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Choosing a Color Laser

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  • Hewlett Packard
  • Peripherals
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Anonymous
a b α HP
April 3, 2005 9:10:57 PM

Archived from groups: comp.periphs.printers (More info?)

I have been wrestling with the choice between the Brother HL 2700,
Okidata 5150 and the HP 2550 color lasers for several weeks now. In my
research I came across this link
http://www.epinions.com/content_156222852740 and found this disturbing
info:




- HP uses "smart-chip" technology on this printer's cartridges. The
chips monitor the amount of toner that you've been using, according to
the manual, letting you know in advance when you're about to run out of
toner. In practice, these smart chips act like kill chips. Let me
explain: Say you print a black-and-white page with just one sentence on
the whole page. The black toner cartridge is rated at 5000 pages; every
page you print, the smart chip deducts one page from the cartridge, so
when you check on your toners in HP's LaserJet Toolbox, it shows your
black cartridge as have 4999 pages left. Even if you only printed one
line on that page, you have used up one page of the cartridge's life!

It gets worse from here. Sometimes, you thought you printed just a black
page, but the printer clunks four times after you click print, as if it
were printing a colour page, even though you THOUGHT you were printing a
black page. This happens with PDF files a lot of the time, when
unintentionally the computer thinks the page has colour on it, and tells
the printer it's a colour page even though it isn't. When this happens,
one page is deducted from EACH of your toners, decreasing their life.

I don't like that at all.

Does anyone know if the two other printers have this characteristic?

Thank you very much.

More about : choosing color laser

Anonymous
a b α HP
April 4, 2005 5:19:55 AM

Archived from groups: comp.periphs.printers (More info?)

Jack Gillis <XXXXXXXX@widomaker.com> wrote:
> I have been wrestling with the choice between the Brother HL 2700,
> Okidata 5150 and the HP 2550 color lasers for several weeks now. In my
> research I came across this link
> http://www.epinions.com/content_156222852740 and found this disturbing

[snip]

> - HP uses "smart-chip" technology on this printer's cartridges. The
> chips monitor the amount of toner that you've been using, according to
> the manual, letting you know in advance when you're about to run out of
> toner.

> Does anyone know if the two other printers have this characteristic?

The Okidata color lasers do the same thing.

First, they tell you that toner is getting low and you should order
replacements. Eventually, they refuse to print until the empty toner is
replaced.

Whether it's watching number of prints or actual toner present, I don't
know.

--
Warren Block * Rapid City, South Dakota * USA
Anonymous
a b α HP
April 4, 2005 9:50:11 AM

Archived from groups: comp.periphs.printers (More info?)

"Warren Block" <wblock@wonkity.com> wrote in message
news:slrnd515hr.3mo.wblock@speedy.wonkity.com...
> Jack Gillis <XXXXXXXX@widomaker.com> wrote:
>> I have been wrestling with the choice between the Brother HL 2700,
>> Okidata 5150 and the HP 2550 color lasers for several weeks now. In
>> my
>> research I came across this link
>> http://www.epinions.com/content_156222852740 and found this
>> disturbing
>
> [snip]
>
>> - HP uses "smart-chip" technology on this printer's cartridges. The
>> chips monitor the amount of toner that you've been using, according
>> to
>> the manual, letting you know in advance when you're about to run out
>> of
>> toner.
>
>> Does anyone know if the two other printers have this characteristic?
>
> The Okidata color lasers do the same thing.
>
> First, they tell you that toner is getting low and you should order
> replacements. Eventually, they refuse to print until the empty toner
> is
> replaced.
>
> Whether it's watching number of prints or actual toner present, I
> don't
> know.
>
> --
> Warren Block * Rapid City, South Dakota * USA

Thank you very much Warren. That is what I wanted to know. Two down,
one to go.
Related resources
April 7, 2005 9:05:11 AM

Archived from groups: comp.periphs.printers (More info?)

