While most people are happy to believe that keeping there pictures on the hard drive or emailing them to friends is enough, nothing can beat that hard copy in your hand. It’s as if it's not real until that moment. Digital photo printers have been around for ages and the price of both the machine, printing paper and ink have come down hugely, no longer does it cost £2 per image in ink nor does it take a long time.
In steps the Kodak Print Station 4000 - the docking printer for all cameras in the Kodak EasyShare range that start with a “4”. A small device - about the size of a lunchbox - that like the 6000 offers 6x4” images at the touch of a button primarily to users of its Kodak EasyShare range. The printer costs £199 and 40 sheets of paper with enough ribbon to print on those 40 sheets only £20, that old phrase said in a child’s voice “it’s too expensive” can’t be used here.
Now that we have got the costs myth out of the way, what of the machine itself? The size of a small lunchbox, the printer coloured in a gun metal grey, looks stylish and practical. Clearly marked buttons adorn the front offering you access to its print facilities and on top sits the docking station for any camera in the EasyShare range.
With a name like EasyShare you would expect just that, and this printer is pretty much ready to work out of the box. Setting up to the PC from getting it out of the box to printing the first picture took less than 5 minutes, and it would be even quicker still if you weren’t fussed with the PC option.
Once you’ve docked you camera onto the printer you can chose to print all the images direct from the PC, chose a single file or even print an index from the camera. Furthermore the printer also acts as a standard EasyShare docking station making the transfer of files easy and quick as well as offering a charging facility - a nice and well throughout element.
Printing direct from the camera takes about 90 seconds while images from the PC are considerably faster. Images are printed borderless, are waterproof and dry when they come out of the machine due to using a thermal-dye transfer printing process - handy if you are in a rush.
Prints are of a good quality - they do rely on your digital camera and your photographic skills. Because of this, don’t expect it to turn your images into masterpieces just because you’ve chosen to print them out.
Colours suffer from the same pros and cons of the Printer dock 6000 and are good, if not slightly dulled with blacks being a touch green at the edges (look at the test prints right). Overall they good enough to believe that you got them from Snappy Snaps or Boots rather than your spare room.
Overall this is a good little device. Slightly restricted by the fact that you really do need to have bought into the Kodak brand to get the full benefit from it, but nonetheless still just as useful if you haven't.
The only thing lacking which would have been a nice touch was a car adapter kit or the option to fit it with a battery like the CP300 from Canon. That said, if you've just invested in a Kodak EasyShare 4000 range camera and looking to produce 6x4” prints whilst on the go, then this makes for a great addition to your digital imaging kit.