Canon Pixma iP4700 review

13 Nov 2009
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Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
inc VAT

An excellent photo printer that gets everything right, from quality and performance to running costs and convenience.


thermal inkjet, 9ppm print speed, USB, PicBridge USB, 153x431x296mm

Canon's Pixma iP4700 is the latest addition to a range that has won many Shopper awards in the past.

This single-function printer uses four dye-based inks for photo and colour printing and pigmented black ink for sharp text printing on plain paper. A separate print head should last the lifetime of the printer, but can be replaced if necessary.

The installer lets you choose any additional software you want along with the driver, which is easy to use. A Quick Setup tab puts the most important options in one place and you can choose from presets including Standard (plain A4 paper), photo (borderless glossy 6x4in) and paper saving (duplex). You can customise and save your own profiles, too.

Print quality is excellent, with solid, sharp black text at standard quality. Our mono text document printed at 7.8ppm. Draft text prints emerged at a reasonably fast 9.8ppm and were clear and sharp enough for day-to-day use, although lettering was a little thin. Our mixed-colour business documents looked great, with solid blocks of colour, sharp detail and smooth shading.

The iP4700 makes no compromises when it comes to photo quality, either. Although it has only four colours, prints look stunning. The dye-based black ink produces rich, intense dark tones, while skin colours and natural shades are reproduced with great accuracy. There's even a CD printing tray and a utility that makes it easy to print your own artwork on CDs and DVDs.

With print costs of 2.3p per mono page and 6.8p per page of mixed colour and black printing, the iP4700 doesn't cost too much to run. If you use Canon's Photo Paper Pro II, a 6x4in photo is a little expensive 39p, but we saw excellent results on Canon's cheaper photo papers, too.

The iP4700 doesn't add much to a winning formula. It doesn't cost too much to buy or run and it put in a respectable showing in our speed tests. If you don't need a multifunction inkjet but you do want something that can print outstanding photos as well as sharp documents, it's an ideal choice.

Basic Specifications

Rating *****
Maximum native print resolution 9,600x2,400dpi

Quoted Speeds

Quoted speed, mono A4 9ppm
Quoted speed, colour A4 8ppm

Tested Speeds

Time for two 10x8in photos 1.0 4m 10s
Time for six 6x4in photos 1.0 5m 5s

Print Quality

Number of ink colours 4
Number of ink cartridges 5
Maximum number of ink colours 4
Maximum number of cartridges 5
Quoted photo durability 30 years
Quoted photo durability source Canon

Physical and Environmental

Standard printer interfaces USB, PicBridge USB
Optional printer interfaces none
Size 153x431x296mm
Weight 5.7kg
Noise (in normal use) 46.5dB(A)
Power consumption standby 0W
Power consumption idle 1W
Power consumption active 18W

Paper Handling

Maximum paper size A4/legal
Maximum paper weight 300gsm
Standard paper inputs 2
Standard paper input capacity 300
Maximum paper inputs 2
Maximum paper input capacity 300
Duplex (code, cost if option) Yes

Photo Features

PictBridge support Yes
Borderless printing up to A4
Direct (PC-less) printing Yes
Supported memory cards none
CD printing Yes


Printer technology thermal inkjet
Supported operating systems Windows 2000/XP/Vista, Mac OS X 10.3.9 - 10.5
Other inkjet features automatic print head alignment, replaceable print head
Other inkjet options none

Buying Information

Price £79
Consumable parts and prices 350 page pigment black PGI-520BK, £8.20; 670 photo dye black CLI-521BK, £7.57; 505 page cyan CLI-521C, £7.34; 471 page magenta CLI-521M, £7.60; 505 page yellow CLI-521Y, £7.26
Quoted life of supplied black cartridge 350 pages (ISO/IEC 24712)
Quoted life of supplied colour cartridge(s) 505 pages cyan and yellow, 471 pages magenta (ISO/IEC 24712)
Quoted life of supplied photo cartridge(s) 670 photo dye black, 209 photo cyan, 204 photo magenta, 205 photo yellow (Canon)
Price per colour A4 page 4.5p
Price per mono A4 page 2.3p
Warranty one year RTB

Tested Print Speeds

Time for two 10x8in photos 1.0 4m 10s
Time for six 6x4in photos 1.0 5m 5s