Oki C610n review
The C610n is a low-cost colour laser for small workgroups, which delivers high print speeds, reasonable running costs and some useful print management tools
Coming in as the replacement for Oki’s venerable C5950, the new C610n targets workgroups of ten users searching for high-speed, affordable colour printing. With a starting price of £460, this A4 colour laser looks to hit the spot for value, and with print speeds of 36ppm for mono and 34ppm for colour it claims to be the fastest in its class.
Media handling is more versatile that other printers at this price point. Using the C610n’s rear paper slot and multipurpose tray at the front creates a flat paper path that allows the printer to handle 250gsm stationery and banners up to 1.2 metres long.
Initial outlay is certainly low but Oki works hard to claw back some of your savings. Along with many other printer vendors, it supplies the printer with part-filled starter cartridges so you’ll be ordering new supplies in no time at all.
The C610n also uses a lot of consumables as for each colour you have separate image drums and toner cartridges and then there are the fuser unit and belt. These equate to printing costs of 1.3 pence for a mono page and just over 8 pence for a colour page.
Overall running costs are reasonable but if you’re planning on printing a lot of colour then it may be worth spending more on a printer with higher-capacity cartridges as these offer lower running costs. Think about memory capacity as well as Oki charges a hefty £240 for a 512MB upgrade for the C610n.
Oki also claims reduced power consumption with the C610n sipping 1.2W in sleep mode. Our inline meter confirmed this with it reading no more than 3W in this mode and we also tested the lab’s C5950 which consumed 14W in sleep mode.
The C610n delivers in the performance stakes despatching a 36-page Word document in one minute at the standard 1200 x 600dpi driver setting. Colour prints presented no problems with it churning out our 24-page DTP style document with plenty of colour charts, graphics and photos in 42 seconds for a tidy 34ppm average.
Output quality for text is impeccable while colour prints have the characteristic vibrancy of Oki’s LED printing process. This works well for colour reports and charts that have some real zing to them, but photographs don’t fare so well as our test prints were too dark and lacking in detail.
The driver’s automatic colour mode is the culprit and we found we could get better results using the Graphic Pro mode. This didn’t saturate the colours as much, resulting in more natural prints with superior detail.
The printer can be managed via a web browser, and Oki includes its Print Control server and client utilities. The client sends logs of user printing activities to the server, which includes file names, paper weight, toner usage and even resolution. Oki’s Colour Access Policy Manager does what it says on the tin. You decide whether specific users may print in colour, mono or even have access at all, and apply these policies to managed printers.
Driver fiddling will be required to get the best colour quality but for general workgroup printing duties the C610n is a good, low-cost solution. It’s fast, returns fair running costs for low volume colour usage and provides simple but effective print management features.
|Resolution printer final||1200 x 600dpi|
|Rated/quoted print speed||36PPM|
|Maximum paper size||A4|
|Cost per A4 mono page||1.3p|
|Cost per A4 colour page||8.1p|
|Standard mono toner life||8,000 pages|
|Standard colour toner life||6,000|
Power and noise
|Dimensions||435 x 546 x 340mm (WDH)|
|Idle power consumption||3W|
|Input tray capacity||300 sheets|
|Operating system Windows 7 supported?||yes|
|Operating system Windows Vista supported?||yes|
|Operating system Windows XP supported?||yes|
|Operating system Windows 2000 supported?||yes|
|Operating system Windows 98SE supported?||no|