Latest Technology in Home Photo Printers
It seems like a blast from the past now…the age of taking a roll of film to a specialty photo shop or pharmacy to get it developed.
But it really wasn’t that long ago. I remember riding my scooter and bopping along to my Discman, which would skip momentarily with every bump in the road, as I made my way to our local shops.
And there I’d wait – for at least 10 minutes – while Mr. Templeton, adorned in his customary white lab coat, would turn my roll of film into real images, which he’d then place into a special slip case with happy children on the cover staring back at me; I sometimes wonder what happened to Mr. Templeton…I doubt I’ll ever know.
I figure he might have changed his line of work, because within a few years I was among the converted, the masses, beginning to print photos from home, our main concern being whether the photo paper was placed the right way up or not.
In other words, this change happened almost overnight. I’m sure there are other, more rapid examples of innovation than photo printers and photo processing but both have certainly changed at a rate of knots.
Of course the main reason for the dramatic change was the shift from photographic to digital printing. The advent of digital has allowed us to print photos from the comfort of our home in seconds, wirelessly, and in an affordable manner.
Latest innovations in photo printers
While the switch from photographic to digital was the sea change that rattled the photographic cage, the strong competition among photo printer companies is forcing them to keep innovating and diversifying to stay ahead.
Some of these companies are simply trying to produce superior quality printers and images. Others are trying new things like smartphone integration and different sized paper inputs. Here, we’ll list a few of our favourites.
Consumer level, innovative photo printers
Canon Pixma Pro 100: This high-end Canon printer produces great quality photos. But what really sets it apart is its ability to print up to A3 in size, using a special eight-ink colour system. So if you’ve got pictures you’d like to hang on the wall or turn into a poster, this printer is for you.
Epson Expression Premium XP-820: The USP of this printer is its ability to print on all manner of surfaces…paper, CDs, DVDs, you name it, thanks to the Claria five cartridge premium ink system. Its other USP is that it has an email address, which means you can print from anywhere in the world.
Canon Selphy CP910: This printer is for all you smartphone lovers out there. Not only is the Selphy CP910 incredibly compact and lightweight, it can connect to almost any device: iOS and Android, laptops, USBs, SD cards and tablets and it comes with built-in Wi-Fi. Printing’s never felt so easy. And you social media buffs can even print Instagram pics in square stickers with this baby.
The forefront of printer technology
These are all fantastic examples of how far photo printing has come but the innovations are far from over.
There’s a strong push for more industrial-type printers that can produce much larger scale and better quality pictures. Then there are textile printers, like this Hollander ColorBooster 320, which apply colours and patterns to the fabric of your choice.
As my grandma used to say, “Whatever will they think of next?”
I sure would love to know what she thought of 3D printers, which we’ve omitted from this post due to the obvious fact that our blog post would be longer than Don Quixote if we tried to fit in all the technological aspects involved; we promise to devote an article to 3D printers very shortly.
The argument for print shops
Of course there’s still a strong case to be made for professional print centres, like our very own Camera House Print Shops.
We find that some of our customers simply like the atmosphere and are keen for some helpful knowledge from our photo experts. Others frequent our photo printing outfits for the optimal image quality that home printers still can’t replicate.
For people like me, it’s also about a bit of Mr. Templeton-style interaction and whimsical nostalgia for the process of getting photos developed like we used to.
No matter the reason, Camera House can handle all your printing needs, from turning a collection of your photos into a beautiful photo album or exporting your favourite photos onto a USB stick. You can even submit them online and pick them up at your leisure.