Best 4×6 Photo Printers (Easy and Portable)

Printing a photo on a 4x6 printer
Credit: imore

As the world is taken over by smartphones, taking pictures is all about clicks nowadays and uploading on social media is the primary concern. But the virtual LIKES, COMMENTS and SHARES cannot match the thrill of flipping pictures on a traditional photo album.

And here comes the photo printers handy, to print out pictures just as Souvenirs; a photo printer basically approves small size printing and mostly does not support letter printing (there are exceptions). Unlike the near-dedicated printers, these are more portable and compact.

4×6 is the standard size for photo printing, and most printers aim for greater demand. There are tons of varieties in photo printers, from basic specs to extravagant features, and to eliminate the confusion, the following segments include:

  • 6 Best 4×6 photo printers detailed reviews
  • Comparison Table
  • Buying guide
  • An overall recommendation

Best 4×6 Portable Photo Printer Reviews

IMAGE

PRODUCT

PRICE

Kodak Dock & Wi-Fi Portable 4x6” Instant Photo Printer

HP Tango X Smart Wireless Printer

Canon SELPHY CP1300 Desktop or Portable Inkjet Laser Bluetooth Wireless Photo Printer

KODAK Step Wireless Mobile Photo Mini Printer

Kodak Dock Plus 4x6” Portable Instant Photo Printer

HP Sprocket Studio 4x6” Instant Photo Printer

Kodak Dock– Best Overall 4×6 Photo Printer

Kodak needs no backing regarding the performance; this legendary brand has been manufacturing the best of the printers, and the Kodak Dock is again an amazing addition to their line. It is extremely lightweight and easy to carry, undoubtedly one of the best portable printers at present.

Kodak Dock Photo Printer
Credit: androidguys.com

It is operated by the Dye Sublimation technology, which basically a thermal transfer process and outstands the basic inkjets. This technology transmission the layers of colors to the paper through heat. Thus the colors remain true and vibrant, the lines are sharp and crisp, and the color blend is tremendous.

The most stand-out feature of this printer is implementing the Dock that complements its overall appearance. It also includes USB ports and connects to the Wi-Fi. Users may just place their androids or IOS phones to the docks, and they are all set for printing as it is compatible with smartphones.

It also includes the Kodak Photo Printer App; this app comes with photo editing facilities (just like the random online photo editing apps), templates, texts, stickers, cards and so on. One can also adjust the brightness, saturation, contrast, shadows, color balances and hues through the app.

Another unique feature is its ability to charge phones; not only one phone, but it can also charge two phones simultaneously. This fast charging technology appears to be extremely convenient if anyone is running out of a phone battery.

Moreover, it features a One-Touch Printing technology which ensures extreme convenience and easy operation. The Dock has a five-pin micro USB connected with smartphones, cameras or USB memory stick directly.

Final Rating: 4.5/ 5

Bottom Line

This printer is easy to use and highly portable, is an excellent choice for carrying around to schools, art projects, or offices. Those who want mobile printers with a sleek design must invest in this one.

HP Tango X Smart– Best 4×6 Smart Home Printer

The first-ever legit smart printer in the market, the HP Tango was way ahead of its time when it was launched. This printer knocks off the traditional USB and is entirely operated wireless by smartphones.

Although the design does not include any control panel yet, it outshines its fellow competitors with its extravagant outlook. The Linen cover available in indigo or grey color triumphs the design game and looks extremely elegant to compliment the home decor.

HP Tango 4x6 Smart Home Printer
Credit: cnet.com

It is a multi-functional option as it can scan, copy and print at the same time. When it comes to print quality, expect quality and excellence across the board. Being an Inkjet printer can also print texts; Graphics and texts are well saturated, attractive, and finely detailed. It is compatible with the maximum number of paper types in the list.

The photos were amazing as well; great color payoff, vibrant and natural color, and saturation were the same as the actual photograph. It can print up to 8.5×14″ sized photos, including 5×7″ borderless pictures with the same color accuracy. The print speed might not be the fastest, but it is faster than the above models.

Also, the connectivity features are quite interesting- it connects to smartphones virtually, and users can print photos from the Cloud and Social Media using the HP Smart app. The most interesting feature is the voice-activated, hands-free option which allows the users to go hands-free while printing through Amazon Alexa and Google Home.

