The Pixma iP4500 offers a fairly basic feature set. The only connection option is USB, though you can network the printer using a print server. It offers up a built-in duplexer for automatic double-sided prints, though the print driver gives you the option of manual duplex print jobs. The iP4500 lacks memory card slots, but it does offer a PictBridge USB port for printing directly from PictBridge cameras and devices. The driver offers the same options as the driver for the iP3500: namely, the ability to create print profiles for common print jobs; photo manipulations options; and paper and source options.
The Pixma iP4500 is a bit on the expensive side for a general-purpose, single-function printer, so we had limited models on hand for comparison. It stood up well to the competition overall. It printed black text at a rate of 8.25 pages per minute, slower than the office-oriented HP Officejet Pro K5400, but faster than the home-oriented HP Deskjet 6940. It was much slower with graphics, scoring just 2.47ppm, a far cry from the HP Pro K5400's 6.21ppm. But the Canon excelled at fast 4x6 photo prints, clocking 2.66ppm, over a full page faster than the Pro K5400 and more than five times faster than the Deskjet 6940. The iP4500 was also faster than the less expensive iP3500 at all print tasks.
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
The Canon Pixma iP4500 is an all-around good printer. The text prints were nicely dark, though close inspection revealed some jagged edges that could be cleaned up. The color graphics print showed pleasing saturation and sharp details in the photo elements, though the color gradients looked a bit faded and the same issue with slightly jagged edges cropped up. The 4x6 print was good overall. We liked the sharp details and general quality of the image, but the flesh tones were a bit washed out and could use a bump of warmth. Overall, the printer's quality is great for everyday home printing--we found it to be slightly better than the print quality offered by the iP3500.