Canon's Pixma G3000 multifunction printer gets you a lot of bang for your buck.
A few years ago, consumer-level inkjet printers from most major manufacturers contained dinky little cartridges filled with a miniscule amount of ink.
These printers typically claimed to be able to print about 300 to 1,000 pages, but typically you would only get about 200 pages if you use it for printing graphics-heavy pages. Also, cleaning the nozzle wastes even more ink.
This gave rise to third-party ink refill companies who took the opportunity to offer retrofitting services that allowed consumers to use special ink tank systems with huge reservoirs that feed ink into the cartridges.
This freed up most people from constantly having to buy cartridges every month or so.
But now the original manufacturers have started fighting back by introducing printers with huge reservoirs and ink feed systems.
One of these is the Pixma G3000, Canon’s affordable multifunction inkjet printer with refillable reservoirs – the company claims it will be able to churn out a whopping 7,000 pages for colour and 6,000 from a single black ink bottle.
Out of the box
Apart from the rather hefty G3000 itself, the device is bundled with bottles and bottles of ink.
For one thing, you get a bottle for cyan, magenta and yellow with each bottle holding 70ml of ink.
For black, Canon bundles not one but three 135ml bottles – each bottle is claimed to be able to print up to 6,000 pages, so with three bottles, it’s going to be a while before you need to run out to buy a refill.
That’s vastly more ink than you get with the traditional cartridge, which typically holds only about 15ml to 20ml of ink.
Filling a reservoir is a little more involved than snapping in an ink cartridge. Also, you have to perform a number of steps to park and lock the ink reservoirs if you want to transport the printer.
Nevertheless, the benefits far outweighs the hassle.
Apart from the ink filling, setting up the printer is pretty easy – as the G3000 comes with WiFi, you don’t even have to use a wired connection to hook it up to a PC.
The G3000 performs really well as a scanner. It has a maximum optical resolution of 600 x 1,200dpi (dots per inch), which is more than good enough for document and photo scanning, which took about 23 seconds each to complete.
Printer resolution is at 4,800 x 1,200dpi and it took about 20 seconds per page for plain paper.
For document printing, the results were really, really good – text was very crisp and clear and looked almost like it was printed on a laser printer.
Canon’s black ink is pigment-based (the colour ones are dye-based, though), which means when printing monochrome documents, the results won’t smudge even if you spill some water on it.
You have to hand it Canon though – while this isn’t a purpose-built photo printer (only has four inks compared to true photo printers which have six or more), it produces very good quality photos when printed on Canon’s Photo Paper Plus Glossy II.
I made a couple of photo prints and they came out with near-perfect colour balance without any calibration or tweaking on my part.
High quality photo prints on glossy coated paper takes much longer – it took a little over three minutes to produce a bordered A4 print.
As the G3000 comes with built-in WiFi, you can access it via your home network or by making a direct connection with the printer.
You can print from your smartphone or tablet using the Canon Print app for iOS and Android. If the printer is already on your home network, it’s a simple matter of connecting to it.
Direct connections can get a little complicated – as the printer has no screen to display information, you need to press a series of buttons to have the printer enter discoverable mode before you can print from your phone.
As far as the number of prints goes, in the short time that we had it we couldn’t really test Canon’s claim of 6,000 to 7,000 pages, but even if it prints half of that then it’s worth the money.
A quick check on Canon’s website reveals that the ink bottles cost RM30 each, which means a full set with black will cost you RM120. That’s a serious bargain, since the cartridge systems (with less ink) cost about that much for just one colour.
The Pixma G3000 is a great multifunction printer. At RM799 it’s not the cheapest on the market, but you get a lot of value for your money in the long run as the inks last longer and are also relatively cheap.
Print and scan quality are both very good and with the right coated paper, you can even make the occasional photo print when you need to.
If you’re considering a printer/scanner/copier combo, you can’t go wrong with the Pixma G3000.
Pros: Print and scanning quality is very good; excellent photo prints on coated paper; very low operating cost.
Cons: Wireless set up can be a little complicated.
Multifunction inkjet printer
Print resolution: 4,800 x 1,200dpi
Print speed: 5ipm (images per minute)
Scan resolution: 600 x 1,200dpi
Copy speed: 2.5ipm
Interface: USB, WiFi 802.11b/g/n
Paper handling: 100-piece plain paper tray
Paper sizes: A4, A5, B5, letter, legal, 4x6in
Dimensions (W x D x H): 445 x 330 x 163mm
Rating: 4.5 stars
Review unit courtesy of Canon Marketing (Malaysia) Sdn Bhd, 1-800-88-2000