Canon announced three new all-in-one wireless printers in August, led by the PIXMA MG7520. The MG7520, which carries an MSRP of $199, offers a variety of wireless printing options, such as through Wi-Fi or NFC connectivity, as well as the ability to print from a few different social media outlets and mobile devices, including Apple devices. The Canon MG7520 can connect through a wired Ethernet or USB connection too.
The PIXMA MG7520 includes dual print trays, allowing for easy printing requiring multiple types of paper. A direct-to-CD or -DVD printing option is offered, and this printer offers a six-tank printing system, featuring individual tanks.
Canon included a 3.5-inch LCD touch screen with the MG7520, making this model easy to use. It’s available in black, white, or burnt orange colors.
Features and Components
Canon included two paper trays with the PIXMA MG7520, and both fit inside the printer body at the same time, giving you constant access to two different sizes of paper.
What’s in the Box?
- Pixma MG7520 wireless inkjet photo all-in-one
- CD/DVD printing tray
- Photo paper sample pack
- Setup CD-ROM
- Setup ink tanks
- Power cord
In tray number one you can make use of photo-size paper, such as 4×6 or 5×7 inches. Tray number two allows for larger sizes of paper, including letter size and envelopes.
Paper tray number two is extended in this photo, while paper tray number one is still collapsed inside the printer, with its rounded handle just visible in this photo at the bottom of the printer body (just under the Canon logo). It would slide out over tray number two.
The front of the Canon MG7520 has a series of icons across the operational panel and surrounding the touch screen LCD that only light up when they’re needed or available during certain printer functions. You can press these lit icons to access the function. The icon buttons, from left to right, are:
- Power. White power button icon that’s always visible, regardless of whether it’s lit. A small white dot appears above the icon and the icon lights up when the power is on.
- Wi-Fi. Blue icon that resembles an antenna, just below the power button. Lights when Wi-Fi is enabled; flashes if there’s a problem with the Wi-Fi.
- Home. White icon that resembles a house. Returns you to the printer’s home screen.
- Back. White curved arrow icon. Returns you to the previous screen.
- Black copy or scan. White diamond icon with a line in the middle. Quick access to starting a black-and-white copy or scan.
- Color copy or scan. Green diamond icon with a line in the middle. Quick access to starting a full-color copy or scan.
- Stop/cancel. Red triangle icon inside a circle. Cancels current print, copy, or scan job.
- Error. Orange triangle icon (not pictured here) below the Stop icon. Indicates an error with the printer.
Canon included two memory card slots on the far left side of the front panel of the printer. Open the front panel, which is hinged at the bottom and folds down, to gain access to the two memory card slots. You then can directly print from Memory Stick (MS) Duo or Secure Digital (SD) sized memory cards.
The top panel of the Canon PIXMA MG7520 includes a glass flatbed area, making it easy to set up for a copy or a scan. It can accept up to letter-sized and A4-sized documents.
On the back panel of the printer are the connector ports. On the left of this photo is the two-pronged power port. The upper port on the right is the Ethernet port, while the lower port on the right is the USB port.
Using the Touch Screen
The 3.5-inch touch screen LCD is in the middle of the operational panel. Just touch any icon to move into sub-menus and make command selections. This is an easy way to control the print, copy, and scan functions of the PIXMA MG7520.
The main menu screen consists of three screens, each with three icons. To move between the screens, drag your finger across the touch screen toward the left to move forward in the screens or drag your finger toward the right to move backward in the screens.
