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There are lots of great printers on the market for those interested in a more portable unit. If you wish to get your hands on a high-quality model, it’s important to understand what are the most important features of a portable printer. Then you can make a more informed decision so you can buy a product that’s worth the money. You might also be interested in our articles about the best label printers and best slide scanners.
The things to look for are:
Because portability matters a lot for these products, you should check their weight and dimensions. More compact products that weigh less are recommended to be easier to carry around. It’s also advised to try to find the right balance between features and design.
2. Battery life
Check this aspect if you’re worried about how many documents you can print before you’re going to need to get the battery charged again. A printer that constantly needs recharging will negatively impact its portability.
The quality of the printing is obviously one of the most important considerations for any kind of printer. A good printer should have a solid image resolution. This is an important indicator of the printing quality that you should pay attention to when evaluating different products. High-resolution printers are more costly, so keep in mind that you will have to make some compromises on quality if your budget is more on the lower side.
Based on your needs, speed can be a factor to consider. The printing speed of a printer is usually listed in the specs of the machine but it’s important to note that in real-world conditions, the actual results may be different.
Looking into the types of cartridges used by inkjet printers is always recommended. Some models require high-yield cartridges, which means that you can save some money in the long run. There are other printers that come with thermal print technology but the specialty paper cartridges used for these machines can be a significant expense.
Finally, the more connection options a printer offers, the better. Some provide online storage and varied cloud systems which can be very useful, considering the popularity of cloud storage in recent times. Others will offer Bluetooth for managing a connection with smart devices or Wi-Fi for wireless printing.
In this article you will now be able to look over individual reviews for the best portable printers on the market. The way this selection has been made was by carefully balancing features and costs to obtain a list of the best products for multiple needs and budgets. Without further introductions, here they are.
Best Buy Portable Printer
If you want to print your smartphone photos instantly, there’s no better way to do it than by choosing a compact Bluetooth printer like the HP Sprocket which uses a special technology which doesn’t rely on ink. Paired with its dedicated app, you can get beautiful images printed in mere seconds, according to your favorite customizing preferences.
Whenever the moment calls for, a 2×3-inch stickable snapshot can be created. This is the magic of this portable printer. Thanks to Bluetooth connectivity, you can connect many different kinds of devices. You can invite friends to connect their smartphones and easily print their memorable snapshots.
Printing photos in just a matter of seconds can be fun but the customizing process can be even more enjoyable. This is where the HP Sprocket app comes in. It enables you to add a more personal touch to ensure that you’ll always obtain the desired printing results. The only thing that you need to keep in mind is that there are some operating system requirements as the app is only compatible with Android versions from 4.4 and later while iOS users can only benefit from the app if their device has iOS 8.0 or higher.
The main attraction is hands-down the portability. It’s quite unheard of to be able to fit your printer in almost any pocket. As this device is similar in size and weight to a smartphone, you can take advantage of its printing abilities anywhere you go. The fact that it uses Zero Ink technology means that you won’t need to get ink cartridges but you will have to purchase the compatible paper packages.
The photos come out very clearly and the device is fun to work with. When you consider all its features, and especially the solid image quality, this is a solid option for a highly portable printer. It’s a bit pricey but it’s worth it if you need quick 2×3 photos when you’re on the go.
- 2×3 photo printing on sticky-backed paper
- Bluetooth connectivity
- HP Sprocket App
- Extremely portable
- Borderless printing
- Zero Ink technology
Best Portable Photo Printer
The Canon Selphy CP1200 is a great all-around wireless printer that you can take everywhere and instantly print your favorite memories using a smartphone app. It can also do its job from both Windows and Mac computers offering you great image quality and a long-lasting battery for a reasonable price.
This is a great machine for printing photos quickly and without too much hassle. You can get solid results in multiple sizes including pictures that are perfectly-sized for passports or IDs. This way, you can save time as you won’t have to make trips to a specialized store just for this.
Similar to other wireless printers out there, a dedicated app will make the whole printing process easier. Canon offers an app which will guarantee that your pictures will look right. Some decent image correction features are available. Take a snapshot with a smartphone and you will have it printed immediately. This is about as convenient as it gets. The app is also helpful to guide you through the set-up process to learn how to use your new Selphy printer.
After you get over the initial configuration step, a nice range of possibilities opens up to you in terms of connectivity. Besides Wi-Fi, you can make use of USB and memory cards. With the help of the AirPrint feature, your iPhone pictures will get brought to life instantly without effort. The ink and paper kits are designed to print exactly 18, 36, or 54 photos so this means that you won’t have to worry about any waste.