Now comes the best part- the four Months free trial for the enrollment in the HP Instant Ink. Once the trial period is over, users can purchase the plans starting from $0.99 per month. Moreover, HP also offers shipping which means you get your ink on your doorstep without any hassle.

Related: HP Envy 4520 Review – All In One Printer

Final Rating: 4.5/ 5

Bottom Line

If anyone is strictly particular about the design and appearance, nothing can satisfy them more than this model. Apart from appearance, it is compact, and smartphones devotees would love the operation.

Canon SELPHY– Best Portable Photo Printer

The most compact photo printer rightfully fits into the category of portable photo printers, yet it carries the legacy of the mighty brand Canon. This pocket photo printer weighs only 1.9 pounds which is more like a paperback book.

Canon SELPHY Portable Photo Printer
Credit: dpreview.com

Canon Selphy uses DYE Sublimation technology where the heat vaporizes solid pigments, transfers to the media, and re-solidifies the color again. This process dries quicker than the traditional inkjet technology, and also the final output remains water-resistant. While Inkjets hardly claim any estimation of the longevity of the photos, this portable printer claims 100 years of print longevity.

This portable printer connects to cell phones (IOS devices and Android) and also can print directly from digital cameras that are PictBridge-compatible. It offers a huge range of connectivity options; there is an SD card slot, USB thumb drive port, and it can also be connected through Wi-Fi. It does not include any USB Type-B cable.

Canon Selphy includes a 3.2 inch LCD screen for ultimate customer ease. It is easy to operate, and users can also edit pictures navigating the screen. There are options for adjusting colors, adding borders and collages to make the pictures more fun.

Though it does not have a high print resolution like other models, the final output is satisfying. Colour reproduction accuracy is commendable, and the collaborative features also contribute to the picture quality.

Apart from all the basic features, this photo printer has a trailblazing feature that is not seen in any contemporary models; the party shuffle option. This feature lets you transfer photos from all the friends connecting multiple smartphones simultaneously and creates a picture collage.

Final Rating: 4.5/ 5

Bottom Line

It is more of a personal printer, and especially if you are into those square Instagram pictures, this printer should be a holy grail.

KODAK Step– Best 4×6 Affordable Photo Printer

Kodak has been no wonder dominating the photography (be it the cameras or the films) world for decades, and it has marked its presence in the printer market with the same brilliance. This particular model is mainly a pocket printer in a mini version yet prints 25 photos on a full charge.

The printing technology is quite a steal regarding this printer; with the innovation of Zink technology, it eliminates expensive ink cartridges, toners and ribbons. Instead, it works with 2″ x 3″ sticky-back paper with embedded dye crystals and produces high-quality and beautiful photos.

KODAK Step Affordable Photo Printer
Credit: systembank.pl

It is designed to print in Passes (layers by layers to be specific) – there are four pass processes. The initial three passes are all about layering colors, including yellow, magenta, and cyan in turns. The fourth layer intends to prevent any smudges, fingerprints, humidity and moisture. And the fourth pass is the final layer of the protective clear coat.

Now comes the printing quality; the photo outcome maintains the same quality as the original. The color accuracy is commendable, with sharp and fine details. Moreover, the manufacturer claims the images to last for decades if preserved appropriately.

It connects to Wi-Fi Direct, which actually allows this printer to be its own hotspot. Thus it passes over the local networks and connects directly to phones. Also, it has a built-in NFC (near-field communication) chip reader, which allows it to connect with NFC-supported phones with a single touch.

Kodak’s Printer Mini app is available that connects the device directly to androids and IOS devices. Users can print photos directly from phones, cloud storage and social media accounts. Moreover, this app can open horizons for editing; it can crop, rotate and flip, adjust brightness saturation, contrast, add borders, texts and stickers.

Final Rating: 4.8/ 5

Bottom Line

One of the best pocket printers on the list is convenient, and the palm-sized dimension is great for portable options if you are looking for portable photo printers, this one worth a shot.

Kodak Dock plus– Best Instant Photo Printer

Another one from the Kodak Line, Kodak Dock Plus, is a prominent name in the snapshot printer market. Its simplicity and sleek design quite steal the show, yet this instant photo printer is widely famous for its classic Dock and charge feature.

It also uses DYE sublimation as printing technology and prints pictures in layers—the four-pass technology prints photos in layers of ribbon, including a laminating process. Thus the photos become water and fingerprint resistant and also preserves the quality for a long time.

