IJ Start Canon TS3351
IJ Start Canon TS3351 – The Canon Pixma TS3351 is a basic printer, no-frills, with inkjet all in one. Priced at just $39, this entry-level model offers printing, scanning, and copying. The TS3351 keeps operation simple by using only two ink cartridges (black and tricolor) instead of individual cartridges. You won’t find any of the fancy extras you’ll see on the best printers. For example, there is no second input tray for photo paper, an automatic document feeder (ADF) for multi-page copies, or a duplex for two-sided prints.
You can connect to the TS3351 wirelessly, or via the USB port. The printer is compatible with mobile devices using the company’s Android/iOS app, although it couldn’t get an iPhone 7 to work (later).
Canon Pixma TS3351 Design
The control panel of the Pixma TS3351 is at the top of the device body, to the left of the scan bed. There are a few physical buttons: Two of them initiate a wireless connection to a network or smartphone, respectively. Two additional buttons bring – on the small liquid crystal display screen (LCD) – either in the settings menu or in the status information. The small 1.5-inch monochrome display has no light and can be difficult to read in a dimly lit space. In addition to the Simple Copy function, you’ll probably want to operate the TS3351 from a PC, not standalone.
The paper is loaded into the 60-sheet paper tray on the back of the unit. The tray can also contain up to 20 sheets of 4-by-6-inch photo paper or 10 sheets of 5-by-7-inch photo paper. You will need to use glossy photo paper; the printer does not support matte paper, although it works with the most exotic magnetic and revisable varieties.
The output tray comes out of the front of the printer, under a large nod to the body. To exchange ink cartridges, you reach inside this cavity and fold a cover to reveal the ink cartridge compartment.
The TS3351 is neither compact nor extremely large for an all-in-one inkjet. With the paper trays collected, it measures 17.2 inches wide by 12.5 inches deep; It’s 5.8 inches tall. With extended trays, the TS3351 becomes 21.8 inches deep and 8.4 inches high. Without a duplexer and ADF, this unit is quite lightweight, with 8.5 kilos.
This model comes in black, white, or red.
Canon Pixma TS3351 Print speed
The TS3351 printed our five-page text document in 43.7 seconds (or 6.9 pages per minute [ppm]). This was significantly slower than the category average of 33.5 seconds, or 9 ppm. The device was extremely slow in color printing, turning into one of the slowest moments to date in our six-page mixed text PDF and color graphics: The TS3351 took 4 minutes (1.5 ppm) to print the document. Comparable models printed the same PDF almost twice that speed, taking only 2 minutes and 7 seconds on average, or 2.8 ppm.
The TS3351 failed to complete our photo printing speed test, for which we do a full-page print on letter-sized photo paper (more on that later). So I did 4-by-6-inch photographic prints for comparison.
The TS3351 made brilliant 4-by-6-inch prints in 2 minutes and 1 second. By comparison, most of the models we tested were faster, although some were slower. Among the fastest models was the Canon Pixma MG3620, which printed a 4-by-6 in just 43 seconds, and the HP Tango X, 1 minute 15 seconds. However, we saw a slower print, like the now discontinued Epson XP-420, which took almost 3 minutes to complete the same task.
Canon Pixma TS3351 Copy and scan speed
The color copy was slow. The TS3351 is the second slowest inkjet model in the color copy we’ve tested in this category. At 47 seconds, he was well behind the average of 27.8 seconds. Only the HP Tango X was slower, at 1 minute and 11 seconds. Canon Pixma TS9120 Editor’s Choice made a color copy in just 17.3 seconds of our tests —nearly three times faster than the TS3351.
The black and white copy was more within reach, but still, a little slow at 19.2 seconds, compared to the category average of 15.8 seconds.
The TS3351 scanned 600 dots per inch (dpi) for jpeg format at an approximately average speed. At 1 minute 1.7 seconds, it was below the average of 1 minute and 7.7 seconds. In comparison, the Canon TS9120 from the Editor did the same scan in just 37.8 seconds.
The printer quickly scanned in black and white format for PDF at 300 dpi. It captured a CT scan in just 7.5 seconds, compared to the 11-second average; the TS9120 was equally fast, at 7.7 seconds.
Canon Pixma TS3351 Print quality
The text prints were not extremely sharp, but appropriate. In a close examination, the letter shapes in text documents had smooth edges, with errant paint spray around them. The letterforms in our PDF test document looked sharper in comparison.
The graphics printed on plain paper looked attractive, with crisp details and smooth transitions in the middle of the tone. The band, however, was clearly visible in all our graphic prints.
Because the TS3351 didn’t print on glossy letter-sized paper, we were left to judge the quality of the photos on bright 5-by-7-inch, 4-by-6-inch prints. These prints looked very attractive, with crisp details and natural-looking color saturation. Although the device does not support matte paper, I was pleased with the look of the printing I did on matte paper using the simple paper configuration.
The quality of the copy was similar to print quality: the text seemed a bit rough around the edges, and the graphics looked very attractive —but the soft band was distracting some prints. The band was more pronounced in photographs or works of art with depth, versus flat-looking illustrations. The same happened in color and black and white.
Photo scans in JPEG format and documents in PDF format seemed very faithful to the originals – overall. Color photos were reproduced with precise exposure and well-saturated colors, although some fine details in shadow areas were lost. The black and white scans of the graphics also lost some details of the original, in dark areas.
