Canon’s entry-level mono laser printer is the Laser Shot LBP-3000. It retails for about £95, so it sneaks under the all-important £100 price point in the UK.
It is quite definitely a personal laser printer as it has a USB 2.0 port but no parallel port (so it’s for Windows 98SE/Me/2000/XP only) and neither does it have any networking capability, unless you include the option of the AXIS 1650 Print Server which sells for £160, i.e. significantly more than the printer itself. The memory is 2MB with no option or need for an upgrade.
Unusually for a personal printer the running costs are quite low, as the only consumable is a combined toner cartridge and drum unit which costs about £40 and has a life of 2,000 pages, working out to 2p per page plus the cost of the paper.
Canon’s specification is a little vague but it suggests that the LBP-3000 has a total life of 10,000 pages, so once your fourth replacement toner cartridge has run out it’s game over. Realistically 10,000 pages is a life of at least two years for the typical home user.
Installation of the LBP-3000 could hardly be simpler as the drivers are a mere 15MB in size and we suspect a fair chunk of that to be the pictures of the LBP-3000 that are installed with the Windows drivers. Although this is a neat touch it’s hardly necessary when you consider that the printer has a single input tray, a single output tray, no duplex and only a USB connection to monitor.
The only snag during installation is that Canon doesn’t supply a USB cable. This is a common annoyance with USB peripherals, and the only manufacturer to consistently buck the ‘missing cable’ trend is Lexmark.
Once the LBP-3000 is installed you’ll find that the speed rating of 14ppm means that each page takes about four seconds to drop, with the first page taking some 12 seconds to print from cold. Although this is considerably faster than many printers from a year or two ago, which would take 30 or 40 seconds to get into their stride, these days a fast start-up is common to most laser printers which is incredibly handy in a personal printer that often sits around between print jobs.
Print quality is good by any standards and particularly so when you consider the low price of the Canon unit.
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