So I have a similar question to this one, but it's about 5 years old now: printer recommendations
Since printing technology is always developing, consider this the updated question for late 2018.
My parents do not have a lot of money but they want to be able to print a bunch of photos from home on occasion. Since they don't print very frequently, they often have the ink-drying-up problem that leads to clogs/poor print quality, which means more maintenance routines that use up even more ink and cost them a lot of money in the long run. So I'm planning on getting them a new printer for Christmas.
My question has two parts:
What would you get them today if these were your parents (presuming you love your parents)
In 2018, are toner photo prints usually good enough these days that they could be a good replacement for ink prints?
I was thinking about getting them a color laser printer + backup toner + laser photo paper bundle, but I'm hoping for some feedback on quality and models (or even feedback that suggests a better inkjet).
So far, I was looking at either a Canon imageClass MFC or a Samsung Xpress. The Xpress seems "simpler" which would be great for my parents and has cheaper toners but worse yield (roughly $0.044 per page vs imageClass's $0.038). However, I have no idea what the image quality for a printed photo is truly like on either of these, and I rarely print photos from my own color laser (a Brother MFC).
There's another part of me that whispers, "If you want good photo quality, laser can't compete with pigment ink..." so I've considered a printer that might be more geared specifically to simple printing of 4x6 photos, like the Canon SELPHY. While it sounds like the print quality is great, I assume (maybe incorrectly?) they would be susceptible to the same kind of ink-drying issues that my parents face on their current printer. Also, the cost per print is much higher (roughly $0.28), but if it doesn't dry out and clog like other inkjets do, maybe it's more feasible... (EDIT: One of the reviews for the SELPHY said the ink doesn't dry out like inkjets do)
So all that said, what would you guys suggest today (or if there's something new and better coming out between now and Christmas 2018) ?