Pros Great color w/o a lot of tweaking
Cons None yet - maybe color ink usage too unbalanced
Summary Regarding paper - try Ilford Galerie Professional Inkjet Photo Range Classic Pearl Paper (GREAT), or Galerie Smooth Gloss or Smooth Pearl (I have them with good recommendations, but no experience). Download the zip file that provides the i9900 profile (with Canon ink) from Ilford.com. The combo is great out of the box with no tweaking - my calibrated monitor shows WYSIWYG on the printed photo.
I've used a couple of Epsons, including the 1280, and always seem to be tweaking things to get the photos to print correctly. Ilford's been around a long time and has high quality products.
Pros Fast and quiet
Cons Milky or "filmy" prints even on expensive Canon paper
Summary I bought this last October--needed a large format printer immediately, so I couldn't wait for the new models--with the $100 rebate (still waiting for that, BTW).
The printer is great for bright colors and bright pictures generally. If you have a wide range with midtones and shadow areas, though, it is absolutely awful. It's like everything has a film over it. Highlights and bright areas are OK, but black and dark areas just cannot be rendered properly.
On Ilford smooth gloss, dark areas suffer from severe banding--only avoided with Canon Photo Paper Pro. Even then, though, it as though there is no black ink--only dark gray. I think I have probably wasted as much ink and paper trying to get proper prints, as I paid for the printer. I've about decided it would be cheaper to just move near a photolab where I can walk over for prints!
I know some people rave about this printer. Either my standards are too high, or this printer is a dud. It did have a loose part inside that I had to have repaired within the first month.
Pros Great print quality
Cons Gigantic machine, eats ink, unreliable
Summary I've had this printer for a little over 2 years. It's great for printing photos - they look as good as any photo shop. However, I've spent hundreds of dollars on ink cartridges (they seem to need replacing every couple of months, even with light use) and I've had to have the logic board replaced twice. Not to mention that the printer is huge and takes up more than half of my desk space. I wouldn't buy it again, but do think the print quality will be hard to beat.
Pros None. I think Epson and HP make more reliable products. This is the second Canon printer I have returned.
Cons I have been a computer professional for 10+ years and understand how to install equipment and software. After unpacking the printer I read through the documentation and followed the step by step instructions. During driver installation twice the cdrom fai
Pros Nice output
Cons Didn't last 3 years
Summary This was my first photo inkjet -- bought it in July 2004.
Overall I've been very satisfied with the quality of my output, though I'm not a camera geek and I never print B&W stuff.
However, just last week my i9900 refused to turn on. I took it to a Canon authorized service facility, paid my $25 nonrefundable deposit to have it evaluated, and a couple of days later the service agent called to tell me that the problem wasn't with the power supply and that the only alternative was to replace the print head and the main circuit board -- total cost, $200 including labor (with a 6-month warranty thrown in).
Ultimately I decided not to pay to have it repaired, and right now I don't have a warm and fuzzy feeling about Canon reliability. I paid $400 for this thing and the fact that it didn't last 3 years ... well, I'm less than thrilled.