Inkjet-Printer: Heavyweights From Canon, Epson and HP

Color Photo Quality 1

The i860 and photosmart 7760 were tested in default mode, leaving the paper analyzer to adjust the resolution accordingly. By the way, Canon does not seem to have had the time to adapt its driver to the printer's new functions. If you want the analyzer to work, you have to be in "Plain Paper" mode, otherwise it will be disabled.

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Actual Size Original PhotoOriginal Photo Enlarged 3 Times
Row 0 - Cell 0 Row 0 - Cell 1
Canon i860Epson C84
Row 2 - Cell 0 Row 2 - Cell 1
HP photosmart 7760
Row 4 - Cell 0

The tests show all three printers are perfectly capable of printing photos, but the quality of the pictures can differ with the model.

On one side is the Epson C84. Here we have 4 colors in drops of 3 picoliters. Even though the human eye is supposed to be limited to 4 or 5, the drops are still visible to the naked eye. This is what gives the scanned picture that grainy effect. Despite that, the end quality is still perfectly satisfactory, quite adequate for the pictures to be worth a place in an album or on a wall. Note too that Epson says its new ink will resist the effects of light for 80 years.

With regard to Canon and HP, an unpracticed eye will not notice any difference in contrast between the two. The i860 prints are brighter, despite the fact that Canon uses four colors and HP six.

If you look at the prints from more than a foot away, you won't be able to see the drops. Close up, you can see some, such as the cyan in the lightest areas of flesh tones. But you really do need to search, so the verdict is: Both are excellent. There is one major difference, though. Canon guarantees its prints for 25 years (provided they are under glass) whereas HP guarantees theirs for 73 years.