Touch a primary icon to move into the sub-menu options. The primary icons available are:
- ECO Settings
- Quiet Setting
- Advanced Print
- Photo Print
The sub-menu options on the first menu screen are:
- ECO Settings – Two-sided printing setting (Copy (On, Off), PDF file print (On, Off), Template print (On, Off)), Energy saving settings (Auto power off (Never, 240 min, 120 min, 60 min, 30 min, 15 min), Auto power on (On, Off))
- Quiet Setting – Do not use quiet mode, Use quiet mode
- Setup – Maintenance (Print nozzle check pattern, Cleaning, Deep cleaning, Auto head alignment, Manual head alignment, Print the head alignment value, Roller cleaning, Bottom plate cleaning), Device Settings (Print settings, LAN settings, Device user settings, PictBridge print settings, Language selection, Home screen background color, Firmware update, Cassette settings, Reset setting), Web Service Setup (Web service connection setup (Google Cloud print setup, Print from e-mail setup, IJ cloud printing center setup, Check Web service setup), DNS server setup (Auto setup, Manual setup), Proxy server setup (Use, Do not use)), Web Service Inquiry, Estimated Ink Levels
The sub-menu options on the second menu screen are:
- Copy – Quantity (between 1 and 99), Magnify (specific number between 25% and 400%, maximum 400%, 183% 4×6 to letter, 156% 5×7 to letter, Same size, 94% A4 to letter, 25% minimum), Intensity (Auto, Manual between -4 and +4), Page Size (Letter, A4, B5, A5, 4×6, 5×7), Type (Plain paper, Plus glossy II, Pro platinum, Plus semi-gloss, Glossy, Matte), Print Quality (High, Standard, Draft), Layout (None, 2-on-1 copy, 4-on-1 copy, Advanced), 2-Sided Print Setting (1-sided, 2-sided, Advanced)
- Scan – Save to PC, Save to e-mail
- Cloud – Register for various applications (Canon Image Gateway, Picasa Web Albums, Creative Park Premium paper craft, Creative Park Premium pop-up card, Flickr, Facebook, Evernote, Dropbox, Google Drive, OneDrive, Attach to Webmail, Photos in Tweets, Notices)
The sub-menu options on the third menu screen includes the Advanced Print icon, where the sub-menu options include:
- Copy Label to Disc Label – Set disc print area (Outer circle, Inner circle)
- Print Photos to Disc Label
- Borderless Copy – Quantity (between 1 and 99), Magnify (specific number between 25% and 400%, maximum 400%, 214% 4×6 to letter, 171% 5×7 to letter, 103% A4 to letter, Same size, 25% minimum, Fit to page), Intensity (Auto, Manual between -4 and +4), Page Size (Letter, A4, B5, A5, 4×6, 5×7), Type (Plain paper, Plus glossy II, Pro platinum, Plus semi-gloss, Glossy, Matte), Print Quality (High, Standard, Draft)
- Frame Erase Copy – Quantity (between 1 and 99), Magnify (specific number between 25% and 400%, maximum 400%, 214% 4×6 to letter, 171% 5×7 to letter, 103% A4 to letter, Same size, 25% minimum, Fit to page), Intensity (Auto, Manual between -4 and +4), Page Size (Letter, A4, B5, A5, 4×6, 5×7), Type (Plain paper, Plus glossy II, Pro platinum, Plus semi-gloss, Glossy, Matte), Print Quality (High, Standard, Draft)
- Photo Copy
- Trimming Print
- Slide Show
- PDF File Print
- Template Print – Notebook paper 1 (8 mm), Notebook paper 2 (7 mm), Notebook paper 3 (6 mm), Graph paper 1 (5 mm grid), Graph paper 2 (3 mm grid), Checklist, Staff paper 1 (10 staves), Staff paper 2 (12 staves), Handwriting paper (3 lines), Weekly schedule (vertical), Monthly schedule (calendar)
You also can access two other sub-menus from the third menu screen, WLAN and Photo Print.
- WLAN – Wireless LAN Setup
- Photo Print (settings options are only available when memory card is inserted) – Paper Size (Letter, A4, 4×6, 5×7, 8×10), Type (Plain paper, Plus glossy II, Pro platinum, Plus semi-gloss, Glossy, Matte), Print Quality (High, Standard), Border (Bordered, Borderless), Photo Fix (Auto photo fix, No correction), Red-eye Correction (On, Off), Print Date (On, Off)
The Canon PIXMA MG7520 offers six individual ink tanks: Black, gray, yellow, pigment black, cyan, and magenta.
When you’re ready to insert the ink tanks, swing open the hinged front panel and then lift the hinged operational panel.
As you insert each ink tank in the matching slot, you’ll see a red light appear on the front of the tank, if you properly insert the tank. When the tank is low on ink, the red light will flash.
Because the red light is not on with the large Pigment Blank ink tank in this photo, you know the tank has not been inserted correctly.
With all six ink tanks lit, the MG7520’s ink system is ready for use.
When printing photos, you’ll have the option of seeing an estimated ink level graph in a popup window.
You can add the MG7520 to your personal Wi-Fi network either through the printer’s touch screen or by running the included CD on your computer. I found it was very easy to use the printer’s touch screen for this process.
