The days of needing to take your camera rolls to a photography shop to print out your pictures are long over. Nowadays, anyone can print beautiful pictures at home with just a mobile phone and a mobile printer.
A lot of this can be attributed to 4×6 photo printers. These portable printers are easy to carry around and can fit in your luggage, suitcase, or even backpack.
They allow you to instantly print physical photos from your phone or laptop.
4×6 printers have many use cases. You can buy one for your home so you can print beautiful memories of family get-togethers.
Or, you can take one with you while traveling so you can retain physical memories of the places you have visited and the people you met. Having pictures in your phone gallery is nice, but having a physical printout is just something special.
In this article, I have listed some of the best 4×6 photo printers available in the market today. Read on to know more.
The short version: The best 4×6 photo printers include the Liene 4×6 photo printer, Canon’s CP1300 and CP1500 printers, the Kodak Dock Plus, and the HP Sprocket Studio Plus.
The Liene 4×6 photo printer has been selected as an “Amazon’s Choice” product. It uses thermal dye sublimation, which means that it transfers the ink onto the paper using heat, skipping the liquid form step and ensuring the dye penetrates the paper deeply.
One of the best things about this printer, though, is that it can connect to up to five devices over Wifi. The printer has a built-in Wifi hotspot with which you can connect your iPhone, Android, or computer to it, allowing quick printing from your digital devices.
That means that you can take pictures with your phone and instantly transfer them to the printer. Your friends can connect their devices to the printer and print their photos as well.
This Wifi connection is faster than a traditional Bluetooth connection.
If you download the accompanying Liene Photo app on your phone, you can touch up your photos and add frames and filters to them before sending them over to the printer to be printed.
You don’t need the app to print, though.
You can use your phone’s built-in capabilities (such as Apple AirPrint) to print wirelessly. Since it uses the device’s built-in wireless hotspot, you don’t need to be connected to a Wifi network to print.
It does support USB as well, so you can transfer photos to the printer from your computer.
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The Kodak Dock Plus printer is both a printer and a phone charger. Its charging dock allows you to charge your phone and print photos at the same time.
It also supports Bluetooth connectivity, so you can connect to the printer over Bluetooth and print your photos wirelessly.
It supports border and borderless photos. The border photos have a border surrounding the picture, leaving some room for you to write small messages for your memories.
The printer allows you to print passport and ID photos as well, so you can save time and money compared to going to the passport photo shop.
The 4PASS Technology that the printer uses applies several layers and a lamination to your photos to help them last. That means that your photos are waterproof and also fingerprint damage resistant; they won’t get smudged easily.
In addition to standard filters and edits, you can also use the augmented reality features to spice up your pictures.
This printer uses Wifi connectivity to print photos from your Android or iOS device to the printer. It produces laminated pictures in a 4×6 size, ensuring the photos are well protected from damage, whether water damage or fingerprint smudging.
The paper is also tear-resistant. And, with the dye sublimation printing technology the printer uses, you will get stunning graphics and colors.
With the printer and app, you can also create a collage and do other cool stuff, like adding text or stickers to your pictures. You can also adjust the brightness and apply other edits.
Note that this printer doesn’t come with a battery. Instead, you connect it to a wall outlet to power it up.
Be aware of this limitation, as while the device is portable, it does need a power source to work.
This photo printer uses thermal dye sublimation and features a 256-tone scale and a display resolution of 300 DPI, providing vibrant graphics and clear colors.
When it prints your pictures, it prints them with an extra protective layer to ensure they are safe from smudging and other types of damage.
The printer works with the HeyPhoto app on your Android or iOS to print photos wirelessly. Not only that, but you can use the app to add filters or frames to your pictures, edit and touch them up, or create collages.
The HeyPhoto app also supports augmented reality to help you enhance your pictures. For example, you can add video to pictures.
In addition to wireless printing, the printer supports USB connections to laptops and PCs, allowing you to print from any device.
Although this is a 4×6 printer, it actually supports a wide range of picture sizes. There are 43 photo sizes to choose from in total, including 1”, 2”, 5”, 6”, and others.
You will need to plug the printer into a power source to use it.
Canon is a big name in the photography industry. Cameras aren’t the only products it produces, however; you can also buy this portable black or white printer.
Unlike many other portable 4×6 printers, which require a power source, this printer comes with an optional battery pack, allowing you to use it on the go.
Each charge can support up to 54 prints, which means that you can take the printer with you on family trips or vacations and print dozens of photos before you need to recharge it.
The photos the printer prints are water-resistant and durable; they are meant to last up to 100 years. In addition, they support writing with markers, so you can write a short message or add a few hearts or something like that to your pictures.
One really cool feature of this printer is that it has a built-in 3.5” screen. On this screen, you can do things like apply black and white, sepia, or other filters.
That means that you don’t have to install a separate app on your phone to apply filters or effects, although you may still wish to do so to access a wider range of filters and editing capabilities.
There is an accompanying app called SELPHY Photo Layout. Using the app, you can add all kinds of effects, turn pictures into mini-stickers, create and print collages, and more.
