Most printers on sale these days are multifunction devices that include a scanner, copier and other features. However, if you're simply looking for a basic printer for light use at home then you might want to opt for Canon's new iP7250. See all budget printer reviews.
Priced at just £79.00, the iP7250 is a standalone printer that provides little in the way of added extras – no scanner, touch-screen controls or memory card slots. It's also rather bulky considering that it's just a straightforward A4 printer.
Yet Canon gets most of the basics right, offering 9600x2400dpi resolution, wireless networking, duplex printing, and the ability to print on to CDs and DVDs. There are two separate paper trays, with the main tray holding 125 sheets and a smaller 20-sheet tray for photos and envelopes.
Canon quotes print speeds of 15 pages per minute for text and 10ppm for mixed text-and-graphics. Our test results put those numbers closer to 12ppm and 7ppm respectively, but that's still perfectly acceptable for such an affordable home printer. Print quality was consistently good too, with smooth, sharp text, colourful graphics and bright, bold photos.
But, as is often the case with cheaper printers, you can get stung when it comes to buying replacement ink cartridges. Text printing isn't too costly, as the iP7250 uses a special black pigment cartridge that is dedicated to just printing text. The high-yield ‘XL' version of this cartridge costs about £13.00 and produces around 500 pages – which works out at about 2.6p per page. We've seen lower costs from a few other printers but that's still reasonable enough for casual use at home.
Unfortunately colour printing works out a lot more expensive. The problem here is that the high-yield colour cartridges don't actually provide very high yields – only around 300 pages, at a cost of £12.00 each for the cyan, magenta and yellow cartridges. That adds up to 12p per page, which is definitely well above average.