You would expect to pay at least £200 for a mono laser printer which could print at over 20ppm, but the 33ppm Xerox Phaser 3435 costs over £300. For this money you should expect some worthwhile extras, so what does it provide?
It starts by having a reasonably discrete footprint and an attractive, angular design in white and dark blue, with a ‘collar’ effect around the top. The control panel is set into this collar and a circular depression in front of the backlit, two-line by 16-character LCD display holds a cluster of six control buttons, for menu navigation and machine control.
The printer has a 250-sheet main paper tray and a 50-sheet multi-purpose tray, which pulls down from the front cover. Although you can buy a second, optional 250-sheet tray to sit under the machine, this only gives a maximum of 550 sheets, which may well mean more servicing of the machine than necessary in a busy office, since the Phaser 3435′s duty cycle is 50,000 sheets per month.
The integrated drum and toner cartridge, which slides in easily from the front of the machine once you’ve pulled down the front cover, is available in two capacities: 4,000 and 10,000 pages. Using the high-yield cartridge gives a cost per page of 1.07p, which is very reasonable for this class of machine.
Xerox provides emulated drivers for both PCL 6 and Postscript Level 3 page description languages and supports the printer under Windows, Mac OS X and various flavours of Linux. Connections include USB, Ethernet and parallel, so the printer should slip easily into a variety of environments.
The spec sheet claims a top speed of 33ppm but, even using our longer, 20-page text test document, we only saw 24.5ppm in practice. Even so, this is an impressive turn of speed and other results, such as 13.6ppm for a five-page text and graphics document and a 15 x 10cm photo print in just 11 seconds, confirm this machine has a capable print engine. Even the duplex speed – duplex is standard on this machine – is a credit-worthy 15.2spm.
Print quality is also good, with crisp, black text being clear and very easy to read. Business graphics are also well reproduced, though there are some signs of micro-banding in large areas of grey fill. These can also be seen in greyscale photo prints, though in neither case do they detract that much from the overall look of the print.
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