Consumerism Geek

Almost the perfect purchase

1. It was what I needed. I’ve been surviving on a (slightly rickety) old mono laser printer for some time now. I decided to upgrade to a colour copier/scanner/printer, to get back colour printing, to clear out the aging scanner that is only just compatible with Windows XP, and to avoid having to go to the library for the occasional photocopy. I didn’t want fax. Linux support for possible future PCs would be good, too.

2. A brand I like. Canon. I’ve got a 5-year-old Canon camera, and a scanner that’s close to ten years old. Neither have ever skipped a beat. (Apart from a strange camera message that turned out to be particles of grit stuck in the lens gears.) The newish video camera is doing well too.

3. A good model on special at Officeworks for $249. I didn’t want a cheapie, so was looking at the MP610. Nice and quick. Fancy colour screen. Direct link to my camera. Prints on CDs too. Duplex! Drivers for XP, Vista, Mac, Linux. Could pick it up at the local Officeworks so I didn’t have to lug it home by hand.

4. $50 cash-back offer! Woo hoo! A good deal just got better.

5. Easy to set up. The graphical instructions, initially intimidating, turned out to be perfectly logical. Even did its own print head alignment thingy. All running, no problems. (Well, except that it didn’t come with a USB cable, but I had a spare, and a quick trip to Dick Smith the next day procured another for $5.)

6. Cash-back form not overly complex. First job of the printer was to print it out, and photocopy the receipt. No arcane registration codes necessary. (Which once with a Quicken product prevented me putting in the correct application and forgoing my money. Annoying.) Cash-back form into the mail, in time to reach them by the 31/1/2008 deadline (well, unless AusPost do the thing they did with Jeremy’s letter).

It was all looking like the perfect purchase. Happy with the product, good price, and a bonus $50 coming my way.

Then I noticed the small print on the cash-back terms and conditions. It was meant to be purchased by 31/12/2007. Damn! Yet that’s not mentioned anywhere else, and both Officeworks and Dick Smith are still mentioning the rebate in their latest advertising. Hmmm.

Well maybe Canon’s processing people don’t know about the small print either? Yeah, fat chance.

Oh well, I’m still happy with my new printer anyway.

Update: One of my ever-helpful commenters notes the cashback offer got extended. W00t!

By Daniel Bowen

Transport blogger / campaigner and spokesperson for the Public Transport Users Association / professional geek.
Bunurong land, Melbourne, Australia.
Opinions on this blog are all mine.

10 replies on “Almost the perfect purchase”

Admit it! You are at your happiest when you purchase a new toy!
PS Does the printer use print cartridges? Are they expensive??

From Canon Australia website: “Purchase must be made between 01/11/07 and 31/03/08 – Cash Back Extended.”

You just got the old form.

Tip: Included cartridges are only half full (ie. “starter” cartridges).

1 month ago I bought a canon mp160, does all the same things as yours just an older model.

$59 kiwi (approx $50 australian) and I am still on the ink cartriges that came with the printer! When they run out I am going to buy another printer as it is cheaper!

Looks like the mp160 doesn’t do duplex, so nyah nyah, and does it have a smaller display?

Oh yeah, the other reason I like the mp610 I got is it all folds up with no exposed dust-catching slots when it’s not in use. Very neat.

Apart from that if you buy ink cartridges you get more than originally came with the printer, for myself I have something of a problem with throwing out a working printer just to save a bit of money on ink. Seems like a waste.

MP160: One black cartridge, one colour cartridge. When you run out of blue, you chuck the colour cartridge away… along with all your remaining red and yellow.

MP610: Seperate colour cartridges, duplex, CD printing, memory card reader for Digicams, digital screen, … and the highest Dpi printing of all brands. Just physically bulky, is all.

Sounds good. Don’t forget to recycle your cartridges. You have a great place in Bentleigh opposite the Post Office.

i got one of the HP printer/scanner/copiers thats been in that sale… the one that is $37 after cashback :) and just like you, the first job it did was print, scan and copy the cashback paperwork!

must remember to go and buy a replacement cartridge this week so i dont get caught out when the “starter” cartridges run out!

Walgreens is a pharmacy chain in the USA that offers a service to refill ink cartridges rather than replace them. I have never tried this service but it should save money over new cartridges. Perhaps there is a similier service in Melbourne somewhere. Cartridges are very expensive here too.

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