printers

Canon Pixma MG3220 Review

The Canon PIXMA MG3220 is a jack-of-all-trades, but master of none.

August 03, 2012
Our editors review and recommend products to help you buy the stuff you need. If you make a purchase by clicking one of our links, we may earn a small share of the revenue. Our picks and opinions are independent from any business incentives.

Introduction

Say hello to the Pixma MG3220, an entry-level inkjet printer by Canon. This multifunction printer managed to achieve good color accuracy, but printed at a snail's pace. Given its stature and price point, this printer would be ideal for a family looking to do a moderate amount of printing.

Design & Usability

Well, at least they included the cable.

The setup procedure was very standard. However, when we were calibrating the MG3220 there were some issues. The calibration required us to press specific buttons: Instead of telling us to hold down the scan button for five seconds, the setup screen provided a diagram. This would be fine if we were right next to the printer, but we set it up in another part of the room. It was a very minor annoyance, but an annoyance nonetheless. Other than following the instructions, there were no other tricks to get this printer ready to go.

There is little chance of hitting the wrong button. Tweet It

All the buttons on the MG3220 were clearly labeled. The naming system was very straight forward. For example, when we pressed the button labeled scan, the scanner activated. Since all the controls are spread out and vertically aligned, there is little chance of hitting the wrong button.

Unfortunately, the MG3220 lacks any media slots. With no SD card slot, Bluetooth, or Ethernet port, this means the only ways of connecting to this printer are via an A-to-B USB cable or over 802.11b/g/n wireless LAN. However, Canon gets high praise for including a USB cable in the box, a rarity in today's world.

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Features & Performance

A slow, but accurate printer.

For an entry-level printer, the MG3220 boasts a competent lineup of options. A streamlined control interface coupled with the fact that everything we needed—including a USB cable—came in the box, made this printer easy to setup and use.

The MG3220 runs off two ink cartridges, one black and the other CMY (cyan, magenta, yellow). This made for an easy setup: just pop in the two cartridges and you're good to go. However, it does create an inefficient situation. If any of the colors in the CMY run out, it becomes functionally useless. To help remedy this, Canon included spare black and color cartridges. You will need them, after 40 prints we received a warning telling us that the color ink cartridge was near empty.

Anything that is up to 8.5 inches wide and 14 inches long will not daunt the MG3220. Tweet It

The MG3220 covers all its media bases. Anything that is up to 8.5 inches wide and 14 inches long will not daunt the MG3220. However, if you're looking to print things like banners, this printer will not do. Like most entry-level multifunctional printers, the MG3220 can hold up to 100 pages of plain paper. If you wanted to print all those pages back-to-back, it'd take approximately two hours and twenty-four minutes.

Overall, color accuracy was fairly good outside of some troubles reproducing blue values. That being said, the color gamut is wide and should be able to handle even the most extreme art prints. However, this all comes with a major tradeoff: terrible print speed.

Conclusion

Although the price is low and the color accuracy is high, this printer is painfully slow.

The MG3220 is an entry-level multifunction printer, essentially a jack-of-all-trades that is the master of none. Given its price range, it did fairly well in the color accuracy and color gamut arena. That being said, the MG3220 has its issues.

Since we're pros over here, we had no trouble setting up this printer. However, the thought that the instructions could have been more clear did cross our mind. In color tests, the MG3220 managed to perform adequately. Although it could produce deep contrasts, the MG3220 had trouble with fine details: edges were blurred and minute details were lost in translation. The biggest moan we had was over the MG3220's print speed: It took almost thirteen minutes to print out five 4x6 photos. We can't fathom how long an entire photo album would keep us waiting.

All our gripes aside, the MG3220 is slow, but solid. At $79.99, it's reasonably priced. However, given that there are faster entry-level printers with little loss in color accuracy, like the Kodak ESP 3.2, we find ourselves hard pressed to recommend the MG3220 to the average family. It would be a good match for someone who needs more color accuracy, but not more free time.

Our editors review and recommend products to help you buy the stuff you need. If you make a purchase by clicking one of our links, we may earn a small share of the revenue. Our picks and opinions are independent from any business incentives.
Our editors review and recommend products to help you buy the stuff you need. If you make a purchase by clicking one of our links, we may earn a small share of the revenue. Our picks and opinions are independent from any business incentives.
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Our editors review and recommend products to help you buy the stuff you need. If you make a purchase by clicking one of our links, we may earn a small share of the revenue. Our picks and opinions are independent from any business incentives.

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