Kyocera Mita – Ecosys FS3830-N review

business laser printer with low running costs
Photo of Kyocera Mita – Ecosys FS3830-N
From £766 + VAT

Laser printing technology is pretty well established, with most manufacturers employing throw-away cartridges containing not just toner, but expensive imaging and developer components too. Not so Kyocera Mita, which bucks this trend to make its printers a lot cheaper to run. As is the case with the Ecosys FS3830-N, which brings quoted costs down to an incredible 0.33p per page, excluding the paper and power.

Designed to handle the printing needs of a small company or corporate workgroup, the Ecosys FS3830-N is a 33ppm (pages per minute), A4, monochrome laser capable of printing at a resolution of 1,200dpi (dots per inch). It uses the same Ecosys technology as other Kyocera Mita printers, and gives excellent results from a long-life imaging/developer unit which means that, most of the time, toner is the only consumable you have to buy.

The imaging unit is guaranteed for 3 years or 300,000 pages, although it will probably go on for longer, and toner cartridges cost just £66 plus VAT. These, in turn, last for up to 20,000 pages each, hence the low running costs, and if you don’t save on consumables after buying the printer you can get your money back.

The printer is pretty impressive in other areas too. For a start it’s remarkably compact for a 33ppm network laser, despite which it’s very robust, with a duty cycle of 175,000 pages per month. The main processor is a 300MHz Power PC accompanied by a generous 96MB of memory. More RAM can be added, using industry standard DIMMs, up to 576MB in total.

There’s also an optional hard disk which can, for example, support a neat proof-and-hold feature and store commonly used forms and other documents. Kyocera Mita employs its own Prescribe language to support these options, but there’s PCL and PostScript plus PDF printing and the usual legacy emulations too.

Integrated parallel, USB and Ethernet interfaces look after the connectivity, with a built-in print server plus Web-based management interface. These make the printer easy to deploy and manage on the LAN with another plus being a Windows driver that can be used with any Ecosys printer. Mac and Linux drivers are available if required and SNMP (Simple Network Management Protocol) management software is also included.

Paper handling starts with a 500-sheet paper drawer in the bottom of the printer, with a fold-out, 100-sheet, multi-purpose tray for envelopes, transparencies and so on. Three more paper drawers can then be stacked underneath to give a total capacity of 2,100 sheets – and a duplexer can be added for double-side printing.

There’s also an optional powered envelope feeder and a sorter/mailbox device. Of course, these add to the price but it’s possible to spread both capital and running costs under the PrintSave purchase plan available from most Kyocera Mita resellers.

Low cost of ownership is, clearly, a key selling point in favour of the FS3830-N, backed up by the ability to produce high quality output at high speed. Add these together and you have a combination that’s hard to beat and well worth investigating further.

Company: Kyocera Mita

Contact: 0118 923 0720


Verdict
Like other Ecosys printers, low cost of ownership is the main reason for looking at the FS3830-N. In addition, however, it offers 33ppm performance and top quality, 1200dpi results from its A4 laser engine. Networking is well catered for and there are lots of paper handling options, making this a first class workgroup or small business laser printer.