Although it has many competitors which offer better options in terms of portability, the Canon Selphy CP1200 makes up for this by offering better picture quality and more format options available. It can be a great device to have when you’re traveling but it can be a suitable option for using it at home too as it directly connects to your Wi-Fi network and allows for fast and convenient printing. All in all, this is a very easy to use photo printer which provides just the right blend of flexibility, performance, and cost-effectiveness.
- Special Wi-Fi button
- Compatible with iPhones and iPads for AirPrint
- Clear protective overcoat
- Practical ink and paper kits
- Easy to use
Best Portable Printer Scanner
If you wish to get your hands on something more performant, perhaps the HP OfficeJet 250 could suit you better. This is an all-in-one wireless printer, scanner, and copier which boasts an increased level of portability compared to a regular printer. It allows for easy printing with a tablet or a smartphone, it comes with a bright color touchscreen and great support for multiple paper sizes.
Wireless printing seems to become the standard nowadays. It’s not very hard to see why. This printer allows you to print and share with multiple computers using a wireless network and this gives you the unmatched freedom to quickly obtain great prints. If you have a smartphone or tablet, you can use it to print too.
The maximum size of the borderless photos that you can print with this unit is 5 x 7 inches. With the help of a vertical document feeder that automatically processes multiple pages, you can do scanning and copying work more efficiently. A color touchscreen enables you to control various features and settings of the printer.
The optical scan resolution of 600 dpi is quite decent but reliability is one aspect where this printer truly stands out. It’s a strong workhorse for an office or any other demanding environments thanks to its durable and compact design. It’s built to keep disruptions to a minimum and to perform more quietly. The battery lasts for a long time which is obviously important for a portable unit. The integration of HP Fast Charge also tremendously helps with the charging speed.
When you take into account all these great features of the HP OfficeJet 250, the final conclusion is a very positive one. It’s built very sturdily, can establish connections to lots of devices, the battery life is decent, and the performance, as well as the image quality, are definitely worth the extra cost. This unit is a considerable investment, but if it fits your budget, there’s hardly a better option out there in this price range.
- Large scan resolution up to 600 dpi
- Compact and durable
- 400 to 25% copy enlarge/reduce
- Quick and easy setup
- 10 ppm black/7 ppm color maximum
Another portable printer worth your attention is the SereneLife PICKIT20 which comes in a compact design and is capable of producing 291dpi glossy images. It uses no paper and no ink but special self-contained cartridges which are enough for 10 prints and are simple to change.
Some people like the idea of being able to print any new photo immediately so a device like this one can be a valuable addition when you’re on the road. With a single charge, this instant portable printer should deliver somewhere around 25 prints that you can more easily keep and admire.
With the body size of a slightly larger smartphone, this printer is ideal to be placed in a pocket or a bag. When the moment asks for, you can easily reach for it. Getting those pictures from Apple or Android smartphones printed is done via the dedicated mobile app which allows you to do some editing and certain quality adjustments or to add various filters and borders.
Messing around with ink or paper is a thing of the past with this wireless printer. The cartridges are completely self-contained so there’s no need to worry about maintenance. Pictures are printed at a reasonable 291 dpi resolution and with a size of 3.5″ x 2″. A protective case is not included but it’s available for purchase separately. You should be careful of accidental drops as this model is not exactly reliable when it comes to durability.
If you’re a little hesitant about the price of this printer, it’s becoming pretty clear by now that this model is loaded with great features that justify the expense. It’s hard to compare the convenience of printing pictures instantly wherever and whenever you like. Sure, you can get a Polaroid camera but with a printer like the SereneLife PICKIT20 you can actually pick which photos to print and you can easily make the right adjustments using an intuitive app. An excellent device to have or to offer as a gift.
- Print from various smartphones
- Portable design
- Inkless self-contained cartridges
- Produces laminated glossy images
- 291 dpi resolution
- Easy-to-use mobile app
Best Portable Printer For iPhone
The SP-2 from Fujifilm is a solid portable printer which brings to life your smartphone or tablet photos in a crisp print resolution of 320 dpi. It’s equipped with a rechargeable battery, an advanced laser exposure system and it comes with its own dedicated app and two stylish color variants.
It’s hard to match the convenience of selecting your best photos from a smart device and simply sending them to the printer and get them in your hands in a matter of seconds. This model provides a powerful laser exposure system to ensure the shortest printing time possible. Interestingly, this system benefits from certain enhancements which make the printing process quieter.
