HP Color LaserJet 2550n review

Price when reviewed

The 2550n is the networked version of the 2550, HP’s entry-level colour laser. It offers stylish looks, easy installation and great quality output.

HP Color LaserJet 2550n review

Our Excel document printed well, and we were particularly impressed by the dithering that produced solid areas of grey. Photo quality was excellent for a laser, with superb colour reproduction. Colour fades were also good, showing no noticeable banding. Greyscale images were printed in composite black, meaning longer print times, but quality was good.

However, the four-pass engine is slow. Excel and Word documents printed at the quoted 4ppm, while our four-page PDF printed at 3.4ppm. Mono documents printed at a decent 13.2ppm, but not the claimed 19ppm. If the 2550n is for a single user, speed won’t be a big issue, but waiting times will increase vastly in a busy workgroup.

HP bundles full-capacity toner cartridges, which is handy considering the low price. Unfortunately, running costs will quickly add up. The image drum lasts for only 20,000 pages in mono, and because of the four-pass print mechanism, just 5,000 colour pages. We’re also concerned that the fuser unit isn’t user-replaceable – and HP doesn’t give a lifetime figure for it. Ultimately, good value is spoiled by the cost per page of 1.7p in mono and 8.4p in colour, as this makes the 2550n one of the more expensive printers to run.

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