Canon Pixma MX895 review
Canon’s range of office inkjet printers is different to most, as it still focuses heavily on photo printing. The Pixma MX895 has a broadly consumer design and features both pigmented and dye-based black inks: one primarily for documents, the other for producing high-quality photos. But it’s also a business device, with fax, Ethernet, 802.11n Wi-Fi and two-sided copying on its list of do-it-all strengths.
On the front sit memory card slots behind a hidden door, and another flap reveals the five ink tanks. Its 3in screen doesn’t respond to touch, but a 4 x 4 grid of dynamic buttons beside it lights up with various navigation options. It isn’t a patch on the precise control of Lexmark’s touchscreen printers – and it emits incredibly irritating noises by default – but it isn’t too hard to get the hang of it.
The three colour inks and both pigmented and dye-based blacks are the same as in the MX885, which means photo quality is outstanding. Colours are rich, blacks are beautifully dark and the level of detail is exquisite. Text is also thick, bold and perfectly defined, so for pure print quality the MX895 is very hard to top.
The scan and copy functions are less stellar but still pretty good. Our test text was reproduced well and fine details captured, but whites tended to be a bit dirty and colours in general rather washed out. They’re perfectly usable, but scans will need a bit of a software touch-up to match HP’s high capture standards.
If you’re wondering what’s actually changed from the previous model, the answer is very little. Canon has added an auto-duplex mode to save paper, and also produced Pixma Cloud Link, which it launched in April. This lets you print images directly from Picasa or Canon’s own cloud services, and incorporates remote printing via Google Cloud Print and Apple AirPrint.
Other than that, speeds are similar to before – it managed a reasonable 11.5ppm and 6.1ppm in mono and colour, and a 6 x 4in photo took 48 seconds. Running costs have risen slightly, though. Canon offers no high-yield cartridges to reduce costs beyond the rather steep 3.3p mono and 9p colour pages, and that alone will be enough to kill its appeal outside the home.
For cheap, high-quality document printing, HP’s Officejet range remains a much faster and more suitable home office choice, but if photos are a priority you won’t find a better all-rounder than the Canon Pixma MX895.
Author: David Bayon
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