Photo printing minus the PC

Rejoice, fellow digital photographers - the first credible alternative to PC- and Boots-free printing has arrived.It comes in the shape of the Lexmark

Rejoice, fellow digital photographers - the first credible alternative to PC- and Boots-free printing has arrived.

It comes in the shape of the Lexmark P450, a photo printer that can connect direct to digicams and archive the results to CD while knocking out your prints. The average computer's been able to do that for years, but it's nice to be able to leave the PC switched off sometimes, no?

It's also a big flashing green light for anyone who's been planning to get into digital photography but doesn't own a computer.

The printer connects to cameras via USB - if they have PictBridge - and every major memory card format that we can think of. To be precise: CompactFlash I and II, SmartMedia, Memory Stick (normal and Pro), SD, MMC and xD.

Prints are limited to standard photo studio size, 4 x 6in, and pop out at a rate of 38 seconds each if you drop the quality right down. The actual image files - the digital equivalent of a film negative - are saved onto CD-R.

You'll be able to bagsy yourself a P450 for £150 from the end of the month.

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