Oki MC860dn - compact A3 colour printer review

Oki’s new MC860dn delivers low running costs, good value and fast print speeds and is probably the smallest A3 colour laser MFP on the market.

IT Pro Verdict

Colour A3 MFP printers can represent a significant outlay and the MC860dn is an affordable option for smaller businesses. It provides 4-in-1 functions in a remarkably compact unit, comes with a comprehensive range of print management tools and delivers good print speeds and low running costs.

With its latest MC860dn, Oki has taken the compact design of its 8000 series A3 colour lasers and produced a multifunction printer (MFP) that's one of the smallest of its type. With top claimed A4 mono and colour print speeds of 34ppm and 26ppm respectively it also rivals many of the larger MFP solutions from vendors such as HP, but comes in with a price tag that makes it more affordable for smaller businesses.

It offers A3/A4 print, copy, scan and fax functions straight out of the box and the base unit on review here can be upgraded with plenty of paper handling options. The MC860dn includes network support plus an internal duplex unit and you can add a second base unit with an extra 500-sheet tray or go for the version with two trays that takes paper capacity to 1,460 sheets.

The MC860dn looks and feels very well built and compared with some of the A3 monsters we've had in the lab is definitely a lot more compact. It's small enough to sit on a desktop although this will need to be sturdy as the base system tips the scales at 68kgs. The colour scanner offers a top 600dpi resolution and includes a 50-sheet automatic document feeder (ADF) that can handle A3 and A4 paper sizes.

We found the operator control panel easy enough to use with its large LCD touch screen display frequently providing hints and tips on various operations. Basic colour or mono copies and scans are one button operations and you can also scan documents directly to email, local and network PCs or to a USB storage device inserted in the front port. Note that you can't print from a USB device.

For network scans you can create profiles using the touch screen panel where you describe the destination system, the target folder and whether the image should be output in PDF, JPEG, XPS or TIFF format. We had no problems sending scanned documents directly to a folder on our test server over CIFS and FTP.

Oki's Configuration Tool makes this process even easier as it is used to remotely add entries and import text files to lists on the printer for fax speed dials, group phone books, email addresses and copy destination profiles. We were able to configure the printer's email settings and copy documents directly as email attachments. Access to printer functions and colour printing can be strictly controlled with user names and PIN numbers, which determine precisely what they are allowed to do.

The 40GB hard disk is for storing overlays, fonts and macros and can be used to automatically collate multiple copies of large documents. Confidential prints can be spooled to the hard disk and held back until an operator enters their PIN number at the printer. Oki also provides a simple utility for remotely accessing the drive and managing its contents and the disk also offers secure erase and data encryption features.

Dave Mitchell

Dave is an IT consultant and freelance journalist specialising in hands-on reviews of computer networking products covering all market sectors from small businesses to enterprises. Founder of Binary Testing Ltd – the UK’s premier independent network testing laboratory - Dave has over 45 years of experience in the IT industry.

Dave has produced many thousands of in-depth business networking product reviews from his lab which have been reproduced globally. Writing for ITPro and its sister title, PC Pro, he covers all areas of business IT infrastructure, including servers, storage, network security, data protection, cloud, infrastructure and services.