With a glossy black finish, sleek curves and a wide variety of mobile printing options, the Canon PIXMA MG6220 looks like a good choice for anyone looking to buy a serious all-in-one printer for their home or small business. Still, compared with competing all-in-one printers from HP and Kodak, the $199 Canon PIXMA MG6220 features a price tag as hefty as its weight. Is the PIXMA MG6220 worth the money?
Click to EnlargeThe 18.5 x 14.5 x 6.9-inch Canon PIXMA MG6220 isn't as wide or long as the HP Photosmart 5520 (21.5 x 17.5 x 5.6 inches), but the extra inch of height makes the MG6220 appear much larger than it actually measures. At 20.1 pounds, the printer also weighs significantly more than either the Photosmart 5520 (11.2 pounds) or the Kodak ESP 3.2 (16.5 x 12.4 x 7 inches, 11.5 pounds). Only the business-focused Epson WorkForce 845 (17.6 x 14.5 x 11.8 inches, 22 pounds) matches the PIXMA MG6220 pound-for-pound.
Like the Photosmart 5520 and WorkForce 845, the PIXMA MG6220 sports an all-black look. The glossy finish, which covers every inch of the MG6220's surface, looks sexy but picks up fingerprints and smudges easily. The lid gently slopes upward, giving the printer a nice, sleek look. A height-adjustable 3.9 x 2.75-inch color LCD sits in the center of the lid, above a scroll wheel (used for navigating the menu) and three selection buttons. A soft blue LED, found on right-front slope of the lid, lets the user know if the Wi-Fi is enabled.
The collapsible output tray can be found on the front of the printer beneath the lid. A 150-sheet input cassette rests just below the output tray, while a 150-sheet auto sheet feeder is on the back. The printer can handle paper of size 4 x 6, 5 x 7, 8 x 10, letter, legal and No. 10 envelopes.
Just to the right of the output tray are a USB Port, Memory Stick Duo reader, SD card reader and CompactFlash card reader. The AC and Ethernet ports are on the back of the printer.
Setting up the PIXMA MG6220 was simple but time-consuming. After we installed the ink cartridges, the PIXMA spent about 4 minutes clearing the print head. After that, alignment took requires another 5 minutes of waiting while the printer went through its automated motions. Ultimately, it took more than 15 minutes to set up the MG6220, compared with the less than 10 minutes for the HP Photosmart 5520 and Kodak ESP 3.2.
PIXMA Cloud Print
In addition to standard wireless printing, the PIXMA MG6220 allows users to print pictures directly from online photo albums such as CANON iMAGE GATEWAY and Picasa, without having to use a computer. Accessing photos first requires connecting to the online gallery via the MG6220's control panel. Inputting the username and password can be a pain, as you must select each character separately using the scroll wheel, but once the printer is connected to an album, it can access photos at any time (provided it has a connection to the Internet).
PIXMA Cloud Print works fairly quickly - after connecting to our Picasa account, we printed a 4 x 6 photograph in 1 minute and 6 seconds, a little less than 10 seconds longer than it took to print the same picture over a standard wireless connection. We only wish we could send photos directly to the printer while browsing our gallery in Picasa, not just the other way around.
Google Cloud Print
Like the HP Photosmart 5520, Epson WorkForce 845 and Kodak ESP 3.2, the PIXMA MG6220 sports Google Cloud Print connectivity, which lets users send files directly to the printer using a variety of Google products, including Chrome, Chrome OS, Gmail for mobile and Google Docs for mobile.
While it sounds great in theory, getting Google Cloud Print to work on the MG6220 proved to be a pain. Our printer didn't ship with the latest firmware installed. More annoyingly, installing the firmware requires a Standard-B USB cable, which doesn't ship with the PIXMA MG6220. The fact that you have to download a third-party app to use Google Cloud Print from an Android device - we used Cloud Print - only added to our frustration.
