Color Laser Printers: Fast and Affordable!

HP LaserJet 2600n

Designed for HP by Canon, the LaserJet 2600n is without a doubt the most astounding one-pass laser color printer. However, while its price is low for a one-pass model, its overall cost per page is incredibly high. This limits its advantages for business use, despite the fact that it comes with a network port as standard equipment.

Ergonomics And Functions

Many people will be attracted to the LaserJet 2600n's relatively small size and weight. At 40 lbs (18 kg), it's a real lightweight compared to the competition. Its architecture, which puts all the cartridges on the top, considerably simplifies the paper path during printing, which reduces the risk of paper jams.

Printing Speed

Thanks to its one-pass technology and Instant-On Fusing, the LaserJet 2600n is particularly at ease with small color documents. It can put out three or four pages in twenty or so seconds, while other printers are still in their warm-up phases. On the other hand, the 8 ppm printing engine was a little slow with monochrome output. It took three times as long to print 20 pages of text as some other models.

Print Quality

A lot of progress has clearly been made with the driver, compared to the first version of this printer, which we tested last year. This time around the colors were fairly accurate overall, and we noted very good reproduction of contrast on documents with a lot of black.

Cost Per Page

Since HP doesn't offer high-capacity cartridges for its LaserJet 2600n, and since the price recently increased by more than 20%, its cost per page was by far the highest of all the printers we tested: 5 cents for a black page and 22 cents for a color page. But ironically, on this model, that's not of major importance. Since the combined cost of the four cartridges is actually higher than that of the printer itself, it's actually better to replace the whole printer when the cartridges are empty. This also gives you the benefit of a fresh warranty.


The LaserJet 2600n will be especially attractive to those who need to print black as much as color. At low printing volumes, however, the high cost per page and limited capacity of the cartridges don't make it very economical to use. Its network port and Instant-On Fusing technology make it ideal for a small organization working in a group.

  • gorbehnare
    This is a good comparison. I found this information very much more useful.
  • wahaha
    You're also forgetting one thing, LOWER DPI.

    You do NOT need to print random obtuse documents at 300DPI. That's a waste of ink/toner, and speed. Is it even worth it to save half of 1 cent though? Who knows.

    And I bet they base the speed claims of these lasers off of 150 DPI settings. You only use 300+ DPI for business appropriate letter head.
  • alfredjr18
    Yup. Nice Post. Try to see this one too

    Best Cost Per Page HP Color Laser Printers

  • Inkjets will dry up if not used for months: TRUE. Lasers are the best choice if you rarely print stuff.

    Inkjets try to waste as much ink as possible: TRUE. They love to spray a LOT of ink when running very frequent cleaning cycles.

    All printer companies try to rip you off: TRUE. Chipping should be illegal from the environmental perspective. I've seen HP printers expire an entire set of 90% full color toner cartridges because they were too old, printers that refuse to print using a refilled cartridge. Some OEMs for medium-heavy duty printers require that you give them the used cartridges to get preferred pricing. That's to keep used cartridges from getting to re-manufacturers.

    Printing photos at home is a waste of money: True. They cost like a dollar for 4x6, and if you botch one, it's now $2. Photo lab is under $0.25, they pay for their mistakes, and the print is much more durable and fade / water resistant.

    For most economical, trouble free printing for a home user, get an old HP 4/5. Built like a tank, tones of re-manufactured cartridges available (if you ever need one)
  • Do you own a laser or inkjet?
  • Its time to end the stereotype of THIS article, cause its BS.

    1) Inkjets have alternative ink, that cuts down printing costs to less than that of lasers. Example: 1L color from Inktec - over 10k pages at 5% - cost 20$. ONE liter. UV resistance included.
    2) It is possible to buy as little as 20ml of ink if you dont print often
    3) Inkjet head can be rinsed with distilled hot water and vacuumed for 10 years period, if you don´t print.
    4) Inkjets do produce better quality photo. 4800x4800 vs 600x600, go try it out. The only paper where they are on parity is normal 80g which makes no difference.
    5) Printing costs: The only laser capable of at least 1200x1200 is lexmark 5xx series, with supplies costing 300$, drum 200$, drying element 250$. All this comes to page costs, somehow everyone forgets that and calculates only toner cost, which is WRONG.
    6) Inkjet consumes only 50W at printing, where lasers are up to 2KW. But thats not a major factor.

    So inkjets weight less, cost less, running costs are less, prints better. What is real problem with inkjets?
    1) You have to use alternative ink, but not just some, but special for your model. Forget about original ink - it costs more than parfume.
    2) It can get messy - if you set wrong settings - because printer dries and stores excessive ink INSIDE of itself, it can pretty much mess everything. You will need lots of paper and/or Q-tips to clean.
    3) Remember 15 minute max on air time for printing heads and catridges. A head which is dried up ins near impossible to recover if it uses pigment ink.
    4) Hardly a photo is water resistant. Due to nature of ink, its impossible. It will not dissolve from water drops, but merging a photo in water - and you can forget it. There are printers which are better here - the sublimation printers. But they are ONLY good for photo and printing costs are high, but thats labor quality.
    5) Unlike laser, you will sometimes need to clean your inkjet. It is a very messy process, and remember never to use alcohol cause it can dry ink up an you can forget the printing head.

    All in one, inkjets are ideal for less than 1000 prints in a month, or in situation where photo printing is needed, but not on large scale. Starting from 1000 prints pro year you should get CISS system on your inkjet, but still laser will be a bit more efficient, because of raw printing speed (1pass laser) and outage times(cleaning head etc).

    Overall inkjet costs way way less with alternative ink, alone the cost of supplies for laser (toner set+drum+fixer) can overweight cost of laser printer itself by factor 200%. This is why you find empty laser printers on sale at ebay for 20$.