Canon Pixma iP4300 Photo Inkjet Printer

By M. David Stone  |  Posted 2007-02-09 Print this article Print

Review: The Canon Pixma iP4300 Photo Inkjet Printer does an impressive job for both standard printing and photos.

Canon doesnt exactly own the Editors Choice slot for standard desktop ink jets, but its been doing an awfully good job of monopolizing it for the last couple of years—starting with the Pixma iP4000, and then the Pixma iP4200. When I started testing the Pixma iP4300 Photo Inkjet Printer ($99.99 direct), the iP4200 still reigned supreme, and I couldnt help wondering whether this new model would improve much on it.

Well, it does. A lot. The iP4300 is faster, and cheaper, and it even offers a smidge better quality than the iP4200 does. And it retains welcome touches such as two paper trays, the ability to duplex automatically, and a PictBridge connector for direct printing from cameras. Not to keep you in suspense, it replaces the iP4200 not just in Canons line, but as our Editors Choice as well.

The paper handling features are typical for Canon ink jet printers and AIOs, but theyre worth special mention, because they arent typical for ink jets in general. Each of the paper trays can hold 150 sheets of plain paper, which is a substantial capacity for a home office or a personal printer in a larger office. If youre using the iP4300 as a home printer, you can load plain paper in one tray and photo paper in the other, so you can switch between standard printing and photos without having to load and unload paper each time. With either approach, the second tray is a highly useful convenience.

Setup is absolutely standard for a Canon ink jet printer. Find a place for the 6.3- by 17.5- by 12.0-inch (HWD) printer, plug in the power cord, snap in the print head and ink cartridges, load paper, plug in the USB cable, and run the automated setup program. One touch thats a little unusual is the ink system, with five ink cartridges to snap in. The iP4300 uses cyan, yellow, magenta, and two versions of black—a pigment-based black for better-looking text, and a dye-based black for better-looking photos.

Read the full review on Canon Pixma iP4300 Photo Inkjet Printer

M. David Stone is an award-winning freelance writer and computer industry consultant with special areas of expertise in imaging technologies (including printers, monitors, large-screen displays, projectors, scanners, and digital cameras), storage (both magnetic and optical), and word processing. His 25 years of experience in writing about science and technology includes a nearly 20-year concentration on PC hardware and software. He also has a proven track record of making technical issues easy for non-technical readers to understand, while holding the interest of more knowledgeable readers. Writing credits include eight computer-related books, major contributions to four others, and more than 2,000 articles in national and worldwide computer and general interest publications. His two most recent books are The Underground Guide to Color Printers (Addison-Wesley, 1996) and Troubleshooting Your PC, (Microsoft Press, 2000, with co-author Alfred Poor).

Much of David's current writing is for PC Magazine, where he has been a frequent contributor since 1983 and a contributing editor since 1987. His work includes feature articles, special projects, reviews, and both hardware and software solutions for PC Magazine's Solutions columns. He also contributes to other magazines, including Wired. As Computers Editor at Science Digest from 1984 until the magazine stopped publication, he wrote both a monthly column and additional articles. His newspaper column on computers appeared in the Newark Star Ledger from 1995 through 1997.

Non-computer-related work includes the Project Data Book for NASA's Upper Atmosphere Research Satellite (written for GE's Astro-Space Division), and magazine articles and AV productions on subjects ranging from cosmology to ape language experiments. David also develops and writes testing scripts for leading computer magazines, including PC Magazine's PC Labs. His scripts have covered a wide range of subjects, including computers, scanners, printers, modems, word processors, fax modems, and communications software. He lives just outside of New York City, and considers himself a New Yorker at heart.


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