Small business inkjets could soon become big business for several printer makers, judging by the number of companies trying to divert customers from colour laser printers. Lexmark’s OfficeEdge range boasts low running costs and fast print, while still trying to keep the price of the OfficeEdge Pro4000 competitive.
The simple description ‘big black box’ fits this printer pretty well, as it’s the size of a microwave, completely encased in jet black plastic and combines function with simple curves. The 50-sheet Automatic Document Feeder (ADF) is set into the top cover, which has a magnetic latch to hold it shut when scanning or copying multipage documents.
The steeply sloped front panel is very logically laid out, with a 60mm colour LCD, a large navigation square, a number pad for fax dialling and assorted buttons for starting and stopping scan and copy jobs. No touchscreen, but simple, positive control from flush-fitting, physical keys. No single-key quick-dials, either, though there is an address book to store regularly dialled numbers.
A single, 300-sheet paper tray pulls out from the bottom of the front panel and a second tray of the same capacity can be fitted underneath as an option. The output tray pulls out from above and a flip-over wire support catches pages as they emerge.
To the right of the paper tray, a flip-down cover gives access to the four, high-capacity ink cartridges, which slide in and click into position quickly and positively. They have capacities of up to 2,500 pages for black and 1,600 pages for colour, so won't need replacing nearly as often as in most inkjet all-in-ones. Above the cover are sockets for SD, MemoryStick and xD cards, as well as one for USB and PictBridge.
Sockets at the rear support USB and Ethernet connections, but the OfficeEdge Pro4000 also provides a WiFi connection, up to Wireless n speeds, which is never likely to be a bottleneck for print data. Bundled software includes Abbyy FineReader OCR software and the Lexmark Address Book utility.