Unfortunately, Google Cloud Print works just as slowly as its setup process. When printing a two-page black and white Word document, a two-page color PDF and a 4 x 6 color photo, the PIXMA MG6220 took 1:10, 1:13 and 1:23, respectively - about the same as the HP Photosmart 5520 (1:05, 0:55 and 2:30) and Epson WorkForce 845 (0:58, 2:15 and 2:40). The Kodak ESP 3.2 printed the documents more quickly, turning in times of 0:53, 0:53 and 1:12, respectively.
The PIXMA MG6220 also gives users the option of printing from their iPad, iPhone (3GS or later) or iPod Touch (3rd generation or later) using Apple's print-over-wireless software, AirPrint. As usual for Apple products, AirPrint is incredibly elegant and intuitive, allowing you to send documents and photos to your printer with just a few taps. Setting up AirPrint proved much easier than using Google Cloud Print - Apple's software automatically detects any AirPrint-enabled printers on the same wireless network as your iOS device, so all you have to do is tap print, select the printer and tap print again.
A two-page black-and-white Word document printed in 57 seconds, a two-page color PDF in 62 seconds, and a 4 x 6 color photograph in 1:26, compared with a faster 27 seconds, 52 seconds and (slightly slower) 1:30 on the Photosmart 5520. Still, this device printed the documents more quickly than the Epson WorkForce 845, which completed the jobs in 1:15, 1:18 and 1:41, respectively.
Printer Performance and Photo Quality
The Canon PIXMA MG6220 offers comparable, although slightly slower, wireless printing speeds than the HP Photosmart 5520, Kodak ESP 3.2 and Epson WorkForce 845. When printing a two-page black and white Word document, a two-page color PDF and 4 x 6 color photo over the wireless network, the PIXMA MG6220 printed a Word document in 27 seconds (0:22 on the HP, 0:22 on the Kodak and 0:18 on the Epson), a PDF in 45 seconds (0:35 on the HP, 0:47 on the Kodak and 0:34 on the Epson) and a 4 x 6 photo in 57 seconds (0:49 on the HP, 1:17 on the Kodak and 1:20 on the Epson).
Thankfully, what the PIXMA MG6220 lacks in performance it makes up for in quality. Although the MG6220 suffers from subtle graininess on the text of printed black-and-white Word documents, the images on our color PDF appeared much more crisp and vibrant when printed on the PIXMA MG6220 than on the Photosmart 5520.
When printing photos, the PIXMA MG6220 exhibited more accurate color reproduction than the Photosmart 5520. When comparing a 4 x 6 photo of a Sonoma Valley vineyard, the blue sky, green leaves and red shingles of a barn roof appear deeper in hue, more closely matching the picture on our computer than the overly bright colors produced by the Photosmart 5520.
The Canon PIXMA MG6220 comes with six ink cartridges: cyan, magenta, yellow, gray and two black ink cartridges. Replacement cartridges cost $13.99 each, except for the larger of the two black ink cartridges, which costs $15.99. Canon also sells a four-color pack (black, cyan, magenta and yellow) for $55.99, a three-color pack (cyan, magenta and yellow) for $39.99, and a black ink twin pack for $29.99. By comparison, replacement cartridges for the HP Photosmart 5520 (which yield roughly the same number of pages) cost just $9.99 each for colored ink and $11.99 for black ink.
Besides wireless and USB, the PIXMA MG6220 also gives users the option of printing via Memory Stick Duo, SD Card or CompactFlash card.
Beneath the lid, the MG6220 sports a flatbed scanner that can capture images (8.5 x 11.7-inch maximum document size) at a maximum optical resolution of 4,800 x 4,800 or interpolated resolution of 19,200 x 19,200 dpi. The scanner supports JPEG, TIFF and PDF file types.
The scanner doubles as a copier as well, with features including 4-in-1 and 2-in-1 copying, auto duplex, face brightening and fading correction, and fit-to-page.
Click to EnlargeThe $199 Canon PIXMA MG6220 delivers high-quality prints and a bevy of helpful features, including AirPrint and the ability to print photos from your Picasa account without touching your PC. However, this device's slow setup process, below-average printing speeds and relatively expensive ink cartridges prevent it from joining the ranks of the best all-in-one printers.