Epson PictureMate PM235 photo printer
A well-priced photo printer with expensive consumables
- Cute design, fairly easy to use, quick print speeds, good black and white photo print quality
- Bluetooth connectivity costs extra, expensive consumables, inkjet technology means printhead cleaning and alignment required
Epson's PictureMate PM235 is diminutive and can print from a variety of memory cards and PictBridge devices. Unfortunately, print quality issues mar what is otherwise a decent option.
Price$ 199.00 (AUD)
Epson's PictureMate PM235 photo printer is a step down from the PictureMate PM270 in terms of portability and speed, but it retains good overall print quality for the price.
Aesthetically, little is different from other Epson dedicated photo printers; it has the same bucket-and-handle design of the PictureMate PM270 that, when fully opened, takes up a surprisingly large amount of room. On the inside, however, the newer model has some noticeable differences. For one, the Epson PictureMate PM235 only has a 2.5in tilting display; it's fine for viewing photos and changing settings, but is too small to edit photos.
The PictureMate PM235 can't stray far from a power point, as Epson doesn't currently offer a battery pack for it.
Two USB ports on the back allow you to connect the printer to a computer or PictBridge-capable mobile phones and digital cameras; USB flash drives aren't supported. It can also print photos directly from memory cards, with support for SD, xD, MemoryStick Pro and CompactFlash formats. Bluetooth connectivity is also available, but only by purchasing a $79 optional accessory.
Oddly, the Epson PictureMate PM235 doesn't use the dye-sublimation printing method employed by most current photo printers. Instead, it uses the same inkjet technology found in standard-sized printers and multifunctions. This means the PictureMate PM235 prints quicker than dye-sub printers, though you'll have to deal with the endless print quality issues associated with printhead cleaning and alignment, which wastes ink as well as photo paper.
The only consumable is a single inkjet cartridge that combines three individual colour inkwells and a black pigment. Epson sells the cartridges with a 150-sheet pack of photo paper for $48.99 or 33c per 4x6in photo, which is more expensive per photo than Canon's SELPHY ES3. Unlike Canon's dye-sublimation consumable, paper and ink for the PictureMate PM235 aren't physically combined, so you can use any 4x6in paper of your choosing.
The PictureMate PM235 offers "speed" and "quality" print modes, with negligible difference in print quality. However, print speeds differ significantly; you can expect a photo to print in 32-36 seconds in "speed" mode, while full quality photos will take between 1m 15s and 1m 25s.
Overall print quality is quite good: colours are vibrant, images are detailed and monochrome photos are crisp. However, we did notice a slight banding problem in colour photos. It usually occurred in colour gradients. This issue was persistent across several test photos and despite attempts to clean and realign the PictureMate PM235's print head. Photos are quite good for the home, but the printer isn't quite the "mini photo lab" Epson claims.
We prefer the slow but consistently high quality dye-sublimation method for photo printing over the PictureMate PM235's inkjet technology. Compared to Epson's highly capable PictureMate range in the US, the PM235 also seems like a raw deal, and this printer's ease of use and print quality are inferior to similarly priced models like Canon's SELPHY CP780.
Stay up to date with the latest news, reviews and features. Sign up to PC World’s newsletters
Follow PC World Australia on Twitter: @PCWorldAu
Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!
Gadgets & Things
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Star Wars Death Star Bluetooth levitating rotating speaker review
- 2 Finally! LG OLED TV 2016 range review
- 3 Fetch TV Mighty review: Better than Foxtel
- 4 Fetch TV Mini review: Make your TV a smart TV
- 5 Panasonic Viera DX900U UHD 4K smart TV review
Latest News Articles
- Why won’t my printer connect to my wireless router?
- How 4D printing is now saving lives
- 3D printing industry to triple in four years to $21B
- Disney files patent for near instantaneous 3D printing
- Never run out of printer ink with HP Instant Ink
GGG Evaluation Team
First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.
For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.
The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.
The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.
My first impression after unboxing the Q702 is that it is a nice looking unit. Styling is somewhat minimalist but very effective. The tablet part, once detached, has a nice weight, and no buttons or switches are located in awkward or intrusive positions.
- The top 10 best and worst tech gadgets and products of 2016
- Best phone of the year 2016
- TV of the year award 2016
- Which flagship TV is best? Sony 4K HDR Bravia 2016 versus LG 4K HDR OLED 2016
- 10 Blu-ray movies / Best looking Blu-ray movies
- FTBrand Marketing Manager - Premium Entertainment BrandNSW
- CCSenior Business AnalystNSW
- CCJava Developer/ Guidewire Developers - Brisbane basedNSW
- TPSenior Project Manager - Digital Application CX TransformationNSW
- TPBI Report Developer - SSRS SSIS SSASNSW
- FTJunior-Mid Level Implementation CoordinatorQLD
- CCService Desk SMENSW
- FTLevel 2 Service DeskNSW
- FTMicrosoft Dynamics AX Functional Consultant Advanced Warehouse ManagementQLD
- CCSenior Business AnalystSA
- FTMicrosoft Dynamics AX Functional Consultant Advanced Warehouse ManagementVIC
- FTLevel 2 Service DeskNSW
- FTIT Information Security AdvisorNSW
- FTJava DeveloperNSW
- FTLinux EngineerNSW
- FTJava DeveloperSA
- FTTechnical Consultant MS Dynamics AXSA
- CCCapacity and Performance Analyst - Mainframe - Z SystemsVIC
- TPDigital Business Analyst | AgileQLD
- TPSenior Business Analyst - Risk & ComplianceNSW
- FTITCM EngineerNSW
- TPIT Procurement OfficerQLD
- CCReporting AnalystVIC
- CCPeoplesoft SpecialistACT
- TPAnsarada Data Room AdministratorNSW