Samsung CLX-2160 AIO review: Samsung CLX-2160 AIO

Typical Price: $799.00

Samsung CLX-2160 AIO

(Part #: CNETSamsung CLX-2160 AIO)
3 stars

CNET Editors' Rating

The Good Small footprint – for a laser printer. Relatively quiet operation.

The Bad Print speeds are a little slow. Paper loading tray is fiddly.

The Bottom Line Samsung's cute little colour MFP wins points with us for its compact style, although otherwise it's a deeply average printer.

6.8 Overall

Samsung touts the CLX-2160 (and its network capable sibling, the CLX-2160n, RRP AU$849) as the world's smallest colour laser multifunction printer. They're undoubtedly correct (for now), although being a laser printer still means you're talking about a unit of some size; those who need a truly compact multifunction device will still need to look at the inkjet world for now. The CLX-2160 measures in at 41.3cm by 35.3cm by 33.3cm and weighs a chunky 16.5 kilograms; it's one of those IT devices that looks lighter than it in fact is.

Installation of the CLX-2160 is relatively painless, especially for a colour laser. It wouldn't be a home printer without the need to remove lots of bits of seemingly superfluous sticky tape, but once you're past that easily penetrable barrier, it's just a matter of installing the toner cartridges, which come in quite cute colour-coded cylinders. They all load simply from the front of the unit in a very similar style to many inkjet multifunction devices. All the cartridges are physically keyed, so it's not possible to insert them the incorrect way.

Samsung do perpetrate one our key irritants when it comes to consumer printers -- the CLX-2160 ships without a USB cable. C'mon guys -- you've already got AU$799 of our hard-earned cash -- would a AU$5 cable break the bank? Drivers and simple print utilities are supplied for Windows and Mac OS X.

Samsung rates the CLX-2160's page performance at up to 16ppm for mono prints, and up to 4ppm for colour prints, with a claimed first page out speeds of 18 and 26 seconds respectively. It connects solely via USB -- those with a hankering for networked colour lasers will either have to set up printer sharing or splurge an extra AU$50 for the CLX-2160n. The scanning bed is an 1200x600 dpi model.

Samsung hasn't missed another little printer manufacturer's trick with the CLX-2160, namely the use of "starter" toner cartridges. The boxed cartridges that come with the CLX-2160 are good for an estimated 1500 black and 700 colour pages -- that'll obviously vary depending on your exact usage -- compared to 2,000 and 1,000 pages for the full coverage replacement cartridges you'll eventually buy. Certainly, it's a trick that every printer manufacturer uses, so Samsung's only as guilty as the rest of the pack, but we still don't have to like it.

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