What is the Canon MAXIFY MB2150?
Canon’s MAXIFY MB2150 is the latest entry-level machine in its popular home office range. It continues to prove that a mid-range inkjet can do just as good a job in the office as a cheap laser.
Canon MAXIFY MB2150 – Design and features
Using the same, big black box design of the rest of the MAXIFY range, the MB2150 only breaks this look with its 250-sheet A4 paper tray, which has to be extended from the front of the machine before you start printing.
Set into the cover of the printer’s flatbed scanner is a 50-sheet Automatic Document Feeder (ADF), more than enough capacity for most home or small offices, though it does not support duplex scanning, so double-sided sheets will have to go in twice.
The control panel, also set into the scanner lid, uses a 62mm colour LCD display and a neat set of physical push buttons. The firmware provides useful instructions and explanations, as well as icons for function selection. As with many new printers, it’s very fussy that you tell it of any changes to loaded paper, each time you remove the paper tray.
There’s a single USB port set into the lower left of the front panel and you can use this to upload documents or photos for printing or to download page images from the scanner.
The four ink cartridges, which are only available in high yield, XL versions, slide in from the front and the machine helpfully lines its carriage up with a set of guides for each of the cartridges. They’re still quite fiddly to click into place, but you shouldn’t have to do this too often.
Software includes the usual array of Canon utilities and there are good iOS and Android apps that find and connect with the printer for easy image and document printing.
Canon MAXIFY MB2150 – Performance, print quality and running costs
Canon claims speeds of 19ppm and 13ppm for mono and colour print on the MAXIFY MB2150 and in our mono test we saw 13.6ppm for the five-page document test, rising to 15.6ppm for the 20 page one. These are not that far off the published specs and very competitive speeds for an inkjet printer.
The colour print speed is rather slower, at a measured 6.3ppm, but this is still respectable for home office use. A colour copy completed in 17 seconds and five mono pages copied from the automatic document feeder took just 25 seconds. 15 x 10cm photos took around 45 seconds, which is again quite quick, though it’s easier to print photos fast when they’re not borderless.
The quality of prints from the machine is very good, with well-formed characters and dense text. There’s perhaps slightly more feathering around the characters than with slower machines, but it’s more than acceptable for general office use. Colours in business graphics are bright and dense and a colour copy showed only a slight degradation from the original. Photo prints are clean and show good detail in shadow as well as bright areas.
It’s a shame the machine can’t print borderless photos, as the photo quality is well up to that of Canon’s home inkjets, which can.
At the best prices I could find for the four ink cartridges, page costs come out at 2.0p for a mono page and 5.2p for colour. These are competitive with similarly-priced machines from other manufacturers and prove once again that cheap colour laser printers still can’t get close to cheap mid-range inkjets in terms of running cost. Very few colour laser printers under £300 can produce a colour page for 5.2p.
Should I buy the Canon MAXIFY MB2150?
The small office/home office all-in-one market is getting increasingly crowded and there are several alternatives to the Canon machine. Brother’s MFC-J5335DW is almost identically priced and includes twin paper trays and touchscreen control, though its print quality is lower than this machine’s.
The Epson WorkForce Pro WF-3725DWF is also a contender, and includes a touchscreen and borderless photo print, but its running costs appear higher.
The Canon MAXIFY MB2150 is a good, no-nonsense small business inkjet all-in-one. It gets on with the job, is quick to print, produces high quality text and graphics and is not expensive to run. It would benefit from a secondary paper path for special media (available in other models in the range) and the ability to print borderless photos.