Olympus Camedia P-10

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Olympus Camedia P-10

Pros

  • Small size, low price

Cons

  • Poor print quality, high running costs, noisy

Bottom Line

While the initial outlay on the CAMEDIA P-10 is inexpensive, its running costs are higher than many Kodak and Canon printers and its print quality is not as good. However, it is a very neat unit, so if you're looking for something that won't take up to much space on your desk or bookshelf, then it could be right for you.

Would you buy this?

This dye-sublimation printer is designed vertically and looks kind of like a bonsai laser printer. I say that because this printer has a paper cassette that is located at the bottom of the unit, while its output tray resides at the top of the unit. This design means that the printer will not commandeer a whole lot of space on the desk and you won't have to factor in extra space for paper trays and flaps.

The paper travels through the internal print mechanism in a curved fashion to reach the output tray, but finished prints do not suffer from permanent bending. The print process takes four passes to complete, as the colours and protective layer are placed onto the paper. A groovy light on the front of the unit will change to indicate which colour is being laid down.

What set this printer apart though was its noise. It certainly made a lot of it as it went through the process of feeding the paper and then printing on it, so you would have to avoid using it while others in your household are seeking peace and quiet.

While this printer does not have a memory card reader, it does have PictBridge so that you can print photos directly off a digital camera. This printer actually managed to print photos from a camera five seconds faster than it did to print them from a PC.

The paper that Olympus supplies for this printer does not have perforated edges and if you elect to print in borderless mode, your photos will be automatically cropped at the edges to fill the entire page.

This unit printed faster from our digital camera than our test PC. PictBridge prints took only 55 seconds, while prints from our PC took 1 minute (both very fast times). Images were slightly cool, with greens, for example, looking slightly blue. Edges were not finely gradated, and jagged lines were noticeable under close scrutiny. Shaded areas of photos often lacked detail and proper shading.

This printer comes with a start-up consumable pack for 10 prints. From then on, you can purchase either a 40-sheet ribbon cartridge and paper pack, or a 100-sheet pack. The 40-sheet pack costs $40, which translates to $1 per print, which is not very economical, but the 100-sheet pack costs $80, which is a more reasonable 80 cents per print.

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