Kyocera ECOSYS P6021cdn review
What is the Kyocera ECOSYS P6021cdn?
Colour laser printers start quite cheaply now, but you get what you pay for and the £150-ish models tend to be slow and cost a lot to run. Kyocera’s ECOSYS P6021cdn is a mid-range machine which would suit a small business, but is expandable enough for a reasonable workgroup, if its workload increases.
Kyocera ECOSYS P6021cdn - Design and Features
Its dark grey and off-white colour scheme does little to relieve the printer’s fairly substantial dimensions, though quite a bit of this is its height. It has a small enough footprint to sit on a desk, but can also be placed on an optional, castored storage cupboard, ideal for storing paper and cartridge supplies.
The top surface forms the output tray of the machine, which can be fed from the 250-sheet main tray or the 50-sheet multi-purpose feed that folds down from the front. A further two, 500-sheet trays can be added as options, giving a total expanded capacity of 1,300 sheets.
Kyocera ECOSYS P6021cdn - Controls
The control panel is in a thin horizontal strip on the front edge of the machine and offers a two-line, 16-character backlit LCD display and a series of control buttons. It works quite well, though the horizontally scrolling menu takes a bit of getting used to.
Kyocera ECOSYS P6021cdn - Cartridges and Connections
The four toner cartridges are easy to access by hinging up the top cover of the Kyocera ECOSYS P6021cdn. They are the only consumables and clip into four slots, one behind the other. The photoconductive drum is a lifetime component, thanks to Kyocera’s patented ceramic coating, which lasts a lot longer than more conventional drums.
At the back are sockets for USB and Ethernet, though unusually the Ethernet port is gigabit rather than 10/100, so the printer should cope with a large throughput, coming from a number of sources.
We had to download drivers as an ISO DVD image and burn our own disc, as none was supplied with the printer. This may be a problem isolated to review samples, but it has happened with the last three Kyocera machines we’ve reviewed, so make sure you have the relevant ‘country kit’ supplied with the printer.
Kyocera ECOSYS P6021cdn - Print Speeds
Kyocera rates the ECOSYS P6021cdn at 21ppm for both mono and colour print. Our 5-page black text test returned 11.5ppm, exactly half the rated figure, but this rose to 15ppm on the 20-page test. It’s not a bad speed for a colour laser, though you’re looking at 15 to 20 seconds for the first page of a job to start printing.
Draft mode print, which is more properly an eco-mode, is no faster than normal print, but it should save you toner, as it’s a much lighter print. The 5-page black text and colour graphics test gave 11.3ppm and our 20-page document printed duplex – two sided printing is standard on the machine – produced 8.8 sides per minute. A single page 15 x 10 cm photo print on A4 took 25 seconds in Fine mode.
Kyocera ECOSYS P6021cdn - Print Quality and Costs
The quality of the print is fine, with sharp, black text and generally bright, solid graphics colours, though slightly dull colours in photos. Yellows didn’t produce sparkling results and there was some haloing of black text over orange, through imperfect registration. For general office use, though, colour print is adequate.
The only consumable cost is the toner cartridges, which are available in a single yield of 3,500 black pages and 2,800 for each of the colours. Using the cheapest online prices we could find gives page costs of 2.2p for mono and 10.3p for colour.
These are low, up to 1p per sheet off the mono cost and 2p per sheet for colour compared with its rivals. Over the lifetime of the printer, this represents a considerable saving.
Should I buy a Kyocera ECOSYS P6021cdn?
The ideal place for this printer is an expanding small business or workgroup. It can handle a fair throughput as supplied, but can also be expanded with extra trays, wireless adapter and even SSDs or HDs for file or job storage.
There are other choices, though, like the HP LaserJet Pro 200 Color M251nw. This is a cheaper, slower, SOHO machine, but it does include wireless support.
Kyocera’s ECOSYS P6021cdn is as solid, useful laser printer for anybody running a busy office. It’s fast enough to cope with a good workflow and can duplex as standard. It’s cheap to run and print quality is good, though colours aren’t as bright as from some rivals. It would benefit from having wireless connection, too.