Canon Pixma MX330 review: Canon Pixma MX330

The copy functions on the MX330 are relatively standard 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 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 to a 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 into your custom "My Box" directory, which displays all scanned and imported images as well as recently saved images onto the hard drive for future projects.

As you can tell from the benchmarks, the MX330 demonstrated only average speed across the board. It jumped ahead most noticeably in the color text speed test at 5.54 page per minute in a tie with the HP OfficeJet J6480, that's almost two times the cost of the Canon. On the other hand, the MX330 suffered a bit in the photo speed test at just 0.93 pages per minute, just ahead of the J6480 that came in last with only 0.83 pages per minute. Since this isn't a full-blown photo printer, we can forgive the MX330 for dropping the ball on the photo print speed, since the rest of the scores are at least average or faster than the competition, specifically the Kodak ESP5 that continually performed the slowest in the group.

Speed test (in pages per second)
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
Presentation speed  
Photo speed (1 sheet)  
Color graphics speed  
Text speed  
HP OfficeJet J6480
Canon Pixma MX330
Kodak ESP5
Brother MFC-5890CN
Brother MFC-685CW

We have several complaints about the output quality of the MX330. We printed all photo and graphical documents on the paper that Canon provided and we were still largely dissatisfied with the results. Black text on standard 20-pound paper appears nicely darkened, but a closer inspection reveals characters with jagged edges and step-downs, fuzziness in small font sizes, and harsh contrasts in color blends. In addition, our color graphics prints came out grainy with a dull hue marring the images. Luckily, our 3 inch by 5 inch photo turned out OK with sharper lines and an even saturation, but the skin tones in the portrait shots still couldn't shake the dreary palette. As stated, the MX330 will definitely satisfy households where cost and robust features are more of an issue than just output quality, but dedicated shooters should seek out a more capable machine to bring their photos to life.

Service and support
Canon offers a limited one-year warranty with the Pixma MX7600. The company also offers toll-free phone support and 24-7 e-mail support, should you run into any problems. Extra features including online manuals, drivers, FAQs, and ink cartridge order forms can be found on Canon's Web site.

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