We recently looked at the Canon’s lower-end PIXMA MG5150 which provided a number of welcome surprises and offered well above average print and photo quality for its measly £74 price tag. Now it’s the turn of its big sister in the MG family, the MG6150.
Superficially the two machines have much in common. Like the MG5150, the MG6150 is styled in glossy piano black, and has a distinctive squat rectangular shape with smooth rounded corners and a dual paper feed. In this case, it’s an extendable rear tray holding 150 sheets of A4 and a (awkward to grasp) front tray holding the same amount, beneath the automatically opening output tray.
Both devices have a front panel for memory cards, including CompactFlash, SD and MMC (although xD-PictureCards require an adaptor). There’s also a USB port for Flash cards and PictBridge-enabled digital cameras. In addition, they share a separate USB output for attaching directly to a PC as well as an auto-duplex capability.
The features above are pretty much where the MG6150′s comparison with its little sister ends, ends because the this device is in many senses a much weightier machine, at 9.2kg (versus 7.8kg) and measuring a chunky 470x368x173mm. Network connection is possible via Ethernet and Wi-Fi (802.11b/g/n) and you can print labels directly on to blank DVD and Blu-ray disks.
The biggest difference, though, is in the printer’s control arrangement, which uses Canon’s new Intelligent Touch System. This combines a non-touch 7.5cm colour TFT display and a flat touch-panel that cleverly highlights the relevant path you need to follow to complete each operation. The system is a dream to operate, and we expect to see more of it in future Canon all-in-ones.
The MG6150′s other major addition is an extra grey ink cartridge, on top of the standard set of five (2x black, cyan, magenta and yellow), which results in vastly improved tonal gradations in both mono and colour prints. Using 9,600×2,400dpi print resolution, these are some of the sharpest and most colour-rich photos we’ve come across on an inkjet in this class (although, as with the MG5150, we noticed that scanned photos still have a tendency towards underexposure). Even standard level mono documents are crisp and solid.
In our experience, Canon is usually more realistic than other manufacturers about print speeds. The same is true here. It claims 10x15cm photos will appear in 20 seconds, and that’s exactly what it took at the normal setting (10x15cm copies are yet quicker at 15). Even standard A4-sized prints took only 55 seconds. Fine-quality versions emerged in just 2 minutes. Standard mono documents were output at 9ppm, with duplex at just under 4ppm, which should be perfectly acceptable for a home/small business operation, although you’ll find yourself paying slightly more per photo (13.3p) than standard four-ink all-in-ones.
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