All of the ports necessary to connect the printer to a computer are on the back of the device, including the power plug, a USB port, and an Ethernet jack for wired networking among several computers, and we found it refreshingly simple to establish a connection to our router. As a result, we were able to access the printer from several PCs with no hiccups. We're remiss to see that HP doesn't include a front-loading PictBridge-compatible USB port for direct printing from digital cameras or USB thumbdrives. The printer also can't do automatic double-sided printing since it doesn't have a mechanical duplexer, but the software shows you how to manually achieve the same goal. The top of the front door folds down and rolls out, revealing the four toner cartridges (one black, three color) lined up in a horizontal row that use a single push-to-release tab for installation. We actually prefer this to the bucket style loading on the OKI C3600n, which forces the user to fuss with awkward buttons and springs to replace the cartridges. The HP CP2025n uses a simpler method, using a single push-to-release tab.
HP provides a full set of laser print cartridges in the box, and according to the Web site, a black cartridge with a 3,500-page life span costs $123, while the color version is $121 for 2,800 pages. Strangely, there's no mention of high-capacity cartridges available, so the cost-per-page equation factors out to 3.5 cents per black page and 4.3 cents for a full-color page--about average for today's standard black prints and rather inexpensive for color prints. Finally, the CP2025n's monthly duty cycle (maximum number of pages per month) is reported at 40,000 pages, which will appeal more to small offices and work groups as opposed to the home entrepreneur.
We compared the HP CP2025n's output speed with four other color lasers and the results vary depending on the type of document printed. For example, the HP is quick to print color text and color graphics at 8.31 and 13.56 pages per minute respectively, but its speed started to wane in the black page tests; it finished behind every other printer aside from the Samsung CLP-315W in the black text and presentation tests. Applied to real life, businesses printing a large portion of color documents will be satisfied with the print speed of the CP2025n, but the Brother HL-4040CN offers much faster all-around output.
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
|Color Graphics||Presentation||Color text speed||Black Text|
The CP2025n makes a more consistent argument for compelling output quality rather than speed. Both black graphics and color spectrums appear to be solid and well formed with crisp lineation and clean edges. As expected, the black toner produces slightly more visually appealing text in smaller fonts than the color toner, but this printer remains true to the quality we expect from a professional laser. We're particularly impressed with the graphical representations in our test subjects, which came out smooth and sharp, much better in comparison to the last color laser on the bench, the OKI C3600n.
Service and support
In conjunction with all the services built into the driver software, HP also offers an online version of its Easy Printer Care Software that alleviates stress from IT professionals responsible for taking of up to 20 HP printers in one office. The bundle lets you manage multiple printers from one aggregated tool, with provisions for monitoring and reordering toner cartridges, overseeing print jobs and private passwords, analyzing user information, and offering instructions on how to preemptively troubleshoot foreseeable mechanical failures. In addition to HP's comprehensive one-year warranty, which includes 24-7 toll-free phone support and live Webchat during weekdays, HP's Web site also contains downloadable drivers, software, and manuals; e-mail tech support; FAQs; and a troubleshooting guide.
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