Sun, 29 Jan 2006 Stylus Photo R240
The Stylus Photo R240 is a budget, entry-level inkjet printer aimed at novice digital camera users. It includes the usual array of card slots and a PictBridge port, plus a small colour LCD screen for previewing images.
Unusually for a photo printer it provides only four colours, which is reflected in its low cost. But the inks do come in separate tanks so you can save some money by replacing colours individually as they run out.
Despite the use of just four colours, print quality is excellent. It's so good, in fact, that it makes you question the need for the extra colours in more expensive printers. To be fair, print quality isn't quite up to that of some of Epson's higher-end models, but you'd need a magnifying glass to spot the differences. It's also capable of a perfectly reasonable print speed of 4 minutes 6 seconds for an A4 photo. A 6 x 4-inch photo takes exactly two minutes to print, which isn't lightning fast, but bear in mind this is a sub-£100 printer.
Thanks to its memory card slots and PictBridge port the R240 can be used completely independently of a computer. The colour LCD display isn't bad and it has an extremely simple user interface, which is perfect for the novice users this printer is aimed at. It's easy to choose between output settings, paper type and paper size at the touch of just a handful of buttons.
Used in conjunction with your Mac, this printer not only outputs excellent quality photos, it also makes a more than passable general-purpose printer. As with photo output text speed isn't that fast, but at 2.4ppm it's sufficient for light home use. Print quality on plain paper is not brilliant, but again it's more than adequate for simple home use.