Let’s talk about Zink.
No, that’s not a misspelling of the 30th element on the periodic table. The Zink we are talking about is short for ‘Zero Ink.’
Gone are the days where you need to invest in ink cartridges, only for them to have run out or dried up when you really need them most.
When you’re printing with Zink, the ink is already within the paper itself, and your Zink printer does a bit of magic to turn that ink into a picture.
So, without further ado, let’s try to find the best zink printer that is out there today!
Comparison Table For Zink Printer
5 Best Zink Printers Reviews
1. Kodak Smile Classic | Best Zink Photo Printer
The first inkless photo printer we’re looking at today is this rather groovy retro design Zink Printer from the Kodak Smile Range.
Being a perfect travel companion, this no ink photo printer allows you to take it anywhere you wish to go thanks to its compact size and lightweight nature. It will always be on hand to capture those moments that you do not wish to forget.
With the option to use 3.5″x4.25″ Zink photo paper, the Kodak Smile Classic allows you to create larger 16-megapixel images than other photo printers of the same type. You will also be able to stick your larger photos wherever you want, thanks to the peel-off, sticky-back paper. We expect your fridge and cupboard to be decked out in holiday and party snaps in no time at all.
If you enjoy a bit of photo editing, then just download the Kodak Classic 2-in-1 app. This full photo editing suite allows you to edit to your heart’s content using your smartphone or tablet. Once you’re done with your effects, send the image to the printer and get it printed off.
- Produces larger photos than any of the other Kodak Instant Ink collection
- MicroSD slot to save images you don’t immediately wish to print
- Connects iOS and Android wirelessly via Bluetooth
2. HP Sprocket | Best Portable Zink Printer
If looking for a cool little zink portable printer, then look no further than the HP Sprocket. It’s a fun compact device that is easy to travel with and print off photos while on the go.
This inkless printer has amazing quality considering the price – the pictures rival that of expensive, larger printers. The only difference is that you don’t have to pay for expensive ink cartridges to get the same photo quality.
One of the great things about the Sprocket is that it’s easy to use; anyone can utilize its features when young or old, technophile or technophobe.
This printer is no bigger than a smartphone, thus allowing you to carry it in your pocket or slip it into a bag. It is made of very durable material, so don’t worry about damage.
You can print 2″x3″ sticky-backed images quickly. Using HP Zink photo paper, your images will have vivid color and be smudge-proof the second they come out.
The printer can hold up to 10 sheets of photo paper, so if you plan on having a big day out, it’s advisable to carry some extra sheets to reload.
- Have a print party with friends by connecting to multiple devices
- Customize photos before printing with HP Sprocket App
- Stays connected to devices so ready to print instantly
3. Canon IVY CLIQ Instant Camera Printer | Best No Ink Printer
This 5-megapixel camera and zink photo printer has the benefit of producing quality photos and looking fun and funky at the same time. Don’t be put off by this camera having lower megapixels than others on this list. When you are producing photos of 2″x3″ you don’t need something with a larger number.
With this being a Canon product, you already know that it will have a higher quality than other instant printers. This product looks and feels like it was built to last. You’re not going to put it in a bag and find it destroyed an hour later. If you want, you can also slip the device into a pocket.
Additionally, the IVY CLIQ is simple to use, even if you’ve spent your entire life clicking photos using a smartphone. If you are struggling, don’t worry, Canon has provided a helpful pictorial based instruction that will have you up and running in no time.
As with most of these printers, your end product is a cool looking 2″x3″ photo with a peel-off, sticky-back. Great for taking snaps to stick in a journal.
- Selfie mirror lets you tale self-portraits without any difficulty
- MicroSD to support mass storage of your snaps to save forever
- Auto-flash helps ensure your pictures come out perfectly
4. Kodak Dock | Best Zero Ink Photo Printer
There are several reasons why the Kodak Dock is a hugely popular zero ink printer. First among those reasons is the fact that this printer will produce photos that are double the size of most portable Zink printers. However, to do that, you do sacrifice some portability. This is a printer you will have to carry in a bag, as it is too big to slip into a pocket.
Compatible with both iOS and Android, this is a great partner for any devices that you own. It can charge your phone while you use it, so you never have to worry about the phone dying on you during a printing session.
Don’t be alarmed by any negative reviews you read about this product. Those have come from people who have tried to use the product straight out of the box without bothering to go through the helpful tutorials online. Take 15 minutes to familiarise yourself with the product. It will be worth it in the long run.
