Lexmark X9575 Professional

A multifunction for small or home offices

The Lexmark X9575 Professional is a colour inkjet multifunction printer packed with business-centric features — including integrated Wi-Fi.

However, while the Lexmark X9575 Professional outshines other models in the same price range (including the near-identical Dell 968w), its costly inks and design flaws might frustrate busier offices.

The Lexmark X9575 Professional performed reasonably well in our tests, posting an above-average rate of 9.9 pages per minute (ppm) in printing text and a below-average rate of 2ppm in printing colour graphics. Text samples looked a little fuzzy but nicely black.

Colour images appeared somewhat grainy on plain paper but melted into smoothness on Lexmark's own photo paper. The Lexmark X9575 Professional's scan quality was good, though a little dark; copies looked a bit thicker and fuzzier, but were still very good.

Better aspects of the design include the Lexmark X9575 Professional's control panel with clearly labelled buttons and a 2.4in, tiltable colour LCD with understandable menu lines and messages.

Other thoughtful touches include side handles to make the Lexmark X9575 Professional easier to lift, and an obvious handhold on the front for lifting the scanner unit to access the ink cartridges. Even the wireless installation is easy, thanks to thorough documentation and a highly automated procedure.

A printer at heart, the Lexmark X9575 Professional should handle paper better than anything else — but it doesn't. The standard automatic duplexer (for two-sided printing) and 50-sheet automatic document feeder (ADF) are great. The Lexmark X9575 Professional's 150-sheet input tray feels flimsy, and its guides and markings are hard to see. (A second 150-sheet input tray is a pay-for extra.)

The input tray's lid is also the 50-sheet output tray. The pull-out extension for catching paper constantly gets in the way: you have to close it to load paper, and it pushes against the input tray when it's stretched to fit legal-size paper. And the single-sheet feeder for thicker media doesn't work well — our photo paper consistently skewed.

The other problem with the Lexmark X9575 Professional is its expensive inks. The high prices will strain the budgets of higher-volume users.

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Melissa Riofrio

PC World (US online)

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