Konica Minolta magicolor 2500W review

£146
Price when reviewed

With its blue upper casing, the Konica Minolta magicolor 2500W looks like it belongs in a design studio, and its print quality reinforces that perception. In our quality tests, the 2500W produced black type with precision and confidence. Solid blacks were even and opaque.

In colour, the 2500W’s performance was even more impressive. Although the four-pass 2,400 x 600dpi engine only has the standard four colours to work with, its dithering is so effective that, from a normal reading distance, it appears to enjoy a limitless palette. Coloured textboxes were solid and even, with no fringing, and our rainbow transition appeared smooth. Colour photos suffered from slight graininess, but the detail and warmth of the prints were better than you’d expect from a laser.

When you see this quality from a printer under £150, you might wonder at the cost of consumables. In fact, the 2500W can be economical to run thanks to the availability of 4,500-page toner cartridges. Although the unit price may seem steep (replacing all four will cost twice as much as buying the printer), 4,500 pages is a high yield by colour laser standards, and the 2500W achieves the lowest running costs in its class.

So is there a catch? Yes, but it’s not as bad as you might imagine. Mono printing was speedy enough at 20ppm, but when it came to colour it dropped to just 5ppm, placing it firmly in last place. On top of this, processing time was slow, with 28 seconds elapsing before the first colour page was produced. This performance, coupled with the lack of a secondary paper feed, doesn’t make the Konica Minolta the best personal laser.

If print quality is important, the 2500W is a great choice at any price. As an all-round personal printer, it doesn’t wrest the crown from the HP 2605, which delivers better colour speeds and quality that’s nearly as good. But if the HP doesn’t quite fit your needs, the magicolor 2500W has a lot going for it.

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