How to Select a Professional Photo Printer

Professional photo printers produce quality images at very large sizes over the standard consumer models. The downside to this is you will not be able to print pictures from your digital camera. The upside is that you can create large quality prints of your photos or even posters.  Professional printers do range in price from about $500 to in the thousands of dollars. Here is a quick and easy guide about how to go about and select a professional photo printer to meet your needs.

Step 1 - Create Your Budget

When purchasing a professional photo printer, you will want to make sure it is cost effective.

Figure out how much it would cost you to send out your photos to be printed over say the next five years and see which is better, buying a professional photo printer or still sending them out to be printed. Either way, you should develop a budget and start to review your options around that budget. Remember that cost and quality are usually inversely related. Do not sacrifice on quality to save a few dollars. When purchasing your professional photo printer, make sure that it does everything you need it to do for the money you are spending.

Step 2 - Research Ink Requirements

By owning your own professional printer you will have to consider the cost of purchasing the ink for the printer. Depending how often you print will determine how fast the ink tanks run out and have to be replaced.  Find out how much the ink for the printer is and how many copies you can print before this happens.

When selecting the printer you are thinking of buying choose one that has separate ink tanks for the colors.  You then will only have to replace the one that runs out first.

Step 3 - Determine Print Sizes

Decide what type and size of paper you will utilize to print your photos. If you envision using 11x17-inch sized photos, make sure you review all those printers that are capable of printing these sizes. Second, some printers allow to to print by rolls of paper. If this is an important feature, note those printers that have that available to you. 

Step 4 - Research Networking Capabilities

If more than one person will be using the printer, you will have to choose a printer with network capabilities. Choosing one with automated installation will cut down on time to figure out how to set up the network connections.

Step 5 - Determine and Review Print Speeds

The speed of printing the images is important. Make sure the printer you choose has adequate speed for your professional needs. Usually if the printer says it prints 20 pages per minute you likely will get 17 or 18 pages per minute.

Step 6 - Portable or Floor Models

You have the choice of selecting either a portable model or a floor mode.  Floor models will be more expensive but you the out speed will be higher and you have the option for larger photos. On the other hand a portable model can be taken with you when you need to print other than in the office. It also if needed can be taken out for repairs.

Popular Cameras for High Quality Photos: