Best Printer for Giclee Prints 2021

Giclee prints are a fantastic way for an artist to take one of their original works and replicate it so that all their time and effort can be appreciated by more people.

Art buyers can’t always afford an original work even if they loved what you did.Thus, being able to offer print versions is a great way to make the art accessible to a wider audience.

To ensure quality and longevity, giclee prints or archival prints can’t be done on just any old printer.

Here, we take a look at some of the candidates for the title of Best Printer for Giclee Prints, and help you condense down the options from a crowded and sometimes confusing marketplace.

List of Printer for Giclee Prints

1. Epson Expression Photo HD XP-1500

2. Canon Pixma iX6820

3. Brother HL-L8360CDWT

4. Canon PIXMA G6020

5. Epson Artisan 1430

6. Canon IP8720

7. Canon PIXMA G6020

8. Epson Expression 

9. HP ENVY Photo 6255 

10. Epson TM-C3500 

Comparison Table For 10 Top Printer for Giclee Prints

IMAGE PRODUCT key features Price 
 Epson Expression Photo HD XP-15000  Functions: Printer
Resolution: 5760×1440 dpi
Configuration: 6-individual ink cartridges
Connectivity: Wi-Fi, Wi-Fi Direct, USB 2.0, Mobile Devices
 Canon Pixma iX6820  Functions: Printer
Resolution: 9600x2400dpi
Configuration: 5-individual ink cartridges
Connectivity: Wi-Fi, Ethernet, USB, Mobile Devices
 HP DesignJet T100  Functions: Printer
Resolution: 1200×1200 dpi
Configuration: 4-individual ink cartridges
Connectivity: Wi-Fi, Ethernet, USB 2.0, Mobile Devices
 Canon Pixma Pro-100  Functions: Printer
Resolution: 4800×2400
Configuration: 8-individual ink cartridges
Connectivity: Wi-Fi, Ethernet, Hi-Speed USB, PictBridge
 Epson Artisan 1430  Functions: Print
Resolution: 5760x1440dpi
Configuration: 6-individual ink cartridges
Connectivity: Wi-Fi, USB 2.0, PictBridge, Mobile Devices
 Canon image PROGRAF PRO-1000  Functions: Print
Resolution: 2400x1200dpi
Configuration: 12-individual cartridges
Connectivity: Wi-Fi, Ethernet, USB 2.0, Mobile Devices
 Epson SureColor P400  Functions: Print
Resolution: 5760x1440dpi
Configuration: 8-individual cartridges
Connectivity: Wi-Fi, Ethernet, USB 2.0
 Canon 9856B002AA imagePROGRAF iPF770  Functions: Print
Resolution: 2400x1200dpi
Configuration: 5-individual cartridges
Connectivity: USB 2.0, Ethernet
 Canon PRO-2000 imagePROGRAF  Functions: Print
Resolution: 2400×1200 dpi
Configuration: 12-individual cartridges
Connectivity: Wi-Fi, Ethernet, USB 2.0

Best Printer for Giclee Prints


What Printer Is Used For Giclee Prints?

Printers for giclee prints should be high resolution, inkjet printers with a high ink cartridge configuration.

The minimum number of cartridges your printer should have is 6. However, for outstanding giclee prints, consider buying a large format printer that holds between 8 to 12 cartridges. The more cartridges the printer has, the wider the color range available to you.

What Is The Difference Between A Giclee And A Print?

Giclee printing is a high-quality print form used for the reproduction of fine art.

A giclee print is designed to last much longer than an ordinary digital print. These prints are done with archival quality materials with high-end print media and specialist inks.

What Is A Giclee Canvas Print?

This type of print is done by taking a digital image and using a high-quality printer to spray the image onto the canvas.

This process is used primarily to create superior quality fine art prints on canvas. For this reason, the quality of the canvas is very high, and the inks used are of the archival variety to ensure the print will not fade quickly.

Are Giclee Prints Worth Anything?

The worth of a giclee print depends on the artist and the number of prints in circulation.

While giclee is used for the reproduction of fine art, it can also be used to create original pieces as well.

For an artist, giclee printing can be very profitable, especially as it allows them to make more money by making quick reproductions of their original pieces, to be put up for sale.

Do Giclee Prints Have Texture?

Giclee prints will not have texture straight out of the printer. Any texture required to match an original piece will have to be added by hand.

Why Are Giclee Prints So Expensive?

Firstly, the process used and the quality of the materials make giclee expensive.

Secondly, an artist’s reputation and the limited numbers of a piece of art that is in circulation adds to the overall cost of a giclee.

It is possible for a giclee to gain value over time, especially if an artist is gaining greater recognition for their work.

Do Giclee Prints Need Glass?

The requirement for glass depends on the print media used for the giclee.

Giclee on canvas does not require placement behind glass, whereas giclee on paper should have non-glare glass protection.

How Long Do Giclee Prints Last?

If made properly with pigment inks and archival standard print media, a print can last 200 years in an album, 80 years behind glass, and 50 years without any glass. These figures are approximations and depend on how well the giclee has been cared for.

How Do You Sign A Giclee Print?

Standard practice is to sign a giclee on the bottom right side of the print. The signature should not be on the image and should be done in pencil.

How Do You Protect A Giclee Print?

Giclee prints can be protected in an album or by being placed behind glass.

If a giclee requires cleaning, this can be done with a dry, lint-free cloth. Damp cloths and solvents should never be used.

5 Best Printers for Giclee Prints Reviews

1. Epson Expression Photo HD XP-15000 | Best Epson Printer For Giclee Prints

What’s not to love about the Epson HD XP-15000 when it comes to producing Giclee prints or archival prints?

With a maximum resolution of 5760×1440 dpi, a 6-individual ink cartridge configuration, and a minimum droplet size of 1.5 pL this printer has been built to produce wonderful replications of artwork.

The resolution itself will ensure that you get detail which is further enhanced by the minimum ink droplet size. Additionally, the 6-cartridge configuration will ensure that your replicated artwork has the same level of coloration and tone as the original.

You will find you have the ability to print on a wide range of media sizes. The minimum borderless paper size is 4×6 inches, while the maximum borderless print is 13×19”. This gives you a great option to offer different sizes for your work.

This printer also has a special feature that allows you to print a long piece of work with dimensions of 13×44 inches, meaning you will be able to offer a different option that you may not have available to you from other printers.

Highlighted Features

  1. Front feed and rear feed input trays
  2. Support for CD/DVD printing

2. Canon Pixma iX6820 | Best Archival Printer

The Canon Pixma iX6820 is both fantastic and extremely affordable. For image printing you can never really go wrong with Canon products, and the Pixma range of printers has an excellent reputation.

Maximum resolution of the Pixma iX6820 is 9600x2400dpi which is going to provide excellent high definition archival prints.

One of the great advantages of this Canon product comes with the ink droplet sizes. You can actually choose between 1, 2 and 5 pL.

A 1 pL droplet size is going to ensure that you get excellent detail due to the sheer number of dots you are able to get into the image. And when you don’t want to use the printer for reproducing artwork, you can change the droplet size and stick the printer on draft mode.

The configuration of this printer sees 5-individual ink cartridges (magenta, yellow, cyan, black and pigment black). While not as many as the previous printer on our list, this is still sufficient to ensure outstanding coloration.

Borderless printing is possible up to a maximum 13×19 inch print media.

Highlighted Features

  1. Supports a range of print media
  2. Dedicated quiet mode so you can work peacefully and print

3. HP DesignJet T100 | Best giclee printer for fine art

The HP DesignJet T100 is not a printer for artists looking to sell their reproduced work commercially. It is more for the architect who wants to produce giclee prints as part of their work.

When looking at it from the architect’s perspective, this is a printer that will very much get the job done with the printouts you need.

A 1200×1200 dpi is enough to ensure your designs transfer from screen to print media with sharpness and accuracy. The printer will provide a minimum line width of 0.04mm and a line accuracy of +0.1%. If precision is what you are after, then precision is what you will get.

In terms of media handling, you have a range of options available to you in order to meet your needs. You can use the input tray, manual feed or roll feed.

Size of media will be important. You can print off a sheet from 11” to 74.7” and that is not an option you will get from other printers on this list. Media width is also large, with a maximum 24 inches possible, which makes it one of the Large Format Giclee Printers.

Highlighted Features

  1. Touchscreen LCD for easy printer navigation
  2. Thermal inkjet technology

4. Canon Pixma Pro-100 | Best Giclee Printers For Home 

The Canon Pixma Pro-100 printer is a great machine for archival prints and  giclee prints. While it is a color printer, its 8-ink Chromalife 100+ configuration make it an incredible monochrome printer that will reproduce your black and white work better than any other printer on this list.

