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Mono laser multifunction printers start at a relatively low cost, but faster models, like their single-function counterparts, rise rapidly in price. Epson’s AcuLaser MX20DN is specced at 28ppm, which may account for its asking price of around £400.
With a rakish taper from its relatively small base to its flatbed scanner, which includes a healthy, 50-sheet Automatic Document Feeder (ADF), the printer manages to hide its substantial dimensions well.
In front of the chunky ADF is a deep control panel with a widescreen, backlit LCD, complete with four soft function keys. The display is particularly well designed, offering tabs for different settings and using the function keys intelligently to control key options.
Three mode keys for Copy, Scan and Print sit to the left of the display, while to the right is a ring of menu navigation buttons and a numeric keypad, which can be used for PINs in secure printing. There's a version of this machine with fax, though the DN version doesn't include it. Finally, at the extreme right are buttons to start and stop jobs and an illuminated one that switches the whole machine into a power saving mode.
Below the control panel is the gap on top of the printer section, where completed documents come to rest. To the right of this is a socket where you can plug in a USB drive for both direct print and scan to USB.
The main tray can take up to 250 sheets of paper and a pull-down panel above this has a telescopic paper support, which offers an extra 50-sheet multipurpose tray. If this isn't enough, you can add one or two optional trays, each of which take an extra 250 sheets.
At the back are sockets for USB and 10/100 Ethernet, though there's no wireless support on the AcuLaser MX20DN. Pulling down the front panel raises a small cover on the top of the printer section and the two together reveal the hopper for the toner cartridge.
This machine uses a Kyocera Mita engine, which means that the photoconductor drum is a lifetime part and all you're adding is toner, in one of two capacities. Software comprises a status application, drivers for both Windows and OS X and Epson Scan, to handle scanning page images to computer.
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