On Sun, 3 Apr 2005 17:10:57 -0400, "Jack Gillis"
<XXXXXXXX@widomaker.com> wrote:

>I have been wrestling with the choice between the Brother HL 2700,
>Okidata 5150 and the HP 2550 color lasers for several weeks now. In my
>research I came across this link
>http://www.epinions.com/content_156222852740 and found this disturbing
>info:

When you are finished looking at these three consider the Dell 3100cn.
Regularly put on sale for $376 shipping included, it comes with FULL
(4000 page) toner carts, 2 paper trays (MFT and lower 200 page tray,
both Internal to the, admittedly, BIG printer). FAST warmup times so
much of the cycling noise issues can be avoided by just turning it
off. Built in parallel, USB and Ethernet input. Like most, the base
memory is generally too small, but takes inexpensive PC133 SO-DIMM
memory. It monitors actual toner levels, NOT pages printed. Toner
carts are not chipped to self destruct, in fact the firmware even has
an explicit setting to ALLOW Non-OEM toner carts... of course since
it's a new model nobody is selling refill or rebuilt carts yet. The
printer is actually made by Fuji-Xerox. It has it's own 'issues'
(somewhat inflexible paper size options, some settings, such as
getting it to print in fast "black only" mode are a bit cumbersome and
best done by creating a second 'print driver' in Windows) but overall
it produces better color, is faster and not so intensely designed to
force you to spend money on toner.
Anonymous
a b α HP
April 7, 2005 6:13:16 PM

Archived from groups: comp.periphs.printers (More info?)

Coup <coup@sumwhere.net> wrote:
> On Sun, 3 Apr 2005 17:10:57 -0400, "Jack Gillis"
><XXXXXXXX@widomaker.com> wrote:
>
>>I have been wrestling with the choice between the Brother HL 2700,
>>Okidata 5150 and the HP 2550 color lasers for several weeks now. In my
>>research I came across this link
>>http://www.epinions.com/content_156222852740 and found this disturbing
>>info:
>
> When you are finished looking at these three consider the Dell 3100cn.
> Regularly put on sale for $376 shipping included, it comes with FULL
> (4000 page) toner carts, 2 paper trays (MFT and lower 200 page tray,
> both Internal to the, admittedly, BIG printer). FAST warmup times so
> much of the cycling noise issues can be avoided by just turning it
> off. Built in parallel, USB and Ethernet input.

An interesting printer. The Dell web page says it has PCL5/6 and
genuine Adobe PostScript 3. Per-page costs including drum are shown at
1.5 cents for black and white and 9.9 cents for color.

The only serious lack is that while black and white pages can print at
25 pages per minute, color prints at 5 PPM. The 5100CN can print both
color at 25 PPM and black and white at 35 PPM, although it's more than
double the price of the 3100CN. Still not bad, considering. The
per-page costs are even lower.

Reviews at epinions.com and computers.com are less than enthusiastic,
however.

--
Warren Block * Rapid City, South Dakota * USA
Anonymous
a b α HP
April 10, 2005 4:49:10 PM

Archived from groups: comp.periphs.printers (More info?)

"Coup" <coup@sumwhere.net> wrote
> Warren Block <wblock@wonkity.com> wrote:
>
> >>
> >> When you are finished looking at these three consider the Dell 3100cn.
> >> Regularly put on sale for $376 shipping included, <snip>
> >
> >An interesting printer <snip>
> >Reviews at epinions.com and computers.com are less than enthusiastic,
> >however.
>
> Well eopinions has exactly ONE review. The guy couldn't get a working
> one, well it's a HUGE beast and weighs a ton, I suspect his issues
> have more to do with whoever delivers to him than the printers
> themselves. I've seen the CNet reviews and the one guy raving about
> toner disappearing makes no sense, nor is it confirmed by anyone
> else., I'm stuck with my favorable reaction to having a 3100cn sitting
> here. <snip>

FWIW, the Computer Shopper that just arrived listed the 3100cn as a "Great
Buy" on the "Buying Basics" end page (their choice for a color laser). At
that sale price, you guys are making me wish I were in the market.
Anonymous
a b α HP
April 10, 2005 9:45:28 PM

Archived from groups: comp.periphs.printers (More info?)

Here are some reviews of the Dell 3100cn color laser printer:

Hardware Central
http://www.hardwarecentral.com/hardwarecentral/reviews/...

PC Magazine
http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,1759,1725623,00.asp

Most folks will want to add RAM memory to it.Comes with 64 MB
hardwired and a slot that takes up to 512MB. The slot uses PC133 144-pin
SODIMM. A 3rd party 512MB module can be had for approx.
$100. Here's some info:
http://www.memoryx.net/decolapr31me.html

Dell sells the toner carts. Black is $50, colors are $100.

4000-page toner cart estimates are okay for text and simple graphics
printing. That's how they get the 10 cents/page toner cost estimate for
color
pages. 8x10 photos, at the other usage extreme, would
tend to eat the carts up 3x to 4x faster, making those pages
cost 30 to 40 cents apiece for toner .

