Kyocera Mita FS-C5150DN

9/17/2012 9:01:39 AM

4 bit of a brute, but cheap as chips to run

Kyocera Mila’s FS-C5150DN is a compact colour laser that’s de­signed to handle the high page yields required by small to medium businesses. Unlike many of its rivals, Kyocera doesn’t quote one-time maximum monthly duty cycle figures, and instead recommends a maximum monthly average of no more than 9,000 pages if you want to keep your printer running smoothly for as long as possible. It’s worth noting that the printer has a 100,000-page OPC drum that isn’t designed to be replaced, which means it’ll probably be more cost-effective to replace the printer when the drum runs out.

Description: Kyocera Mita FS-C5150DN

Kyocera Mita FS-C5150DN

Because of the savings made by the fixed drum, the FS-C5150DN’s print costs and total cost of ownership are remarkably low. It represents good value for money if your printing requirements are slight, costing just $500 over three years, but the more you print, the more you’ll benefit. For example, if you print 500 mono and 250 colour pages every month for three years, you’ll spend just $1,770. That’s significantly less than you’d spend with most of this printer’s rivals, par­ticularly the Konica Minolta Magicolor 3730DN (opposite).

The FS-C5150DN is a big, heavy workhorse, and it looks the part - it certainly won’t win any awards for aesthetics. It’s also a bit more complicated to assemble than more compact colour lasers, having a waste toner bottle to fit in addition to four toner cartridges.

Nevertheless, it’s clear operating instruc­tions meant we had no major problems physically setting it up, despite the slightly fiddly cartridge locking system.

Out of the box, the C5150DN starts with an input and output capacity of 250 pages. However, it’s massively upgradable, taking up to four additional paper trays for a maximum paper capacity of 1,250 pages.

Driver installation is incredibly fast and hassle free, thanks to an auto-detection system that scans your network for the printer and quickly installs the relevant drivers. The Kyocera emulates PostScript 3 using the KPDL 3 page description language and also supports PCL 5c and 6.

You navigate its built-in menu system using a handful of buttons and a mono LCD screen. You can easily access its network settings, paper configuration and print files directly from a USB stick, which is an unu­sual feature for a single-function printer. Its onboard menu options are also available via the printer’s HTML-based command centre, which makes it easy to remotely manage and monitor the device.

The FS-C5150DN is a particularly fast mono printer, at 18.8ppm. Its7.4ppm colour speeds were slower than those of most col­our lasers, but we duplex-printed ten colour pages in a rather quick time of one minute and 28 seconds.

Colour prints weren’t as bright and glossy as those produced by the Magicolor 3730DN and many of the Kyocera’s other rivals, but they were accurately coloured and solidly shaded. Mono text was sharp, but it lacked the glossiness that we’ve come to expect from most laser printers. While the lack of sheen was notable, it didn’t make the prints look cheap or faded.

We’ve already touched on how cost- effective the FS -C5150DN is to run, but costs of just 1.3p per mono page and 9.2p per page of mixed black and colour prints really are very reasonable.

If you’re after fast print speeds and glossy colour, but don’t intend to print a lot, then the Konica Minolta Magicolor 3730DN is a bel­ter option - and it’ll look nicer on your desk. But if you want a fairly high-yield printer that costs peanuts to run, the FS-C5150DN could be the laser with your name on it.

Description: Toner Cartridge Set for Kyocera Mita FS-C5150DN Color

Toner Cartridge Set for Kyocera Mita FS-C5150DN Color

Pages per minute

24pp plain text: 1:20 mins 18ppm

24pp colour: 3:14 wins 7.4ppm

Six 6 x 4in photos: 45 secs 8ppm

600 x 600dpi




250-sheet tray


Price: $430


Needs: OS X 10.2 or later

Pro: Reasonably priced, Inexpensive to run, Speedy mono prints

Con: Slow colour, No glossy sheen


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