Whether you're printing off photos to save in your scrapbook, or you want to have some glossy photos of your best pictures handy, a good photo printer can make a huge difference when you're saving those important images. While most printers can print images, a dedicated photo printer can accurately and vividly reproduce colors while still retaining detail from your original image. Inkjet printers also tend to be better suited for printing photos, and some inkjets even include special photo cartridges to give you an even better color reproduction.
We've tested over 105 printers, and below are our recommendations for the best photo printers you can buy. For other options, check out our picks for the best home printers, the best inkjet printers, and the best printers with cheap ink.
The best-quality photo printer that we've tested is the Canon PIXMA TR8620. It's the replacement to the Canon PIXMA TR8520, with a similarly decent-feeling plastic build with easy access to the ink cartridges and potential paper jams. It has a flatbed scanner with lid hinges that raise to scan thicker items, an automatic document feeder, and built-in fax.
It has a good color document yield, and its cost-per-print for photos is excellent and should help keep costs low over time. It prints photos at a satisfactory speed, with excellent detail and vibrant colors with acceptable accuracy. The connectivity options are incredible, including Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, and it can also print directly from SD cards. You can use the Canon PRINT Inkjet/SEPHY app to access the printer functions directly from your phone, view scanned documents, and order ink.
Unfortunately, its black page yield is poor, so if you're going to be printing lots of black text documents frequently, you'll need to replace the cartridges a lot. It's also very slow to print documents, so you'll have to wait a while for long reports or essays. All in all, it's very good for casual photo printing, and it's also one of the best wireless printers we've tested.
If you want a printer that produces more accurate colors, consider the HP ENVY Photo 7855. It prints photos that look somewhat less good than the Canon PIXMA TR8620, and its page yields and cost-per-print are much worse, but it produces significantly more accurate-looking colors and prints documents much more quickly. It has the same scanning features and connectivity options as the Canon but can print directly from USB flash drives. Sadly, it doesn't feel as well-built since it has a flimsy-feeling input tray and an output tray that's difficult to push back into place. The mobile companion app doesn't support many of the most commonly-used printable file formats, but it's still one of the best photo printers we've tested.
If you prioritize photos that look great and can be printed more cheaply, get the Canon. If you need to print colors that are more accurate-looking and print documents more quickly, go with the HP.
The best multipurpose photo printer that we've tested is the Epson WorkForce Pro WF-4830. It's an all-in-one inkjet unit complete with scanning and faxing capabilities. It has a high-resolution flatbed scanner, which is excellent for digitizing old photos and documents. Additionally, you can lift the scanner lid's hinges to fit thicker items like magazines and textbooks, and the automatic document feeder automatically performs duplex scanning.
The photo printing quality is good, and images come out detailed and vibrant with little banding in darker areas. Colors look accurate; however, they may not be precise enough for professionals looking for exact color reproduction. The print speed for black and color documents is quite fast, and photos take a little under a minute. Additionally, it has excellent connectivity options, including Ethernet and USB ports.
Unfortunately, it has low black page yields, and you'll need to replace the cartridges frequently, but, thankfully, high yield cartridges are available to purchase. It's also a bulkier printer, meaning it wouldn't work well in tight spaces. With that said, it's an excellent printer that produces high-quality photos with a good cost-per-print, and it's one of the best all-in-one printers we've tested.
If you're looking for something compact, the best printer for pictures that we've tested is the HP DeskJet 3755. It's reasonably well-built, and it has easy access to ink cartridges and paper jams through the front panel with the HP logo. It has a sheetfed scanner on top, meaning you can easily digitize documents. The compact size fits well in smaller spaces like dorms or small desks, and it comes in your choice of three different colors.
Performance-wise, it prints good-quality photos that are detailed and vibrant, and there's little banding in gray areas. It also has impressively accurate-looking colors; however, they may not be accurate enough for professionals looking for exact color reproduction. Also, it has decent connectivity options, and you can use the HP Smart App to scan, print, and send faxes from your phone.
Unfortunately, like many other compact inkjet printers, it has a poor page yield and cost-per-print. Though the ink is relatively cheap, you may have more costs if you frequently print, as the ink will need replacing often. It also takes more than a minute for photos to print. That said, it's great for printing photos when you're low on space.
The best printer for printing photos in the budget category that we've tested is the Canon PIXMA TR4520. This all-in-one model has a flatbed scanner with good scan resolution and color depth, as well as an automatic document feeder for processing multi-page documents. It has decent connectivity options like an Ethernet port, Apple AirPrint, and Mopria Print Service.
It produces impressive-looking photos with vibrant colors and clear details, with only a little bit of banding in grayscale, and its color accuracy is decent and should be fine for casual use. Also, you can use the Canon PRINT Inkjet/SELPHY app to print, scan, and copy directly from your mobile device, as well as to order replacement ink cartridges.
Unfortunately, it has a poor page yield, so you'll need to replace the cartridges often, resulting in a disappointingly high cost-per-print. Paper jams are also hard to get to since you'll have to lay the printer on its side or lift the back panel to access them, and it prints very slowly. Overall, this is a good option if you're looking to print great-looking photos on a budget.
Oct 15, 2021: Verified picks for availability and accuracy; added Canon PIXMA TR150 to Notable Mentions.
Sep 16, 2021: Made the Epson WorkForce Pro WF-4830 'Best Multipurpose' and moved the Brother MFC-J995DW to Notable Mentions. Verified availability and accuracy of picks.
Aug 20, 2021: Moved Canon PIXMA G7020 to Notable Mentions as it's difficult to find in stock at a good price. Moved the HP ENVY Photo 7855 from Notable Mentions and made it the 'Better Color Accuracy Alternative' to the Canon PIXMA TR8620. Removed the Canon PIXMA G3260 from Notable Mentions. Verified availability and accuracy of picks.
Jul 23, 2021: Verified availability and accuracy of picks, and updated text for clarity.
Jun 23, 2021: Verified availability and accuracy of picks, and updated text for clarity.
Our recommendations above are what we think are currently the best home printers for most people. We factor in the price, feedback from our visitors, and availability.
If you would like to do the work of choosing yourself, here's the list of all our printer reviews. Be careful not to get too caught up in the details. While no printer is perfect for every use, most are good enough to please almost everyone, and the differences are often not noticeable unless you really look for them.