Inkjet printers generally use dye-based inks
, but Canon has long specialised in hybrid ink systems which combine a pigment-based black ink with dye-based coloured inks. The pigment black delivers crisp, rich black text for documents, which is smudge resistant and ensures excellent longevity, even on plain paper and envelopes, while the dye-based inks produce vibrant colour rendition for photo printing, especially on glossy and lustre paper.
Canon's entry-level hybrid inkjet printers use a pigment-based black cartridge and a tri-colour dye-based cartridge. More advanced models feature four or even five separate dye-based inks in addition to pigment black, including a Photo Black and sometimes Photo Blue or Grey. These enable printers like the Canon PIXMA TS704
and Canon PIXMA G640
to deliver a broader colour range or gamut for photo printing, along with greater tonal range and contrast.
For freedom of expression in photo printing, for both colour and black and white images, the pigment-based LUCIA PRO ink technology used in Canon's imagePROGRAF PRO printers comes to the fore. For example, the A3+ format Canon imagePROGRAF PRO-300
uses ten pigment-based inks, delivering unbeatable quality on matte photo paper and specialist fine art media. This printer also uses a Chroma Optimiser cartridge
to enhance smoothness and overall quality on glossy media.