The drum has to be replaced every 24,000 pages. It costs about
$180 from Dell. That adds another 3/4 cents per page in costs.

-- stan
April 11, 2005 10:58:53 AM

Archived from groups: comp.periphs.printers (More info?)

On Sun, 10 Apr 2005 17:45:28 GMT, "Stanley Krute" <stan@stankrute.com>
wrote:

>Here are some reviews of the Dell 3100cn color laser printer:
>
>Hardware Central
> http://www.hardwarecentral.com/hardwarecentral/reviews/...
>
>PC Magazine
> http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,1759,1725623,00.asp
>
>Most folks will want to add RAM memory to it.Comes with 64 MB
>hardwired and a slot that takes up to 512MB. The slot uses PC133 144-pin
>SODIMM. A 3rd party 512MB module can be had for approx.
>$100. Here's some info:
> http://www.memoryx.net/decolapr31me.html
>
>Dell sells the toner carts. Black is $50, colors are $100.
>
>4000-page toner cart estimates are okay for text and simple graphics
>printing. That's how they get the 10 cents/page toner cost estimate for
>color
>pages. 8x10 photos, at the other usage extreme, would
>tend to eat the carts up 3x to 4x faster, making those pages
>cost 30 to 40 cents apiece for toner .
>
>The drum has to be replaced every 24,000 pages. It costs about
>$180 from Dell. That adds another 3/4 cents per page in costs.
>
>-- stan
>

I only added a 256 Meg SODIMM and I've thrown huge color images that
fill 8.5 x 11 pages at it without issue. I won't categorically say
that 512 is unnecessary, but I suspect 320 Meg total is sufficient for
almost anything.

For balance here are other 'major issues' both pro and con:

Pro:

1. Warm up is very fast, so much so that if your usage is infrequent,
just turn it off.. From 'cold' to 'ready to print' is under 1 minute,
much faster than many of it's competitors.

2. When it "sleep' mode it is dead silent.

3. Buried deep inside the Setup Firmware you will find a setting that
may make you faint: "Allow non-oem toner cartridges". This bodes
extremely well for the future if it gets popular enough to support
aftermarket suppliers... when was the last time you saw ANY printer
with such an option... In fact I'm being EXTREMELY wary of any
firmware upgrades until I'm sure this option doesn't 'disappear'. So
far there is one firmware upgrade that seems to address some issues a
few are having with the Ethernet interface...

Con:

1. There are a substantial number of options for common paper sizes,
but so far some are complaining they can't create 'custom paper
sizes'. Personally I don't see why u can't use a 'close enough' size
and trim....

2. For some common tasks you have to make changes at several places in
the interface software, many have found it's just easier to create
additional "printers" under Win, rename each and set up each for
specific tasks (like B&W only printing which is MUCH faster and
doesn't cycle thru all 4 engines if you set it up properly)

3. The options for color matching are.. daunting.. you have about 7
variables with many options under each, leading to literally hundreds
of combinations... finding the best match for your tastes can be
frustrating.. but I've seen similar issues with all color lasers..
out-of-the box, none of them provide a match to color that's as close
as most inkjets.. and remember, if your 'standard' is high gloss
deeply saturated color that closely mimics photographic color prints..
then ALL current color lasers are going to disappoint....what you can
get is matte or low gloss images with a reasonable but less vibrant
color gamut.....

4. Current Dell tech support is a complete joke, they know absolutely
NOTHING about this printer and cannot answer even the simplest
questions about it..otoh.. as the guy who went thru 3 found, they are
more than obliging at replacement if something is wrong with yours...

5. It's BIG, its' VERY BIG.... the 17" x17" footprint is similar to
others in it's class, but it's all of 2 ft tall. OTOH both the MFT and
2nd tray are totally internal so the 'real' footprint isn't any
larger. The ONLY output is to the top tray, NO straight path out the
back which limits media to around 56 lb stock, and means envelopes are
likely to see some wrinkling. It's also HEAVY, about 72 lbs, and while
build like a tank (the lower paper drawer is all steel and must weigh
15 lbs by itself) true to some unwritten law observed by all printer
manufacturers, it MUST include at least one element that is so
stupidly flimsy that it will break under even careful normal use. In
this case it's the extension flaps to the output tray on top which
consists of double hinged paper-thin plastic......

But all in all, it offers more-than-decent color laser output at a
price point many of us have been waiting for....
!