Kodak, like Canon, make products built to last. You’ll get significant usage here.
- Get postcard size printouts with incredible color and detail
- Charge two of your devices through the dock
- Companion Kodak App is excellent for photo editing.
5. Kodak Smile | Best Inkless Printer
The final zero ink photo printer we are looking at brings our reviews full circle with the Kodak Smile, the sister product to our first review, the Kodak Smile Classic.
With a more modern design, this is a printer that you will quickly fall in love with as you become obsessed with printing photo after photo.
This Bluetooth printer will give you quality 2”x3” photos (slightly smaller than the Kodak Smile Classic). The Kodak Smile is designed with a pop-open design from which your photos will appear.
As with all Kodak products, you get the benefits of their apps. Here you will be able to use the Smile App to edit and enhance images before printing. This is available on both iOS and Android devices. Filters, lighting adjustments, and a range of effects are available.
A benefit if the Kodak Smile is a longer-lasting rechargeable battery than similar products. The battery fitted to the Smile will allow you to print up to 40 images on a single charge. The battery charge time is not that long either, coming in at 2 hours—enough time to have a break in a café to get some charge back into the device.
- Instant editing possible through the Kodak Smile App
- Customize your images with trendy frames
- Tear-proof and smudge-proof photos to last a lifetime.
Zink Printer Buying Guide
When looking for the best zink printer, there are a few features to look out for if you want to get some genuinely high-quality polaroid zink photos. Here we take a look at what some of those features are.
Zink photo printers don’t come in just one size. Some are capable of a bigger maximum print size than others.
The smallest size you are going to find on our list is 2”by3”. These are great for making small stickable pictures to decorate something or place into a journal.
If you are looking for a more standard size photo, then look for a printer that can do postcard 6″x4″ prints. These are the same size as a postcard.
Just remember, if you are printing larger photos, you want a polaroid style device with a higher number of megapixels.
With the smaller size, 5 megapixels will be enough.
2. Prints per charge
These printers are portable and great for life on the go. But portability means you need a device that has decent battery life.
With most of these devices, the battery life is measured by how many photos you can print per charge.
Some lower-end printers can only manage ten prints on a charge, which is fine if you know you will have access to a charging socket quite regularly.
If not, it’s better to go for a device that can give you 30 prints or more on one charge.
3. Charge Time
When you are out and about, chances are you’re taking a lot of snaps. You don’t want a situation where you can’t print anymore because your device has run out of juice, and there’s nothing you can do about it.
Buying a printer with a fast charge time lets you sit down, have a cup of coffee and bite to eat, and make use of a plug socket to get things going again. Even if you don’t have time for a full charge, it still means you have more snaps left to take.
Think about it, if your device does 40 prints off two hours charge, even getting it plugged in for half the time means a lot more photos.
What is Zink paper?
Zink stands for ‘Zero-INK.’ Zink paper is a full-color paper for printing that comes with all the color you need within the paper itself. That’s why a Zink printer doesn’t require ink cartridges.
We’re not going to go into all the technical details right here. However, put simply, the printers use thermal technology to mix the color on the paper and produce the final image that you see.
How long do Zink Prints last?
Zink prints are described as ‘long-lasting’ without any specific time-frame given to establish precisely what long-lasting looks like.
What we can safely say is that Zink Prints are designed for fun. They are sticky-back photos taken of random moments. You’re not using this type of printer for a family portrait that you expect to last decades.
Fujifilm produces a similar product to Zink, and they say their prints last between 8 to 12 years. We would expect nothing more than that with Zink.
Does Zink paper expire?
Your Zink paper probably comes with an expiry date, simple because it is a legal requirement for it to do so.
However, Zink paper, according to those in the know, does not actually expire.
The way that Zink works means the crystals that lead to the color are only activated when a certain amount of heat hits them. IE. The heat from your printer.
Assuming you don’t store your Zink paper in the oven, it should stay good until the time that you actually wish to use it.
Now that the best zero ink printer that money can buy have been listed and reviewed for you, it’s time to make your choice.
Remember, your decision needs to be based on size and issues relating to the battery. In terms of photo quality, there is not much difference from one of these printers to another.
Whichever Zink printer you do choose, we are sure you are going to have loads of fun snapping pictures in the future, editing them, and then getting them printed to stick the memory somewhere for all to see.