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Canon PIXMA iP4850 review



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Canon PIXMA iP4850
  • Canon PIXMA iP4850
  • Canon PIXMA iP4850
  • Canon PIXMA iP4850
  • Canon PIXMA iP4850
  • Canon PIXMA iP4850
  • Canon PIXMA iP4850
  • PIXMA iP4850 Inkjet Printer - Colour - Photo Print - Desktop (20 Second Photo - 9600 x 2400 dpi - 300 sheets Input Capacity - USB, PictBridge - PC, Mac)


Our Score:


Although all-in-one printer sales outstrip single-function printer sales several times over, there are still plenty of situations where a conventional printer is the right choice and you can save money, if you don't need the scanning and copying functions. Canon's PIXMA iP4580 is slightly more than a single-function printer, as it can print on plain paper, photo paper and directly onto coated CDs and DVDs.

It’s another of Canon's high gloss, piano black boxes, with a silver band around its chamfered top edge. You'll need to keep a clean duster to hand if you want the printer to maintain its pristine looks.

There are two main paper paths, from a telescopic, fold and lift tray at the rear and a paper cassette that pushes in and projects from the front. Both these sources can take 150 sheets of plain paper, though Canon suggests you leave the rear tray for photo paper. This makes sense, as you can then leave the rear tray closed most of the time, which helps keep dust out of its mechanism. The output tray is another telescopic support, formed from the inside of the fold-down front cover.

The only controls are set into the heavily curved right, front edge of the machine and consist of two buttons, each with inset, coloured LEDs. One is for power and the other for paper feed. Below the buttons is a PictBridge socket, so you can print from most digital cameras, using the camera display to select images.

The only data connection to the PIXMA iP4850 is a single USB socket at the rear and the suite of Windows software includes Easy PhotoPrint and CD LabelPrint, with equivalents for Mac owners, too.

The CD/DVD print software is particularly easy to use and works much like a simple desktop publishing application for importing and positioning images and text. Flip down an internal cover just behind the printer's front cover and it provides a support for the CD/DVD carrier, which can take regular and mini discs, as well as the smaller, credit-card sized ones.

The machine uses five individual ink tanks in a semi-permanent print head, with two black inks for text on plain paper and photos. They all snap easily into place and are equipped with Canon's handy LED indicators, which show when the cartridges are properly located and flash when ink is low, so you can tell at a glance which need replacing.


January 30, 2011, 2:20 pm

Still have an old Canon ip4300, it works very well so is there any point in buying this in that its significantly better?

Canon cartridges are way too expensive though. Also the startup time from cold to printing a document is an eternity, how does this printer do on that front?


January 30, 2011, 3:03 pm

What exactly is the difference between this and previous models?

I love Canon printers and now own several. However, Canon has a nasty habit of releasing newer models for the sake of it. This just leads to confusion and several models of ink cartridges - pushing up costs.

Come on Canon - you make great printers, but go easy on the model cycle - it can't be very good for your 'Green Credentials' for developing so may models.

Martin Daler

January 31, 2011, 12:39 am

@Prem. I think the only difference is that this is a new model, period. It really is no different from my 5+ year old IP5200R. But, being new, it gets reviewed on TR, it gets reviewed in the magazines, and that is where people looking to buy a new printer look. Who buys a 5+ year old model - we drive this insanity.


January 31, 2011, 5:54 am

It seems like the reverse is true at the top end of the Canon range, with the wide format units. The difference between the x300 series now and the W6400/6200 of five years ago is amazing, and there has been 3 model releases in that time, the x000 series in 06, then the x100 series in 07 and the x300 series in 2010. The print quality has improved massively, with twice the number of inks and all the old bugbears of inkjet printing pretty much banished. The printers are laden with ever more features too. The same applies to HP and Epson as well.

The consumer inkjets of today are pretty much identical to the ones 5 years ago, the only real addition has been wifi - It's only when it packs in that anyone replaces them. The churn in models is needed so it makes your printer look out of date in the hope you'll buy another.

Martin Daler

February 1, 2011, 12:31 am

@Mattj, you'd be right about the new models only adding wifi over the 5 year old models, except that my 5+ yr old IP5200R has....wifi :) And ethernet, duplex, CD printing, twin paper trays, plus a strange water-drop style logo over a front USB port - no idea what that is! I really truly don't see anything new in the new models.


December 16, 2015, 11:06 am

I was given a Canon Pixma ip4850 with some ink left in it. At first when I tried it out, it printed 2 pages, but I noticed the ink was being used up very fast. I ordered some more ink cartridges, replaced those that were empty and print 1 page. Now printer is making a lot of noise (like something is happening); paper doesn't go through (no paper jam) and ink just spews out of cartridges at an alarming rate. Any help to overcome this problem would be appreciated.

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