Many people are aware of the advantages of colour laser printing because of low-cost, entry-level machines. One of their functions is as an advertisement for their more expensive siblings higher up the product range, and Samsung’s CLP-670ND is aimed at the medium workgroup of maybe 5-10 office workers.
This is a big block of a machine, with dark grey sides, back and control panel and light grey front and top. Even with its substantial dimensions, you still have to flip out a paper support at the back and printed sheets project by over 100mm. The usual argument for putting data sockets at the side – so a printer can be pushed flush against a wall – doesn't hold, because of this overhang and the fact that the mains plug slots in at the back.
The control panel is both bold and minimalist, with simple buttons for power and to cancel a job, and a four-way ring for menu navigation with an OK button in the centre and a surrounding blue ring for effect. The 2-line by 16-character LCD display has no backlight, but is still readily readable under normal overhead lighting.
A 250-sheet paper tray slides out from the bottom of the front panel and a further optional tray of the same capacity can be fitted underneath the machine. Additionally, an inset in the front panel folds down to become a 100-sheet multi-purpose tray in a novel arrangement, where the guides on the lid slot into place as it swings down, while a front panel slot flips open to provide access.
The front panel itself folds down to reveal a transfer belt attached to its back and this contacts four combined drum and toner cartridges in the CMYK colours, which are stacked up inside. They slide into place using grips at either end and are very quick and easy to install.
Samsung provides PostScript Level 3 and PCL 6 drivers in emulation, as well as a printer-monitoring applet and a web page print utility. Support is provided on CD for Windows and OS X and various Linux distributions, including Red Hat, Mandrake, SuSE and Fedora, are also supported via download. The CLP-670ND can be connected via USB or 10/100 Ethernet.