HP Color LaserJet CP5225dn review

£1115
Price when reviewed

HP’s latest A3 colour lasers aim to satisfy workgroups with a hunger for colour, as well as businesses looking for a single, affordable solution for in-house printing. The CP5220 family comprises three versions, with the base model offering a USB port, the CP5225n adding a network port, and the CP5225dn a duplex unit.

Installation is swift, but it was disappointing to see that the printer discovery and driver installation routines didn’t recognise Windows 7.

The printer’s web interface offers plenty of information about the status of consumables, and we also like the colour usage reports, which show all jobs printed, the number of mono and colour pages in each one and their owner. The Easy Printer Care tool comes in handy if you have multiple HP printers, since it shows instant readouts of toner capacities, gives advice on detected problems and provides quick access to HP’s website for ordering new cartridges.

HP Color LaserJet CP5225dn

The driver provides a bunch of predefined options for general printing, transparencies, booklets and so on. Standard paper capacity can be increased with an extra 500-sheet base tray, and memory can be upped to 448MB, but HP charges a mind-boggling £546 for a measly 256MB stick of DDR2.

The only consumables are the toner cartridges, which are easily accessed from the front of the printer. Longevity is good, but running costs poor: a mono A4 page costs 1.7p, while a colour page will set you back 10.3p.

The quoted top print speed of 20ppm for mono and colour means the CP5225dn is no speed demon, and in our tests it delivered a mixed bag of results. A 20-page Word document emerged in 60 seconds, and using the duplex unit for the same print took two minutes. For A3 document printing, we saw speeds pan out at around 10ppm.

But our 24-page DTP-style document and its collection of colour graphics, photos and charts had the CP5225dn flummoxed. Printing this on the standard driver setting took four minutes, with the printer pausing after every few pages and dropping speed down to 6ppm.

On a brighter note, output quality is extremely good, and it’s with colour prints where the CP5220 family shines. The printer handles cheap copier paper well, with minimal banding and plenty of detail in darker areas. On heavier paper it gets even better, with bold, vibrant colours. The PC Pro colour performance chart showed the underlying quality, as solid blocks of C, Y and M hit us between the eyes and complex fades showed virtually no stepping across colours. Grey shades using equal mixes of C, Y and M were also reproduced faithfully.

Initial outlay for the CP5220 printers puts them on price parity with Oki’s C810n. HP’s output quality is undeniably classy, but this is matched closely by Oki and the C810n delivers higher speeds and much lower running costs, making it our preferred choice for large-format colour printing.

Printer language & OS Support

PCL level 6
PostScript level 3

Basic Specifications

Colour? yes
Resolution printer final 600 x 600dpi
Rated/quoted print speed 20PPM
Maximum paper size A3
Duplex function yes

Running costs

Cost per A4 mono page 1.7p
Cost per A4 colour page 10.3p

Consumables

Monthly duty cycle 75,000 pages

Power and noise

Dimensions 545 x 599 x 338mm (WDH)
Peak power consumption 440W
Idle power consumption 30W

Performance tests

Mono print speed (measured) 20ppm
Colour print speed 6ppm

Media Handling

Input tray capacity 250 sheets
Output tray capacity 250 sheets

Connectivity

USB connection? yes
Ethernet connection? yes
Bluetooth connection? no
WiFi connection? no
PictBridge port? no

OS Support

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
Other operating system support Mac OS X 10.3 or higher

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