Multi-function Workgroup Printers

The magicolor 2490MF is the most expensive of the printers on test, and as such, expectations will naturally be higher. Overall, it does not disappoint on its scan, copy and fax features, while on print it particularly excels.

Based on five per cent ink coverage, the 2490 performed as claimed with regards to pages per minute (five in colour and 20 in monochrome), but our killer print test saw it take a big hit on its first-page out figure (21 seconds colour) - it took one minute 34 seconds. Copy speed performed as stated (25ppm in monochrome and 5ppm in colour).

The quality of printed output is impressive - superior to the Epson AcuLaser, and of slightly greater clarity than the HP, albeit with a higher print resolution. There are also productivity boons with the 2940 - it has a 50-sheet automatic document feeder, and offers duplex copying features.

Less compelling is its running costs. Its CMYK cartridges come in two capacities - 1,500 prints (54) and 4,500 prints (95), giving a cost per page of 0.036 pence - the most expensive on test - and 0.021 pence respectively. The drum cartridge costs 109 for a lifespan of 45,000 pages, at 0.002 pence per page. There is also a 4,500-capacity CMY Toner Value Kit at 260, giving a CPP of 0.019 pence.

The Magicolor 2490MF includes a 10/100baseT Ethernet and USB 2.0. Using the Local Setup Utility software you can change settings and check status from a PC. Operations that can be performed remotely include setting numbers for one-touch fax dialing as well as changing Utility mode settings.

The included Page Scope Web Connection is a web admin tool that allows anyone on the network to access the 2490MF using a web browser; with a password you can change the configuration of the printer from your PC. It gives access to printer status and frequently used configuration options, such as page layout, number of copies, and paper tray options. You can also configure one-touch scan destinations, like scan to email FTP or desktop.

Warranty options include the standard one-year Protect Repair (onsite) and an extended warranty of one year for 119.


It won't disappoint those for whom colour counts, but toner costs add up over time.