Kodak Dock plus Instant Photo Printer
Credit: priceplus.com

Taking off the PictBridge technology, it opts for Bluetooth connectivity for a more effective and less complicated operation. Also, it connects to mobile phones through a USB-C pre-installed docking pin. For IOS phones, there is a Lightning connector; thus, users can print photos literally from anywhere at any time.

The free Kodak App is a one-stop solution as it launches six options, including photo editing and social media and cloud sharing. The photo editing option is quite versatile; users can crop pictures, add filters, texts, borders, stickers, and adjust color saturation. This app also allows the customers to watch photos from the connected phone gallery.

This compact printer prints decent photos and supports adding templates. Thus, it is quite handy to print Id photos, Christmas or birthday cards, and DIY phone cover photos. The final output is impressive; fine details, color accuracy and proper balance are noticed in the pictures.

It can print both bordered and borderless pictures simultaneously and print postcard size photos (larger yet better!). The starter pack offers an ink cartridge with ten free sheets, so you can now print more in less budget.

Final Rating: 4.5/ 5

Bottom Line

This instant photo printer is superb for larger photo prints and instant sharing. A wide range of connectivity and simple operation makes this one a cult favorite among the customers.

HP Sprocket Studio– Best Professional Photo Printer

This photo printer is not compact in size and is appropriate for bulk or professional-quality prints. It runs by power but to maintain portability, and HP lets the users use a portable power bank and go cordless.

Like all the new-age photo printers, the HP sprocket also uses DYE sublimation technology and ensures high-quality prints. Moreover, the final print appears smudge-proof, glossy with ultimate color accuracy. It also provides 100 years of no-fade print longevity.

HP Sprocket Studio printer
Credit: gzhls.at

The Free HP Sprocket App allows direct connectivity and photo editing (probably not phot shop but everything one might need for editing). Users can adjust the color, brightness, a saturation of the pictures. Also, there are built-in templates for collages, stickers and cards. This app lets you make stickers out of your doodles which is quite cool.

Check out The Best Printers for Stickers.

This instant photo printer comes very handy with its Bluetooth connectivity as it connects multiple phones at a time and allows you to print photos instantly. Also, it can print photos directly from social media, google photos and phone galleries.

The HP sprocket also includes a cartridge bundle comprising 80 sheets of glossy photo paper and two cartridges. Though it is extremely easy to operate, the brand offers 24/7 customer service for any inconvenience and query.

Upon unboxing, customers would explore two parts; the body where all the printing mechanism happens and the paper tray (which can hold up to 20 sheets). No doubt it will complement any office desk or home decor.

Final Rating: 4.5/ 5

Bottom Line

HP Sprocket is not a regular compact photo printer rather a professional one, extremely effective for office jobs and precise printing.

Top Six 4×6 Photo Printers Comparison Table

Printer Name

Printing Technology

Printing Speed

Media Type

Printing Resolution

Connectivity

Type

Kodak Dock

D2T2 Dye Sublimation

50- 55 seconds

Glossy photo paper

300 dpi

Wi-Fi

Print only

HP Tango X Smart

Inkjet

(Color)Eight ppm

(Mono)11 ppm

Envelope, Paper (plain), Card stock, Labels, Glossy photo paper, High-resolution paper

1200 x 1200 dpi (Black) 4800 x 1200 dpi (Color)

Wi-Fi

Scan, Copy and Print

Canon SELPHY

Dye Sublimation

Postcard Size 4 x 6 Photo: 47 seconds, (Borderless)Card Size Photo: 39 seconds

Paper (plain), Labels

300x300 dpi

Ethernet

Print only

KODAK Step

Zink Technology

Black white: 1.0 pages per minute colour: 1.0 pages per minute

Glossy photo paper

314 x 400 dpi

Bluetooth; NFC

Print Only

Kodak Dock Plus

Dye Sublimation

Less than 50 seconds

Glossy photo paper

300 dpi

Bluetooth

Print only

HP Sprocket Studio

Dye Sublimation

1 minute on an average

Glossy photo paper

300 dpi

Bluetooth

Print only

Also read: Dymo 450 vs 4XL Label Writer Comparison Guide

4×6 Photo Printer Buying Guide

Printing on a Portable Photo printer

Finding a decent photo printer can be quite challenging despite the overflowed quantity of models. But a specific buying guide can minims the hassle to a limit. So here you go:

Printing Technology

Photo printers usually use two types of printing technologies; the inkjet and the DYE sublimation printing technology. Now, it depends on the customers’ requirements. If you want simple monochrome images, inkjet printers will be enough to suffice. Inkjets have basic outputs but mostly accurate for document printing. On the contrary, the DYE sublimation is the new-age technology. It is effective for color photo printing and also advanced in the final output.

