PMA Printers, Scanners Seek Advanced Audiences

By Greg Scoblete On Mar 13 2006 - 8:00am




Home printing is typically a low-key affair at PMA but vendors keyed in on advanced amateurs with high-resolution scanners and photo printers.

Canon introduced a 10-ink and an eight-ink photo printer, the first Pixma models to wear the Pro designation. The 10-color, pigment-based Pro9500 and eight-color, dye-based Pro9000 can print in sizes up to 13 inches by 19 inches.

The Pro9500 features individual ink tanks that can all fit in the print head simultaneously, which the company says increases efficiency. The printer uses the company's Lucia-branded ink set, FINE print technology and features three-picoliter droplets. The Pro9000 features eight individual ink tanks with droplets as small as 2 picoliters.

To compliment the launch of the new printers, Canon is introducing two fine art photo papers, Photo Rag and Fine Art Paper Premium Matte, both available in 8.5 by 11 inches and 13 by 19 inches.

The company also introduced two all-in-ones, the network-enabled MP800R and MP830. Both ship in March and feature the five ink ContrastPLUS system with a photo resolution of 9,600 by 2,400 dpi. They can print a borderless 4- by 6-inch print in 36 seconds using default driver settings and offer direct printing from memory cards and infrared devices (MP800R). The MP830 ($299.99) offers print speeds of 30 pages-per-minute (ppm) black and 24ppm in color, black-and-white and color faxing, auto duplexing and a two-way paper feed with a capacity of up to 300 sheets of letter-sized paper.

The MP800R ($399.99) builds off the MP830 with built-in wired and wireless networking, onboard image editing and automatic image retouching for camera phone images. With an optional adapter, the MP800R can print from Bluetooth-enabled devices.

Epson introduced two new high-end flatbed scanners, the Perfection V700 Photo and V750 Pro-m. The V700, for an estimated $549, features a 6,400 dpi hardware resolution, 48-bit color and a dual-lens scanning system. The second lens lets the V700 achieve 6,400 dpi resolution when scanning film only.

The V750 Pro-m builds off the V700 with a new high-pass optical system with anti-reflection coating on the CCD lens and a high reflectivity mirror. It will retail for an estimated $799.

Hewlett-Packard announced a high-end eight-ink photo printer, the Photosmart Pro B9180 along with a third-generation gray ink in its Vivera line. The new printer can crank out a 4- by 6-inch photo in 10 seconds, according to HP, and a 13- by 19-inch in 1.5 minutes. The Pro B9180 will ship in June for an estimated $699.

Kodak announced changes across its line of consumer inkjet papers with a new porous media that the company claims enables quicker printing. The line, refreshed in April, will also be reduced to three families available in both glossy and non-glossy finishes: ULTRA Premium photo paper, Kodak Premium photo paper and Kodak photo paper. Each paper will be available in three different sheet counts.

Pantone announced a line of ColorVANTAGE inks for Epson's K3 printers, which include the Stylus Photo 2400, Pro 4800, Pro 7800 and Pro 9800. According to Pantone, the pigmented inks cost 20 percent less than their Epson rivals. They are available as single cartridges or as starter kits with a complete set of inks required for a specific printer.

Unibind launched its My Books hard-bound photo album creator. My Books lets users create 8.5- by 11-inch photo books with their own home-printed photo pages. The product ships with front and back cover sheets and a hardbound album shell. It will ship in March.

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