You can even create QR codes and print them, so people can easily visit any URL of your choice by scanning your QR code printouts.
The printer supports both Wifi and USB connections, allowing you to print from your phone or computer wirelessly or through a wired USB connection.
To print wirelessly, you will need the app, and you will need to connect your printer and your phone to the same wireless network. The printer also supports Apple’s AirPrint technology, which you can use if you have a supported iPhone or another Apple device.
Not only that, but the printer also supports memory cards.
That means that you can transfer pictures to your memory card from your camera, a friend’s PC, or any other source and then use that memory card to print from the Canon SELPHY CP1500.
Supported memory cards include SD and SDHC cards. You can also use miniSD, microSD, miniSDHC, microSDHC, and microSDXC cards, but you will need a memory card adapter, which isn’t included.
Since it supports USB connections, you can also pop in a USB flash drive and print the images stored on that flash drive.
Unlike most printers using dye sublimation, which can only produce glossy photos, the SELPHY CP1500 gives you several options to choose from. You can print glossy pictures, semi-glossy photos, and photos with a satin finish. You can even print patterns on the top layer for texture.
At just around one hundred bucks (not including photo paper and ink, which you can buy as an add-on), this is an incredibly versatile and affordable printer, and I highly recommend it.
By the way, in addition to 4×6 photos, it can print label stickers and 2.1×2.1 photos.
Another excellent photo printer from Canon is the SELPHY CP1300. It is very similar to the CP1500, but there are some differences.
For example, the display on the printer itself is 3.2 inches (as opposed to 3.5 inches), and it comes with a tilt mechanism and supports multiple languages. It also supports Mopria wireless printing from your Android or Kindle Fire OS device (for Kindle, you can also use the Canon Print Plugin).
It is compatible with iOS devices via Apple AirPrint or the SELPHY app. You can attach a USB or a memory card.
Supported memory cards, without an adapter, include SD, SDHC, and SDXC cards. With an adapter, you can print from miniSD, miniSDHC, microSD, microSDHC, and microSDXC cards.
It is also PictBridge compliant.
The CP1300 prints in several sizes, in addition to 4×6. You can also print pictures in postcard, credit card, square sticker, and other sizes.
Both glossy and semi-glossy finishes are available, and you can print both border and borderless pictures.
This wireless printer from Epson prints in both 4×6 and 5×7 sizes. It is important to note, however, that it will only work with Epson cartridges, so be prepared to purchase them if you plan on using this printer.
It supports wireless printing from your phone or computer, although you may use a USB connection as well. And, with Wifi Direct, you can instantly connect your phone to your printer without a shared Wifi network.
It prints pretty quickly, printing glossy borderless pictures in just 36 seconds, although that is slightly longer than some of the other options on this list.
The pictures are water and fade resistant. According to Epson, they are meant to last up to 200 years.
That is double the durability of many of the other options on this list, which are meant to last up to 100 years. Ultimately, it doesn’t really matter, as none of us can live that long.
The printer features a cute little 2.7” color display, which allows you to preview your pictures on a small screen before printing them.
The HPRT CP4000L printer is another great choice. It can print in many sizes, not just 4×6, and you can print wirelessly from your device or using a wired connection to your PC.
In addition to Wifi connectivity, the printer also supports Bluetooth mode, so you can print over Bluetooth without a Wifi connection.
With the HeyPhoto app, you can touch up and edit your photos, applying frames or using augmented reality to enhance your pictures before printing them.
The printer supports a maximum of 18 photo sheets at once in the cassette.
The photos that it prints are dustproof, fade proof, smudge proof, and waterproof.
Finally, we have the Epson Expression Premium XP-6100 printer. It prints 4×6 photos in as little as 15 seconds!
It also supports other photo sizes, including large size such as 8×10 photos.
The printer features a 2.4″ color LCD display built in, which allows you to preview your pictures before printing them out.
Users can print from their phones to the printer over Wifi. Epson added Wifi Direct support, which allows you to print from your phone without a home Wifi network.
Not only that, but with hands-free printing, you can print using voice commands, allowing you to multitask with ease! With the voice commands, you can talk to your printer and tell it to print out a to-do list, a shopping list, or other documents (it’s not just for photos!).
There are built-in USB and memory card slots as well. That means that you can print photos you took on your camera or connect the printer to your computer.
The printer also supports two-sided printing.
A 4×6 photo printer is a really cool gadget to have. It allows you to preserve precious memories for generations!
Before buying your printer, though, make sure it has the features you want. You might want additional photo sizes, rechargeable battery support, or certain kinds of finishes.
In addition, some printers may only work with compatible cartridges, so make sure you can afford them and have a place to buy them when you run out.
Tom loves to write on technology, e-commerce & internet marketing. I started my first e-commerce company in college, designing and selling t-shirts for my campus bar crawl using print-on-demand. Having successfully established multiple 6 & 7-figure e-commerce businesses (in women’s fashion and hiking gear), I think I can share a tip or 2 to help you succeed.