Instant cameras have provided convenience to shutterbugs for generations now. Through these cameras, people have been able to instantly print their captured photos, skipping the inconvenience of having your shots developed elsewhere. With the remarkable quality that smartphone cameras are able to deliver, even the convenience of instant cameras have been eclipsed. This paved the way to the creation of portable photo printers. We were able to test out Canon’s newest mini photo printer and here are our thoughts.
At just 11.9 cm, Canon’s new mini photo printer boasts a solid, rectangular body made entirely of hard plastic. Our demo unit had rose gold accents, giving it a classy, understated look. On its top part lies the micro-usb port and LED indicator for charging, as well as the reset button and a lanyard hole for your carrying convenience. Its left side is home to the power button, while the front edge is the slot printed photos appear from. When you slide the top cover upwards, it reveals the smart sheet slot where the ZINK photo paper can be loaded. Its compact size and low weight barely register in your bag, making it an extremely travel-friendly device. Since it is small, the mini photo printer produces 2 x 3-inch wallet-sized prints.
Like most other portable photo printers, the Canon Mini Photo Printer uses ZINK technology that boasts inkless printing. Instead of using ink cartridges, the device uses specialized photo paper that produces colors when exposed to heat. Small but definitely capable, the device can print a single photo in 10-20 seconds, depending on the image resolution and size. Its performance also depends on the image source.
In terms of connection, the mini photo printer from Canon comes with Bluetooth 4.0 connectivity, and can be linked with Android and iOS mobile devices through the Canon Mini Print App.
User Experience: 3.5/5
To fully enjoy its capabilities, you will need to install its dedicated mobile app to your own device before connecting to it via Bluetooth. The app also allows you to access several cloud, and social media sites such as Dropbox, Google Photos, Facebook, and Instagram, and print photos from those. You can also navigate to your device’s own gallery, or take a new photo and print it in real time. Ideal for memory hoarders and scrapbook enthusiasts, the photo printer lets the users add layers, filters, emojis, texts, special effects, and frames to the images prior to printing, all from the convenience of the app.
Apart from the inkless Zink technology and borderless printing, the Canon Mini Photo,s prints are smudge-proof and tear-resistant, and can even be turned into stickers thanks to an adhesive back. I tried submerging one of my samples in a glass of water for a full, with no damage to the photo.
However, there are some downsides that I was able to notice upon using it on my work trip to Hong Kong. First, the device gets hot after about half an hour of use. It also took me forever to charge the device, with a full charge happening over about three hours connected to a wall outlet. When it comes to the photo print quality, don’t expect magazine-cover quality. I tried printing low-light photos featuring city buildings and it delivers darker images with quite a bit of noise. Colors are also paler and a bit blurry to images on natural lighting, except for portraits which turned out great. All of my photos were taken at high resolution, but when compared to the printed versions, you can notice a difference from the image on the phone’s screen. Photo printing time comes in at an average of 30 seconds.
The Canon Mini Photo Printer is jampacked with features that are both quirky and appealing to millennials. It comes in a handy, colorful package that gives decent, wallet-sized photos of your special moments. If that’s what you’re looking for in a device, then the PHP 8,000 sticker price shouldn’t hold you back.
- Dimensions: 11.9 cm x 8.1 cm x 1.8 cm
- Weight: 160 g
- Printing technology: ZINK Zero Ink, borderless printing
- Print speed: Up to 50 seconds
- Print resolution: 314 x 400 dpi
- Compatible operating systems: iOS 9.0 and above, Android 4.4 and above
- Connectivity: Bluetooth 4.0
- Memory: 64 MB
- Battery: Built-in rechargeable lithium-ion, 500 mAh can print up to 20 sheets
- Ergonomic design
- Produces water-resistant and tear-proof prints
- Lacks support for Wi-Fi connection
- Colors are a bit washed out
- Charging time takes forever
It delivers real-time photo printing at your fingertips.
Also published in GADGETS MAGAZINE May 2019 Issue
Reviewed by Jewel Sta. Ana