Canon Pixma Ip1800 Inkjet Printer - Review and Cartridge Choice

By: Alan Wilson

The PIXMA ip1800 is a no-frills, entry-level printer that retails at under ?40, yet instead of settling for a humdrum cream casing, Canon has designed a sleek black mirror finish to a case that remains relatively compact (442 x 237 x 152mm) and weighs 3.3kg.

This is a machine that has been stripped down to the absolute bare essentials. There are only two buttons - for on/off and paper feed - and a USB 2.0 port for connecting to your PC. Curiously, there's not even an out tray (so you'll have to allow enough desk space for paper ejection), no memory card slots and no PictBridge support.

You are at least given a flip-up page rest and a page sizer which can accommodate everything from 10 x 15cm (4 x 6-inch) borderless photos to A4. Although this is a perfectly serviceable document printer, you'll undoubtedly reap the best rewards when building up your photo album.

Once the software's in place you're ready to rock. There are just two ink cartridges to install, one black and a FINE colour cartridge that combines three colours. This is where you start to be impressed, as the print technology uses Micro-Nozzles to fire ink droplets as small as 2pl onto the page. As the maximum FINE print head resolution is 4,800 x 1,200dpi, the resulting quality is surprisingly good.

As is becoming the norm, the printer is supplied with low capacity cartridges,PG-37,CL-38 and it is economical to replace these with higher yield versions when they run out. The black replacement cartridge PG-40 contains 16ml of ink and the colour CL-41 contains 12ml.
Both of these cartridges are readily available direct from Canon, your local Computer store or from an online discounter like Cartcon.

The black tones on both photo paper and standard sheets are on the grey side of pure black but certainly acceptable for processing normal holiday snaps or multi-colour documentation. Colours are vibrant with a superior degree of clarity and detail and as the cartridges employ Canon's ChromaLife100 system, your photos are guaranteed a 100 year life span. Not that you're likely to be around to contest that guarantee, of course.

The PIXMA ip1800 isn't a slowcoach either, managing to deliver a 6 x 4-inch borderless photograph in just 70 seconds. Quoted print speeds for documents average 20ppm for mono and 16ppm for colour.

The bundled software includes Canon's excellent Easy-PhotoPrint, which takes the strain out of printing one, or multiple images in a wide range of formats and sizes, as well as Easy-LayoutPrint, which lets you create your own album, calendar and stickers. There's good news for Windows Vista users too, as you won't have to download any patches or add-ons to get you started. And it's Mac compatible too.

Printers
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 

» More on Printers
 



Share this article :
Click to see more related articles