Canon Pixma iP2600 review

£29
Price when reviewed

Multifunction devices are taking over from standalone printers in popularity, but a pleasant side effect of this is that inkjets are more affordable than ever. Canon’s new Pixma iP2600 costs just £25 – pocket money in PC equipment terms, and it’s far from the style-free shoebox we were expecting.

It has a similar glossy black exterior to the more expensive Pixma models, which gives it a sleek sheen that stands out from most ultra-low budget devices. And it’s practical too: the top lifts up to form a 100-sheet input tray, while the front folds down for the output tray and a small plastic extender rotates out to hold the prints. It’s USB only, but for basic everyday printing that’s not a problem.

Canon quotes print speeds of 17ppm and 7.8ppm for mixed text and graphics in draft and standard modes respectively, but we got nothing of the sort out of the box. As with many Pixma printers the driver is set to a medium dry-time by default which forces a pause in the middle of each page; it’s totally unnecessary for all but the most solid areas of ink, and removing it allows you to get closer to the claimed speeds.

We got a reasonable 8ppm in draft and 7.4ppm in normal mode. A 6 x 4in photo at best quality took around 100 seconds, and our A4 photo montage test came out in 3mins 19secs. Compared to our A-Listed Pixma iP4500, which produces the same test in 32 seconds, it’s no speed-demon, but it’s impressive given the price.

As you’d expect, the iP2600 uses one black and one tri-colour cartridge, which combined will set you back around as much as the printer itself to replace – this is not meant as a workhorse printer.

it_photo_5615But the quality is excellent: photos are sharp and full of detail, and colours are reasonably accurate. Reds appeared a little orange and washed out in some of our prints, but for running off holiday snaps it’s perfectly acceptable. Text is solid and shows only minor feathering around the edges, and draft output is perfectly readable, which is always a bonus.

The iP2600 lives up to Canon’s usual high standards, and does so at a price that makes it an absolute bargain. Those wanting top quality photos will be better served by the individual ink tanks of the dearer iP4500 or the multifunction MP610, but as a cheap addition to a home PC this is hard to fault.

Basic Specifications

Colour? yes
Resolution printer final 4800 x 1200dpi
Integrated TFT screen? no
Rated/quoted print speed 17PPM
Maximum paper size A4
Duplex function no

Power and noise

Dimensions 442 x 253 x 142mm (WDH)

Performance tests

6x4in photo print time 1min 40s
A4 photo print time 3min 19s
Mono print speed (measured) 8ppm

Media Handling

Borderless printing? yes
Input tray capacity 100 sheets

Connectivity

USB connection? yes
Ethernet connection? no
Bluetooth connection? no
WiFi connection? no

Flash media

SD card reader no
Compact Flash reader no
Memory Stick reader no
xD-card reader no

OS Support

Operating system Windows 7 supported? no
Operating system Windows Vista supported? yes
Operating system Windows XP supported? yes
Operating system Windows 2000 supported? yes
Operating system Windows 98SE supported? no

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