Canon imagePROGRAF Pro-1000

Exquisite Color and Grayscale Photos On Media up to 17"x 22"

imagePROGRAF Pro-1000
Impeccable color and gray scale images with Canon's imagePROGRAF Pro-1000. Photo courtesy of Canon
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It’s been awhile since Canon has released a new desktop professional photograph printer. The well-respected and popular Pixma Pro-1, Pixma Pro-10, and Pixma Pro-100 have all been around for several years. This time, though, rather than aligning this new model with the Pixma consumer brand, the Japanese imaging giant has released this latest photo printer, the imagePROGRAF Pro-1000, under the higher-end imagePROGRAF placard for plotters and the like.

For those in the market for this type of printer, between Canon and its primary competitor, Epson, there are several to choose from. Epson’s equivalent (or best match) is the SureColor P800, which I haven’t reviewed yet. However, two notable differences are that the Epson model uses fewer inks and it can use 17”-wide roll paper, which unfortunately none of the Canon models mentioned here are capable of.

Even so, this is an excellent photograph printer in several ways and especially where it counts—image quality.

Design and Features

One thing is certain, images of this printer don’t do it justice, in terms of size and weight. At 28.5” from side-to-side, by 17” from front to back, by 11.2” high, compared to most other desktop printers, this is one huge machine. At 70.5 pounds, it’s also quite heavy—significantly heavier than the SureColor P800, and larger. But I’m not convinced that weight matters all that much, especially if it adds to the overall durability and dependability of the printer.

All the Pro-1000 does is print; however, unlike many of its competitors, it also comes with several modern mobile connectivity options, such as Wi-Fi, Ethernet, and USB, support for cloud printing, as well as Canon’s PRINT App and Pixma Cloud Link. The mobile app supports both iOS and Android devices; it allows users to transfer images quickly, manage files for print, as well as monitor the printer's settings.

Performance, Paper Handling, & Print Quality

Since this isn’t a high-volume text printer, how fast it prints isn’t nearly as important as how well. In fact, more than anything else, the Pro-1000 is all about print quality. Even so, these days it’s not unreasonable to expect just about any printer to be relatively fast. Canon claims that it will print a bordered (as opposed to borderless, which takes significantly longer) 17” by 22” page in 4 minutes and 10 seconds, which is about what I got. However, some images printed better at higher settings, and that takes significantly longer.

Keep in mind that when printing on smaller paper sizes, such as say 8” by 10”, it takes a lot less time. When it comes to paper handling, there are two input sources: a rear slot for holding multiple sheets, and a manual feed, or override slot for a single sheet up front. The front slot also accepts thicker media, up to 27.6 milligrams.

But again, this printer is all about print quality. To accomplish this exceptional quality, the Pro-1000 uses 11 color inks and one clear coat, or Chroma Optimizer. The 11 inks are matte black, photo black, cyan, magenta, yellow, photo cyan, photo magenta, gray, photo gray, red, and blue.

If you noticed all of the monochrome (five of them) inks; these help produce some of the best grayscale images in the business.

Many aspects of this printer, of course, account for the exceptional print quality, including the FINE (Full-Photolithography Inkjet Nozzle Engineering) technology and a 50% larger printhead, and a two-way vacuum feeder accurately feeds media, keeping it flat for greater accuracy. The Chromo Optimizer decreases the difference in droplet sizes making for a smoother ink layer, and it enhances color consistency on coated papers.

Also important to the process, of course, are Canon’s pigment-based LUCIA inks.

Cost of Use

Frankly, like any printer in this class, this one is expensive to use. Not only is the ink relatively costly, so is the media. Packages of 25 sheets of 17” x 22” can cost well upwards of $100, or well north of $4 per sheet. Then comes the ink. The Pro-1000 uses 80ml tanks. The inks sell for about $60 each and the Chroma Optimizer runs about $55.

There really is no way to measure how much each page costs in ink, except to say that the larger sizes will easily cost dollars, not cents.

Conclusion

Granted, the Pro-1000 isn’t for everybody. In fact, it’s not even for those pros who need a roll feeder for printing banners and such. Nothing’s perfect. Like its competitors, this is one great photo printer.