Canon claims a quite modest 14ppm for the i-SENSYS MF-8280Cw, but we only saw around three quarters of this speed. Our 20-page text print returned 10.6ppm, while the more typical 5-page document gave 6.8ppm. The black text and colour graphics test gave 6.1ppm.
This doesn't make the machine particularly quick; taking the Workforce Pro WP-4025DW again as comparison, it reached 12.9ppm printing black and 6.5ppm on the colour document. It can also print duplex, of course, something the Canon laser can't. On the Canon, a 15 x 10cm photo printed on A4 from a PC took a very respectable 23s and from a USB drive was slightly faster, at 20s.
We should also have been able to print from our Samsung Galaxy Mini Android smartphone, via Canon’s Mobile Printing App. However, we couldn’t find this in the Play Store and couldn’t download it from Canon’s site, as it was declared incompatible. Canon is investigating.
The print quality is very good; black text is light, but clean and very readable, with no signs of toner spatter and smooth diagonals and curves. Colour graphics are also even and bright, with no banding and good registration of black text over colour.
A colour copy was very good and colour reproduction was unusually close to the original. Photo prints were a little ‘picture postcard’, with some pastels coming out too intense and some loss of detail in darker, shadowed areas.
Using the high yield black cartridge, which offers 2,400 pages, and the colour cartridges which come in just one yield of 1,500 pages, gives page costs of 3.1p and 13.0p for black and colour, respectively. These are reasonable for this class of laser printer, though substantially more than from many small office inkjets.
As you've probably picked up from this review, we feel the price of this machine is quite high, given its feature set. There's no duplex print and no provision for loading more than 150 sheets of paper at a time.
In comparison, something like the Dell 2155cdn is considerably faster, has duplex print as standard and much more flexible paper handling. There’s no fax on that machine, though.
The Canon i-SENSYS MF-8280Cw is a straightforward colour laser multifunction printer, which benefits from very good print quality, excellent scans and full fax facilities. It’s quite slow, though, has no duplex print and comes with an annoyingly-small paper tray. Check out its main competitors before deciding.