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Hands-on Gear Review
Canon PIXMA MX922 Review
Price: $180 List | $86.61 at Amazon
Pros: Nice interface
Cons: High operating costs, slow
Bottom line: Inexpensive, but high ink costs quickly make it uneconomical
The Canon PIXMA MX922 is an all-in-one color inkjet printer with scanning, copying, and faxing capabilities. It utilizes an interesting design that is fairly easy to use and doesn't take up much desk real estate. Though the printer itself is fairly inexpensive, it had some of the most expensive operating costs of the models we tested. It was also the one of the slowest models we tested, working at less than a third the speed of the fastest model. If you only need to print or scan infrequently, this is a fairly inexpensive way to bring those capabilities into your home. However, if you print any sort of of volume you'll save money in the long run with a more efficient model.
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Our Analysis and Hands-on Test Results
Criteria for Evaluation
This graph shows (in blue) the Canon PIXMA MX922's performance in our testing compared to that of the other printers we tested.
Below we further discuss how the PIXMA MX922 performed in each one of our individual tests.
The PIXMA MX922 produces reasonably good text. It scored a 5 in our text quality testing, which was an average score in a metric that had scores ranging between 2 and 9. Characters looked bold and dark, but there was some pixelation and inconsistencies on the edges, especially with smaller fonts. However, this quality was quite good for an inkjet, and most readers wouldn't notice any blatant issues when perusing pages produced by the PIXMA MX922.
The PIXMA MX922 fared poorly in our cost testing, earning a 4. This was just above the bottom score of 2, and well off from the top score of 7. This low score was mostly due to its black and white printing costs. It produces monochrome documents at about $0.05 per page or $26.67 per ream of paper. This was the second most expensive monochrome printing costs we encountered, and was well above average. It also printed color pages at the fairly high rate of $$0.10 per page or $47.83 per ream. We calculated its estimated lifetime cost at $550, which was approaching the high end of those figures.
Ease of Use
The PIXMA MX922 picked up a score of 7 in our ease of use testing. This was just behind the top score of 9 and comfortably ahead of the low score of 4. The large display offers a setup guide, which makes initial setup quite easy. The display is not a touch screen, but there is a four by four grid of backlit buttons that adjust their functionality based on your current task. For example, if you're navigating menus these buttons are a set of arrows and a select button, but when you enter fax mode they become a standard numeric keypad. There are also dedicated buttons for accessing each one of the PIXMA MX922's various functions. This design isn't quite as intuitive as a touchscreen, but the PIXMA MX922's interface is still relatively easy to use. Our testers were annoyed by the PIXMA MX922's small arm that was meant to catch printed pages, because if you printed more than a few some inevitably ended up on the floor. Also, the lack of both a bypass tray and a flash drive USB on a full functioned all-in-one is a slight downside.
The PIXMA MX922 scored right around average in our graphics and photo quality testing, picking up a 5. This was right in the middle of a metric that saw scores ranging from 2 to 7. Generally simple graphics were of fairly good quality, but some pixelation could be observed upon close inspection. Photos had decent resolution, but often looked overly red, specifically when printing people's faces.
Even with a cheering squad of testers the PIXMA MX922 refused pick up the pace. It was by far the slowest printer we tested. It scored the worst score of 3 in our printing speed testing, putting it well behind the top score of 9. When printing single sided text documents it crawled along at a rate of 6 pages per minute. This was about 1/5 the speed of our fastest model. We're talking Shaquille O'Neil racing against Usain Bolt. That speed dropped to an infuriating 2 pages per minute when printing double sided. Even the most environmentally minded of our testers were tempted to eschew their beliefs and print single sided when using the PIXMA MX922. It also took nearly 6 full minutes to print a full page photograph. It seemed this slow speed was due to data being processed slowly rather than the actual mechanics of the printer. Regardless of the cause, if you're considering printing something of any length on the PIXMA MX922 you might as well make a second pot of coffee, because you're in for a wait.
The PIXMA MX922 lists for $180, a reasonable price for an all-in-one, and at the time of this writing could be easily found online for nearly half that. However, its high ink costs make it more expensive in the long term. There are certainly better values to be found if you're looking for an all-in-one, such as the Brother MFC-L2740DW.
The PIXMA MX922 is a fully featured all-in-one that offers an interesting design at a relatively low initial price. However, due to its expensive black and white printing costs and its incredibly slow printing speeds, most users will probably find that there is another model out there that will better suit their needs.
— Max Mutter and Steven Tata
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