Canon, HP's Xmas Ink-Jet Printer Fleet

Canon Pixma IP5200

Just as the Pixma iP4200 replaces the iP4000, the Pixma iP5200 is the natural successor to the Pixma iP5000. The latter was the very first printer to use 1-picoliter droplets, and the iP4200 now does the same. That means that this higher-end model needed to set itself apart in some other way to justify its extra cost of approximately $70. It does this by offering faster speeds.

Ergonomics And Design

Even if there's a two pound difference in weight between the Pixma iP5200 and the Pixma iP4200, the two models look very similar. Again, there's no LCD display or memory-card slot - those features are found only in the Pixma iP6000 line - but there is a PictBridge interface and a USB 2.0 port for connecting to the PC. There's also a version called the Pixma iP5200R, which offers a Wi-Fi interface as standard, something that is more and more appreciated.

The upper tray, with a capacity of 150 sheets, is flanked by a second tray that will be more effective for positioning photo paper or the attachment for CD and DVD printing. There's also automatic duplex printing, which is relatively rare on inkjet models.

As is habitual for Canon, there's a solid software bundle, with five different applications, though some are fairly similar to each another (PhotoRecord and Easy-PhotoPrint, for example). A single application, like the very good ImageZone from HP, would be preferable. However, Canon has chosen to put their software development effort into the driver - which, incidentally, is excellent.