Canon’s i-SENSYS MF4890dw is rated at 25ppm and we saw a best speed of 21.1ppm under test, which is close and an impressive speed for a modestly priced multifunction. That was for 20 pages of text, but on more typical, five-page documents, it still managed 15.8ppm, thanks to a quick first-page-out performance.
Adding graphics into the print mix slowed the print a little, but only to 12.5ppm. Duplex is standard on the machine and the same 20-page document printed as 10 duplex pages took 1:27, giving a speed of 13.8 sides per minute.
A copy took 10s from the flatbed and five pages through the ADF came through in 25 seconds, both of which are very respectable times. A 10-side duplex document copied through the ADF in 1:33, which is also quick.
The prints themselves are good quality, with clean, unblemished text, dense black and smooth greyscales, though with fewer shades than some machines, meaning colours from originals can be hard to differentiate.
Photo printing was only reasonable, as nearly all the shadow detail in the image was lost to black. A copy of a greyscale page also showed some of the problems often found with contact scanners, a blotchiness when reproducing greys and de-emphasis of the number of shades.
The scanner has an optical resolution of 600ppi, plenty for OCR and general office tasks and can enhance that through software to 9,600ppi. Scans are good and colour reproduction is fair, though better on vivid business graphics than more subtle natural shades in photos.
The combined drum and toner cartridge is only available in one capacity of 2,100 pages and, using the best price we could find, gives a page cost of 3.2p. This is on the high side, with similar machines having running costs up to 1p per sheet lower.
The Canon i-SENSYS MF4890dw is a good, general-purpose multifunction printer, with the added benefits of duplex scanning, copying and faxing, as well as double-sided print. It’s quick and reasonable easy to use – though some features could be more directly accessed. Running costs are a little high and it will be good when Canon gets its Android app running alongside the iOS one.