Canon Pixma MG8150 review: Canon Pixma MG8150

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Typical Price: $449.00
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4.5 stars

CNET Editors' Rating

The Good Excellent black print quality. Excellent photo print quality. Intuitive and slick touch panel. CD/DVD printing. Slide scanning included.

The Bad Slower than the cheaper MG6150. Slower than an average inkjet.

The Bottom Line The Pixma MG8150 is the costly bigger brother of the excellent MG6150, but unless you've got a burning need for slide scanning, it's difficult to justify the additional cost.

8.6 Overall

Design

If you put the MG8150 and the recently reviewed MG6150 side by side and obscured the tiny product logos that sit on the left hand side, we reckon that anyone excluding a Canon product designer wouldn't easily tell them apart. The MG8150 is ever so slightly larger at 470 x 392 x 199mm, but they're both large glossy black multifunction inkjet printers with a focus on touchscreen controls that light up in context-specific situations. It's a remarkably easy to use printer with a highly logical workflow that comes as close to being genuinely intuitive as any product we could think of.

Features

The vast majority of the MG8150 mirrors that of the MG6150, so we'll borrow liberally from our review to cover off most of them. The multifunction aspects of the MG8150 encompass scanning via a 4800 x 4800dpi CIS scan head, copying via the same mechanism and printing; fax is the noticeable absentee feature, but we're seeing fewer multifunctions with faxing built in these days, at least in the consumer/SOHO space. You can however print still images directly from HD movies.

The MG8150 prints from six colour inkjet tanks to plain paper, photo media and directly onto CD and DVD media, giving it plenty of operational flexibility. Connections are via USB or 802.11n WiFi, and it's compatible with Canon's Easy Photo Print App for iPhone and iPad. That's not quite as fully featured as HP's competing ePrint solution that we've seen on theEnvy 100 and the Photosmart B110.

The MG8150 commands a price premium over the MG6150 primarily due to the inclusion of a film and slide scanner built into the scanner tray head. It's not quite as flexible as a true film scanner would be in terms of the sizes of negatives it can take, but for most basic work it should be more than adequate.

Performance

With so many similarities to the MG6150, we were expecting big things from the MG8150, given that its cheaper compatriot was an easy Editors' Choice pick. Like the MG6150, the MG8150's print quality was excellent for both text and photo prints. There aren't many inkjets where we'd say you could substitute draft for normal coverage and easily get away with it, but the MG8150 comes awfully close. For SOHO personal office work, draft is certainly good enough.

The problem we had with the MG6150 was that it wasn't particularly quick and unfortunately the MG8150 was even slower with the same print tests. Canon rates it for approximately 12.5ipm in black and white printing. We managed an average of 4 pages per minute in full coverage and only five in draft, with the first page in either case taking a leisurely twenty two seconds to emerge. 4x6-inch photo prints took sixty eight seconds to emerge.

Conclusion

The Pixma MG8150 offers excellent print quality. Just like the MG6150. It's an easy to use multifunction with an excellent touch panel display. Just like the MG6150. It features direct CD/DVD printing, auto duplexing and direct printing from compatible cameras and video cameras. Just like the MG6150. But the MG6150 is one hundred and fifty dollars less and is slightly faster in operation to boot.

You might be able to pick which one we'd recommend. The MG8150 certainly isn't a bad printer, but unless integrated slide/negative scanning is of vital importance to you, get the cheaper MG6150 instead.

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