Canon PIXMA iP100 Wireless Portable Photo Printer (A Small Mobile Printer)

If you’re looking for literally the best wireless portable inkjet printer, then I present the Canon PIXMA iP100 – better than HP’s comparison, better than Brother – the best of the best.

Out of all of the printers I have reviewed this product excels in terms of reliability, portability and durability while still retaining high performance core printing functions which grant a refreshing printing experience.

Concise Review with HP’s OfficeJet 100 Comparison

 

When you want to find out the best product you assess two important things, its specifications and its reliability. Its specifications gives you an idea of what it can do, and the reliability tells you if it can fulfill its specification’s potential without incident.

In terms of specifications you need to look at what it can produce in terms of printing, as well as an assessment of the two factors affecting portability – physical dimensions and mass.

Canon PIXMA iP100 Reviews

Canon PIXMA iP100 Reviews – Overall 4 Stars – Highest Rated Mobile Printer.

Printing Capabilities:

 

  • Highest resolution of all the mobile printers  at 9600 x 2400 dots per inch color printing.  This is double that of HP’s best mobile printer – the OfficeJet 100.
  • 600 x 600 dpi monochrome (black and white) printing – equal to the OfficeJet 100.
  • PictBridge enabled which allows you to print-direct-from-camera without a laptop/computer.
  • USB CardSlot adapter, allows you to print photographs directly from memory cards.
  • Rapid printing speeds,  nearly equal to that of the OfficeJet 100

Unique Features:

 

  • Mountable Bluetooth External Adapter.  No other printer be either Canon or HP can attach an external adapter inside.  This protects the adapter, means it doesn’t need to be removed when you want to pack your iP100 away and is one less thing to carry.
  • Largest variety of media sizes available – allows for photograph quality business card sizes going up to envelope size.
  • Auto Image Fix allows your photographs and pictures to be displayed in the best quality possible and removes the need for picture/photograph editing software.

Transportability…

 

  • It weighs just 4.4 pounds as opposed to 5.1 pounds for the OJ 100, making it one of the most lightweight printers.
  • It’s slightly thinner and smaller in terms of physical dimensions, however it’s slightly longer across one of the three measurements.

Reliability…

 

We suggest you use Amazon’s reviews of the product to get an independent assessment in terms of reliability.  We have only experimented with one printer and don’t want to give a biased opinion.

 

If possible take heed of  ‘Vine Reviews‘, ‘Real Name‘ reviews and finally ‘Amazon Purchase Verified‘ reviews.

Is the Canon PIXMA iP100 compatible with the iPad and iPhone?

 

Basically yes and non.  The Canon PIXMA iP100 is compatible with the iPad (and the iPhone too) assuming you purchase a printer application and install it on your Apple device.  It will work as long as it has the correct printer app.  People ask me all the time “does the iP100 work with the iPad?” and I wish I could give them a simple yes and no answer.  But I can’t, because like many things it’s a little more complicated than that.  The Canon PIXMA iP100 can work with the iPad and it is compatible but the printer app is required – it’s that simple.

 

Canon PIXMA iP100 3

Canon PIXMA iP100 3

 

Long and In-Depth Review

Sometimes when there’s a very poor product I enjoy ripping it apart, sometimes when a product is great I love to give it a fantastic review.  I love my job.  In this instance I’ll just tell you know that you’re going to be reading a fantastic review which outlines a fantastic product.

Firstly let’s take a look at the technical specifications so as to put it in context with other printers and give you a feel for what it can achieve.  It’s highly portable weighing just 4.4 pounds, which, for what I’m about to tell you about its functionalities is really a fantastic weight.  Most inkjet printers weigh much more due to the moving parts and their additional subsequent weight when contrast with say thermal printer .  However at 4.4 pounds this is very lightweight and its dimensions are also enviable: 12.7 x 2.4 x 7.2 inches which is similar to a Netbook in size at around twice the thickness.  When it comes to mobility, Canon has nailed it right on the head because we’re dealing with something that ticks both boxes in terms of weight and size.

Looking at the printing side of things; as is usually important I find, it can print a variety of different mediums.  For example regular 4 x 6 borderless photos, credit card size prints (perfect for business cards), letter, legal, envelope and photo stickers size (all based on U.S. sizes) – and of course A4 and A5.  All of these different potential sizes allow for a really broad spectrum of use, whether you’re an photographer or businessman is irrelevant because the chances are this is going to perfectly accommodate you.

The quality at which it prints is incredibly high, even for stationary desktop printers and this is very impressive due to its rugged portability.  It has 320 black nozzles and 1546 color nozzles allowing for printing resolutions up to 600 x 600 dpi for black and white or 9600 x 2400 dpi for color (photos).  This suits almost everyone’s needs and in my opinion goes past the point where a human being can actually distinguish the different dot per inch amounts.  Never the less, having such a high resolution in such a portable and compact printer is a breathe of fresh air.  You’ll be hard pressed to find a printer which is as mobile and prints to such a high resolution, yet I find myself lying.  I spend a lot of time looking at and reviewing wireless portable printer models and ‘hard pressed’ is simply a lie – there are no other options which are even equal to this device.  I just felt I should be more impartial.

