Oki C710n review

£759
Price when reviewed

Large workgroups looking for high-speed colour printing are spoilt for choice but Oki’s latest C710 LED printers aim to rock the boat by delivering fast print speeds and top quality but in a compact, space-saving chassis.

The base C710n on review only tips the scales at a modest 27kg but it’s no lightweight in the performance stakes, claiming print speeds of 30ppm for colour and 32ppm for mono.

Our real-world tests confirmed Oki’s claims with the printer dashing through a 32-page Word document in precisely one minute at the standard 600dpi driver setting.

The C710n rose to the colour challenge as well with it despatching our 24-page DTP-style document with lashings of colour charts, graphics and photos in 48 seconds for a tidy 30ppm average.

Move up to the higher resolutions and colour speed does drop slightly as the same document printed at 1,200dpi and the interpolated 2,400dpi mode averaged 25ppm. Operational noise levels aren’t the lowest we’ve heard as the printer clunks loudly each time it picks up a fresh page from the lower tray.

A smart feature that Oki adopted many years ago is the use of separate print processes where the toner cartridges each have their own photo-conductive drum and are placed in-line down the paper path. In the printer lid are four LED arrays allowing images to be laid down in a single pass. This approach makes the C710n more versatile as using the rear paper slot and multipurpose tray at the front creates a flat paper path allowing the printer to handle 220gsm stationery and banners up to 1.2m long.

A drawback is the number of consumables as each colour has an image drum and toner cartridge and then there are the fuser unit and belt.

Even allowing for these, the C710n delivers low running costs with a mono page costing a shade under one penny while a colour page will set you back a very reasonable five pence. The toner and drum cartridges are also easy to access as the entire lid swings up.

Oki’s LED printers usually deliver good output quality but we found the C710n to be a little variable. Text was pin sharp across a range of font sizes and detail in mono photos and graphics was good. For colour photographs the C710n delivers a vibrancy characteristic of this printing process, but we found darker areas in some pictures too murky and suffering from a lack of detail. Also, large areas of a single colour such as skies had a noticeable cross-hatching effect.

The print server’s web interface provides a complete status display of all consumables and full access to all functions. Oki offers plenty of expansion options which include a duplex unit plus second and third lower paper trays. You’ll need the optional hard disk if you want to store frequently used jobs locally and take advantage of PIN protection. Memory can be upgraded to a maximum of 768MB but £189 for a standard 512MB module is excessive.

The C710n will suit workgroups with a demand for high volume document and colour report printing as it delivers a good turn of speed and comparatively low printing costs. It’s good value as well but not so hot on printing colour photographs.

Basic Specifications

Colour? yes
Resolution printer final 1200 x 600dpi
Rated/quoted print speed 32PPM
Maximum paper size A4
Duplex function no

Running costs

Cost per A4 mono page 1.0p
Cost per A4 colour page 5.0p

Consumables

Fuser life 60,000 pages
Transfer-belt life 60,000 pages
Standard mono toner life 11,000 pages
Standard colour toner life 11,500

Performance tests

Mono print speed (measured) 32ppm
Colour print speed 30ppm

Media Handling

Input tray capacity 530 sheets

Connectivity

USB connection? yes
Ethernet connection? yes
Bluetooth connection? no
WiFi connection? no
PictBridge port? no
Other connections Parallel

OS Support

Operating system Windows Vista supported? yes
Operating system Windows XP supported? yes
Operating system Windows 2000 supported? yes

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