Kodak Photo Printer 500

The Kodak Easyshare Photo Printer 500 brings the benefits of real Kodak pictures at home to virtually all digital camera and camera phone owners -- with or without a computer. People who use CANON, SONY, OLYMPUS, NIKON, HP and other camera brands can experience the same great quality that Kodak Easyshare camera owners have enjoyed for the past two years. With the Photo Printer 500, people can view and edit their pictures on a large, bright, 3.5-inch LCD screen -- the world's largest on a snapshot photo printer. The LCD screen can be closed, making it more convenient to move around the home or take on trips, as well as protecting it from dust. The Photo Printer 500 makes 4×6-inch prints directly from virtually any digital media in about 60 seconds, including most popular memory cards (SD, MMC, CF, xD, Memory Stick), USB flash memory devices, PictBridge enabled digital cameras, mobile devices with Bluetooth wireless technology, and Wi-Fi enabled computers (optional KODAK Wi-Fi card is required). Pictures are enhanced with Kodak PerfectTouch Technology, automatically delivering better, brighter pictures without the use of complex menu commands. Red-eye reduction is also available at the touch of a button. Your prints will last for a lifetime thanks to the Xtralife Lamination, which also makes them waterproof and stain-resistant.
This is a dye transfer printer, not an inkjet. Never change another messy, leaking ink cartridge, this is a completely dry process. The printing is accomplished by a four-pass process, one for each color (cyan, yellow and magenta) and the forth pass applies the XtraLife protective overcoat. A thermal printhead uses heat to transfer ink dyes from a mylar sheet and fuses them in the paper. This is a subtractive color process, the color dyes are transparent and can be placed on top of each other to create up to 16 million colors and produces a picture the equal of conventional photo prints.

Direct printing from any PictBridge compatible camera is simple. Just connect the camera to the side-mounted USB port using the camera's download cable. Most cameras automatically go into PictBridge print mode when the cable is plugged in - if not, then switch to Playback mode manually. Select the picture on the camera's LCD and press the PRINT button. Sixty seconds later you have a photo lab-quality print that's dry to the touch. camera. You can also use the side-mounted USB port to transfer pictures from a USB Flash Drive device to the host computer.

Printing from flash memory cards is easy. Plug your card into one of the front-mounted slots, view the pictures on the LCD and press the print button. If you have previously selected images to print in your camera using the DPOF feature, the printer recognizes this and gives you the option to print the tagged pictures first. The left slot accomodates CompactFlash cards (Type I only, no Microdrives), the middle slot handles SD, MMC, Memory Stick and xD-Picture Cards. The far right slot is a SDIO (input/output) type for use with the Kodak Wi-Fi card.

The large, flip-up, 3.5-inch color LCD screen makes viewing and editing your photos a snap. You can zoom and crop the pictures to get them just the way you want them before printing. The LCD closes with the face inward when not in use to protect the screen and make the printer more compact for storage and transportation.

The controls: Menu button calls up the onscreen menu system where you select your printing settings, wireless settings, editing options, menu language and etc. The Rotate buttons lets you rotate portrait mode images for proper display on the LCD. The Slideshow button begins automated playback on the LCD. The Crop button lets you easily crop the frame for subject content or to fit a 4:3 aspect ratio image into the 3:2 format used by 4×6-inch prints. The Cancel button stops the print. Press the Bluetooth button to enable/disable the internal radio receiver. You select pictures and navigate the menus by pressing Right or Left on the 4-way controller just like your digital camera and print the picture displayed on the LCD by pressing the center button. Red Eye Reduction is used when printing without a computer, press it to automatically remove red-eye in your pictures. The Transfer button works with the Kodak EasyShare Software when connected to a computer to automate downloads from your flash cards. The LEDs warn if the paper is out and tell you when it is time to replace the ribbon cartridge.

The Kodak Photo Printer 500 is ready "out of the box" to communicate with Bluetooth equipped camera phones, laptops and PDAs. It also works wirelessly with standard 802.11b/g Wi-Fi devices when used with the optional Kodak Wi-Fi card.

And let's not forget that the Kodak Photo Printer 500 can be used like any other personal dye sub printer when connected with its USB cable. Using Kodak's Easyshare Software makes it a snap to print your pictures on this printer. Compatible with computers with builtin USB port and operating with Windows 98, 98SE, ME, 2000 SP1 or XP and Macintosh OS X 10.2.8 or greater. When the printer is connected to your computer it also functions as a card reader. You can transfer images and movies from either card slot to your computer, there's even a dedicated Transfer button that launches the Easyshare Software to do it.

The Photo Printer 500 can print 4 different sizes: Full photo 4×6"

  • 3×4" credit card size with borders
  • Multiple 2×3" wallets
  • 1.3×2" mini photos

    You can also choose from four different color modes: natural, enhanced (vivid), black and white or sepia toned. To make "perfect" 4×6-inch borderless prints you need to use your camera's (3:2) quality mode. This 3:2 aspect ratio yields an image that fits perfectly on the 4×6- inch size paper with no cropping. Most cameras create a 4:3 aspect ratio image which printed at 4×6" requires cropping some of the top and bottom of your image. For this reason Kodak offers the smaller 3×4-inch print size.

    The PH-40 print packs contain the ribbon cartridge and two packs of printing paper with 20 sheets in each pack. The ribbon is good for all 40 prints, separating the paper into two packages helps keep it fresher. The street price is $24.99 so the "per print" cost is rather high at $0.62 each. The PH-80 print pack for $39.99 will make 80 prints ($0.50 per print). For the greatest value buy the PH-160 print pack, it's $46.99 and makes 160 prints which lowers the cost down to an economical $0.29 each.