Are you a creative graphic designer or artist that needs a reliable and affordable way to print out your newly fashioned content? As an artist, you know your strengths, and figuring out which PC to purchase is certainly not one of them! You’re not a certified computer technician, so how will you choose a computer for your artistry? If this sounds familiar, you’ll want to read through this article. It covers everything you need to know, from A to Z, about purchasing the best quality printers for your artwork.
Whether you need to have a printer for your paintings, business cards or documents, we’ve got you covered.
Canon PIXMA Pro-100
The PIXMA 100 is by far our most popular printer in our line-up this year. More users have purchased this model than any other on our list by far. The Canon PIXMA possesses the high-quality performance and style you need when working on complex creative projects. This printer will provide you with beautiful borders that will last up to three hundred years! We recommend purchasing selected genuine Canon ink and paper to optimize the efficiency and effectiveness of your device.
Printing and automatically correcting your photos has never been easier, thanks to its auto fix feature. The printer comes with a wide variety of nozzles and can print up to 600 X 9600 X 2400 dpi resolution. These printers are compatible with Windows 7 and Windows Vista, and have a standard droplet size of 1, 2 and 5.
The Canon PIXMA is compatible with Microsoft Explorer and does not require CD installation. You do, however, need an internet connection. The photo print speeds are based on the standard mode driver setting, using photo test patterns and select Canon Photo Paper. The print speed is measured as soon as you insert the paper, so you won’t have to worry about its consistency. Customers have claimed that this product is easy on ink and replacement is economical. The quality is excellent, and can be used every day without worry. Many customers request to use it mostly to print high-quality photos. The Canon PIXMA Pro-100 is indeed an all in one printer that will not break your bank.
Some might view the ~$400 dollar price point as a negative, but it’s actually reasonable compared to other high quality models on the market.
Several users have reported an annoyance with a consistent cleaning cycle, leading to a “clicking” noise that occurs from time to time. Several have also shown concern that this might use up ink, but few have voiced any specific complaints about ink use.
CANON PIXMA iX6820
Next on our list is another very popular model based on both our editor’s research and our user purchases and feedback. It’s another model from the Canon PIXMA line of printers, but this one has a much lower price point than the PIMXA Pro-100, making it a more attractive option to many aspiring artists out there.
With very comparable specs to more expensive models, this is the perfect item for the cost conscious artist. At 9600 x 2400 dpi, printing up 13 x 19, and other fancy features like AirPrint and mobile device compatibility, this comes in as a steal.
This model uses 5 individual inks, compared to the 8 of the PIXMA Pro-100. Depending on how picky you are with your prints, you may or may not care or notice. Many users have reported that this is perfect for what they need, and a great way to save on costs.
It’s not as quiet as the Pro-100, but that can be dismissed as a minor inconvenience, especially considering the price difference.
It ONLY PRINTS, it does not scan or copy, which is another way it keeps its price competitive.
Epson Stylus 3800
Our next selection jumps up a notch in terms both quality and price. The Epson Stylus Standard Model line of printers is targeted towards professional photographers and artists that require exceptional quality and don’t mind investing in a quality piece of hardware in order to get it done right.
This model incorporates a three-level black along with new color pigments, to dramatically raise the bar for professional color, as well as black and white prints.
This printer delivers remarkably high-grade performance with a one-inch full printhead, which incorporates a new auto-sharing black ink technology. This technology allows both photo and matte black to be installed and switched automatically. The extreme precision delivers masterfully printed quality performance without any signs of how it was produced.
The product is lightweight and affordable. One person can easily carry it, unlike many of its competitors. The physical dimensions are also aesthetically pleasing, a perfect fit for your home or office.
It requires calibration of your monitor and printer, so it may not be perfect out of the box. It pays to take some time to calibrate the color of both the printer and monitor before you start printing in earnest. While this isn’t a great time, DIY printing sometimes requires that we get down into the details and tinker until we have our settings just right.
If you aren’t sure you have a monitor that is up to the task in terms of color gamut or calibration, try our guide to graphic design monitors, which can help you in selecting a proper alternative.
Expression Photo HD XP-15000 (Wide Format)
Last but certainly not least is another entry from Epson, the Expression Photo HD XP-15000. Coming in at about 1/3rd of the price of the Epson Stylus 3800, this is a great opportunity to get Epson quality for a more affordable price point.
Using 6 individual inks, this is somewhat middle of the road for our selection (we’ve seen upwards of 8 and as low as 5), but this should be fine for most applications.
The “Wide Format” in its name refers to 13 x 19inch printing, which is in fact borderless (unlike some other 13×19 models). Additionally, this newest model maintains that printing width while cutting down on the overall size of the printer (making it much easier to fit on a desktop.)
Users report the quality of the prints to be fantastic, which is of course a must for a professional artist. All this at a very competitive price point (~$350), makes the Epson a smart grab.
Those that are seeking to print screen films will be disappointing. This has been touted by the manufacturer as a replacement to the now defunct Epson Artisan 14340, which was commonly used for screen film prints, but it does not live up to that accolade. Nonetheless, it is a great printer for art prints and photography.
The WiFi setup can be a little bit painstaking, but that’s not uncommon (unfortunately) for many wireless printers on the marketplace. Have patience and follow the instructions to get it set up efficiently.
The user interface is also a bit tiny, unbecoming of a modern piece of professional technology. However, this doesn’t affect the quality of the prints and might not even be an issue for any given individual (this probably comes down to personal preference).
If you are tired of second-guessing your equipment, we recommend you select one of the products above. Regardless of which one you buy, we feel you’ll be happy with what you receive. We are confident that once you have one of these products, you’ll be able to produce artwork like magic, all thanks to the highly effective and efficient nature of this technology.