The printer comes with a driver installation CD that lets you choose between commonly used templates like standard, business, paper saving, and photo printing that adjust the type of media, paper size, and source. Additionally, the driver provides you with adjustments for borderless printing, vivid photos, grayscale prints, and even manual color intensities by numeral increments. It also features a pop-up print status monitor that shows the current job, document name, device owner, status, and a graphical representation of the ink cartridge levels. Conveniently, this pop-up automatically disappears once the job in queue is finished printing.
The MP495 has the standard array of copy functions for a multifunction device: you can make up to 99 copies at once and easily adjust the contrast and magnification of a document from 25 percent to 400 percent, all directly through the settings on the LCD menus. The scanner gives you two options, allowing you to scan either single photos and documents or a stack of documents using the automatic document feeder.
You also have several choices in terms of where you want to send a scanned document, such as directly to a PC as a JPEG, TIFF, BMP, or PDF file, or you can attach it to an e-mail with the option to scan and convert to text using optical character recognition. All scanned files are placed in your custom "My Box" directory, which displays all scanned and imported images as well as images recently saved on the hard drive for future projects.
We speed-tested the Pixma MP495 using several template documents, including a full page of black text, a graphics page, a single 4-inch by 6-inch photo and a 10-page Microsoft PowerPoint presentation, and the printer yielded slower-than-average results across the board. It falls shortest in color text speeds and comes in dead last after all four of our competitive printers at 4.07 pages per minute (PPM). If you're set on using a printer for high-volume documents, expect to wait longer than average for your job to release from the MP495.
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
|Presentation speed (PPM)||Photo speed (1 sheet)||Color graphics speed (PPM)||Text speed (PPM)|
The MP495 is a relatively decent performer when it comes to judging output quality, and although we could see visible lines in the more drastic gradations of our test prints, the overall graphics print quality should be more than adequate for school prints or business documents. On the other hand, the snapshot photo quality is less than stellar, and colors appear muted even in high-quality print mode--and user experience suffers even further when you're forced to wait more than a minute for a photo with distorted color representation.
Service and support
Canon offers a standard one-year warranty for the Pixma MX870. Toll-free phone support is available weekdays from 8 a.m. to midnight PT and on Saturdays from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. E-mail support is available 24-7 via a Web-based form. Canon's standard online support options include downloadable drivers and software, manuals, and FAQs. Canon also sells its Canon Care Extended Service Plan for $25 that includes two extra years of service after the initial year is spent.
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