I learned from my work that HP inkjets are problem magnets. Very few have not had problems. The history goes back to the 1200, 1600, 2500, all the way to current.
If you only print a photo a month, you will probably be fine - but on average they don't hold up for heavy use over time. Since I've seen so many in an office out for maintenance, I'm wary of HP inkjet printers. Your experience may be different.
I like my Epson R1800. 13" x 44" border-free archival prints with 8 pigment Ultra Chrome High Gloss ink (Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, Photo Black, Matte Black, Red, Blue, Gloss Optimizer) for an extended color gamut. It produces professional quality matte and fine art color prints.
I absolutely hated the Epson I had years ago. Nothing but problems and it went through ink like it was going out of style. I had a Lexmark at my old job and hated it too. The ink cartridges constantly got gunked up. I've never had a problem with HP. The one I currently have at home is the exact same one I have at work. I got it on sale last summer at Office Depot for $30 (it was regularly around $100).
The newer Epson printers are fantastic. I have had the Epson Stylus Photo R220 for about 2 years now. Never had a problem with it. No jams, and uses color very economically. The pinter will take paper up to 8 1/2 X 11 and handles anything from plain paper to super high gloss photo glossy paper. It also has an extra tray to print directly to CD's or DVD's you create that can be printed on. I get mine from Meritline in matte silver and they look absolutely professional as the printer comes with a special program to print directly to the disc.
It uses separate ink cartridges for Black, Cyan, Light Cyan, Magenta, Light Magenta and Yellow. The color carts cost about $12.95 each at Best Buy and the Black runs about 4 to 5 dollars more. That's the one thing I did not like about the HP. They have one small cart for Black and one expensive cart for color. It only holds three colors; Cyan, Magenta and Yellow. If you run out of one color you have to change the whole cartridge to replace that one color.
It's fast and quiet. Under a $100 at most places. I got mine for $88.00 at Best Buy.
Epson has indeed made great strides in the past 5 or so years.
I have an Epson R320 - it's a bit newer than Lost Boy's, but similar. I use it only for printing CD's & DVD's. I got it on sale for $79.
It does nice photos - not as good as the R1800, but pretty finely detailed with vivid color reproduction on glossy photo paper. Has a color LCD screen, and card slots to print directly off your chips. Still goes for about $100 in many computer stores if you can find it - it's been replaced with a newer model - the R380. Does the same things, but uses the Claria High Definition inks. The R380 retails for $130. The R280 model isn't bad either - and cheaper.
I figured that there would be a newer model. You can go to www.epson.com and look through the selection of printers they have and the price range (this is their price so don't be to shocked. What they list for, say $150 will be far less at Best Buy or Home Depot or even Wal Mart or Target) read up on things like ink cartridges, how many, etc. If you are going to do disc printing make sure the printer supports that. If you are going to do high resolution photos make sure the printer can handle the premium glossy papers. Then armed with all that information, you can start the search for the one or two you single out and get the least expensive price at whatever store you find. NEVER order a printer on line! The shipping will negate any savings and printers are pretty heavy duty, but you never know how many times that box is going to be thrown, dropped, slid down a chute to land on a hard floor, etc. And you have to wait for the delivery, and be there when it gets there. Going to the store will save all kinds of headaches, and if something should not be right when you get it set up, you can take it back immediately for help or replacement. Have fun and good happy hunting. Oh, make sure of one other thing. The printer will work faster and you can do other things while it's printing if it has a USB connection to the computer. The old printer cables with the big plugs are not much used anymore, but just to sure make sure the box says USB connector is included.