Saturday, February 14, 2009

Canon Pixma MP510

Yesterday, kind of on a whim, I picked up a nice little piece of equipment for not too much money. Business Depot was selling off, at clearance, a nice Canon printer, the Pixma MP510. There are better ones, fancier ones, but this one does most of what I'm after. Two years ago they were selling for around $250 hereabouts, but they were unloading this one for a hundred.

My main motivation was to be able to print photos, since photography's one of my main hobbies. It's never been a big deal to me to be able to print my own shots, and when I wanted to I'd just trot off to Shopper's Drugmart, but something about being able to do it myself really appealed to me. I had to line up there last weekend just to print seven shots, and then stand around for 15 minutes to wait for them... what is this, 1975? So I decided to look around, see what was available.

I have an HP laser printer from about five years ago. It's utterly out of toner, and hard to find the refill for, and when I do (online), it's about a hundred bucks. Couldn't use it to print my photos anyway, but sometimes it's nice to be able to print out things like directions and emails and things, and I've missed that. So it's nice to have the option again.

The printer is also a scanner, which enabled me to retire my old scanner. Combined with that, it came bundled with OCR software that's better than what I had, which is just the ticket.

It's an inkjet printer, not surprisingly since its main job is printing photos. Before I bought it I checked the price of the ink cartridges, and they were reasonably priced at about $22 for the colour ones and about $35 for the black (which is rather larger). Also, it's that more sensible system where you replace the inks separately as they run out, instead of having to replace a whole cartridge because you're out of magenta, while you still have lots of cyan and yellow.

I've printed four photos (one twice, because I printed it on the flat side of the paper rather than the glossy), and I'm pleased with the results. I'd say they're as good as the stuff I was getting out of the machines at Shopper's. All things consided, I don't know if I'm saving money, but I'm not having to go out and stand around and I can work with the photos on the fly to get what I want.

I'll be interested to see how long the inks last, but for now, I think it's a pretty solid score for a c-note.

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