The Pro9000 photo printer features the Canon Smart LED Ink Tank System, an intelligent ink-management system that uses individual ink tanks for each color. You replace only the color that runs out rather than an entire and expensive multi-color cartridge.
This is the sight that greets you when you lift the cover on the Pro9000 printer. When the ink tank is properly installed a red LED lights up inside the tank. The 8-color, dye-based ink system consists of cyan, magenta, yellow and black inks plus a photo-cyan, photo-magenta, red and green for a wider color gamut and very photo-realistic colors. ChromaLife100 system, including FINE print head technology for great photo printing. When using select genuine Canon photo papers and inks, prints can resist fading for up to 100 years when stored in an archival quality photo album. The 100-year-lifespan rivals that of many traditional film based photos, long considered by consumers to be the benchmark for image permanence. Prints produced on Canon Photo Paper Pro with ChromaLife100 inks have an up to ten-year gas fastness when exposed to open air. ChromaLife100 prints, when created using Canon Photo Paper Pro or Photo Paper Plus Glossy, have up to 30-year lightfastness when displayed under glass.
The Pro9000 features the PIXMA printhead which employs Canon's FINE (Full-photolithography Inkjet Nozzle Engineering) technology. The 6,144 nozzle (768 x 8 colors) advanced print head is one of the keys to the impressive speed and high photo quality in PIXMA photo printers. FINE technology uses a ground-breaking high-performance, multi-nozzle print engine that ejects consistent and microscopic (2-picoliter) ink droplets. The results are high-resolution (up to 4800 x 2400 dpi) photos with great detail and clarity in less time. Not only can the user replace the individual ink tanks, you can also replace the entire print head if necessary. (Replacement print heads are available from Canon Service after it is determined that a replacement is necessary.) Epson printers require a trip to the service center when they encounter a problem as the print head is permanently mounted.
Optical ink sensors automatically monitor all ink color levels and communicate with your computer--giving you a pop-up message indicating exactly what colors are running low. You can also check the status of the ink tanks at any time using the Status Monitor of the driver as shown above. Canon's optical low ink detection system prevents wasted printouts by notifying you via the Printer Status Monitor before any ink tank becomes empty, so you'll never unexpectedly run out of ink in the middle of a job again.
A light beam shines through a prism located at the bottom of each ink tank. When there is sufficient ink, the light is detected by the sensor. When only about 20% of ink is left in any of the ink tanks, the light beam is refracted, triggering the sensor which tells the printer driver to display a low ink tank notification for that ink tank.