Dell 2145cn MFP printer review

Reviews 1 Jul, 2009

This duplex capable Dell multi-function printer seems to have all the bases covered.

3
Price: 
£514
exc. VAT
Verdict: 
This is a rugged, well-conceived colour laser multifunction, which is easy to maintain and offers good economy. Its ability to scan, as well as print, in duplex mode makes it relatively eco-friendly and although colour print quality is nothing special, it's adequate for general office duties.

Buying a multifunction device rather than a simple printer makes a lot of sense, particularly if space is tight. Building scan, copy and fax functions into a single machine, with pretty much the same footprint as a single-function printer, will provide a productivity boost and if, as in Dell's 2145cn, it can duplex, too, it could save you quite a bit of your stationery budget, as well.

This is a big, black Dell box, sitting a full 650mm off the desk. In fact, if you go for the optional second paper tray, you might be as well to set it on a lower stand, rather than a desk.

At the top of the machine is an A4 flatbed scanner with a 50-sheet Automatic Document Feeder (ADF) and this can re-feed and turn originals over to scan both sides in a single operation.

In front of the scanner is a sparsely populated control panel, sparse partly because it's quite large. There's a 2-line by 16-character backlit LCD display for status and menu reporting and in front of this are simple navigation buttons. As well as a number pad for fax dialling set towards the right-hand end of the panel, there's a separate panel of speed-dials – up to 30 of them – set to the left, for regularly used fax destinations.

There are specialist buttons for the usual copying parameters, with the addition of an illuminated button to turn duplexing on and off. At the right-hand end of the control panel are a trio of buttons to start black and colour copies and to stop a current job.

In the top right-hand corner of the front panel is a USB socket, which can be used to plug-in USB drives, to print from or scan to. The printer's output tray is just to the left of this and has quite a narrow slot, so it's as well the whole scanner section hinges up, in case you need to deal with paper jams.

At the bottom of the front panel is a 250-sheet paper tray, with a 100-sheet multi-purpose tray additionally available, when you pull down the front panel. A 250-sheet main tray is not really big enough on any machine intended for business use and, although there's an optional 500-sheet tray available, the base capacity should be increased.

Specifications: 

DPI: 600 x 600dpi, 20/20ppm A4 colour laser multi-function

Paper tray: 1 x 250 sheet paper tray + 100 sheet multi-purpose tray

Duty cycle: 1,000 – 7,000 pages per month

Connections: USB 2, Ethernet

Languages: PCL 6 and PostScript L3 in emulation

Features: Duplex print, copy and scan, USB drive port