Once you select the type of connection you want to make between the printer and the network — for this test I chose Wi-Fi (Wireless LAN) — you’ll be asked whether you want to use the computer or the printer’s touch screen to set up the connection.
When working from the MG7520’s touch screen, touch the Start Setup button and the printer will find any available Wi-Fi networks. Select the network you want to connect to and enter the password on the digital keyboard that will appear on the screen. If you enter the password correctly, you’ll see a screen confirming that you’ve made the desired connection.
The CD that Canon included with the MG7520 offers a variety of items you can install, including a detailed user manual and Canon’s My Image Garden software.
Through the My Image Garden software you can access any photo that’s stored on your computer or on a linked online storage site, such as Microsoft’s OneDrive. Click on the folders on the left side of the screen, and all of the available images will appear as thumbnails on the right side. When you highlight a thumbnail, you’ll see information about the photo in the lower left corner.
The editing options are listed across the bottom of the window, along with a Print button. You can change the way the thumbnails are displayed using buttons and slider bars along the bottom of the window too. You’ll have to highlight a thumbnail to activate the buttons for the editing options, which include: New Art, Correct/Enhance, Special Filters, Video Frame Capture, and Create/Edit PDF File.
Under the New Art button you can create some interesting artwork and gifts using your photos. The options under New Art include: Photo Layout, Collage, Card, Calendar, Stickers, Disc Label, Video Layout, and Paper Craft.
Let’s take a closer look at two of the editing options, which are very basic. I was a bit disappointed in the overall feature set of My Image Garden, as most of the editing options included here are nothing more than what you’d find as editing options inside a digital camera’s Playback mode. A more extensive feature set would make My Image Garden much more useful.
The editing options under Correct/Enhance are:
- Auto Photo Fix
- Red-Eye Correction
- Face Sharpener – Weak, Medium, Strong
- Digital Face Smoothing – Weak, Medium, Strong
- Manual – Adjust (Brightness (-5 to +5), Contrast (-5 to +5), Sharpness (0 to 10), Blur (0 to 10), Show-Through Removal (0 to 10)), Correct/Enhance (Red-Eye Correction (Weak, Medium, Strong), Face Brightener (Weak, Medium, Strong), Face Sharpener (Weak, Medium, Strong), Digital Face Smoothing (Weak, Medium, Strong), Blemish Remover)
The editing options under Special Filters are:
- Fish-Eye Effect – Weak, Medium, Strong
- Miniature Effect – Small, Medium, Large
- Toy Camera Effect – 0, 1, 2, 3
- Soft Focus – 0, 1, 2, 3
- Blur Background – Weak, Medium, Strong
You also can install the Quick Menu from the CD, which gives you quick access to a variety of printer-related information and services, including printer software, user manuals, printer settings, and helpful Web sites. The options in the Quick Menu are:
- Print – Creative Park Premium, Photo Layout Print, Video Layout Print, Disc Label Print, Card Print, Collage Print, Calendar Print
- Scan – Auto Scan, Photo Scan, Document Scan, Custom Scan, Scan Settings, Start ScanGear
- Web Services – Inkjet Cloud Printing Center, Easy-Photo Print+, Creative Park, User Registration, Member Login, Access to Consumables Shop, Introduction to Useful Functions, Product Information, Notices
- Manual & Device Information – Ink Model Number, Detailed Manual Online, Basic Manual, Start My Printer, Diagnose and Repair Printer, ECO Information
- Device Settings & Maintenance – Network Settings, Quiet Settings, Auto Power Settings, Printer Information
If you use the printer software functions a lot, this Quick Menu feature is a nice option.
Photographers who want versatility in their photo printers — whether that’s versatility in the types of files it can print, versatility in the user’s ability to control the prints directly from the printer, or versatility in the types of devices with which the printer can connect — will want to take a long look at the Canon PIXMA MG7520.
Canon’s all-in-one PIXMA MG7520 wireless color photo printer is a sharp looking model that’s easy to set up and use. Its print quality is very good across the board, thanks in large part to the six-ink system, and this model compares favorably to other consumer-level photo printers in terms of image quality. I wouldn’t bother printing your best photos on any setting other than highest quality, as the print quality difference is very noticeable versus the standard quality setting.
