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Canon Pixma iP5200

Review posted 10/28/2005

Canon Pixma iP5200 Color Bubble Jet Photo Printer

Canon PIXMA iP5200 Features ChromaLife100 Inks
and FINE Print Head Technology

The Canon PIXMA iP5200 Photo Printer offers premium photo printing with high-speed performance. The printer can produce a borderless 4×6" photo with photolab quality in approximately 36 seconds with the default setting in the printer driver and prints at a maximum of 9600×2400 color dpi with microscopic droplets as small as 1 picoliter. It uses both the FINE print head technology and the ChromaLife100 system and has built-in duplex printing and a second paper tray cassette for convenient paper selection. It uses five individual inks and the clear smart LED tank system.

The PIXMA iP5200 uses the breakthrough new Canon ChromaLife100 system. This system can produce prints on select genuine Canon photo papers that resist fading for up to 100 years when stored in an archival quality photo album. The 100-year lifespan rivals that of many traditional film-based photos, long considered by consumers to be the benchmark for image permanence. It also includes a pigment-based black ink tank to produce crisp, fast, high-quality black text. As with all Canon ThinkTank printers, each of the five ink tanks are individually replaceable which avoids the necessity of throwing out a multi-color cartridge when only one of the colors is exhausted.

Direct photo printing is made possible without a computer thanks to the front-mounted PictBridge USB port. PictBridge is an industry standard for digital printers, digital cameras and digital camcorders that allows the direct printing of images from PictBridge compatible digital cameras and camcorders to a PictBridge compatible printer, regardless of brand or manufacturer, without need of a computer.

Compatible with both Windows and Mac platforms (Windows 98, 98SE, XP, 2000, Me and Mac OS X v. 10.2.1 and greater), the iP5200 photo printer also includes the Easy-PhotoPrint (Windows/Mac), Easy-WebPrint (Windows only) and PhotoRecord (Windows only) imaging and printing software.

Pixma iP5200 Major Features:

  • ChromaLife100 system with up to 100 year print longevity

  • ContrastPLUS 5-color ink system: CMY inks plus photo-grade black ink for photos and pigment-based black ink for high-quality text

  • Dual paper path; covered lower cassette and top sheet feeder

  • Built-in duplexer for two-sided printing

  • Fast printing: 4×6" borderless photos in about 36 seconds

  • Canon FINE printhead, 3,584-nozzles and 1-picoliter MicroFine ink drops

  • Borderless printing in 4×6", 5×7", 8.5×11" sizes

  • Individually replaceable ink tanks lowers your printing costs

  • Uses the new Canon Clear Smart LED ink tanks

  • Computer-less PictBridge Direct USB printing

  • USB 2.0 high-speed interface (Windows XP, 2000/Mac OS X 10.2.8)

Mechanics & Performance

The iP5200 is a stylish looking, blue-gray and silver colored printer that will turn your workspace into a high-performance print shop. This is a fairly compact (17.5 x 12 x 6.5 inch) and lightweight printer that can even be placed up against a wall thanks to its front-loading and front-exiting paper path.

Setup is straight forward and can be accomplished by following the steps outlined on the included big page of directions. You first install the user-replaceable printhead assembly, unwrap and install the ink tanks (which is a snap now thanks to the new Smart LED ink tanks), install the driver and application software, connect the USB cable and turn on the printer. Installation on my Windows XP machine went without a hitch even connected through a 9-port USB hub. It took a total of about fifteen minutes to unpack, setup and be ready to make the first print.

In operation the iP5200 is very quiet, the only real "noise" is generated when the paper is first fed into the printer. During the actual printing process only a faint swish-swish sound is heard as the printhead moves back and forth. And the printer is fast, very fast - capable of printing a borderless 4×6-inch print in about 36 seconds. Day to day printing of color documents is accomplished at speeds of up to 24 pages per minute, black-only is even faster at up to 30ppm.

(Note: Not the iP5200 but a similar Pixma printer)

The iP5200 has two paper paths; a top-mounted auto sheet loader and an internal cassette in the bottom. Both the upper and lower paper trays can support up to 150 sheets of letter-size plain paper as well as 4x6" photo paper, 5x7" photo paper, letter-size photo paper and #10 envelopes.

