My 6-year-old Sony FP70 dye-sublimation photo printer has hinted on its demise many months back, with increased occurrences of print defects and hardware errors. The final straw came yesterday when it  failed to complete a print 4 times out of 6. With only 1 piece of photo paper left before I needed to purchase costly refills, I decided to do a snap research on a replacement photo printer. There wasn’t a lot of choices: I could buy back a Sony-brand printer, but Canon has always been a strong contender and leader in consumer printing segment, and its latest model, Selphy CP900, offers an excellent balance of features and price.

  • 2.7″ tilt screen
  • Wi-Fi enabled (2.4GHz, Channels 1-11)
  • Prints from your desktop, laptop or mobile device wirelessly
  • Prints from USB flash device or SD card
  • Various consumnables like stickers and smaller card-size papers
  • Choice of colours: black, white, pink

Retailing at S$199, I was pleasantly delighted that Courts Megastore was having an in-store promotion of  the exact model at a S$30 discount. I mean, what are the odds? It saves me a trip to Sim Lim or Funan where the retailers typically offer more competitive prices. I forked out another $37 for a pack of 108 print refills (the printer package does not include any paper) and I’m ready to roll.

Comparing to my old Sony printer, the Dye Sub printing technology and product design remains largely unchanged. In fact, my older printer has more features, like multi-card readers, global colour fine-tune settings, saving of edited images, and prints faster. The 2 plus points on the CP900, that I feel are really practical features, are the built-in Wi-Fi and tilt screen. The built-in Wi-Fi allows printing from any device within the home network, from desktop to mobile phones. You can even purchase a portable battery pack for printing on-the-go.

I didn’t know how bad the Sony was until I produced some prints from the new Canon unit. The photos’ colour tones are completely off, probably due to old age. The new Canon Selphy, on the other hand, produces sharper images and the colour tones are closer to the original. I felt the skin tone was not warm enough, and would prefer to notch the warm tone a little and then the print quality would be good.

Do note that the CP900 does not come with cleaner unit and dust cover, although it is stated in the manual as accessories that are bundled only for certain regions. My previous Sony comes with it, but looking at the life span of it, I suppose the photo printer should last me for years without maintenance.

Why Should You Buy Dye Sub Printer
There was a time when print labs were aplenty and cheap, costing as low as 20-cents a piece. Then came the digital revolution where people shared images online or stored the images without printing, and the print market took a tumble. I bought my old Sony DPP-FP70 weeks before my daughter’s birth so that I can print photos for my parents and relatives. I was surprised how many prints I have made over the years, and I believe I will continue to print more to share my child’s growth with my loved ones. That is why I decided to purchase another Dye Sub printer, which is absolutely useful for printing ad-hoc photos in low volumes.

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