Connectivity Options

There are plenty of connectivity options; USB, Wi-Fi Direct, NFC, Bluetooth and so on. Every connectivity type has its own perks and downfalls as well. It is always better for a printer to have multiple conduction compatibility.

The USB option comes with a cable to connect to the devices and an SD card slot to use memory cards. USB is a corded option and if you want to go cordless, just go for other wireless options. Wi-Fi connectivity and Bluetooth ensures direct connection to devices, and even through built-in apps, the printer can be connected to social media accounts, cloud storage and google photos.

Wireless options can go wrong sometimes as it gets stuck a lot. Nothing can replace the USB option to avoid this annoyance. So a combination of both USB and wireless options would be a perfect choice.

Print Quality

Print quality is very important to consider before buying any printer. Photo Printers with high resolution are a must for photo printing. 300 dpi is the basic printing resolution, and it can go up; choose the resolution as per your needs. Also, there certain things to consider when it comes to photo printing quality. To start with the color saturation and accuracy, it is very important for good photo output. Also, the fine detailing, print longevity, water and fingerprint resistance are very important.

Printing Speed

This feature depends on the customers. Fast printing is needed mostly for professional spaces, and for personal usage, medium speed is great. Sometimes fast printing can actually result in low-quality output; thus, make sure your fast gadget also excels in quality. Photo printing usually takes more time than document printing.

Portability

Who does not long for a portable and mobile printer for instant printed photos? Most of the photo printers are highly portable and designed as pocket printers. Apart from the basic design, cordless ones are more portable. Compact photo printers are great for portability. Also, weight plays a vital role in portability; make sure the device is lightweight.

Also read:

Best Printer for Screen Printing Transparencies

Brother MFC-L2740DW Printer Review

Best Printer for Waterslide Decals

Conclusion

Our team of experts constructed this list of the best 4×6 photo printers to lead the readers to a more learned decision (we all know photo printers are expensive, the wrong move can cost you lots). Here is a quick recommendation in case you don’t have enough time to go through the detailed review:

  1. Kodak Dock– Overall Best Photo Printer
  2. HP Tango X Smart– Best Smart Home Printer
  3. KODAK Step– Best Affordable Photo Printer

No wonder each of the printers works best in their focused aspects; read the detailed reviews so that you can choose one to meet your personal needs.

FAQs

What is the best 4×6 Portable photo printer?

There multiple printers that are extremely effective and ensures high quality; recommending one particular gadget as the best photo printer can be difficult. Yet, the Kodak Dock can be considered the best 4×6 photo printer due to its convenience and print quality.

This pocket printer is extremely portable and the most aesthetic-looking printer in the market right now. It simply outshines the competitors with the never-seen Dock technology. It can simultaneously charge two phones, and the photo print quality is also excellent.

How can I print a 4×6 photo at home?

Printing a 4×6 photo at home is not rocket science; one just needs a photo printer that supports 4×6 sized photos. There are multiple methods to print photos from a printer:

  • Print directly from your mobile phone or camera using the wired or wireless connectivity option. It is the most basic and easy method for photo printing. Users can edit or adjust the photos using the built-in apps as well.
  • Use Windows Live photo gallery and print multiple photos at the same time. In this method, choose an 8.5×11 Page for printing, and you can print multiple pictures together.
  • For iOS users, use iPhoto for printing photographs on Mac. You can customize the photo size as well.

How do I print a 3×5 photo on a 4×6?

One can resize the photo to 3×5 before inserting it into the printer, and also some of the printers offer resizing features. In such cases, in the editing section of the printer, a photo can be resized to 3×5 size.

Basically, you have to adjust the ratio aspect; a 3×5 photo has an aspect ratio of 5:3. While adjusting, make sure the ratio is 5:3. But vertically, the ratio gets reversed, and the ratio aspect of a vertical 3×5 photo is 5:3.

Using this method, you can easily resize a photo to a 3×5 size and print it using a 4×6 photo printer.