CNET First Look
Dell P513wThe Dell P513w all-in-one printer produces adequate prints, but the cheap build, quick-depleting cartridges, and spotty wireless service aren't worth the $150.
Hi, I'm Justin Yu with CNET.com. This is your first look at the Dell P513w Multifunction Printer. So we actually have mixed reviews about this device. It performed well and it output professional-quality text prints and we do like the handy eco mode that will save you money and help the environment, but those features don't really offset a lot of the snags we ran into during testing. But before we get into those critiques, let's check out the printer itself. The white P513w sizes up about average for other printers, and it's a multifunction printer which means you can print, scan, and copy all directly on the machine. The scanner sits on top of it and can handle up to 1200 X 2400 resolution images, but we're remiss to see that Dell omits an auto-document feeder on the top. Now, that would normally be really useful for businesses because it lets you scan or copy a stack of documents hands free. Unfortunately, though, you do not get that on this device, which is a little strange for a $150 printer. Another issue we take is with the multiple paper jams that came about because of this 25-sheet paper output tray. Now, most printers can hold double that amount, so if you're printing a high volume of documents, this definitely is not the printer for you. Like all modern printers, you do get an 802.11b/g print server built right in that lets you ditch the cord and hook it up to your computer wirelessly. Again, though, we ran into a speed bump here trying to configure the network settings, although that problem did eventually fix itself. And, finally, we're not particularly satisfied with the output performance, either. Qualitatively, our test sheet of full black text looked presentable from far away, but upon closer inspection, we did notice several jagged lines at the corners of some characters, particularly in italicized text, and even at its highest quality setting, we wouldn't recommend using this printer for professional documents either. The graphics quality just doesn't stand up to competitor printers from HP, Canon, and Epson that sell for the same price or less. And you can read the full review including alternative printer recommendations, but that's gonna do it for me. I'm Justin Yu, you just took a first look at the Dell P513w Multifunction Printer.