While the dreaded Retail Price Index continues to rise, which makes the monthly food and utilities bills that much more scary, it’s reassuring to know that some useful household products seem to be heading in the opposite direction. If you run a small business from home and need to replace or install a new printer, then Canon’s latest entry-level PIXMA MG2150 might be worth investigating – not least because some online stores are selling it for just £42.
Unlike many other multifunction printers currently on the market, Canon has opted for a matt black finish rather than the glossy variety for this very compact (449x304x152mm) and lightweight (5.3 kg) model, with smoothly rounded corners to avoid the plain boxy look. It all folds up very neatly as well, as the front panel drops down to become a 100-sheet feeder tray and the inner panel descends to function as the output tray.
If you’re familiar with Canon’s other recent inkjet MFPs then you’ll instantly recognise the control layout to the left of the scanner cover. It uses a simple 7 segment LED display to organise both numbers of copies and copy types, many of which will need the manual to decrypt. In most circumstances you can just use the 3 paper choices button, Black and Colour options or the Scan button for quick processing.
However, it’s more likely that you’ll be using the supplied software for most operations (especially the Canon Solution Menu EX) as it allows for much greater refinement. The publicity for this machine emphasises the ability to print web pages via Easy-WebPrint EX and stills from HD movies using Full HD Movie Print. However, Cannon doesn’t point out that you’ll have to an upgrade on the web software and the necessary movie printing software (e.g. ZoomBrowser EX 6.5 which handles MOV format) as it is not included, so you might have to buy a Canon camera first.
As you might expect from an entry-level model, connectivity is reduced to just USB cable to a PC and while we wouldn’t have anticipated Wi-Fi, maybe Ethernet might have been possible. The good news, on the other hand, is that the quality of colour photo images is particularly good, with strong vibrant hues closely matching the originals. The photo printing speeds are more than reasonable at 1 minute and 45 seconds for A4 images and 40 seconds for 10×15 cm snaps. A4 photo copies are also comparatively nippy at 1’35″ although there were some noticeable banding and a slightly redder wash. The software does include a fun element, though, as there are six filter effects you can add to your photos prior to printing.
Black text documents were not as high quality and were generally slower at 5ppm for standard quality and 10ppm for draft – but some of this lag was due to a couple of moments when the printer paused for a while to think about its next move. There are just two ink cartridges (black and colour) but you can opt for a 600 page black cartridge in place of the basic 180 page version. There’s a similar 400 page upgrade from the supplied 180 page colour cartridge, roughly £40 for the XL, rather than £28.
Contact: 01737 220000
- Good quality photo prints
- No software for HD movie prints
The Canon PIXMA MG2150 is compact, light and offers scan, copy and print functions at a very affordable price. While it gets good marks for photo quality, the black text printing is not as good as the photo image printing and some of the software is not as user friendly as suggested.