Inkjet

The ubiquitous inkjet printer employs dozens, scores, or many hundreds of tiny nozzles to propel tiny ink or dye droplets onto paper. Literally millions of these droplets are clustered closely together to make up a single picture. While inkjets are available in a wide variety and price ranges, including some of the best professional photo printers around, as a rule, they are inexpensive, low-maintenance items. However, the cost of the inks and paper—consumables—are relatively expensive, and the devices are disposable in that most have to be replaced rather than repaired when they malfunction. So many different makes, models, and types of inkjets are on the market that it's difficult to generalize about them. (See later in this chapter for more information on the different kinds of inkjets.) Depending on the device, inkjet may offer near or true continuous tone, adequate to great gamut, and very short-lived or archival colors.

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