The proliferation of digital cameras and phones with superior camera sensors have led to capturing of lots of digital pictures. These digital pictures are often stored on our hard drives or on the cloud but what if you want to develop them and frame them in the real world? Sure, you could give it to a professional studio or you can use this nifty solution from Epson where you can call the shots. Literally. The Picturemate series of portable photo printers is quite well-known from Epson and they’re taking it ahead with the PM310.
The PM310 is a portable printer in vanity box-shaped chic design and features a 7-inch display and some memory card slots. Aesthetically speaking, the printer scores high in that department that looks chic in snow-white hue and decent build quality. The front portion is taken away by the tilt-able 7-inch screen, paper outlet, one side with the memory slots and PictBridge. place to insert photo cartridge.
Epson has taken a unique approach with its photo printer trying to make it work sans PC, allowing users to customize settings and take printouts from its integrated display. To print, the process is quite simple. All you just need is to insert a memory card (CF/MS/MMC/xD) that contains your photos, select them and print. Users can also buy a Bluetooth dongle accessory to wirelessly transfer content from Bluetooth-enabled devices. The device can read JPEG and TIFF image file formats and users can add lots of effects, crop pictures without real effort. You can also do the same thing and enhance a bit more when attached with a PC. PM310 supports Windows 2000/XP/Vista and Mac OS 10.3 or higher and bundles software like Easy Photo Print, Easy Print Module.
PM310 can print pictures at resolution of up to 5760 dpi with size of 4R (4×6”). The print quality from the printer was pretty good. It can be almost compared to lab prints. Although the initial print was not up to the promised mark, the subsequent print was as good as expected. Epson claims about 37 secs to print a single photo but it took us about 50-55 secs on an avg. to print our snaps.
Apart from being a proficient printer, PM310 can also be doubled up as a digital photo frame. There’s no in-built storage, which means a user needs to insert his memory card to display photos on the screen. Users can view slideshow of the pictures, set different transitions or set it to display alongside the calendar. The pictures on the LCD look great but not making it a touchscreen one, seems to be disappointing. All the controls need to be executed via the bundled remote control and if the remote runs out of battery, you won’t be able to print any images. Some sort of control on the printer would also suffice.
Epson PictureMate PM310 retails for Rs. 14,999 and though the product seems to miss some things in this iteration, it seems a good buy at the current price range.
Pros: Portable, Good picture quality
Cons: No touchscreen display