Photo Printing — Not The Scam We Thought It Was

By | January 31, 2005

This is all a bit late, I know, but it’s probably worth pointing folk to if they’re not habitual readers of the excellent British computer magazine PCPro. Their cover story on photo-printing (registration required to read full reviews) in the February issue is a very sound, thorough and and detailed piece which makes some surprising conclusions:

  • Getting your photos printed on the high street is not always cheaper than printing them yourself;
  • It’s also not always better, in terms of quality and durability;
  • Inkjet cartridges and their contents are not always complete rip-offs (and ink is only the fifth most expensive liquid on earth, not the most….)
  • Epson comes out of it looking remarkably good, particularly its Stylus Photo R800 which now sells for around $300 (pictured above).

The study was conducted with the help of Wilhelm Imaging Research, which has its own detailed results of testing the R800 and other models.

I must confess I’ve been very skeptical about home printing of photographs, given how cheap some Internet services are. I also reckon that unless you spend a lot of time and practice you’re not going to get the same results as professionals — and that time and practice can use up a lot of expensive ink and paper. But as PCPro point out, for larger pictures it may actually work out cheaper, and better.

3 thoughts on “Photo Printing — Not The Scam We Thought It Was

  1. Dennis

    The problem with online services like Ofoto and Shutterfly is they only accept the jpeg (jpg) file format which is a lossy format. Quality suffers no matter how low the compression. This is more apparent in enlargements. It’s still pretty good, though. And fine for anybody that shoots digital photos using the jpeg setting.

  2. Allison B.

    Warning: shared my credit card information with a website WLI travel for services I did not sign up for. This was apparently done at the end with all the confusing pop-ups, and I did not knowingly or willingly sign up for this service which started charging me $10 per month. Shame on and I would warn anyone from using this service as they share credit card information.

  3. Ricardo

    I just discover a new site to help home photo printing. You can calculate the costs and coverage.


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