While wireless printers have certainly been around for a couple of years, they still aren’t as prevalent as regular wired ones. There are several reasons for the disparity, but the bottom line is cost. Wireless printers are usually the top-end models, and carry a ton of features that most users don’t really need. That’s not the case with Canon’s newest wireless all-in-one printer, the Pixma MG3170. This AIO is able to connect to your home network sans wires without driving up the price of admission. Let’s take a closer look at it.
With dimensions of 449 x 304 x 152mm, the PIXMA MG3170 is certainly a substantial printer. You will have to clear out dedicated space for this particular machine somewhere in your home or office, that’s for sure. The MG3170’s controls are on the panel on the top left of the printer. It’s scanner tray can accommodate documents of up to A4 size. Similarly, it can take up to A4 size paper on its front feeding tray. The Pixma MG3170 is capable of duplex printing, which should theoretically save you some pages of paper if you’re printing backto- back.
To be able to offer the MG3170 at a price that most regular folks can afford, Canon had to cut a few features found on their higher-end, Wi-Fi-enabled printers. The most obvious omission for the MG3170 is a detailed LCD screen. Instead, you’re given a relatively simple LED display. This means you cannot connect the MG3170 to your network without the aid of a PC. This isn’t a big problem (you will have to connect your PC to the device anyway) but it’s something that may irk advanced users who want to start printing as soon as possible.
Setup of the MG3170 is pretty easyyou pop in the software that comes with it into your CD drive (if your PC doesn’t have a CD drive, you can always download the software from Canon’s website) and choose which connection type you’d like to useeither USB or wireless. If you select wireless, the software will install the necessary drivers into your machine before showing you the dialogue where you can connect to the wireless network of your choice. From there, it’s all a matter of selecting the correct SSID and encryption method then entering the password to the network and you’re in business.
The MG3170 uses Canon’s two-ink system-one color cartridge and one black cartridge. This isn’t the best setup for printers as it forces you to change out the color ink tank when one of the colors run out even if there’s still plenty of ink left for the other colors. At its price range, that’s to be expected as Canon usually reserves the multiple-ink system for their higher end models.
Print quality is good, although we did notice that the printed pictures ofthis month’s cover seemed a bit darker than what’s displayed on the monitor. Prints from our photos weren’t quite as bad, so we’re willing to attribute the darker prints on our cover to software issues. The MG3170 isn’t the speediest of printers, but its 5ppm for color and 9ppm for mono printing performance is more than adequate for most people. It’s also capable of printing photos in less than a minute, and typically needs around 45 seconds to print out a 4×6 photo.
The MG3170 is also capable of scanning documents up to A4 size. Users can also produce copies oftheir documents using the scanner as well, but we won’t recommend doing that very often as you’ll go through the ink stores of the device relatively quickly. As far as scanning speed is concerned, the MG3170 is able to scan an A4 document in 14 seconds at 300 dpi. Priced at around PHP 4,495, the MG3170 is probably the most affordable Wi-Fi printer around. While it lacks some of the nicer features of higher-end models, this wireless AIO will definitely free up your home or office from the curse of cluttered wiring.
Drivers:40mm Range:16Hz to 20kHz Cable:8.2 ft.
Plug: standard 3.5mm,with 6.3mm adapter
Mac input power: 200mW
• Easy to setup
• Duplex capability
• Two ink system
If you’re looking for an affordable,
Wi-Fi enabled printer,then the Canon
Pixma MG3170 might be for you.
Words by John Nieves
First published in Gadgets Magazine March 2013