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Canon Pixma Pro 9500 Mark II A3+ Colour Inkjet Printer Review

Superseding the Canon Pixma Pro 9000; the Pixma Pro 9500 Mark II tries hard to make a couple of wrongs wright whilst maintaining the status quo.

Like the Pro 9000, the 9500 benefits from a sturdy, heavy duty build. It has a metal top cover, solid metal output rollers and high quality brushes. The thick dual rails provide stability during operation of the moving print head.

The front facia contains only three buttons and a PictBridge connection foir digital camera. No LCD screen, keypad or network/wireless capability. This printer has been designed to be controlled via a PC or Mac via a USB connection.

In contrast to the Pro 9000 template, the Pro 9500 uses pigment based inks as opposed to dye inks. The more cartridges the printer uses, the wider the colour gamut. The printhead holds a total of ten cartridges; a Grey (Gray) PGI-9GY, and Matte Black PGI-9MBK have been added to the old line-up in the hope of improving black and white photograph printing. The Gray cartridge is designed to reduce 'metamerism' and produce neutral tones. By eliminating the need to use Black/Cyan/Magenta/Yellow Inks to create grey, the gray balance is stabilised. The new Matt Black cartridge adds high contrast. The other Canon Lucia cartridges are Photo Black PGI-9PBK, Cyan PGI-9C, Magenta PGI-9M, Yellow PGI-9Y, Photo Cyan PGI-9PC, Photo Magenta PGI-9PM, Red PGI-9R, and Green PGI-9G.

The Canon Easy-PhotoPrint Pro software gives you the choice of different colour modes. Linear Tone uses the original properties of the image without making any chances to the contrast, brightness etc. Photo Colour is the default mode for Pixma Pro printers which automatically optimises images. Finally ICC profiles can be used from the existing library or new ones created with the Color Management Pro software that is provided.

The rear paper feed holds 120 sheets of 80gm thick paper up to A3+ in size. By using the front manual paper slot you are able to use slightly wider 14" paper but due to availability most users will use A3+ sized media. You do need to allow space at the back of the printer for the paper to stick out when using this paper feed method.

The Pro 9500 is slower at printing than the older Pro 9000 and Ink costs are higher. Monochrome printing is improved by the introduction of the two extra Inks but with ten cartridges in operation and each costing around £10, a full set of Canon 9 Series Inks cost £100!

Just like the Pro 9000, this model struggles to print on ordinary paper and requires coated media to acheive good results. The Pixma Pro Series of printers were designed for use with fine quality media, and when image settings are correct, results can be outstanding.

To get the most from the Pro 9500, users will need to experiment with print settings to achieve best results. Running costs can be high for heavy users.


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