Canon i-SENSYS MF229dw: A great value multifunction printer for home and small business [review]

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There’s no shortage of cut-price mono laser printers on the market, but the multifunction Canon i-SENSYS MF229dw is the perfect example of why it’s worth paying a little extra to get a printer that can do everything you’d want it to, and more besides.

Obviously it’s a mono printer, so the one thing it can’t do is output color pages, but aside from that it can print single and double-sided, scan (in 24-bit color), copy pages, and fax documents. It’s a wireless printer, and you can send photos and documents to print directly from iOS and Android devices.

Setting it up is very easy, you just remove all the orange tape and tabs, install the software, power it up and then use the touch sensitive panel on the front to configure everything and connect it to your wireless network (Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n). This last step is done through the panel, but the process is quick and painless. You can also connect the printer via a wired network (10/100 Base-T Ethernet). You have to choose one or the other networked methods, not both, and wired LAN is the default.

The angle of the operation panel on the front can be adjusted to suit, and once it’s all up and running, you can use the touch screen to copy, scan and fax documents, access the address book, and adjust various settings.

Text is output at 600 x 600 dpi, and is pin sharp. The quality of photos is similarly impressive at up to 1200 x 1200 dpi with image refinement.

Canon quotes printing speeds at 27 pages a minute, and outputting a 27 page single-sided document took exactly that. Printing the same document in duplex took one minute and 45 seconds. The Quick First Print feature reduces the waiting time for the initial page, which is a great addition.

The scanner has an optical resolution of 600 dpi and this can be stretched to 9600 dpi with enhancement. You have the choice of flatbed and a 50 sheet Duplex Automatic Document Feeder (DADF), and the flatbed can expand to take thicker material, such as books and brochures. Quality is very good, and A4 photos took on average 7 seconds to scan in full color at 300 dpi, and 17 seconds at 600 dpi.

The MF229dw works well as a photocopier, and can enlarge and reduce documents (arrange multiple documents on one sheet, for example), copy one sided documents on to both sides of the paper, and collate your copies. There is a choice of copy modes -- Text, Text/Photo, Text/Photo+, and Photo. Copying an A4 photo in Text/Photo took 9 seconds, and 15 seconds in Photo. The difference in quality between modes is very noticeable.

Faxing is still a thing for some businesses, and the MF229dw’s Super G3 fax can send a page every three seconds, and store up to 256 pages in memory. There are four one-touch dials and 100 coded dials.

There’s very little to dislike about the MF229dw. It’s a tad on the chunky side perhaps, Gigabit networking would be good and 256MB memory isn’t exactly generous, but those are minor complaints. It’s a very capable multi-function model that offers superb print and scan quality, and which I can definitely recommend without reservation.

If you’re looking for a new, stylish and versatile office printer, the MF229dw should be near the top of your list.

It’s available from Ebuyer for £241, including delivery.

Technical Specifications

General

Device Type Fax / copier / printer / scanner
Fax Type Plain paper
Printing Technology Laser - monochrome
Monthly Duty Cycle (max) 10000 pages
Display 6 lines
Display Features Touch screen
PC Connection Availability Yes
PC Connection LAN, Wi-Fi(n), USB 2.0

Memory

Standard Memory 256 MB

Copying

Max Copying Speed Up to 27 ppm
Max Copying Resolution Up to 600 x 600 dpi
Grey Scale Half-Tones 256
Max Document Enlargement 400%
Max Document Reduction 25%
Maximum Copies 99
Exposure Modes Text, photo, text and photo
Automatic Duplexing Yes
Copying Features Toner Save, 2 on 1, 4 on 1, ID Card Copy

Printing

Max Printing Resolution Up to 1200 x 1200 dpi
Max Printing Speed Up to 27 ppm
Printer Drivers / Emulations UFRII LT
Image Enhancement Technology Automatic Image Refinement
Automatic Duplexing Yes
First Print Out Time B/W 6 sec

Scanning

Automatic Duplexing Yes
Optical Resolution 600 x 600 dpi
Interpolated Resolution 9600 x 9600 dpi
Color Depth 24 bit

Fax Machine

Compatibility Super G3
Max Transmission Speed 33.6 Kbps
Fax Resolutions 200 x 400 dpi, 200 x 200 dpi, 200 x 100 dpi
Total Memory Capacity Up to 256 pages
PC Faxing Yes

Fax Machine Features

Error Correction Mode (ECM) Yes
One Touch Dialing 4 station(s)
Speed Dialing 104 station(s)
Broadcast Transmission 114 stations
Features Fax forwarding, Distinctive Ring Pattern Detection (DRPD), automatic redialing, remote reception, Dual Access, fax activity reports

Document & Media Handling

Min Original Size 127 x 140 mm
Max Original Size A4 (210 x 297 mm), Legal (216 x 356 mm)
Original Type Sheets
Document Feeder Capacity 50 sheets
Min Media Size 76.2 x 127 mm
Max Media Size A4/Legal
Min Media Weight 60 g/m2
Max Media Weight 163 g/m2
Supported Media Type Transparencies, envelopes, plain paper, labels, recycled paper, heavy-weight paper
Supported Media Sizes ANSI A (Letter) (216 x 279 mm), Legal (216 x 356 mm), Executive (184 x 267 mm), A4 (210 x 297 mm), A5 (148 x 210 mm), B5 (176 x 250 mm), Statement (139.7 x 215.9 mm), 76.2 x 127 mm, Oficio (216 x 343 mm)
Supported Envelope Sizes International DL (110 x 220 mm), Com-10 (105 x 241 mm), International C5 (162 x 229 mm), Monarch (98.4 x 190.5 mm)
Standard Media Capacity 250 sheets
Bypass Feeder Capacity 1 sheets
Output Trays Capacity 100 sheets
Document & Media Handling Details Input tray - 250 sheets size: 76.2 x 210 mm - Legal (216 x 356 mm)/A4 (210 x 297 mm) weight: 60 g/m2 - 163 g/m2 � Bypass tray - 1 sheets size: 76.2 x 127 mm - Legal (216 x 356 mm)/A4 (210 x 297 mm) weight: 60 g/m2 - 163 g/m2 � Output tray - 100 sheets � ADF - 50 sheets size: 127 x 140 mm - Legal (216 x 356 mm)/A4 (210 x 297 mm)
Speed Details Printing : up to 27 ppm ( A4 ) - B/W � Copying : up to 27 ppm ( A4 ) - B/W

Connections

Interfaces 1 x USB 2.0 - 4 PIN USB Type B � 1 x LAN - RJ-45
Operating System Support MS Windows XP, Linux, MS Windows Server 2003, MS Windows 7, MS Windows Vista, MS Windows Server 2008, MS Windows Server 2008 R2, Apple Mac OS X 10.5.8 or later, MS Windows Server 2012, Windows 8, Android, iOS, Windows 8.1, MS Windows Server 2012 R2
Software Included Drivers & Utilities, Presto! PageManager, Canon MF Toolbox

Power

Voltage Required AC 230 V ( 50/60Hz )
Power Consumption Operational 1300 Watt
Power Consumption Standby 5.8 Watt
Power Consumption Sleep 1.7 Watt

Miscellaneous

First Copy Out Time B/W 9 sec
Consumables Included 1 x Cartridge ( black ) - up to 1700 pages

Dimensions & Weight

Width 39 cm
Depth 44.8 cm
Height 36 cm
Weight 13.1 kg

Environmental Parameters

Sound Emission 43 dB (idle) / 51 dB (operating)
Humidity Range Operating 20 - 80% (non-condensing)

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