Canon Pixma MG5250
All-in-one printers have become extremely popular, and the Canon Pixma MG5250 is one of the best of the type, with the ability to print at up to 9,600 dpi resolution. This printer handles the expected tasks - printing, copying and scanning - but also has another string to its bow, in the form of a highly useful Wi-Fi capability that allows quick and easy sharing of documents. As would be expected from a printer with the Canon name on it, this unit is well put together and sturdy, with a more solid and durable feel than some of its rivals in this section of the printer market.
With some all-in-one printers, there has been so much attention paid to the extras that the core business of actually printing has been somewhat neglected. Thankfully, this is not the case with the MG5250, which offers an impressive set of features. There are five four ink tanks for colour printing - black, cyan, magenta and yellow - as well as a separate, dedicated black tank for printing monochrome material. The presence of this extra tank greatly increases the required time between replacements, and makes this printer a practical proposition for truly all-round usage.
Speed is naturally important for any printer, but particularly for one such as this, which is likely to be in for fairly heavy use. There's not a great deal worse than having to sit through a lengthy print job, so it's good to see that Canon has minimised the amount of time the user will need to spend doing this. The company gives a print speed of up to 11 inches per minute in black and white, but perhaps more notable is the only slightly slower figure of 9.3 inches per minute in colour. This translates to a six-by-four photo printing in around 20 seconds. A lot of printers are much slower in colour than in monochrome, so this is a definite point in the MG5250's favour.
Scanning and copying is also nicely responsive, with a full-colour document being copyable in around 15 seconds, a time which is well ahead of many of the Canon's rivals. All common types of memory cards are compatible with the MG5250, ranging from the popular SD format right through to the older, but still widely used, CompactFlash and xD card styles. Because of its excellent Wi-Fi ability, this printer can copy or scan wirelessly as easily as it can print - the freedom this offers from tangling wires and unreliable connection leads is sure to prove extremely welcome.
The Canon Pixma MG5250 comes with a comprehensive suite of dedicated Canon software, enabling it to handle a huge range of tasks with ease. Pictures can be touched up with Auto Photo Fix II - red-eye will never be a problem again. The innovative Easy-PhotoPrint EX program makes designing calendars uncommonly simplistic, and features an enormously useful function which can sift through Flickr for pictures that can be freely used. This can work in conjunction with Easy-WebPrint EX, which allows information to be clipped out of web pages and combined into one coherent piece. The Canon Pixma MG5250 makes almost any task close to effortless, and will be warmly welcomed by its users.