Canon Pixma TS3351 Ink cost and yield
The TS3351 uses two ink cartridges: a black pigment and a tricolor dye-based ink cartridge. Three layers of ink cartridges are available, but the cheapest of them come at a very high cost per page. Using the PG-243 Black and CL-244 color cartridges, the costs per page are 16 cents for text and 37 cents for graphics. There.
The increase in the PG-245 black cartridge brings the cost of the text page to 10 cents —but it’s still far north of the 7.2 cent average for a standard cartridge. Using the CL-246 color cartridge, the costs per color page are 22.8 cents, versus the average of 19.8 cents using standard cartridges.
Using high-yield xl cartridges, the TS3351 has costs per page of 8.7 cents for text and 18.7 cents for color. The averages for competing models that use high-yield cartridges are 5.6 cents (text) and 14.4 cents (color). If you do a lot of printing, these ink costs will add up.
Using the basic cartridges, printing a 4 by 6-inch photo costs an impressive 67.5 cents (if you buy them individually). Using color CL-246 and PG-245 cartridges, a 4 by 6 requires 43 cents of ink. XL cartridges print a 4 for 6 for 34.3 cents.
Combo packs could slightly reduce these costs per page—in theory. The PG-243 (black) and CL-244 cost a total of $36.98 individually, and two-pack costs $26.99. However, the high costs per page of these 100-page yield cartridges already make them difficult to recommend.
Disappointingly, a larger two-cartridge package will not reduce printing costs. The pg-245 black cartridge (180 pages) and the CL-246 XL (300-page) color cartridge cost $54.99 when purchased with 50 sheets of 4-by-6-inch photo paper. But buying them individually costs only $47.98. The canon online store does not clarify whether the package includes standard photo paper or Plus Glossy II photo paper. But anyway, it’s not a deal. A pack of 100 packs of 4-by-6-inch Photo Paper Plus Glossy II costs $10.99. The same package of plain photo paper costs $5.99. Math doesn’t make sense.
Canon Pixma TS3351 Configuration and software
The first step in setting up the TS3351 is simple. You remove a handful of tape and packaging material and install the ink cartridges. Configuring a USB connection with a Windows 10 laptop, I was instructed to download the software online at ij.start.canon.
On my first print attempt, however, I received an error message because a cartridge was not fully docked. The ink cartridge compartment is deep inside the body, behind a folded door. Getting inside and installing the cartridges is a bit tricky: You should press the cartridge in (forward) and angle it slightly.
As mentioned in the print speed section, the TS3351 could not make a full-page photo print on glossy letter-sized paper (nor smaller sizes such as 4 by 6 and 5 by 7). Attempting to print on photo paper in font size caused a conflict with another print setting —but did not specify which one—and caused the print driver to change the paper size setting to 4 by 6. Changing other settings, such as shrink to fit, borderless, and glossy paper didn’t solve the problem.
The company sent us a second test model, but the same test has not yet been successful. I tried to do a 4-by-6-inch photo print on glossy paper the size of a letter, but I got an error message saying that the media type and paper size were not set correctly.
It is worth noting, for photographic printing enthusiasts, that the TS3351 does not support printing on matte paper.
To set up the device with an iPhone 7, I scanned the QR code in the printed manual, which led me to download the iOS app (there is also a QR code on a sticker on the printer body). The scan took me to a page in Safari and started the setup process. However, the Canon application said the printer could not be found. Holding the mobile connection button on the printer was also unsuccessful.
Oddly enough, the TS3351 appeared on my list of wi-fi printers on iOS. But the connection failed every time I entered my network password. The LCD of the printer said “E36”, which I had to search online; the definition simply said that the wireless connection failed. A second test unit also did not appear in the Canon application. And although the printer appeared on iOS, I still couldn’t print for it from the iPhone 7.
The TS3351 supports Mopria on Android devices, although we haven’t tested this. The specs say the device also supports Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, and IFTTT (If This Then That) integration.
The device started slowly, taking about 12.8 seconds before the print sounds calmed down and the power light stopped blinking. Making a black and white copy of the gate took a little longer than normal, which is not surprising. Instead of making the copy in the usual 19.2 seconds, the first copy took about 25.5 seconds to manufacture.
Canon Pixma TS3351 Key point
The TS3351 keeps it simple, adding many features aimed at photo printing enthusiasts and busy home offices. The low starting price is attractive considering you get high-quality prints and photo scans. But, the graphic printing of plain text and paper was in the middle of the road.
Mediocre performance makes the TS3351 far from versatile. The device scans quickly in black and white, but otherwise slow across the board, and suitable for just occasional tasks. The problems we encounter with two test units suggest that this all-in-one can be very error-prone for comfort. None of the test units would print a photo on glossy paper the size of a letter. And, no test unit would work with an iPhone 7, even when the phone was able to detect it. The standalone operation is a bit annoying, relying on a small 1.5-inch LCD without light to help you read it.
Ink costs are well above average with standard and XL cartridges. But if you make the mistake of buying the smaller capacity ink cartridges, the costs per page are very high. You think a combo pack of cartridges and photo paper would save you money, but it won’t.
All these shortcomings make the TS3351 difficult to recommend. However, if the $39 price tag still seduces you, it may work in favor of your wallet. Compared to the $150 Canon Pixma TS9120, TS3351 has an average of 2.1 cents more in ink costs per page. If you don’t print too much, this might work in your favor: to eat the $111 difference in price, you would have to print nearly 5,300 pages.
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