboy

    Bushboy Mu-43 Top Veteran

    613
    Apr 22, 2018
    Aotearoa
    Charlie
    I looked into this, but it worked out pretty expensive.
    I print lots of my pics because I'm old school. Warehouse stationary does a hundred for minimal cost. Put a hundred on a flash drive, take it in, and it's all self service. Piece o cake too.
    I know most people will spin, but the 6x4 printed pic is the only backup I have.... :) 
     
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  6. melanieylang

    melanieylang Mu-43 Top Veteran

    723
    Jun 23, 2017
    Thanks for your replies @Bushboy@Bushboy @Michael Meissner@Michael Meissner @pdk42@pdk42 @TNcasual@TNcasual. The current Canon Selphy reviews well, but I was looking for something to use while travelling; I just discovered that the Instax SP1 will communicate directly with my Fujifilm X30, so seems like the most obvious choice.
     
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  7. phigmov

    phigmov Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Apr 4, 2010
    Keen to see the output. Those little printers looks super-cool but seem geared more towards smartphones than computers in terms of being able to output hard-copy.
     
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  8. Replytoken

    Replytoken Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    May 7, 2012
    Puget Sound
    Ken
    Are you planning on sharing these snapshots? These portable printers and their supplies are small, but not that small that I would consider carrying one when travelling unless I had a need for the snapshots, especially given the image quality they produce.

    --Ken
     
  9. Holoholo55

    Holoholo55 Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Aug 13, 2014
    Honolulu, HI
    Walter
    I have an LG pocket photo printer someone gave me. It uses ZINK paper, which is quite durable. One traveling photographer recommended a ZINK printer because it was perfect to give photos to people while he traveled. Made almost everybody more than willing to allow themselves to be photographed. Argh, can't find the article now. ZINK paper is more expensive than inkjet paper, but no cartridges are needed and the printer literally would fit in a pocket. Something to think about, anyway.
     
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  10. While I no longer use the printer for past few years, my experience is with the Epson Picturemate Deluxe. I have no idea if there a current replacement or not.

    For years I travelled with it on extended stays in Central American countries, so that I could take copies back to the people I had photographed in the streets. It was very difficult finding dependable labs to make decent 4x6 prints.

    The image quality was impeccable. To the highest standard. A reason I was really sold on this printer, is because it used the same long lasting pigment inks that my big professional printers used when producing prints for my clients.

    To test the longevity out myself, I printed half a dozen 4x6 prints and left them on the dash on my van for one full year in full sunlight and through brutal cold Canadian winters. While probably faded slightly from the year before, they were still totally usable and colorful.

    The only reason I don’t use printers any longer is because now I can direct those people to my Instagram feed and more often then not I immediately send then the file by WhatsApp or Facebook or email by wirelessly transferring the file from my camera to my phone and then sending from any remote area. I didn’t have those options 5 or 10 years ago.
     
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  11. melanieylang

    melanieylang Mu-43 Top Veteran

    723
    Jun 23, 2017
    As I seldom travel any way other than by car, I figured it won't take up too much extra space in the vehicle.
     
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  12. Mack

    Mack Mu-43 Top Veteran

    766
    Jan 14, 2018
    I have had an Epson PictureMate Charm PM-225 printer for maybe a decade. Got it with a battery for location. It's still working too. Battery still seems fine too.

    Bad part is the ink comes bundled with the paper so figure $45 for 150 sheets of glossy, or a little less for matte paper. I always ran out of ink before using up all the paper too. Sometimes it needed a cleaning cycle if it sat too long which wastes a lot of ink.

    Good part was Epson allows you to return the unused 4x6 inch paper and they refund 30 cents for each unused sheet, but takes maybe 2-3 months to get a check from them. I usually got a full refund on paper for every couple of paper/ink packs since Epson is sort of stingy on ink and I got about half the paper sold (~75 sheets) before it ran out of ink.

    Prints seem to last a long time outdoors and are water resistant. Their website claims 200 years so it must be their better Claria dye ink. Color is very good though so no complaints there. It prints fast too, ~30 seconds.

    Their replacement unit is the PictureMate PM-400: https://epson.com/For-Home/Printers/Photo/Epson-PictureMate-PM-400-Personal-Photo-Lab/p/C11CE84201 It may need to be plugged in though and not battery operated for location.
     
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  13. gryphon1911

    gryphon1911 Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Mar 13, 2014
    Central Ohio, USA
    Andrew
    I have a Canon Selphy as well. Works well for quick 4x6 prints.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  14. Replytoken

    Replytoken Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    May 7, 2012
    Puget Sound
    Ken
    My bad. I was assuming that you were travelling by plane/train. I can see if you had a car where this fits in the picture (pardon the pun).

    --Ken
     
    • Like Like x 1
  15. Holoholo55

    Holoholo55 Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Aug 13, 2014
    Honolulu, HI
    Walter
    Ah, here's the article. He uses an Instax printer.
    Printing Photos On-the-Go

    The LG printer prints from your smartphone, so if want to print from a camera, you have to transfer images to your phone first and then print. A bit more hassle, but doable.
     
    Last edited: Apr 19, 2019
    • Informative Informative x 1
  16. melanieylang

    melanieylang Mu-43 Top Veteran

    723
    Jun 23, 2017
    That's a good article, and I liked one of the comments below it about using one at the commenter's wedding (which works with any of this kind of printer). Being a Fuji owner, I'm certainly leaning towards the Instax option, particularly as I like the Polaroid-style result. And it's still useful with photos edited on a phone or tablet, which is the only way I edit, anyway.
     
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