HP LaserJet Pro P1566 review

Kat Orphanides
28 May 2010
HP LaserJet Pro P1566
Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
inc VAT

Driver-free installation is handy, rather than essential, but this is still a great little mono laser.



mono laser, 22ppm print speed, USB, 236x287x243mm

The LaserJet Pro1566 is the first laser printer we've ever reviewed that doesn't require you to install drivers from a CD. Instead, the printer can install its own drivers over its USB connection. This isn't the first time HP has used this Plug and Print approach – we've previously seen it in the company's compact photo printers – but it's the first time it's appeared in a business printer.

Its specifications are nothing unusual, with a 250 sheet paper tray, sheet feed slot for envelopes, a one-time maximum monthly duty cycle of 8,000 pages and a recommended monthly page volume of up to 2,000 pages. It has a quoted print speed of 22ppm and a native resolution of 600x600dpi, enhanced to an effective resolution of 1,200dpi using HP's FastRes 1200 image processing technology, which inserts extra detail to smooth out difficult areas like fine lines and curves.

Setup and installation proved to be as easy as promised. Once your power and USB leads are connected to the printer, all you have to do is switch it on and connect the other end of the USB lead to your PC. The printer will act like a USB storage drive with an autorun installer. It takes just a couple of clicks of the mouse to start installing the driver. Although this doesn't save much time, it's hassle-free and means that you'll never have to hunt for a lost driver disc, or download another massive driver installation package.

Beyond this feature, the P1566 did exactly what we expected of it. Print quality is excellent; we were particularly pleased with accurately shaded greyscale renderings of our colour business documents. We got speeds of 21.1ppm when printing our mono text document at default quality settings, with FastRes enabled. Our greyscale document prints were almost as fast at 19.5ppm. A single page of mono text emerged in seven seconds, even from a cold start.

Print costs are very competitive. The printer comes with a 1,000 page starter cartridge with an integrated photoconductor drum. The only consumable is a 2,500 page replacement cartridge (CE278A), which costs around £51. This works out to a very reasonable 2p per page.

The Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) adds up to £241 for three years' light use (100 pages every month), which is comparatively high due to the printer's £139 purchase cost. Three years' medium use (750 pages every month) adds up to £547. This isn't too bad, although such TCO’s make it a little more expensive than Samsung's similarly specified ML-2525 mono laser, which costs the same to run and a little less to buy.

The LaserJet Pro P1566 is a great little printer, USB installation may be a bit of a gimmick, but it’s a useful one nonetheless. We hope to see its price go down as it becomes available from a wider range of retailers, but at present it’s a little too expensive in comparison to its immediate competition.

Basic Specifications

Maximum native print resolution600x600dpi
Maximum enhanced print resolution1,200dpi

Quoted Speeds

Quoted speed, mono A422ppm
Quoted warm-up time0s
Quoted time to first page, mono7s

Tested Speeds

Mono page from sleep time 1.07s
Letter, time to first page 1.07s
25-page mono document - total time00:01:11
Time for 24 pages mixed greyscale 1.01m 14s
Time for two greyscale 10x8in photos 1.114s
Time for six greyscale 6x4in photos 1.020s

Physical and Environmental

Standard printer interfacesUSB
Optional printer interfaces£260
Noise (in normal use)64dB(A)
Duty cycle8,000 pages

Paper Handling

Maximum paper sizeup to A4
Maximum paper weight163gsm
Standard paper inputs1
Standard paper input capacity250
Maximum paper inputs1
Maximum paper input capacity250
Output tray capacity150 sheets
Duplex (code, cost if option)No


Printer technologymono laser
Supported operating systemsWindows XP/XP 64-bit/Vista/Vista 64-bit/7 32-bit/7 64-bit, Mac OSX 10.4/10.5/10.6, Linux
Standard printer memory8MB
Maximum printer memory8MB
Other laser features and options£51

Buying Information

Price per mono A4 page2.00p
Price of 2nd paper cassetteN/A
Capacity of supplied black toner1,000 pages
Capacity of supplied drum(s)replaced with toner
Estimated mono TCO - three years light£241
Estimated mono TCO - three years medium£547
Estimated mono TCO - three years heavy£2332
Warrantyone year RTB

Tested Print Speeds

Time for two greyscale 10x8in photos 1.114s
Time for six greyscale 6x4in photos 1.020s