Canon i80 Color BubbleJet with Bluetooth, PictBridge and Borderless Photos!

The Canon i80 is a very average portable printer, neither the best nor the worst, it’s better than most I would say – but like all printers it does have its own drawbacks.  Now that’s not to say it’s not a good option and because it’s a slightly dated device you can find it much cheaper than the ‘best’ and at much lower prices too, and for some people it will definitely do an exceptional job because its downsides depend on the person using it.  Find out more below.

When it comes to portability then you’ll find this is quite a ‘standard’ portable printer, and portability is defined by only two core characteristics.  First is the weight of the printer and secondly are the dimensions relating to its overall fold away size – both for obvious reasons.  The weight of the Canon i80 is a paltry four pounds which actually makes it one of the lightest inkjet portable printers.  It’s a little lighter than the almighty Canon PIXMA iP100, which is in my opinion the best wireless portable printer out there at the moment – better than HP equivalents it’s also worth mentioning.  Its dimensions are also admirable at 12.4 x 6.9 x 2.0 inches which make it the size of a medium sized notebook apart from a little thicker.  Ultimately for an inkjet based printer those are quite good dimensions and a very good weight – you’ll be very hard pressed to find a printer which matches this level of portability while retaining the core functionalities.

Next its various resolutions certainly aren’t the best, but in all fairness they’re not far from it, at 600 x 600 dpi for black and white (which for monochrome is the best at the moment) and 4800 x 1200 dpi for color (in this case for its photo printing) which itself is actually very good.  Overall both those dots per inch amounts are very good, on par with many stationary printers and although it’s certainly not ‘the best’ it’s not far from it and frankly it reaches a level as to where I’m skeptical as to whether a human being can actually tell the difference in one square inch between the various amounts of dots.

Its printing speeds are a little bit of a let down, it prints around 14 pages per minute in black and white and 10 ppm for color.  This is definitely slower than many other portable printers but the truth is that it’s still an okay speed, some people won’t want to put up with it.  But when contrasted with other printers we’re talking a difference of perhaps 6-15 ppm for black and white and 3-8 ppm for color.  It’s admittedly a pretty big difference as a percentage of the overall sum, but both are pretty fast and unless you’re thinking of printing of a novel you’re going to be fine.

It can print a variety of different sizes, and I really enjoy this feature because it can cater to the vast majority of people’s printing needs.  It can print letter size, legal size, 4 x 6 inch (regular photos) or 5 x 7 inch (larger photos) or finally European envelopes.

When it comes to data transfer it has a number of mediums which are reasonable including usb 2.0 as standard, infrared (for Window’s devices only however), optional Bluetooth adapter and Direct Print Ports (for example right from your camera to the printer so as to start printing 4 x 6 photo prints right away).

So far we’re looking at a pretty solid wireless portable printer (assuming you get the Bluetooth adapter which I highly recommend).  It can print on most types of paper to name a few: plain paper, envelopes, glossy photo paper and high-res paper – and it can also handle a wide variety of different paper sizes.  Most base glossy photo cards can have ten held in the paper feeder, and around 40 sheets for regular printing paper.

Looking back over what I’ve read it would seem we’re actually dealing with a decent compact mobile printer, if it were not for the faults below.

Canon i80

Canon i80

The Bad

There are two major faults with this printer, firstly the print heads get dry if you don’t use them enough.  About one week of non-use and they’ll almost completely dry out and be an absolute pain to get working again.  This is one of the reasons I stated at the top that for some people they’ll be fantastic, because if you’re using it a lot if won’t be a problem.  Some people seemed to have developed a train of thought whereby they think of they use an inkjet printer less it will keep for longer.  Not true, in this case one of the significant weaknesses are the head’s drying out and this can cause knock on effects and further frustrations for people.

Canon i80 Mobile Printer

Secondly there are faults with the paper feed which affect some people and causes the paper not to feed through properly.  This is generally due to a lack of care on some people’s parts but nevertheless I have seen a ratio of comments, reviews and forums which outline that this is a problem which is occurring far too frequently.  If these two problems were combined then we’re looking at a real nightmare for some people, and it’s a serious detriment that you need to use the printer once a week and be very mindful of its printer feeder.  Now remember that it is a mobile printer after all, and it’s understandable that the tray does get damaged if people are carrying it around.  However it should be designed in a manner whereby the printer feeder is more durable and it’s not acceptable that people are having to suffer as a result.

Canon i80

Canon i80

Summary

Overall there are some definite reasons to buy this printer.  If you’re careful with it and don’t damage the paper feeder, as well as either using it regularly or purposefully printing something randomly every week to keep the ink heads wet.  It’s definitely a hassle and it shouldn’t have to be done, but ultimately those are the only two faults with this Canon portable printer, and to an extent they are self inflicted.  Careful use and preparation can allow you to purchase a really versatile printer, which is mobile with a battery at a fraction of the cost of some better devices.

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