Pros and Cons of an Inkjet Photo Printer

An inkjet photo printer is the most popular type of printer used to create high quality prints from your computer. These are very popular because they are so affordable and easy to use. Digital photography is wonderful because it has made it much easier for many different people to take photographs. However, many of these photos sit on your computers hard drive without ever being really enjoyed.

Photos need to be liberated from your hard drive and set free. There are a few different types of printers which can be used to print photos, and although inkjet is the most common, that doesn't mean that it's right for you.


When shopping for an inkjet photo printer, you will be most interested in the advantages. These are the things which make you want to purchase an inkjet printer.

Inkjet printers are afforable to buy. This is for two reasons. First, the technology is fairly old and very popular. This allows the prices to fall. Another reason is because many manufacturers sell the printers with very little markup or even at a loss. This is because they make lots of money on the genuine cartridges. When shopping around for inkjet printers, remember to take a look at the running costs rather than just the price to buy the printer. A Lexmark printer, for example, is much cheaper than many other brands. However, the running costs of these far exceed many others.

Inkjet printers are very easy to use and most of them are supported as standard in windows. Even those that aren't are easy to set up because they come with windows install CDs. They are also supported on many Linux and Mac computers. Inkjets are fairly small and this means that they can be moved from desk to desk if needed. It's also possible to take them anywhere you go. Small portable printers are available to take with your laptop computer.


There are some disadvantages to using these Inkjet photo printers. Almost all photo printers require the use of genuine ink cartridges. These are fairly expensive, and although compatible cartridges are available, these will normally void your guarantee. These cartridges are also a waste because you throw away something that could actually be reused. A really good option is to use a Continuous inking system. This is a system which does not use cartridges. Instead, the ink is drawn from a large reservoir which can be topped up.

Ink is another problem. If you are printing on porous paper, such as copier paper, then it can make the sheet of paper very soggy. You must use special photo paper when printing photos. A color laser does not suffer from this problem because the ink is not absorbed into the paper.

Ink is designed to dry on the paper to form the image. This can also happen inside the tubes of your printer if it's not used for some time. If ink dries inside the printer, then it will cause a blockage which needs to be removed. Cleaning blockages waste a lot of ink. All of this waste ink also fills up a waste sponge deep inside the printer. This is not a user serviceable part, which means when it is full with ink, the printer will need to be replaced. This shows that these printers are designed to have a limited lifespan and are not good for the environment.