For printing photographs you’ll find that this model is a bit slower than other all-in-ones on the market, which is a trade-off for the above average print quality. My tests showed average print speeds of:
- From memory card, 4×6-inch photos: High quality, 46 seconds; standard quality, 18 seconds
- From PC via Wi-Fi, 4×6-inch photos: High quality, 42 seconds; standard quality, 22 seconds
- From memory card, 8×10-inch photos: High quality, 64 seconds; standard quality, 20 seconds
- From PC via Wi-Fi, 8×10-inch photos: High quality, 54 seconds; standard quality, 24 seconds
General text document printing is also slower-than-average with this model, although the output is sharp and clear.
For photographers, the MG7520 has a good collection of features that you can use to print directly from a memory card inserted into the printer, including several options for resizing the photos.
The 3.5-inch touch screen LCD on the printer is a good size for previewing photos that you want to print directly from an inserted memory card, although I felt like the touch screen wasn’t quite as responsive as I expected. If you touch the screen with a sharp angle between your finger to the screen, it likely won’t respond. Your finger almost has to be perpendicular to the screen for proper touch response.
Or you can print from your cell phone and other mobile devices through the printer’s easy-to-use Wi-Fi connection. Canon gave the MG7520 an Ethernet port and a USB port, as well as Near Field Communications (NFC) capabilities, so you should be able to make a connection with this model in whatever way you want to use.
- Very good print quality at “best” settings
- Six-ink printing system is especially good for photos
- Numerous connectivity options, including Wi-Fi
- Wi-Fi feature is easy to set up and use
- Dual memory card slots simplify photo printing
- 3.5-inch touch screen LCD is a good size for displaying photos
- Sharp-looking mirror finish
- Dual paper trays for different paper sizes
- Print speeds are a bit slower than other consumer-level printer options
- Cost per printed page is above average with six-ink system
- Photo print quality at “standard” setting could be better
- Starting price near $200 is a little high
- Scan and copy options won’t provide high-end capabilities
- Included image-editing and image-management software is nothing special
- Touch screen could be a little more responsive
The NFC option is particularly interesting, as an NFC-enabled tablet or smartphone that includes support for PIXMA Printing Solutions (PPS) can print photos just by being near the printer. Manufacturers of consumer electronics undoubtedly will continue to include NFC capabilities in more and more devices in the coming months and years, so offering NFC capabilities in the MG7520 is a good way for Canon to extend the useful life of this model.
While it’s nice to have dual memory card slots available with this all-in-one printer, I’m not sure how many people will make use of the MS Duo memory card slot. The SD sized memory card slot will be much more useful.
The PIXMA MG7520 will occupy more than a square foot on your desk (17.2 by 14.6 by 5.9 inches), but it’s not quite as large as some other all-in-one devices on the market. Its weight of 17.4 pounds is also a bit less than some other options.
The size of the MG7520 is partially defined by the glass flatbed scanner on the top panel of the printer. This unit’s copy and scan functions and features are about average versus similarly priced all-in-ones. Canon chose not to give this model an automatic document feeder (ADF), which would appeal to those who plan to use the scanner or copier extensively, but for photographers, an ADF probably won’t be missed. Photographers will be more pleased with the inclusion of dual paper trays, allowing you to switch quickly between small photo-sized paper and letter-sized paper.
I liked the mirror finish on the MG7520, and its curved edges give it a sleek look. I reviewed the black unit, but Canon is offering this all-in-one printer in white or burnt orange too. The use of lit icons doubling as buttons on the operational panel is a nice design feature too.
The software Canon included with this printer is nothing special, so if you have an image-editing program you already use and like, there’s no pressing need to install Canon’s My Image Garden.
I liked quite a few aspects of the Canon Pixma MG7520 all-in-one photo printer, including its better-than-average image quality when printing photos at the highest quality setting. This printer has numerous options for connections, including an easy-to-use Wi-Fi connection and two memory card slots. But it does run a bit slower than other all-in-one options out there, and the six-ink tank system means it will cost you a bit more to make prints with the MG7520 than would a four-ink printer. For those people who are seeking an all-in-one model that excels in print speeds with extensive copy and scan capabilities, while also doing an adequate job with photo printing, better options are in the market. But if you want a consumer-level printer that excels with high-quality photo prints while offering adequate multi-function features, the Pixma MG7520 is a strong option.