- Review Price: £399.47
A couple of weeks back we reviewed the Samsung CLX-6220FX colour laser multifunction printer. The CLP-620ND, reviewed here, is a single-function printer, based on the same print engine as that machine. It’s intended for a small business or a workgroup within a larger organisation.
This is a substantial printer, sitting high off the desk, as its four-colour engine is arranged vertically inside the case. Its overall design, in two shades of grey, is elegant and functional, with the exception of the flip-up paper rest at the back of the output tray. You’d think in a machine this size a stop wouldn’t be necessary; its moulded hinge is big enough for the first page of each job to catch on it. It’s not enough to disturb the paper flow, but is irritating.
The control panel at the front is simple but sufficient, with a 2-line by 16-character LCD display, a ring of control buttons, with a four-segment, blue LED surround and two further buttons for power and job cancel. There’s a large red and green LED indicator for error conditions, too.
Part of the large front panel folds down to become a 100-sheet multi-purpose tray and there’s a 250-sheet main paper tray. You can add a second, 500-sheet tray underneath, as an option.
The machine is provided with USB and Ethernet connections at the back and drivers are provided for Windows, OS X, Linux and Citrix. Physical setup is straightforward, as the front panel folds down to access the drum and toner cartridges and the transfer belt, while the top cover reveals the fuser unit. Only the drum and toner cartridges have to be fitted before use.
Samsung rates the CLP-620ND at 20ppm for both black and colour print, and we got closer to this than we did with the CLX-6220FX. Our five-page text print took 28s, giving a real-world speed of 10.7ppm. Coincidently, this was also the speed for the five-page black text and colour graphics document.
When we printed the 20-page text document, the speed increased to 16.2ppm, which is very reasonable for a mid-range colour laser. The machine performs what Samsung calls Real-Time Calibration, which attempts to insure constant colour fidelity, a laudable aim. It does mean, though, that periodically a print job will take longer than normal, because of this automatic adjustment.
Duplex print is standard on this machine, not that usual for a colour laser, and it prints quickly and effectively. Our 20-page document, printed as a 10-page, 20-side duplex job took 2:30, exactly eight sides per minute.
We were particularly impressed with the colour quality of the multifunction version of this machine and the prints we got here were of similar high-quality. Black text is crisp and dense and very suitable for all general office use. Even in small print sizes, it’s clear and precise.
Colours are also bright and attention-grabbing, though some shades of blue and green are a little dark by default. Black and colour registration is particularly good. Our text and colour graphics test piece places black text at a small point size over areas of solid colour fill, which is an exacting test for any colour page printer. Here there was no sign of any white halos around the black characters.
Our 15 x 10cm colour photo benefited from the good colour quality. The range of colours available from a colour laser printer is smaller than from a typical inkjet and can produce rather gaudy images, over-emphasised in blue and green. The CLP-620ND was better than normal in this respect and although not as good as even quite humble inkjets, photo images could be incorporated in day-to-day business documents from this machine.
There are two consumables to consider: the drum and toner cartridges and the transfer belt. The cartridges are rated at either 2,500 pages standard or 5,000 pages high-yield, while the transfer belt should last for 50,000 pages, so may well not need replacement during the life of the machine.
Using the high-yield components, we calculate a black page cost of 2.8p and a colour page cost of 10.4p. You may notice these two figures are lower than for the Samsung CLX-6220FX and this is because we found a different, less expensive source for them. Since both machines use the same consumables, these lower costs can be applied to that machine, too.
The costs sits roughly in the middle of the range of costs for colour lasers between £200 and £1,000 which, given its asking price, is what we’d expect.
Like its multifunction sibling, the Samsung CLP-620ND is very good at what it does. It prints black and colour pages at high quality, with particularly good colour rendition for a laser. It does it quickly, single or double-sided, with minimum fuss and maintenance is both reasonable in cost and quick and easy to do.
Score in detail
Print Speed 8
Print Quality 9
|Paper Size||A4, Letter, Custom Size, Legal, A6|
|Sheet Capacity||350 sheets|
|Rated Black Speed (Images per minute)||21 ppmipm|
|Rated Colour Speed (Images per minute)||21 ppmipm|