This is an important feature, because a personal laser printer is unlikely to be printing anywhere near continuously. Typical use will probably see only a few documents printed each day, within long periods of sleep. This means most print jobs will include any start-up time and without the need to warm-up a fuser, the printer will be quicker overall than those that have to wait.
So, does the printer reduce its start-up time by keep it's fuser hot all the time, in which case it will be using lots of power, even when asleep? It draws just 7W in sleep mode, about half the consumption of an energy-saving lamp, so it'll use a unit in just under six days.
Print speeds for our text and graphics and the photo page files are both good, with 18 seconds for the former and a fairly blistering eight seconds for the photo print - 7.5ppm. Even when we switched to the higher resolution ProRes mode, it only took 11 seconds.
Text print quality is very good, with clean, dense characters showing very little distortion and no toner spatter. Greyscale tints are also quite smooth, with good tone gradations and little in the way of banding. Some of the greyscale equivalents to coloured shades are quite dark, in comparison with other mono lasers.
We ran the photo print in both FastRes and ProRes modes and, while the ProRes is slightly smoother, particularly in large areas of graduated tint, both are very good, with little banding evident. There's a good level of general detail and better than average shadow detail, too.
The LaserJet P2014 doesn't seem that noisy when running, but when we measured it, it peaked at just over 60dBA, which is quite loud. As usual, it's the paper feed mechanism that makes the most noise.
There are two different capacities of drum and toner cartridge, one which delivers 3,000, five per cent pages and the other which should give 7,000 pages. Using the higher-yield cartridge produces a page cost of 2.05p, which is on the high side for a printer in this price band, but isn't completely out of order.
The LaserJet P2014 is a good, solid, no-nonsense mono laser printer which will be a useful asset in a home office or small business. While it's not the cheapest mono laser to run, it's quick, particularly for the first page out, and produces high quality pages of both text and, more unusually, greyscale photo images.