I'm a big fan of the Canon S9000 inkjet printer. Its print quality is first rate, the richness and weight of Canon's Photo Paper Pro makes it my favourite glossy photo paper and when I need to make a lot of prints in a short time, its speedy 3072-nozzle print head keeps me on schedule. This printer is the photo workhorse of my home office.
At the same time, I have four complaints about the S9000 and its associated paper: it isn't possible to make borderless prints at the 13 x 19 size, some prints show faint banding, Canon's dye inks are susceptible to colour changes unless prints are framed or stored out of the light and Canon's Matte Photo Paper isn't available in 13 x 19.
The i9100 appears to address two of these four concerns. Printing to the edges of 13 x 19 paper is possible, while the faint banding problem appears to be eliminated, perhaps because the printing resolution has jumped to 4800 x 1200 dpi (from the S9000's 2400 x 1200 dpi). Borderless 8.5 x 11 and 13 x 19 inch prints on show at PMA looked fantastic. The stellar speed of the S9000 is expected to carry over the i9100.
Unfortunately, the same inkset means the same susceptibility to colour shifts over time if the prints aren't carefully stored. And Canon has yet to make their Matte Photo Paper in sizes larger than 8.5 x 11, which means matte paper fans with plans for making big prints from an i 9100 will have to look to a different brand of paper.
The i9100 is slated to ship in April 2003 at a suggested list price of US$500 in the US.