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Steve 
 

Recommendations for Camera/Printer combo for Store


I'm in the process of opening an ice cream parlor, and one of the themes I'm trying to play up in the store is for it to be a community gathering place.

To enforce this, I'd like to purchase a digital camera and a photo printer, and use them to allow me to (with their permission) take photos of my customers (e.g, eating an ice cream), and immediately print them out for the customer to post on our "community wall".

Any recommendations that anyone can offer on a camera/printer combo that would be appropriate for this use?

If possible, I'd like to avoid anything that requires a PC host, so direct camera to printer solutions are the best.

Some of my questions:
- How fast can I turnaround a digital image into a printed photo? Fast enough to make this idea viable?
- How much can I expect to pay per print?
- Will the prints last similar to a normal photo, or will I experience more fading if they are displayed openly?
- Ruggedness/ease of use of the solution? (I may end up having the general counter help run the camera, so something that's easy to operate, and rugged enough to take some abuse would be preferable.)

Thanks!


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12/2/2002 3:58:54 PM

 
Michael Kaplan   I will try to give you some help.

-Any recommendations?
-If possible, I'd like to avoid anything that requires a PC host, so direct camera to printer solutions are the best.

For this I would suggest maybe using aa Direct Photo Printer like the Canon CP-100. It works with a lot of Canon Powershot cameras and you plug the camera right in to the printer. The quality is good and it is fairly simple to use. The supplies are easy to work with as well. There are other 'Photo Printers' which include card readers or direct connections like a model or 2 from HP bit I think the dedicated printer setup from Canon would be most headache free.
Here is the link to see the brochure.
http://www.canon.ca/pdf/cp100_bro.pdf

-Some of my questions:
- How fast can I turnaround a digital image into a printed photo? Fast enough to make this idea viable?

Yes, Printing witht the Cp100 is rated at 81 seconds and it is not too complicated but I doubt you would want to do EVERY SINGLE customer during your rush hour.

- How much can I expect to pay per print?
As far as costs go, this is from imaging-resource.com 's review of the printer. "Print cost of about $0.55 per 4x6 print, based on August 2002 "street" media prices." You can print more than one picture on a 4x6. You can print borderless credit card sized prints as well which only take 40 seconds to print. You can read the article here:
http://www.imaging-resource.com/PRINT/CP100/CP100A.HTM

or from here:
http://www.steves-digicams.com/2002_reviews/cp100.html

Do a search on the net for more info should you need it.
- Will the prints last similar to a normal photo, or will I experience more fading if they are displayed openly?
You will always experience more fading if they are displayed openly. Any quoted life for prints are bases on under glass not in any direct light within certain normal temperatures. But how long do you really need them to last? They say that "The prints from the CP-100 are at least as durable as photographic prints from film"

- Ruggedness/ease of use of the solution? (I may end up having the general counter help run the camera, so something that's easy to operate, and rugged enough to take some abuse would be preferable.)
I would not think this would be a problem as long as they don't go around dropping the camera but you can also buy a fairly inexpensive one which will do just fine for your purposes so if one does break it won't break the bank to get a replacement.

I hope this helped you somewhat and I wish you good luck with your ice cream store and in doing something a little unconventional with the pictures.

Michael Kaplan
Montreal, Canada
Canon EOS-10D
http://www.pbase.com/mkaplan


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7/19/2003 3:02:01 PM

 
Lizbeth M. Gray   Well you will want to match your printer with your camera, and there are several options. First let me say you can no go wrong with Epson quality, however they do have drawbacks. Epsons NEED head cleaning cycles done if not in use, and NEVER use anything but Epson ink and if you do normal printing always use inkjet paper.


That out of the way, I have 4 Epsons, one of them a Photo Stylus 785EPX. My prints look better than the Laser prints in the copy center I work at, and better then the Dye Sub prints that I sell (a 400.00 Olympus included). The new R300 (and most of the new Epson Photos too) has a direct print ability from ANYTHING connecting via usb as well as 12 major card formats support on the slots available. It takes about 1-2 Min to get a borderless 4x6 at the highest quality, personally I use high, it saves ink and time and still look awesome. When I buy ink and paper at my work my prints run about .43 a print at 4x6. The R300 should be about the same, maybe as high as .50. Like ALL dye based printers if displayed the photos will eventually fade, the only way around this is to go with a Dye Sub Printer (apx .60 a print) or Pigment based Inkjet. If you want to go pigment based there are a few options, you could get a Niagara (continuous ink flow, initial cost 300) system that uses pigment ink for any Epson photo printer, or you could go Stylus 2200 (600ish), but the 2200 is a wide format printer and probably more than you need.

For the camera I would suggest finding what you like, and that you are comfortable with. Like I do mainly point and shoot type photography so I have an Olympus C700UZ, which I love and get wonderful looking prints off of. A serious photographer my want to look at things more like the Canon G5 or Olympus C5050 and such cameras.

If you still need the information I hope this helps.

Liz


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11/25/2003 5:49:51 PM

 
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