Canon Pixma MX512 – A Pixma for Business

Canon Pixma MX512 Review and RatingsGet out your printer scorecards, boys and girls. Just when we think we have more than enough all-in-one (AIO) printers to choose among in Canon’s wide family, the printer stalwart introduces a few more Pixma models.

Here in early 2012, the new ones are three low-cost, business-centric units: the $79.99 Pixma MX372, the $99.99 Pixma MX432, and (the subject of this review) the $149.99 Pixma MX512. These new Pixma multifunction machines all print, copy, scan, and fax, and they come right behind three other similarly priced, photo-centric AIOs: the Pixma MG4120, MG3120, and MG2120. (We tested all three in recent months; click the links for the individual reviews.)

Apart from Canon’s “MX” designation in their names (which indicates that these printers are intended for office use), what sets these new Pixmas apart—specifically, what makes them home- and small-office AIOs—are two features not found on the MG models: the ability to send and receive faxes, and an automatic document feeder (ADF). An ADF allows you to copy, scan, or fax a multipage document without intervention.

Canon Pixma MX512
Canon’s Pixma MX512 – long on useful features and output quality, but the exceptionally high cost per page (CPP) of ink will get you.

While these three new Pixmas look a lot alike, the higher-priced MX512 has, as you’d expect, the most features. For the extra $50 over the $99.99 Pixma MX432, you get a 2.5-inch color LCD, support for printing from most popular memory devices, automatic duplexing (that is, unassisted two-sided printing), and a few other options not found on the other MX models. Of these three new AIOs, the Pixma MX512 offers the best range of productivity and convenience features at a reasonable price.

In our tests, the Pixma MX512 printed, scanned, and copied documents and images in exceptional quality. It and the other two MX models are certainly not speed demons, however. A few competing models in this price range, such as the $149.99 Brother MFC-J825DW, do print faster, especially with business documents. If speed is what you’re after, you’d do better spending a little more for a higher-volume AIO, such as the $299.99 HP OfficeJet 8600 Plus.

Overall, the Pixma MX512 is a good little business machine. Our only real concern is this model’s per-page cost of operation, in terms of its ink cartridges. (We’ve got more on that in the Design section of this review.) The trend in the inkjet AIO market of late has been toward lower costs per page (CPPs). This model runs against that. As a result, this printer is a good choice only if your small or home office has modest print and copy requirements, but the prints you do need to make must be top-notch quality.

Read the full review at Computer Shopper.


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