Canon's MAXIFY MB2320 All-in-One, or AIO, Printer

A business-ready AIO printer, a role-reversal for Canon?

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Canon Maxify MB2320 Multifunction AIO. Canon

Pros:

  • Strong feature set for price
  • Dual high-capacity input cassettes
  • 50-sheet ADF
  • Strong performance
  • Good mobile and cloud support
  • Good-looking output

Cons:

  • High black-and-white cost per page
  • Lack of support for Wi-Fi Direct
  • Lack of support for Near-Field Communication, or NFC

Bottom Line: This printer has been out long enough now that it sells for under $100 ($99 at Amazon) and it will probably never go north of a C-note again, and it's well worth that.

Introduction

Here, we’re looking at a mid-range model, the $199.99-MSRP ($99.99 street) MAXIFY MB2320. Price and features place it smack in the center of a five-product offering of four mid- to high-volume MFPs and one single-function (print) machine, Canon debuted going on close to about two years ago. Compared to the competition, this is a lot of printer for $100.

Design and Features

While these MAXIFY AIOs are all gloss-black and somewhat cube-shaped, aside from that, they don’t really look a lot like what we're used to from Canon--Pixmas. Most Pixmas, for instance, are short and squat, and therefore incapable of a lot of capacity. This Maxify, on the other hand, comes with two 250-sheet paper drawers, for a total capacity of 500 sheets. In addition, a 50-sheet auto-duplexing automatic document feeder (ADF) makes scanning, faxing, and making copies of two-sided originals, child’s play.

At 18.3 inches across, 18.1 inches from front to back, 12.6 inches tall, and weighing in at 26.9 pounds, unlike its Pixma predecessors, the MG2320 is a little too big for most desktops.

(Plus, if it’s busy at all, you don’t want it on your desk.) In addition to making copies and scanning from the printer’s control panel to the PCs on your network, the 4.3-inch touch screen allows you to scan to and print from USB thumb drives, as well as several mobile printing options and support for various cloud sites, such as Google Cloud Print, Maxify Printing Solutions, Flickr, Facebook, Twitter, Microsoft Drive, and Dropbox, as well as scanning to and printing from email.

This MAXIFY supports a number of additional mobile device options; in case you’re unfamiliar with today’s most common mobile printing features, check out this About.com “Printing from Your Mobile Device” article.

Performance and Print Quality

I can’t think of a single consumer-grade Pixma known for its print speed; although the majority of them print both high-quality business documents and photos. When it comes to print quality, this MAXIFY is no exception. It churns out business documents much faster than not only Pixmas (which isn’t hard to do), but several other office-oriented models from other manufacturers.

The MB2320 features a new print head and mechanical system, as well as a new Dual Resistant High Density (DRHD) individual ink cartridge system designed for producing output with sharp, optical density, vivid colors, and reformulated inks that are supposed to be marker- and friction-resistant.

What that means to you is that you’ll get great-looking prints—photos and documents—relatively quickly, with excellent text, image, and graphics quality.

Cost Per Page

I’ve been squawking about the CPPs of Pixmas for years. Granted, this is not a Pixma, and you know what, as such it does fairly well on cost per page—for an under-$200 printer that is.

When you use the highest-yield tanks with this Maxify, black-and-white pages run about 2.7 cent each and color pages are about 8.1 cents.

Are these great CPPs? The monochrome number is a bit too high, but not unexpected given the purchase price. The Color CPP is not bad at all for a $100 MFP. But these CPPs are OK only if you don’t plan on printing more than a few hundred pages each month, certainly no more than 1,000. If you do plan to print more, though, you should go with one of the MB5000 series models, such as the Maxify MB5320 reviewed here a while back; their black-and-white CPP, when you use the highest-yield tanks, runs about 1.5 cents.

Believe me, if you print a lot, that 1.2 cents per page can get expensive—about $120 for every 10,000 pages, or put another way, two or three months before you make up the difference between the cost and begin making money. Check out this About.com “When a $150 Printer Can Cost You Thousands” article for a more detailed perspective.

The End

What’s not to like about this MAXIFY? The CPPs? Well, yes, if you print a lot. If so, check out the MB5320, as mentioned. It costs a little more up front, but it’ll pay for itself fast enough. Otherwise, if you don’t print much, the MB2320 should serve you well.

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