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Printers can be ten-a-penny nowadays, we mean by that devices that just print are really cheap. The multifunction ones are a little bit more expensive. But Canon has managed to punt out a multifunction printer in the form of its MP540 unit for under £70 and seemingly without skimping on features.

The Canon Pixma MP540 is perhaps bigger than its rival Brother device but within its footprint manages to squeeze in an LCD, card reader, two paper trays, single ink tanks and a 2400dpi scanner to name a few.

Its paper tray is situated underneath at its base decreasing its footprint so small enough to sit on a desk without taking up too much desk real estate.

Setting up takes around ten minutes from getting it out of the box to installing the ink cartridges (a great thing here is that when you install the right cartridge in the right slot a light comes on – ingenious and time saving). Setting up the printer to work with both a Mac and PC is reasonable. We would like the Mac set up to be a little more easier to do (a couple of quirks in setting up seemed to throw us off a bit).

The LCD display is easy to navigate and the click wheel is just about ok to use with it. The menus are thoughtfully laid out and easy to understand.

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But the real strength with the printer is, unsurprisingly, the printing. The colours came out exceptionally well with the photos coming out almost professional quality (this is definitely true when you use the Canon photo paper provided as a sample with the box).

Text looked sharp and even photocopies were pleasingly near accurate to originals. We detected no spread in the ink on our test prints. Printing was fast in normal mode but best mode meant that printing could take a lot longer to finish.

The scanner was not only quiet in operation but fast too. the results from scanning were, as with copying, an excellent facsimile.

Overall, for £65 (ex. VAT) this multifunction device not only looks good but delivers great results and won’t break the bank to boot.

Rating: 8.5/10

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