HP has largely steered clear of the “prosumer” photo printer niche, which caters to serious amateur photographers and professionals on a budget. It’s made a splash, though, with its superb Photosmart Pro 9180, one of the best sub-$1,000 photo printers you can get.
The B9180 prints on regular, photo, and fine-arts papers up to 13 by 19 inches, as well as on banner paper up to 13 by 44 inches. It uses an eight-color ink system with pigment-based inks, which tend to last longer than dye-based inks. HP claims a lifetime of more than 200 years for prints on its best papers in dark storage or behind glass.
The printer turned in a reasonably fast total time on the test suite, at 15:30 (min:sec). The quality of my test photos-on an assortment of papers, including several fine-arts papers-was as good as anything I’ve seen. Even monochrome photos were superb. Graphics looked terrific when printed on photo Paper.
Ultimately, the HP Photosmart Pro B9180 Photo Printer’s most compelling trick is its price. It stands toe-to-toe with the competition on output quality and features, yet it costs significantly less. This printer’s stellar output qualities, plus a relatively low price, are enough to earn it an Editors’ Choice.Price rangeHP Photosmart Pro B9180 Photo Printer: $699.99Check This Out:HP Officejet J5780 All-in-One: An All-in-One That’s Not for EveryoneHP PHOTOSMART A320: Cheap Portable Photo PrinterXerox Phaser 8560MFP/D: As Solid as Its Ink