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This One Goes to 12

November 2, 2011 - Dave Hecei

Having a large photo printer in your home or office might be considered a luxury. If you are a serious photographer, either pro or amateur, then having a large format photo printer is likely a necessity. There are really only three printers makers to choose from – HP, Epson, and Canon. While most photo printers use four colors (C M Y K), photo printers use a few more (C, c, M, m, Y, K, k - the lower case is a lighter color). The new Canon Pixma Pro-1 goes totally crazy by using 12 inks. Yes, it goes to 12.

Canon just announced this new wide-format photo printer last week (October 26, 2011). The Pixma Pro-1 can print on paper sizes from 4 x 6 inches to 13 x 19 inches. No roll paper option available so printing on sizes longer than 19-inches is doubtful.

So let’s get to the 12 inks. This might be just overkill, but then when you see the finished product you’ll probably change your mind. The Pixma has the usual color tanks - Cyan, Photo Cyan, Magenta, Photo Magenta, Yellow, Red and Chroma Optimizer. Instead of having one or two blacks the Pro-1 has Matte Black, Photo Black, Dark Gray, Gray, and Light Gray. Yes, you counted right. There are five blacks in this printer.

Having this many tanks has its advantages and disadvantages. Canon claims that having these extra blacks helps in creating superior images that contain dark scenes. It should also help to create smooth gradation of tones and suppress graininess in the colors of reflected light. These extra black should also make this one of the best B&W printers for the fine art photographer.

Pricing for the Pixma Pro-1 is stated to be about $999 and should start shipping by the end of this year. The new Canon Pixma Pro-1 is getting rave reviews from early testers and I look forward to trying one out soon.


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