The Bottom Line
- Good quality prints, excellent photos
- Customizable applications (SmartSolutions)
- Wireless networking is easy to set up
- Five-year warranty with lifetime technical support
- Automatic duplex printing
- Slow printing
- Not all SmartSolutions worked properly
- Long setup time
- Color inkjet all-in-one printer
- Copier, fax, and scanner built in
- Color print resolution: 5760 x 1440 dpi
- 4.3" color LCD touchscreen
- Built-in wireless networking
- Four inkjet cartridges
- SD, MS, xD, MMC card compatible
- Five-year warranty
Guide Review - Lexmark Pinnacle Pro901 All-in-One Printer
Of course, except for the customized print/scan/copy apps, they don't necessarily work quite as flawlessly as you hope. For example, you can access BBC News and read headlines on the touchscreen; you can even launch the full story on your computer. But when I tried to print them, I got error messages that couldn't be overcome. The app library is still growing, and, glitches aside, I think these are excellent additions to a decent printer.
I say decent because the Pinnacle is not a great printer. For one thing, it's pretty slow, with first pages coming out in almost half a minute, and PDF taking about 20 seconds per page, about twice what a Word document averaged. Either way, it's no speed demon. It also took a long time to set up--nearly half an hour to get the software installed and everything up and running. And while wireless printing was easy to configure, once the procedure was complete I found that I had lost my connection to the Internet, requiring a modem reboot. I can't swear that the modem error was a direct result of connecting the printer to my wireless network, but since they happened at the same moment, it seemed too unlikely to be a coincidence.
Black and white text looked perfectly fine, but colored graphics left cheap copy paper a bit limp. Colors were very good, despite the ink bleed into the page (use better paper for better results). Photo prints looked excellent, with deep, sharp colors--I compared prints with those from some dedicated photo printers, and preferred the Pinnacle's.
Free scanning software allows the scanning of multiple business cards at once. There's precious little in the way of understanding how to do that (ultimately I settled on two columns, three rows, that fit inside a 8.5x11 rectangle); this did a serviceable job on some tough cards (lots of logos and graphics), but it wouldn't be my first choice for a business-card scanner.
Lexmark offers a few excellent extras. For example, the printer comes with a five-year warranty as well as lifetime technical support and what the company calls "priority phone support." New ink cartridges are a cheap as $4.99 for black. And there's a handy automatic duplexer, though again, it saturated cheap paper, so the money you save on cartridges you may have to spend on good paper. Still, that's not a bad tradeoff, since paper is fairly cheap.