Whilst the printer market is flooded with medium-size colour multifunction and mono single function machines, it's much harder to find small format printers dedicated to photo printers. It's this niche that Canon is trying to capture with the Canon SELPHY CP900.

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Ideal for stowing in a small suitcase, the Canon SELPHY CP900 measures an ultra-compact 178 x 127 x 605 mm and yet feels robust and chunky at 810g. 

Styled throughout in chic matt black, this is a mini printer that proves you can be sexy as well as practical.

The design is very similar to its predecessor, the Canon SELPHY CP800, with a tilting 2.7in colour LCD monitor positioned centrally on top and a row of clearly labelled control buttons in front of it. 

The supplied paper cassette slots into the open front panel. Immediately above it is an SD slot for direct printing from a memory card without a PC.

On the left side is a USB port for flash drives and PictBridge enabled cameras, as well as a standard USB Type B port output for conventional computer attachment. 

The main difference between the Canon SELPHY CP900 and its predecessor, though, is Wi-Fi connectivity which allows printing via computer, tablet or smart phone.

A certain amount of onboard editing and effects can be performed via the edit menu and the supplied Photo Print software makes printing steps a doddle. 

In our tests, print speeds averaged around the claimed 47 seconds per postcard-size image, with credit-card size images and various sets of mini-stickers slightly faster at 30 seconds each.

Colour vividness and photo sharpness were impressive for a dye-sublimation thermal transfer system. Colour brightness, tone, image optimization and a 'smooth skin' effect are available if you don't have immediate access to photo editing software.

The all-in-one ink cartridge slides neatly into the side of the machine and each pack comes with 36 postcard-size sheets. 

Best value pack is the KP-1081N which contains three 4x6in ink and paper sets for £34. Individual prints then work out at around 31.5p each.

If you splash out on an optional battery pack for a further £74, each charge is good for 36 sheets.

Canon SELPHY CP900: Specs

  • Portable photo printer
  • 300 x 300dpi maximum resolution
  • 47 seconds per postcard-size print specified speed
  • 18-sheet maximum input capacity
  • ?USB 2.0
  • 802.11b/g
  • 178 x 127 x 60.5mm
  • 810g excluding ink cartridge & paper cassette
  • Portable photo printer
  • 300 x 300dpi maximum resolution
  • 47 seconds per postcard-size print specified speed
  • 18-sheet maximum input capacity
  • ?USB 2.0
  • 802.11b/g
  • 178 x 127 x 60.5mm
  • 810g excluding ink cartridge & paper cassette

OUR VERDICT

Canon's latest ultra-compact thermal dye photo printer has a welcome upgrade of Wi-Fi over its predecessor alongside good quality images, simple controls and flash drive/SD card instant processing.

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