The Canon PIXMA iP100 is compatible with all the usual operating systems, Windows 7, Vista, XP, 2000 and Mac OS X.  Unlike several HP portable printers which actually have outdated drivers which still haven’t been updated and will cause problems when trying to install in some of the mentioned operating systems (Windows 7 and W7 ultimate), Canon has done a good job in keeping on top of things.  No problems so far.

It’s data transfer interfaces are PictBridge, although the cable isn’t included, standard usb 2.0 (cable usually included although I have read reviews of people now getting theirs), infrared and Bluetooth.  The Bluetooth isn’t pre-installed within the device which is a bit of a shame, but on the other when you buy it you can actually attach it inside which is a unique and pleasing feature.  It would have been far better for it to be installed inside to begin with, but I’ve yet to see a printer which catered to people in such a manner by not increasing the product price for everyone who didn’t necessarily want Bluetooth accessibility, but still catered to the people who wanted an internal Bluetooth component.  The slight hassle is you’ve got to do it yourself but there are instructional guides and it shouldn’t take more than 10 minutes maximum.

It’s a truly portable printer, and what I mean by this is that it’s durable.  Many printers face hardware faults when they’re moved around and although they’re branded as mobile printers, I don’t think it’s fair to think of them as such.  Mobility doesn’t just mean the convenience of being able to move to location to location, it means being able to get there in one piece too.

Canon PIXMA iP100

Canon PIXMA iP100

One criticism I do have is of the paper feeder, now before I go over this annoyance I just want to say that paper feeders and their design structure have not been developed up to the point where they can be mobile and completely insusceptible to breaking.  This is true of HP more so, their printer’s paper feeds are certainly more likely to encounter errors then Canon, but even so to not mention this problem would give an unfair review.  If you treat this printer like you would a laptop, then you’re going to break the paper feeder and possibly more.  What I mean by this is that if you’ve got a laptop you can throw it onto your bed and it will work fine.  The difference with mobile inkjet printers is a simple one, and affects all mobile printers using inkjet print mechanisms.  Simply put, unlike thermal printers, inkjet printers have moving parts, and if you move moving parts too much they cease to function properly and can potentially break.  Canon’s design is far superior to most others, the chances of the paper feeding are still much lower than anyone else’s – but there’s still a chance of it occurring, especially if you’re not careful, and so you need to be careful when dealing with this printer.

Canon PIXMA iP100 Portable Printer

Canon PIXMA iP100 Portable Printer

Extras

I think it’s really important to note a few things.  It does not arrive either ‘portable’ or ‘wireless’, it arrives ‘compact’ and unable to transfer work data right away.  Let me explain.  To start with you need to purchase a battery if you want ‘portable’ printing, and if you’re not going to have access to AC power then this is pretty much a must.  It does not arrive with the Bluetooth adapter, you need to purchase this either with it, or later on and then either plug it in (or mount it inside).  It also does not arrive with a usb 2.0 transfer cable, so make sure you purchase it too if you need.  This may sound like Canon is trying to make money, but the reality is that this printer is still very cheap, cheaper than most of HP’s competition (and frankly HP is the only competition).  I think overall people will save money, because they’ll be able to buy only the extras that they need instead of it arriving with peripherals they don’t want which therefore means they’re subsidizing the cost for others.

Summary

It’s a great portable printer, but it has some downsides and for some people it’s not going to be the right portable printer for them.  Let me tell you who it’s not good for, there are essentially two types of people.  The first group of people are careless people, if you drop it (even in a bag) or you treat it like you would most mobile devices then it will break – like all inkjet mobile printers.  The hardware inside simply doesn’t allow them to be roughly handled like many other devices, so it needs to be treated right.

The second type of person is someone who needs it for ‘in the field’ work.  If you need something which can take a few blows, which is really compact (fit in a pocket compact) and far more lightweight (basically a feather) then you’ll need something based on thermal print mechanisms which also have no moving parts making them far more reliable.  In this case I suggest you take a look at the Brother PocketJet 6 printer, just remember that thermal printers can’t hit anywhere near the dpi range of this product which is the sacrifice they make for their high levels of portability.

Overall, for most people this is the best you can buy at the moment as of the 14th of October 2011.  It’s rugged and durable, especially when compared to other portable printers.  It has incredibly high resolution prints and caters to a variety of paper/card sizes which makes in invaluable to most people.  It’s compact and lightweight for what it does, and its Bluetooth connectivity is icing on the cake.  Truly the best wireless portable printer I’ve ever seen.

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