Advice on printing photos

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by revilo, Dec 18, 2008.

  1. revilo

    revilo TPF Noob!

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    I have a few shots from my digital camera that I'd like to print off, but seeing as I only have a very poor printer, what are my options? What printer would I have to buy to get acceptable images? How would I then maximise the quality? I'd like the print anywhere between 5"x7" and A4, possibly a little larger but certainly not much larger than this.Or is it better to get prints from a shop for now, seeing as I don't really have the budget for a printer.
     
  2. Chewbecca

    Chewbecca TPF Noob!

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    I have only printed a few shots of mine. I have had GREAT results with mpix.com. The prints are very well priced, imo. And they come back looking great.
     
  3. Frozen

    Frozen TPF Noob!

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    I did a test print of one shot at Costco, and it came out well, I have a couple more that I am picking up today. But from what I have heard, with Costco it can be hit and miss if the guys running the machines are good.
     
  4. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    In most cases, if you are going for good quality, it's probably better and cheaper to just use a lab to print your photos.
     
  5. Tom3

    Tom3 TPF Noob!

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    I've had 4 photo printers in the last two years. The last one I have is an Epson Artisan 800 and I'm really happy with it.

    If I want to print a lot, I still get a company to do it.

    Home printing is not cheap and even though I'm the first on to scream that Epson/HP/etc inks are way overpriced, the cheap ink will not look the same, especially over time (and I'm talking over less than a year).

    So, at the end, it really depends what you need; I deal a lot with art for my work, and sometimes I need quality prints 'now', but for anything else, I always use a third party.
     
  6. Josh66

    Josh66 Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    I like the Canon Pixma printers (mine is the iP5200). The biggest they can print is 8.5x11, but the prints look pretty good to me.

    I haven't figured out exactly how much one print costs me, but I have a feeling it would be cheaper to send it out for printing (especially large quantities). I mostly use it for 4x6's for the photo album, and the occasional 8x10.
     
    Last edited: Dec 18, 2008
  7. ANDS!

    ANDS! No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    The PIXMA line includes the 9000 (which I have) and the 9500 which can print up to 13X19. The home consumner photo printers which are usually sub 200 bucks, are the ones that print up to 8.5X11 max.

    You are going to be HARD PRESSED to find a quality photo printer around 100 to 200 bucks that does NOT print at A4 (8.5X11) size. I have the HP D7360 which is awesome, but an older model.

    And sure, if you don't see yourself firing off a ton of prints, a lab might be the better option, but if you are interested in making your own prints - a dedicated photo printer is infinitely more convenient.

    What is your budget?
     
  8. mrodgers

    mrodgers No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I only have one of those small 4x6 photo printers. My wife bought it for Christmas last year to go with the camera she bought me.

    I learned very quickly after running out of ink after printing 30 photos that the $30 to refill the ink and paper was FAR more than the $10 it costs to just send them to a printing lab (I love Adorama after comparing Adorama, MPix, and Snapfish.)
     
  9. Battou

    Battou No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    You could go down to your local Drug store and use their printer. My local drugstore (Rite Aid) has a publicly available print station for digital image printing. Printing an 8x10 at Rite Aid is $3.00 (USD) cheaper than the sendout services available to me, So I use that when ever I have print needs. Only draw backs are, I am limited to 4x6, 5x8 and 8x10 and full frame photos need to be in letterbox format to print an 8x10 with out loosing the ends.
     
  10. Sw1tchFX

    Sw1tchFX TPF Noob!

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    Unless you do a ton of printing, it can be very hard to justify spending an arm and a leg on a printer and ink. I suggest using a Lab, because unless you practically print pictures everyday, they're cheaper and of better quality in the long run.
     
  11. ksmattfish

    ksmattfish Now 100% DC - not as cool as I once was, but still

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    I'd try your local lab or an online lab like mpix.com Well done ink-jet prints are very nice, and if done right much more archival than chemical prints, but it's hard to beat lab made C-prints for quick, cheap high quality prints.
     
  12. Josh66

    Josh66 Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    Your local lab may produce better prints, but my local lab does not.

    I have been very happy with my printer, especially when I compare it to the local labs. The only downside for me is the cost, but I'm more than willing to pay a little extra for the added quality. Anything bigger than 8.5x11 I will have to send out though.
     

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