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Old Nov 18, 2003, 12:01 PM   #1
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Default Canon CP-200

So far, I have no made the leap to digital. I owned a Casio digital many years ago which could about 320x240 on a good day. Back then nobody even considered trying to make prints, digicams were just toys for the few of us who had web pages.

This year for Christmas, I was considering buying a digicam for my wife. My brother called and asked if I wanted to split a digicam with him to give to our mother. And so began my crash course in digital photography.

From my research and listening to the comments from the potential users, I am fairly convinced that we will be buying at least two Canon A70 digicams in the near future. I liked the Nikon menus and ergonomics, but have been convinced that the A70 will handle all three users' needs quite nicely.

My mom and brother would both be using the same HP inkjet. It's a multifunction printer but should be good enough quality for them. My own printer, though, is an el cheapo HP that I recently bought because its sale price was about what I was about to spend on replacement ink for my old el cheapo HP. I am perfectly satisfied with my el cheapo HP for computer use, so I'm not too compelled to buy a new inkjet photo printer.

The camera will be for my wife. She doesn't like computers and would want something that she can plug her camera into directly. There's no need for the printer to do more than 4x6, if she wants to enlarge something she is perfect content with having them printed at a store.

I don't think dye sub is required, but since the printer is meant to be used exclusively for printing 4x6 photos, it seems like a reasonable choice. I don't anticipate this printer being loaded up for a hiking trip, the portability need is from a perspective of bringing it in the car without having to unplug it from the computer and lug around a desktop size printer. I'm not opposed to doing so, but it seems like size overkill since it's sole purpose would be to print 4x6.

I am leaning towards Canon for a couple reasons. Primarily, I want this to be something that can be self-contained and easy for my wife to figure out. If she has to rely on me to load them to the computer before printing, or figure out how to work the printer, she will get bored with it quickly. The PictBridge technology seems to do well in this category.

I would still like the possibility to load them to the PC, manipulate them, then print 4x6 at home. I believe the CP-200 can be used from a PC and not just straight from the camera, but somebody please correct me if I'm mistaken.

The second reason I am favoring Canon is the price. If I were to go with a Canon inkjet, I'd get either a $50 or $100 rebate. The CP-200 is not covered by this rebate. However, since the CP-200 is sold at Target, I will get a 20% discount (long story) which would be a $36 discount.

With rebates and discounts, I am looking at probably the i860 for $90, the i960 for $140, or the CP-200 for $145. Tax not included, but for comparison purposes you get the idea.

I have read that the CP-200 prints work out to about $.55 each. That's not as cheap as I'd like, but as others have said if there is any large batches we can always take those to Costco. Even though that does tend to defeat one of of the purposes of going digital in the first place (quick home printing).

Even though the printing packets are a bit expensive, their ease of use would be another point in my book. My wife can buy the whole package as needed. If it's an inkjet hooked to my PC, it will be more confusing for her to try to buy individual colors as they run out, and also deal with two types of paper. I know the Think Tank technology helps reduce the cost, but I have to wonder by how much and will it be worth it if it's too complicated for my wife to figure out?

I know buying choices are highly personal and it's difficult to give objective advice since we're talking about very subjective things like ease of use and quality. I am hoping that some of you can at least confirm or deny if I'm on the right track or if there is something that I might have completely overlooked.

I am definitely leaning towards the A70 / CP-200 combo.

Thanks in advance!
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Old Jan 14, 2004, 4:18 PM   #2
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Hello there,

my reply may be out-dated, but just saw your post. i considered cameras and printers till my head was ready to explode. in the end, went with a Canon S400 and the CP-200 you were asking about.

won't have either till this weekend, but no second thoughts. the 200's main competition (for me) were the HiTi's. cheaper per print, allows some editing with the printer itself, compatible with more types of memory/cameras.

however, when all was said and done, chose the CP-200 for reasons somewhat similar to your concerns about your wife:

i want _simple_.
do not want to interface with a computer (tho pretty sure the CPs will, check the PowerShot website).
wanted the smallest and lightest possible, i RV a lot - that's Canon for my camera. (bought DC chargers for both camera and printer)
the HiTi's appear to be a bit more sensitive to dust, prolly due to design.
a small thing, but i love that the camera connects to the computer via cable rather than having to remove memory..but i'm a total newbie, non-tech person.

based on what you're saying about your wife, think it would be a good choice.

hope this helps,
Karen
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