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Xerox Phaser 4622 review: mono laser printer dependable, fast and high quality

When buying a suitable printer for a flourishing small-to-medium business, the main priorities are often less about multiplicity of gadgets and funky designs and more about speed, capacity and reliability. It's with this in mind that Xerox came up with the Phaser 4622 mono laser printer, a thoroughbred amongst affordable workhorses. (See also: best printers of 2014.)

The basic unit is undeniably solid, measuring a squat 476 x 541 x 420mm and weighing a back punishing 35kg. It comes with a fold-down 100-sheet multipurpose tray at the front and a 550-sheet paper feeder tray at the bottom, with a maximum output on top of the unit for a healthy 500 sheets at a time.

However, if you have a large number of employees demanding a lot of printing time or your daily volume is increasingly demanding, then you have the option to add a 500-sheet finisher with stapler on top, plus two further 550-sheet feeders and a high-capacity 2,000 sheet feeder (complete with stand) underneath the unit. This would provide you with a whopping 3,750-sheet capacity in all and you can even tack on a 4-bin mailbox.

Connectivity on the Phaser 4622 is via Ethernet to your network or USB 2.0 to a single PC or Mac. If it's essential to have a wireless connection then an extra Wireless 802.11n network adapter can be attached which will also create native support for mobile/tablet printing with Apple AirPrint. A USB port at the front enables direct printing from a flash drive and thus bypassed the need for a PC altogether.

The control panel rests firmly in front of the output tray and the buttons are kept to a minimum, with a simple Menu and Back button alongside arrows, a number pad and three final buttons for Help, Stop and Energy Saver. Disappointingly the display is a basic mono text reader when we might have expected a colour touch screen with maybe a preview function.
The reason Xerox chose this path was probably because the focus on the Phaser 4622 is heavily on speed and volume.

We've already seen how much paper you can stack up but once we put it through its paces, we realised what a speed demon this machine could be. It started churning out single-sided text documents at around 52ppm and duplex versions at 24ppm, courtesy of the Dual Core ARM 600 MHz processor using the standard 256MB memory. This can be expanded to 768MB (for £236) and for £362 you can attach a 320GB hard disk.

Naturally there are separate toner and drum cartridges which slot effortlessly into their housings beneath the control panel and the supplied 13,000 page toner cartridge can be replaced by a more economic 30,000 page version - reducing costs from 1.37p per page to 0.94p per page. The print quality throughout is excellent - even large images have no obvious banding or streaking issues. (See also: best printers of 2014.)


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