The Instax Share app that manages the connection between your smartphone and printer is available in both the Apple App Store and Google Play. It comes with a great user interface to achieve quick printing exactly the way you want. There are loads of creative filters and fun templates to choose from as well as many settings to improve the overall printing results.
Quality-wise, this model doesn’t disappoint as it’s capable of turning your photos into 800 x 600 prints which offer crisp 320 dpi details. You should be able to distinguish subtle characteristics more clearly. The Instax technology is well-known for color development as it produces sharper pictures with less deterioration and improved image stability.
Some other notable features worth mentioning about this printer are the highly portable design, the high-luminance LED, and the rechargeable battery which gives you a more prolonged printing session. A reprint button can be found for sharing the same print with your friends.
Taking into account its abilities, the Fujifilm Instax SP-2 is the ideal travel companion for anyone who likes to print great memories in just a matter of seconds. A solid improvement over the previous model, this unit delivers in terms of performance, battery power, and most importantly the superior image quality thanks to a better resolution. All of this comes at a cost though, but if you want a reliable product, making an investment in this one is recommended.
- 800×600 image resolution
- Print resolution of 320 dpi
- Laser exposure system for quick printing
- Built-in rechargeable battery
- Dedicated app
Canon is a brand with a good reputation in the world of printers and they do have some great wireless models like the Pixma iX6820 which is intended for business users on-the-go. It comes with a high-performance ink-tank system, a large print resolution, and a powerful print head technology. The price is decent too, so let’s see how good this portable printer really is.
The printing quality is one of the most important aspects for anyone interested in this type of device. As this provides 9600 x 2400 dpi, you will definitely be amazed by the fine level of detail in your printed photos. This is also a decisive factor when it comes to printing business documents because the better the resolution of the printer, the more clearly you can read the text.
The special system composed of five individual tanks helps a lot with the color quality of the printed pictures. Your photos will get a more professional look and the pigment-based black ink offers crisp text. Quality blends well with performance in this printer as it offers a speed of 14.5 images per minute when printing web pages and documents and a speed of 10.4 images per minute for printing colorful photos.
This model makes a great office unit especially for those who work in busy environments. It features a quiet mode that allows you to print without disturbing your co-workers. To simplify the using of this printer, Canon offers the My Image Garden software which takes care of all your photos to customize them with many essential editing tools for obtaining the desired results when printing.
Although this printer lacks a control panel, there are clearly lots of great things about this unit. It represents a solid investment for anyone who wants a capable portable printer. The ink cartridges are a breeze to install, the colors match very closely what you’ll see on your computer’s screen, and the printing results are excellent. This is a great printer that’s versatile enough to cover many different needs without any issues.
- 9600 x 2400 dpi maximum print resolution
- FINE print head technology
- Built-In Wireless
- Uses Air Print, PIXMA Printing Solutions, and Google Cloud Print
- 5 individual ink tank system
Best Portable Wireless Printer
A solid wireless photo printer for on the go and home users, the Canon Selphy CP1300 can effortlessly print your favorite pictures that you can share wherever you are. As opposed to the CP1200 that’s been previously reviewed, this unit comes with a new feature called Party Shuffle which enables multiple users to wirelessly connect to the printer at the same time.
Although this model is less compact than other units on this list, it’s still a very portable printer. It can be transported in a bag and taken to an event without any hassles. There’s an optional battery pack available to increase the portability even further.
The Party Shuffle function is one of the highlights of this printer because it broadens the creative potential of the machine. People at a party can send pictures from their compatible devices and the printer can take them all and compose an amazing collage which you can print and share with everyone. Another interesting mode is called Photo Booth and enables you to obtain two strips on 4×6 paper which contain four images each. Separate the photos with a scissor and share little-printed snapshots to everyone.
A quiet and compact printer that does its job just as intended, the Canon Selphy CP1300 is a strong candidate on the market for portable printers. Getting a quality print on demand is possible with the help of it and the fact that it’s so easy to operate makes it an attractive choice. There are hardly any differences between this and the CP1200 so unless you really need the Party Shuffle feature, you can save some money and get the CP1200 instead.
- Party Shuffle Print
- Sleek, portable design
- Multiple connections including Wi-Fi and memory card support
- Dye-Sublimation Print Technology
- 3.2” Tilt-up Touch LCD
HP is one of the leading brands in the printing industry and if you liked their OfficeJet 250 model but want a less expensive version, perhaps the OfficeJet 200 is a better choice. It’s not an all-in-one printer but it comes with similar printing abilities and the same ease-of-use that you can benefit from its more expensive brother.
