Multi-function printers capable of scanning, copying, printing and faxing usually don’t come cheap. The Canon MX492 is something of an exception – in addition to offering all four of these major functions, it is a low-priced printer that will set you back a mere $99.99. But does this unit truly represent a good bang for your buck or is this a case of fool’s gold? Read on to find out!
If you had to describe the MX492 in a single word, it would be “compact.” Measuring at just 17.2 x 11.7 x 7.5 inches and 13 pounds, this product is the smallest printer in Canon’s entire MX lineup. The controls are intuitive, and consist of a monochrome LCD screen, a numeric keypad, black and color start buttons, a stop button and quick menu buttons. The printer can be connected to the internet via Wi-Fi or USB, and it supports a number of useful cloud-based applications such as Google Print, Airprint and Canon’s Pixma Print Services.
As far as output goes, the MX492 can hold its own. Keep in mind that the auto document feeder can manage 20 sheets of paper at a time, so printing out large documents will require multiple sittings. Similarly, the input tray holds 100 sheets at most, but it can be adjusted to fit multiple sizes of paper. The output tray is neatly positioned above the input tray, and above them both is a print head carrier, which lets you switch your ink cartridges. The printer supports a decent number of paper layout options, from legal-sized paper to 4×6 photos.
The print speed can probably be characterized as the MX492’s weakest suit. On average, this unit will print 8.8 monochrome images and 4.4 color images per minute, which pales in comparison to some of the more expensive Canon products. On a more positive note, the MX492 contains just two ink cartridges – a black one and a tri-color one – so replacing them should not be too hard on your wallet.
However, the tri-color cartridge will have to be replaced as soon as one of the colors runs out, even if the other two colors are still available. This means that ink replacement will be a little expensive as some ink will not be used at all. To offset this, you can get your ink supplies from discount ink stores like 4inkjets.com. Remanufactured ink is the most economical ink, and Buhelo—a site that has coupons for 4inkjets—offers the cheapest way to buy ink from qualified recyclers.
Considering the MX492’s budget price, the image quality is outstanding. The printer can support images up to 4800 x 1200 dpi, and the colors are very clear and accurate. Every supported type of paper prints out as well as you could hope for, and the control panel offers additional printing options. The copy and scan functions are easy to figure out, and the auto document feeder is a lifesaver if you’re dealing with multi-page documents. For additional functionality, the official Canon Print app allows you to scan documents from your mobile device.
- Compact size
- Image quality
- Affordable price
- Printing speed
- No automatic duplex printing
If you’re buying a printer for personal use, you should take a long look at the MX492. For a low price of $99.99, you’re getting a four-function printer that fits pretty much anywhere and does what you want it to do – provided you’re prepared to wait a little longer for the job to get done. You wouldn’t have to look too hard to find a more powerful machine on the market, but the MX492 nonetheless represents excellent value for money.