The Canon Pixma Pro-200 is by some distance the largest printer I've ever had in my home. Aimed at 'photography hobbyists' and 'aspiring professionals', it's labelled an entry-level model in Canon's professional photo-printer lineup, but after living with it for several weeks, I can confirm there's precious little 'entry-level' about this fantastic printer.
With the Pro-200 already featured on Creative Bloq as one of the best art printers around, I got a loan unit from the maker to do a full test and review and confirm whether it still belonged on that list. In my time with the printer, I used it to print glossy photos, matte artwork, rich, complex nature scenes and abstract geometric shapes. Also seeing how it fits into a professional working person's life, I used it to print regular documents, including text documents, forms and more.
Design & setup
Like most printers, the Canon Pixma Pro-200 is a big block of plastic casing around the printer mechanism. However, the front has rounded corners and 'cuts' the top edge to make it look a little sleeker than most printers I've had in my house until now. While it looks bulky, it's relatively lightweight and was easy to extract from the product box and onto the side table next to my desk.
The printer has a menu display, a 3-inch LCD screen through which you set up the printer, following the instructions on there along with setting up the connection via your computer. The menu screen, angled to face up to eye level, is easy to navigate, and through it you can also select exactly which type of paper you're feeding into it at any time to get the most out of every print. Setting up the printer was free of any complications, dropped connections and general emotional torment, which I can tell you is extremely rare in my 30-year relationship with printers.
There are two feed trays at the back, an automatic feed tray at the top and back, and a slightly concealed manual feed tray behind and beneath the automatic one. Both are easy to reach, they both have tall enough back supports to hold a piece of A3+ paper without me having to guide it along like a toddler on a bicycle, and both gripped onto the paper fed into them without a fuss.
There is also a third tray you might not notice; I certainly didn't at first. A 'multipurpose' tray is placed underneath the front, which you can feed with printable nail stickers (NL-101) and printable disks.
Replacing the dye-based ink cartridges, of which there are eight, was straightforward enough, with the large front lid opening wide to make access to the innards nice and easy.
As a professional photo printer, The Pro-200 is designed to give you great photos, images and art on various different types of paper. There are around a dozen different paper presets programmed into the printer, from plain paper, through various glossy and matte photo and art papers to fabric transfers. Each mode will change the nature and amount of ink used to suit the paper being used.
It's a wireless printer that works via your wifi network (not Bluetooth), but a wired USB-B connection is also available. It's compatible with both Windows, Mac and Chrome operating systems, and you can also connect to the Pro-200 using Airprint or the Android Canon Print Service app.
The ink used is dye-based, which gives you better colour saturation over pigment inks, but at the risk of lower durability and a higher risk of pictures fading with time, so whether that's a pro or con depends on your personal outlook of results now vs long-term lifespan, I guess.
I was hugely impressed with the quality of the pictures, right from the first test images I printed to make sure the Canon Pixma Pro-200 was working and set up correctly.
Getting to grips with making sure paper selection on the computer and the printer matched and that paper was placed in the right tray each time took a little time, but I blame my sleep-deprived dad brain for that rather than anything on Canon's side.
Glossy A3 and A3+ nature and landscape photos had a fantastic shine, lustre and depth of colour to them, and the printouts dried out impressively quickly too. Meanwhile, matte art, including a portrait surrounded by different-coloured geometric shapes, a classic film poster and more, had a tangible texture to them. The effect of the different print profiles was clear to see, and is a real asset for anyone using the Pro-200.
The maximum printing resolution is 4800 x 2400 dpi, and it's clearly on show here, with little to no graining on big printouts, where I particularly noticed how well it blended colours to create different shades of green. Meanwhile, sharpness in lines on shapes with starkly different colours was equally impressive, and the colour accuracy from screen to print was faultless on glossy prints, while matte printouts tended to be a little darker printed out than in preview. That's fairly common for photo printers, though, and easy enough to account for when printing.
The one downside I found, and it is only a small one, is that when printing 'regular' text documents, it's really quite slow. It's not a huge downside for what's going to primarily be an art printer, but if you can only fit one printer in your home or office setup, this is something to keep in mind for your workflow.
The printer will also need fairly frequent ink replacements, due to the cartridges being quite small, with an estimated yield of just 54 to 139 A3+ pages for each colour.
The Canon Pixma Pro-200 costs around £459.99 / $549.99, but discounts pop up periodically, along with incentives like student cashback on Canon's UK website, so do make sure you shop around for the best price.
It sits in the mid-range of comparable printers when it comes to price, about £200 cheaper than the Epson EcoTank ET-8550, but almost double the price of the Canon PIXMA iP8750, which has a higher print resolution but lower colour range as it has five dye-based ink cartridges as opposed to the Pro-200's eight.
Ink cartridges will be an added cost to run the printer, obviously, so you do need to take that into account.
Should I buy the Canon Pixma Pro-200?
The Canon Pixma Pro-200 produces stunning images, with an especially good range of colour and detail in glossy photos. If you are a hobbyist photographer, there might be cheaper options available for you that will do the job, but for pros who need commercial-quality photos to sell or exhibit, the Pro-200 becomes a very tempting choice indeed.