As this is a fairly compact unit, you shouldn’t have any issues when traveling with it. It’s small enough to fit in a backpack even if you will most likely feel a noticeable weight. It has an input tray which extends and a control panel equipped with physical buttons has been incorporated to make controlling the printer a breeze.
When it comes to performance, this portable inkjet printer works especially well for documents. If you compare its quality with the printing results from the OfficeJet 250, which is more expensive, you won’t be able to notice any difference. With its rate of 8 pages per minute for black text and approximately 7 pages per minute for color, this is a very fast printer for its price.
This portable model uses a combination of a black and a tri-color cartridge to deliver prints in a full-color range. The price per page is decent as the yields of 200 pages for black prints and 165 pages for color ones demonstrates. If you buy cartridges with bigger capacities that HP provides, you can substantially increase the yield to reduce costs even further.
There’s both Wi-Fi and USB support for connectivity and the printer accepts pairing with bots computers and mobile devices. For the latter, you will need the ePrint app made by HP which can be found in both the Apple and Google Play stores.
As the printing process is very straightforward and the quality excellent for the cost, the HP OfficeJet 200 can surprise many users with its performance and reliability. Anyone requiring portable printing for their job or activity would benefit tremendously from this product so this printer is strongly recommended.
- Wireless printing
- Durable and compact
- Leading cartridge yields
- Long-lasting battery
- HP reprint app
- 2” display
Epson’s WorkForce WF-100 wireless printer is a very light and small device that shouldn’t miss from the bag of any businessman who needs to print contracts, invoices, presentations, and more in a fast and hassle-free manner. With flexible powering options and multiple connectivity options, this model has great potential for a portable printer.
One of this printer’s key features is the portability. At only 3.5 pounds, this model can be tucked in a bag and transported almost anywhere in an effortless manner. Professionals who need quick printing can definitely benefit from the versatile charging options. Go with the AC adapter when at home or pick USB battery charging during travels. The printer is also smart enough to deal with energy waste. It provides an automatic power-off feature to conserve precious battery life.
Printing important documents anywhere is nice but it’s also essential to be able to connect multiple devices to the printer so you’ll never find yourself in a limiting position. This model allows for various devices to demand prints and included among them are Apple or Android devices and laptops.
User interaction with the printer is facilitated by the addition of a 1.4 inches LCD that allows you to conveniently set up and operate the device. It doesn’t matter if we’re talking about printed photos or documents, this model deals with both in a high-speed manner. The inks used by the machine are also quick to dry, ideal for more productive printing sessions.
A powerhouse packed in such a small package, the Epson WorkForce WF-100 won’t disappoint you if you’re looking for a dependable printer that you can take anywhere. Something that you should be aware of is that this device needs some extra work as you have to periodically replace its maintenance box. Still, considering everything about it, this printer delivers in terms of performance and it will save you a lot of time when you need a quick print. There’s no doubt about its usefulness so this is why it deserves a spot on this list.
- Light and small
- Print from multiple smartphones and tablets
- Built-in, rechargeable battery
- Can be charged with AC or USB adapter
- 1.4 inches LCD
To make your photos come to life you need a reliable device that will also not weigh you down. A mini printer like this one from Lifeprint offers all the features required to have a solid printing experience on the go. The price is within the acceptable range and a great aspect of this unit that makes it stand out is the ability to send photos directly to others’ printers to simplify the sharing process with friends.
Using this printer is a fairly straightforward process. The first step is to charge the device then you need to establish the Bluetooth connection with a smartphone. After you load the special paper, the only thing left to do is to download the dedicated app created by Lifeprint and press print.
The app delivers plenty of customization features, lots of filters, stickers, and borders. To get a stable experience, it’s important to use an Apple device that’s running iOS 10.2 or above and an Android unit which uses 4.4 KitKat or above. This printer requires you to make an account and it will store your images in the cloud. Even though it provides good privacy settings, this is still something that you should be aware of before getting one.
One of the best things about this little printer is that it prints quality 2×3 photos without having to rely on ink. The resulting pictures have sticky backs so they can be attached anywhere you like with ease. In the box, Lifeprint provides a 10 pack film, a charging cable, and a handy instruction manual.
An easy-to-use little gadget, the elegant Lifeprint portable printer can be fun to have as it allows you to print photos with ease. The paper for it is a bit on the expensive side and there are sometimes issues with its smartphone app but all in all, this is worth the cost. Look forward to printing some quality photos with it.
- Zero Ink Technology
- Creates 2×3 sticky backed photos
- Lightweight and portable
- Bluetooth connection
- iOS and Android support
- Full photo editing suite