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Quiet and Fast Office Mate

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Samsung SCX-4729FW Monochrome Laser Printer

Samsung SCX-4729FW Monochrome Laser Printer

Photo courtesy Samsung
Small offices don't have to invest much these days (around $400) for a fast, dependable, and high-quality monochrome laser printer. While that might seem pricey, given that even some color laser printers are available for less money, the Samsung SCX-4729FW offers a duty cycle of 12,000 pages per month--that's 2,000 pages more than the Brother MFC-7860DW (which is a fair amount cheaper than the SCX-4729). Small offices will also appreciate how quiet the Samsung printer is, as will home users.

Speed

First page out times were consistent (and sometimes better than) the times Samsung professes in its marketing materials. Not quite warmed up, first pages were out in about 15 seconds. Warmed up, some first pages were out in as little as 10 seconds. That means a four-page Word document took only 16 seconds total--or six seconds for three pages. That's some very fast printing. Switching to the printer's duplex mode didn't mean a lot more time for print jobs; the same four-page document took just 21 seconds.

I like that that printer has a built-in Eco Mode (same as Draft Mode--that automatically sets the printer up to print two-on-one and on both sides. You'll save a little ink and a lot of paper: However, you'll need to wear your reading glasses, since the typical document is going to be pretty small on the page if you do this.

Quality

In terms of regular printing, the quality was as good as it should be. Fonts were crisply rendered down to very small sizes, and weren't jagged or rough-edged at all even at the largest sizes. Using the Eco Mode definitely adversely affects the final product, with font not only very small but fairly faint as well. It's a good idea but it's not particularly practical.

Samsung is to be commended for its excellent printer-properties tabs which make it very easy to adjust quality, use of toner (there's a great toner-save feature), and other printing variables. A display shows what you're going to get so there are no unpleasant surprises.

Bells and Whistles

Well, for upwards of $400, you get all the ones you should get. These include: built-in wireless and wired networking (including one-touch wireless setup); automatic duplexing; automatic document feeder (good for 50 sheets); a 250-sheet cassette tray; and a 120-sheet output tray. Samsung also offers a mobile printing app so that you can print directly from an Android or iOS mobile device. And since it's an all-in-one printer, of course there's a fax, scanner, and copier built in (up to 29 copies per minute, and up to 4,800 dpi scan resolution). The printer is under 50 decibels when it's working--that, Samsung claims, is the sound of a normal conversation. That'll make small offices happy.
Disclosure: Review samples were provided by the manufacturer. For more information, please see our Ethics Policy.

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