Of the 8 ink cartridges in the system, three of them are dedicated for monochrome printing, with a Black, Gray and Light Gray cartridge. This really does deliver an enhanced monochrome print that has deep blacks and wonderfully subtle shading.

Specs wise we are looking at a maximum resolution of 4800×2400 in either black or color. Ink droplet size is 3pL. And the maximum printable area is 13×19 inches. All these aspects of the printer are roughly on par with what you would expect from a good printer for color giclee prints.

The printer has a 1 sheet manual feeder which allows you to utilise specialised print media such as Fine Art ‘Museum Etching’ paper.

If you want to print photos you have created, then you can connect the printer direct to your camera via PictBridge. Our recommendation for best home giclee printer will be this canon pixma pro-100 giclee.

Highlighted Features

  1. Fast prints – A3 11×14” in 90 seconds
  2. Supports CD/DVD printing

5. Epson Artisan 1430 | best home printer for giclee prints

We come to the Epson Artisan 1430 which is the final printer on our list. Straight away with the ‘Artisan’ branding you can tell that there’s going to be something fancy under the hood of this machine.

This isn’t just an inkjet printer. It’s a 6-color advanced MicroPiezo inkjet technology printer that uses Claria Hi-Definition Ink to produce a 5760×1440 dpi printout with a minimum ink droplet size of 1.5 pL. Put aside all the extra razzmatazz of the naming, and that gives you some pretty nice looking giclee prints.

The six-ink configuration includes black, cyan, light cyan, magenta, light magena and yellow, meaning this printer is very much set up for providing outstanding color prints. If you’re more into monochrome printing, then look at the previous entry on the list.

The maximum print size here is 13×44”, though if you want borderless you can go from 4×6” up to 13×19”.

Ultimately, this printer has been set up to maximise its photo printing ability, but it does support a wide range of print media.

Highlighted Features

  1. Print archival life, under glass, of up to 98 years
  2. Can be used with PictBridge compatible cameras

Printer for Giclee Prints & Archival Prints Buying Guide

There are few factors before purchasing the best printer for giclee, which should be in consideration. We have summed up these factors for you.

a) Configuration

The number of ink cartridges a printer has, and the colors present amongst them, will have a huge impact in determining the best giclee printer for your own personal needs.

An architect making giclee prints will have a much different color need to an artist looking to reproduce their work as prints.

Whatever your giclee printing purpose, the very least number of cartridges you should be looking for is 4, as that will give you one black cartridge and 3 colors.

Ideally, if you really want the colors of your work to be enhanced you, should be looking at 5, 6, 8 or 12 cartridges. Though, if you are going for the latter, you will likely be paying handsomely for it.

6 should be enough to get great color prints.

If you also want to produce outstanding monochrome prints, then we suggest look at an 8-cartridge printer that has black and two shades of gray in its setup.

b) Media Size

The printers we have taken a look at offer a range of media size options.

Ideally, you want to be able to offer people a good selection of sizes when selling things commercially, so you want to look for a printer that does a borderless 4×6” as a minimum, and goes up to at least 13×19”.

Some wide format printers also have special features relating to the length and width of the non-borderless sizes they can produce. You may want to consider whether these features will be useful to you in the long term, or whether they will be a rarely used expensive waste.

c) Ink droplet size

The smaller the ink droplet size, the more detail the image you are printing will appear to have. This is especially useful to artists who want to produce a printout of high quality.

Some of the printers go as low as 1 picoliter, which is tiny and will give amazing results. You may not always need such detail though, so it might be best to get a printer that gives you the option to change the droplet size depending on your needs.

d) Line width and line accuracy

This one is aimed more at the architects who are looking at giclee printing. With your job requiring a great deal of precision, you will need to check the specs on line-width and line-accuracy.

We don’t want any buildings falling down because the printer put things in the wrong place…

Final Word

Artists, architects and anyone who wishes to giclee print will find the best giclee printer for their needs on this list.

We have shown you a range of high definition printers that ensure your images look perfect; printers with varying degrees of configuration to maximise the color output; and a range of machines that are capable of printing on larger print media.

You are certain to find a great printer, and we are sure you will be more than satisfied with the archival prints or giclee prints you get from any of the models we’ve taken a look at.

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