- Review Price: £221.00
Laser printers don’t have the glamour they once had, but they’re still the doyens of nearly all small businesses. As such a new mono laser for from HP is definitely worth a look. The main thing about the ‘nw’ variant of the LaserJet 1022 is that it has 802.11g wireless networking built in. This means anybody with a home or office wireless network can print to the 1022nw without any physical data connection.
There’s nothing particularly surprising in the design of this printer – its cuboid case has only slightly curved edges to make it easier on the eye. Unfold the tray from the front cover and you can load it with up to 250 sheets of plain paper. There’s a smoked plastic cover which clips on top to keep dust off the paper and also to provide a multi-purpose feed, which can take up to 10 sheets of special media.
On top are two buttons, three indicator lights and a special blue light at the back to indicate a live network connection. The buttons turn the printer on and off-line and cancel a current job. At the back are sockets for a local USB 2.0 connection and 10/100 Ethernet. Most people paying the extra for the ‘nw’ version of this printer will be using it wirelessly, though.
The single-piece toner and developer cartridge slides into place under the top cover in a very easy obvious and positive way. It could hardly be easier to fit.
HP claims setting up the wireless connectivity is very easy, because it’s automatic. We can confirm this. We followed the simple instructions, and had the machine connected up and recognised within a few minutes. This statement doesn’t tell you the whole story, though.
If you’re connecting the printer into an infrastructure network (rather than an ad hoc set up), you have to connect it to your switch or hub via a network cable, before you start. You can then switch the printer on and wait for an IP address to be assigned to the printer, which you can check for by printing out a settings sheet. Finally, you disconnect the Ethernet cable and can then use the printer fully wirelessly.
Which all begs the question, why can’t it sign on wirelessly, too? If your hub is in an awkward place, or all the ports are used, it’s not that convenient to cable it up in order to install it. There is an answer though – security. If it tried to link into to a wireless network before being allocated an address the printer could sign up to your neighbour’s network.
Once the printer has an IP address, you run the driver installation on whichever PC or PCs you want to be able to print from and away you go. There’s still something of a sense of magic seeing pages being printed when there’s no visible connection between printer and PC. Practically, it means you can position the printer wherever you like and share it seamlessly with several computers.
Text prints, as is normal from HP, are very good. Dense black characters with crisp edges are the order of the day with little toner splatter to blur things. Graphics are also cleanly reproduced, though areas of tone are a little blotchy. This blotchiness is also apparent if you print photographic images, particular in skies and flesh tones, where you have continuous gradations of tone.
The LaserJet 1022nw is rated at 18ppm in draft mode and we saw over 10ppm in normal mode. Our text and graphics page printed in 13 seconds, giving over 4ppm, and this was the same for our photo sample. All these times are good for a printer in this class.
There’s just a single consumable in the LaserJet 1022nw, a 2,000 sheet toner and developer cartridge. The typical cost of this item gives a cost per five per cent cover page of 2p. This is a little higher than some mono lasers in this category, but still an acceptable rate.
What’s a bit more awkward is the cartridge’s page yield; 2,000, five per cent pages is not very much. Start printing graphics and that number drops considerably and even for personal use, you may find yourself changing cartridges more often than you would like. We’d like to see at least 3,000 pages, but better 4,000, on any laser printer which has pretensions to business use, even home office.
This is a neat and very easy to use mono laser printer, one of the first personal or home office lasers to have the convenience of wireless network connection. It provides fair print quality, is quick and is straightforward to maintain. Even in the home, though, the page yield of 2,000 pages per cartridge is low.
Score in detail
Print Speed 8
Print Quality 8
|Networking||Fast Ethernet, Wi-Fi|
|Paper Size||Letter, Legal, Executive, Envelope No. 10, Monarch Envelope, Custom Size|
|Sheet Capacity||250 sheets|
|Rated Black Speed (Images per minute)||19 ppmipm|