Canon is setting its store by the compact elegance of this model. It’ll certainly appeal to lovers of glossy black who don’t mind the finger marks on the hood. At 44.9 x 30.4 x 15.2 cm for 5 Kg, it’s certainly compact - this model has been designed for those looking to position their printer on a shelf. You feed the paper in at the front as well as accessing the cartridges from there, thanks to the FastFront system.
In terms of functionality, it has wi-fi and duplex mode but no fax or card reader. For these options you have to go higher up the Canon range. Nor is there a touchscreen or touch sensitive control panel.
Load and receive paper from the front
Change cartridges from the front
When the ink runs out, you can force this model to print by pressing on the 'Stop/Restart' button for a few seconds, though this is only a fallback solution as it alters print quality.
SpeedAs expected, the print speeds here don’t beat any records. Our speed readings were however rather surprising. We followed exactly the same testing procedures as usual, but in spite of Canon’s promises to increase print speeds and the fact that the MG3150 is higher up the range, our readings have it at identical speeds to the Pixma MG2150, both for photos and office documents. Our rating is therefore also the same: speeds are comparable to those on other entry level models. It gives 8 pages per minute (ppm) colour and 6 ppm black & white, whereas the tech spec claims 5 ppm colour and 9.2 ppm black and white. These speeds are the opposite of those for the Epson Stylus SX420W which gives 4 ppm colour and 8 ppm black & white. Canon drying times are always longer.
Photo speeds are much faster than those for the Epson Stylus SX420W. To print an A4 photo the Canon takes 2 minutes 44 seconds, compared to 4 minutes for the Stylus. In 10 x 15 cm format, Canon retains the advantage with 1 minute 5 seconds against 1 minute 24 seconds for the Epson.
QualityPrint quality is very much comparable to that of the MG2150 as the two mono cartridges are the same. Office document prints are good, as always with Canons. With graphics it’s not so impressive, with the main fault, as the image below shows, being the size of droplets visible in the shaded colour areas. It looks pretty poor overall, though the letters are visible and the shading respected. The characters in the yellow area at the bottom are smudged and give a rather messy look to the graph.
The dE 94 graph – representing colour difference – shows however that the main issue is with the blues and greys, which isn’t necessarily an issue on documents for personal use.
Average deltaE 94 (colour difference): 12.1
The higher the value, the lower the accuracy.
For comparison, good screens score under 3.
It’s the same verdict for photos. The droplets are visible in places and the colours are rather bright. This is a deliberate choice on Canon’s part to give photos more punch. For a user who wants to use this printer to print photos from time to time, the results are fine and at times better than much more expensive desktop printers.
Average deltaE 94 (colour difference): 5.1
Scanner and copierCopies can be printed using a button on the hood of the printer (white button for black & white and a green one for colour). It takes 20 seconds to print a black & white copy and 47 seconds to print a colour, which is twice as long as a printer that has been designed for pro use. Once again however, the MG3150 isn’t competing alongside such machines. Copy quality will be okay for text but not much else.
Average deltaE 94 (colour difference): 7.7
The printer consumes less than 1 Watt in standby and 13 Watts when printing. This is among the lowest we’ve seen on any printer. It’s also quiet, never exceeding 48 dB(A).
Energy consumption & Noise levels
Cost per page: 8.5 penceThere are just two cartridges: one black and the other a mono-cartridge for colour. There are two cartridge formats (standard and high capacity). As always, the cost per page for XLs is lower over time: 8.5 pence per page here. What’s more, large format cartridges require less maintenance.
ISO lifespan for text XL Cartridges
|Cartridge||Price||ISO lifespan||Cost per page|
|PGI-540XL (black)||£15||600||2.5 pence|
|CL-541XL (Tri-colour)||£24||400||6 pence|
- Wi-fi + duplex
- Low energy consumption
- No card reader
Here’s one of the cheapest duplex, wi-fi 3-in-1 models on the market. It offers neither full functionality, nor speed but it fulfils its purpose in offering good print quality.