A durable and duplex-capable all-in-one printer that’s priced right.
Epson WorkForce Pro WF-5621
Epson’s WorkForce series color inkjet printers are primarily designed for business, touting features like fast print speeds and reliability, workgroup connectivity, and easy mobile device printing. This recently launched model, the WorkForce Pro WF-5621 stands out for being a multi-function device with additional copy, scan, and fax functions.
A marquee feature on the WF-5621 is PrecisionCore, Epson’s latest printhead technology. PrecisionCore first appeared in Epson’s commercial systems, but is now being brought to desktop inkjet printers. This is the chief reason for the WF-5621’s impressive specs, at least on paper: a print speed of 20ipm for both black and color, plus a top resolution of 4,800 x 1,200 pixels. Other impressive numbers include a first-page-out time of about 7 seconds, and a 45,000-page monthly duty cycle.
Versus the single-function WF-5111 that uses the same print engine and costs just $249, the $399 WF-5621 is considerably more expensive. That said, it does get you a lot more features. Copy, scan, and fax functions aside, the WF-5621 also comes with a 35-page automatic document feeder, and a USB port for direct printing, scanning and saving of faxes with USB memory devices. While both have wired and wireless networking support, only the WF-5621 lets you share your scans via email. Support for LDAP address books and IP address filtering, and the ability to limit user access to certain printer functions are also useful security features to have for an office machine.
Usage-wise, I’ve hardly any complains. The WF-5621’s 3.5-inch color LCD control panel is big and nice, the rear tray handles photo papers well, and the front cassette holds a decent 250 sheets of paper. You can increase the capacity by adding another 250-sheet paper cassette.
Versus its closest rival the Canon Maxify MB5370, the WF-5621 was slightly ahead in color print speeds but slightly behind for mono. If you scan multi-page documents a lot, the duplex-capable ADF is a real time saver; unfortunately, it can’t do single-pass scanning. Overall, text looked sharp and colored graphics smooth and clean. The DuraBrite Ultra pigment inks made the printouts impervious to the water and highlighter I threw at them. The ink cartridges that Epson is selling have a high page yield of 4,000 pages in black or color, comparable to toner yields from similarly priced laser printers.
If you print a lot, Epson WorkForce Pro WF-5621 with its high duty cycle and high capacity ink cartridges makes a lot of sense. And Epson’s new printhead tech has raised the print speed and quality to a level on a par with Canon’s best.
AT A GLANCE
Features Print, scan, copy, fax with ADF
Print Speed 20ipm (black and color)
Paper Handling 330 sheets (front and rear)
Interface USB 2.0, Ethernet, Wi-Fi