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Canon PIXMA MG5450 review

Our Rating :
Price when reviewed : £86
inc VAT

A stylish and fully-featured MFP, but we're not sure about its wireless performance

While Canon often refreshes PIXMA models without making major changes, the MG5450 is quite a new design. It’s stylish and very low-slung, rising less than 15cm from the desk. To make this low height possible the scanner bed is fixed in place; you access the ink cartridges by raising the cantilevered control panel.

It’s beautifully engineered, but we have our reservations; the shallow access means you have to insert the rear of each tank by feel, and we found ourselves wondering how we’d clear a paper jam if one happened deep in the printer’s bowels.

Canon PIXMA MG5450

This printer uses a five-ink setup comprising a pigment black tank for bold prints on plain paper, and dye-based black, cyan, magenta and yellow inks for high-quality photos. For the first time Canon has introduced high-capacity versions of this style of tank, which does help to lower running costs to 7.9p per page. While acceptable, however, this is hardly cheap; the more basic Canon PIXMA MG3250 undercuts the MG5450 by nearly 1.5p per page.

This printer has a colour screen with three dedicated selection buttons below, combined with a separate four-way navigation controller and selection button. We’re not a great fan of this system, in which the two sets of buttons never seem to work together intuitively.

Canon PIXMA MG5450

The MG5450 seemed unhappy with the congested wireless environment in which we performed our wireless printing tests. By switching the router’s wireless channel we managed to double the speed of a 1,200dpi photo scan from taking six minutes down to just over three, but over USB the sample test took just a minute and 21 seconds, and all other scans were swift. Several other MFP scanners also seemed affected to a lesser degree, illustrating that in a typical environment high-resolution scans can still be slow over a wireless network.

Canon PIXMA MG5450

Print speeds were adequate in our tests, peaking at an impressive 13.2ppm when printing black text at the Normal setting. Strangely, the Fast mode proved more than 2ppm slower, making it useless unless you want to save money on ink; text printed using it was far lighter, but still very readable. Our mixed colour text appeared at a modest 2.6ppm, but the quality was very high.

Canon PIXMA MG5450 Duplex

The MG5450 supports some advanced page setup options, including automatic duplex (double-sided) printing

This printer’s high 9,600×2,400dpi resolution and small one-picolitre ink droplet size promise good photos, and the results were indeed strong, with a characteristic sharpness and good shade control that helped reproduce detail that gets lost by less accomplished photo printers. Scans were similarly good, with above-average sharpness and colour accuracy. Working together, the scanner and printer delivered high-quality photocopies very quickly, with a colour copy taking only 20 seconds and black copies 11 seconds.

This is a good multifunction printer, with useful features, good results and a welcome dash of style. However, we’ve some minor gripes about its controls, and its wireless performance was fairly slow; we think the Canon MG6350 is worth the extra cash.

Basic Specifications

Maximum native print resolution9,600×2,400dpi
Max optical resolution2,400×4,800dpi
Output bit depth24-bit

Tested Print Speeds

Time for two 10x8in photos 1.09m 45s
Time for six 6x4in photos 1.013m 57s

Physical and Environmental

Standard printer interfacesUSB, 802.11b/g/n wireless
Optional printer interfacesnone
Noise (in normal use)44.4dB(A)

Paper Handling

Maximum paper sizeA4/legal
Maximum paper weight300gsm
Standard paper inputs2
Standard paper input capacity145
Maximum paper inputs2
Maximum paper input capacity145
Duplex (code, cost if option)Yes


Printer technologythermal inkjet
Supported operating systemsWindows XP/Vista/7/RT/8, Mac OS X 10.5.8 or later
Other inkjet features7.5cm colour screen
Other inkjet optionsnone

Buying Information

Consumable parts and prices£12 each
Price per colour A4 page5.1p
Quoted life of supplied black cartridgePigment black 300 pages (ISO/IEC 24712), dye black 1,795 pages (Canon estimate)
Quoted life of supplied colour cartridge(s)Cyan 332, magenta 319, yellow 344 pages (ISO/IEC 24712)
Quoted life of supplied photo cartridge(s)N/A
Warrantyone year RTB

Print Quality

Number of ink colours5
Number of ink cartridges5
Maximum number of ink colours5
Maximum number of cartridges5
Quoted photo durability30 years
Quoted photo durability sourceCanon

Tested Scan Speeds

Full scan area preview8s
A4 document at 150dpi13s
A4 document at 300dpi21s
6x4in photo at 600dpi25s
6x4in photo at 1200dpi1m 21s

Tested Copy Speeds

Time for single A4 mono copy 1.011s
Time for single A4 colour copy 1.020s
Time for 10 A4 copies using feeder 2.0N/A

Photo Features

PictBridge supportNo
Borderless printingA4
Direct (PC-less) printingYes
Supported memory cardsMemory Stick, SD, MMC
CD printingYes

Copy Features

Maximum number of copies99

Fax Features

Max mono fax resolutionN/A
Fax memory (maximum mono pages)N/A