Designed to function perfectly in a small office setting or in a home office, Canon – the manufacturers of the Pixma G4511, tried hard to make this possible by fitting as many functional features as possible into this small compact unit. Just like with a 4-in-one unit, you can use the Pixma G4511 to scan, copy, print and fax pages. Despite its compactness, this unit also has a 2-line display, Wi-Fi capability and an inbuilt 100-sheet paper tray located at the rear of the unit.
One of the most surprising features incorporated by Canon in the Pixma G4511 is their proprietary refillable ink tank system which despite expectations by many pundits did not lead to an increase in the overall size of the unit. The new ink tank by Canon allows each unit to produce 6,000 monochrome documents or 7,000 colour documents before it needs refilling. The addition of the refillable ink tank however lead to a marked increase in the cost of the printer with each unit currently retailing for €229 (around £178).
At this point, it is worth noting that the new refillable ink tank system is not as advanced or refined as Epson’s EcoTank system whose features and efficacy improved drastically with the second generation release. However, Canon has implemented their proprietary new ink tank design fairly well in the Pixma G4511 in such a way that it is more cost-effective compared to Epson’s designs and existing Canon designs that are found in wide circulation in most machines. For example, the new ink tank design by Canon in the Pixma G4511 contains only four ink tanks compared to the five ink cartridges found in Epson printers and the six ink cartridges found in most printers by Canon.
In the detailed review below, the discussion will feature how the design features found in the Pixma G4511 by Canon influence its overall performance.
The Design of the Pixma G4511
To date, the Pixma G4511 ranks among the smallest and most compact four-in-one multifunctional printers that we have ever had the pleasure of testing. One of the best design features is how the 100-sheet paper tray and ADF fit neatly in an oblong box at the rear of the printer. This makes storing the printer fairly easy when it is not in use.
This printer also comes in a matte black finish which is a departure from the conventional shiny black finish in most printers which has been known to attract a lot of dust over time.
When it comes to the overall design, our only worry is that the manufacturers incorporated too many features in a compact space which makes the printer feel a bit flimsy.
Top Features of the Canon Pixma G4511
The Pixma G4511 is a four-in-one printer. This basically means that it incorporates a lot of unique features. Apart from the standard scanning, copying, printing and scanning that you would expect from a four-in-one printer, this unit also has in-built Wi-Fi capability which can be substituted with a Wi-Fi Direct connection which is also available on the printer.
The media input tray on the printer can hold 100 sheets of A4 paper, any A4 size papers (including Canon’s square photo paper), and, envelopes.
When it comes to printing, the manufacturers of the Pixma G4511 have quoted it at 8.8 imprints-per-minute (ipm) for monochrome (black and white) prints with colour prints and photos taking fairly longer. The printer has a fairly acceptable print resolution (4,800 × 1,200 dpi) and a fairly unimpressive scan resolution (600 × 1,200 dpi). At this point, we should note that you can find other printers with a better print and scan resolution at a fairer retail price than that offered by this printer.
One of the key drawbacks that we found in this printer is that it lacks key features you would expect in a small office printer. For example, the GT4511 does not allow for duplex printing (printing on both sides of the paper) and it does not also come with a front USB port or SD card slots which we found to be a major inconvenience.
Setting Up and Operating the Canon Pixma G4511
Setting up and using this printer is fairly easy as you will be aided by the many instructions embedded in QR codes found in the user manual. You do not necessarily need the video and written instructions in the user manual to set up this unit but it is still a great idea to peruse through them to avoid spilling ink when setting up the printer.
To set up the ink cartridges in such a way that you do not damage your unit permanently, simply uncork the stoppers in the refillable ink tank and pour ink into the tanks – taking care to ensure that each tank receives the right ink colour.
Unlike the Epson EcoTank which is designed with corresponding nozzles in each cartridge and valves to prevent overflow, there is a lot of room for error when you are using the refillable tank in the GT4511 by Canon. When refilling our unit, we spilt quite a few drops which gave us permanent stain marks at our work desk.
It is also worth noting that though most features of this printer are fairly easy to use, we had a little trouble initiating a scan because the UX was hard to follow and the small two-line display on the printer did not help matters.
The Pixma G4511 produces text documents fairly fast with small fonts coming out clear and easy to read. However, the level of ink being produced by the unit sometimes fluctuates during printing and this is sometimes visible in the printed document.
Colour printouts also come out great with minimal signs of ink smudges. Photo printouts from this printer are also bold but they lack the clarity and vividness you would find in Canon’s six-tone printer. However, though this printer lacks the capacity to produce clear and vivid high-resolution photos, it produces softer pictures compared to contemporaries such as Epson’s ET-7750.
Our Final Verdict
Based on our tests, the Canon Pixma GT4511 suffers the same range of problems you will find in most printers that have Epson’s EcoTank system. It features a great new ink tank system that offers a lot of benefits but the tank is fitted to a printer with the same ordinary features. We honestly think that this printer would be a most ideal acquisition if you are more concerned with cost over all other considerations you would typically look for when buying a printer.