Canon Pixma Pro9000 Mark II £499
26th Jul 2011 | 10:40
A speedy colour specialist that's easy to install
Aiming to deliver the ultimate in colour quality on glossy paper, the dye-based Pro9000 has seven individual colour inks as well as photo black for a wide gamut. For a dye-based printer, it also produces very pleasing output on matte photo papers and fine-art stock.
The rear-mounted paper input tray accommodates photo paper up to A3+ size, while a front-loading feeder accepts individual sheets of up to 14x17 inches. However, borderless printing isn't supported on 14-inch media. Installing the printer is quick and easy, and the supporting driver and additional software is intuitive.
The Pro9000 Mark II printed at twice the speed of any other printer in the group, delivering a high-quality borderless A3+ colour print in just 1m 54s. However, there's a catch in black-and-white photo printing. Without any grey cartridges, the only way to ensure that you avoid unwanted colour casts is to switch to greyscale printing.
This not only makes black-and-white photos look a little dull, with a lack of detail in darker tones, it also slows down the printer to a snail's pace. In maximum quality colour mode, the Pro9000 Mark II output an A4 borderless print in 2m 9s, but in greyscale mode it slowed to 15m 9s.
Back in colour mode, with auto colour/intensity enabled, the Pro9000 excels in producing vibrant landscape images, as well as giving a glamorous golden touch to skin tones. Manual colour adjustments are also available for landscape and portrait images, the latter giving slightly pinker skin tones.
The printer also delivered accurate results when Photoshop was given control of colour management. Overall, it's fast and glorious for colour, but black-and white printing is a disappointment.
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