Dell 1350cnw Color Printer review
Dell's 1350cnw is a compact colour laser-class printer that looks almost identical to the entry-level Dell 1250c we reviewed recently. Despite the similarity, however, the 1350cnw improves on the other printer's specification in several important ways: in addition to a USB port it supports both wired and wireless networking, has a small backlit control panel and comes with a multipurpose feed on top of the standard paper input tray.
Like the 1250c, strictly speaking the 1350cnw is an LED printer, as it uses LED rather than laser light to create the page image on the photoconductor drum. While the former is one of the cheapest colour laser-class printers you can buy, the extra features on the 1350cnw don't make it all that much more expensive. At just over £130, it's a potentially a huge bargain for small firms or home users who just want to share a printer among network users, but only if it's actually any good.
Things get off to a positive start. The compact printer is small enough to fit on a desktop or even a deep shelf, and not too heavy to lift there. During use it's very quiet and transmits almost no clunks or thumps into the desk, making it easy to work alongside. When loaded with A4 the simple paper tray projects from the front, however, and the four consumables are accessed via a door at the right, so the printer requires more space than it seems. Paper is held in place by a stop at the end of an extending arm, which flexes in a way that doesn't exactly inspire confidence. Otherwise, though, the printer seems well put together.
Dell's straightforward setup program asked if we wanted to download the latest drivers and printer firmware during the installation, but it stalled during the process. We didn't experience any other problems, though, and the supplied drivers worked with no issues. They're well laid-out, too, presenting everyday options on three tabs relating to paper settings, graphics and layout. The options available on these cover the vast majority of needs, but determined users can access the full range of settings via the Advanced tab, which includes a helpful couple of sentences to explain each option.
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