Feeds
85%
Canon i-Sensys LBP3100

Canon i-Sensys LBP3100

Cheap and better than cheerful

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

We're so used to manufacturer's speed claims being wildly outlandish that it came as something of a shock when we tested the LBP3100. Canon claims a top print speed of 16ppm, and a five-page text print completed in 26 seconds. This is mainly due to a very fast first page out and is equivalent to 11.5ppm, in real terms – that is, including processing time and printing in normal print mode.

Canon i-Sensys LBP3100

There's a multipurpose feed above the paper tray – unusual in this class of printer

When we tried a 20-page text print, where processing time represents a smaller percentage of the total print time, the speed went up to 15.2ppm, very close to Canon's headline figure. A 15 x 10cm photo print took just 15 seconds to complete.

These speeds are very impressive for an entry-level laser printer and we've seen slower machines under test, whose manufacturers claim higher speeds for them than Canon does - and ask higher prices as a consequence. One of the reasons for the LBP3100’s speed is that it takes very little warm-up time and its "instant-on" fuser is pretty much that. By the time the first page has been rasterised, the engine is ready to print.

Perhaps it's because Canon has been less enthusiastic in talking up the speeds of its printers, that it's the first company we've seen to adopt the new ISO 24734/35 speed test standard in its literature, which should bring all speed claims down to Earth with a bang.

There's not much point in producing pages quickly, of course, if their quality is questionable. In general, that's not the case here. Black text is dense and clean cut, with no signs of toner spatter or other artefacts which would spoil the effect.

Things aren't quite so good with greyscales. Although they’re reproduced well, with no signs of banding, there isn't enough differentiation between different tones. Our test page includes business graphics using colours which have a good greyscale differential, but these were sometimes hard to distinguish on the prints from the LBP3100.

Canon i-Sensys LBP3100

The paper-tray cover folds out when the front cover’s opened

Our sample photo print, reproduced at the machine's highest resolution, 600dpi enhanced up to an effective 2400 x 600dpi in software, still showed a noticeable dot pattern in areas of sky, with some shadow detail also lost. Foreground detail in bright light is good and the overall results are reasonable for a mono laser at this price.

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

Next page: Verdict

More from The Register

next story
All aboard the Poo Bus! Ding ding, route Number Two departing
Only another three days of pooing and I can have a ride!
Official: European members prefer to fondle Apple iPads
Only 7 of 50 parliamentarians plump for Samsung Galaxy S
Fujitsu CTO: We'll be 3D-printing tech execs in 15 years
Fleshy techie disses network neutrality, helmet-less motorcyclists
Space Commanders rebel as Elite:Dangerous kills offline mode
Frontier cops an epic kicking in its own forums ahead of December revival
Nexus 7 fandroids tell of salty taste after sucking on Google's Lollipop
Web giant looking into why version 5.0 of Android is crippling older slabs
Dragon Age Inquisition: Our chief weapons are...
Bioware's fantasy forces in fine fettle
prev story

Whitepapers

Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
Getting started with customer-focused identity management
Learn why identity is a fundamental requirement to digital growth, and how without it there is no way to identify and engage customers in a meaningful way.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Reducing the cost and complexity of web vulnerability management
How using vulnerability assessments to identify exploitable weaknesses and take corrective action can reduce the risk of hackers finding your site and attacking it.
Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile
Data demand and the rise of virtualization is challenging IT teams to deliver storage performance, scalability and capacity that can keep up, while maximizing efficiency.