This is convenient for keeping your glossy photo paper in the lower cassette where it's protected from the environment and the more used plain paper is loaded in the upper sheet feeder.

Canon Pixma iP5200 Color Bubble Jet Photo Printer

You can load different media in the top and bottom trays and then select it with either the printer driver or front-mounted pushbutton. Both top and bottom trays can be loaded with plain paper, the printer will automatically switch between them when one source runs out of paper.

Canon Pixma iP5200 Color Bubble Jet Photo Printer

The ultimate paper saver - the iP5200 features a built-in duplexer. It can easily print on both sides of plain paper or 2-sided photo papers. This will cut your paper waste in half when printing out web pages and documents and allows you to create your own "ready to be stapled" photo albums, newsletters or product catalogs.

Canon Pixma iP5200 Color Bubble Jet Photo Printer

Located on the front is the PictBridge USB port for direct printing from majority of today's digital cameras and video camcorders.

This PC-free process saves time and eliminates the need to be tied to your computer. And if needed, the iP5200 photo printer will even brighten subjects' faces automatically, for better results when printing direct.

Canon Pixma iP5200 Photo Printer

When the camera and printer are connected, the camera's color LCD is used to select the image(s) you want and what options to print them with. Usually it's as simple as select the photo and press a camera button. (Shown here are the PictBridge menu screens on a Canon Digital Rebel XT SLR).

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Page 2 - Ink Tanks

iP5200 Photo Printer Specifications

Printer Type
Photo Printer
Print Speed (up to)
Black: 30 ppm (approx. 2.0 seconds/page)*
Color: 24 ppm (approx. 2.5 seconds/page)*
Color Photo: 4" x 6" borderless photo: approx. 36 seconds*
Number of Nozzles
Black: 512
Color: 1024 x 2 (C, M)
512 x 2 (Y, Bk)
Total: 3,584
Print Resolution (up to)
Black: 600 x 600 dpi**
Color: 9600 x 2400 dpi**
OS Compatibility
Windows® XP/Me/2000/98; Mac® OS X v10.2.1 to 10.4.x***
Standard Interface
USB 2.0 Hi-Speed**** and Direct Print Port (cables not included)
Ink Compatibility
PGI-5 Pigment Black
CLI-8BK Black
CLI-8C Cyan
CLI-8M Magenta
CLI-8Y Yellow
Paper Sizes
Letter, Legal, Credit Card (2.13" x 3.39"), 4" x 6," 5" x 7," U.S. #10 Envelopes
Noise Level (Approx.)
34.7 dB(A) in best quality mode
Physical Dimensions
17.5"(W) x 6.3"(H) x 12.2"(D)
16.1 lbs.
Power Source
120V AC, 60Hz
Toll-free technical phone support plus 1-year limited warranty with InstantExchange program (subject to certain conditions and restrictions, see for details).
Software Included
CD-ROM† including Printer Driver, Setup Software and User's Guide, Electronic Photo Application Guide, Electronic User's Guide, e-registration, Easy-PhotoPrint 3.3 (Windows/Mac), PhotoRecord® (Windows), Easy-WebPrint (Windows only, requires Microsoft® Internet Explorer version 5.5, version 6.0 recommended)
* PPM print speeds are based on the highest speed printer driver mode. Photo print speeds are based on the default mode driver setting using Canon Photo Paper Plus Glossy paper. Print speeds will vary depending on system configuration, interface, software, document complexity, print mode, types of paper used and page coverage.
** Resolution may vary based on printer driver setting. Color ink droplets can be placed with a horizontal pitch of 1/9600 inch at minimum.
*** System requirements vary by application.
**** USB 2.0 Hi-Speed requires Windows XP, 2000 or Mac OS X operating systems. For Windows 98, Me and Mac OS X v. 10.2 to 10.2.6 operating systems, the printer will operate at USB 1.1 specifications.
† System requirements vary by application.

(Specifications as represented by the manufacturer)

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Page 2 - Ink Tanks

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