Canon Selphy CP400

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Canon Selphy CP400
  • Expert Rating

    4.50 / 5

Pros

  • High print quality, postcard feature

Cons

  • Nothing notable

Bottom Line

Excellent print results and reasonable running costs for a dye-sublimation printer mean this unit is hard to beat if you are after photo-lab quality prints.

Would you buy this?

While the CP400 may look tiny, its flat design and straight paper path mean that the paper tray, and the rear clearance requirement, during print operations, requires a depth over 40cm wherever you decide to rest it.

Logistical issues aside, the CP400 is a four-pass dye-sublimation printer that can print on 4" x 6" media, credit card sized media and wide media. A separate paper cassette is required for each type of media (the 4" x 6" cassette comes with the unit) and you can buy media packs that actually come with the required cassette, so you don't have to search for one separately.

Conveniently, the 4" x 6" media for this unit has postcard markings on the rear, which means you can print your favourite image, write a few words on the back, whack a stamp on it and send it to friends and relatives anywhere in the world. But the paper is not as thick as a real postcard, so while the image may be protected thanks to the overcoat that is applied after the cyan, magenta and yellow colours, there is a strong chance it would reach its destination slightly crumpled.

Printing through PaintShop Pro 8, left and right borders were present on each test print. Using PictBridge, images were printed beyond the perforated edges of the paper, which were then removed to obtain completely borderless prints.

This printer yielded good results in our tests. It produced fine gradations and adequate detail in shadowed areas and all prints ended up looking crisp yet natural. It took 1 minute 34 seconds to produce prints from our test PC, while PictBridge printing took 2 minutes and 7 seconds.

For 4" x 6" printing, the consumables available are a 36-sheet ink and paper pack and a 108-sheet pack. At the time of writing, the 36-sheet pack cost around $35, which made it expensive at 97 cents per print. The 108-sheet pack cost around $84, and was much better value, at 78 cents per print.

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