Dell 2150cdn colour laser printer

Dell 2150cdn review: This printer has a low price tag and impressive performance figures, but buying toner is expensive

  • Review
  • Specs
  • Images
  • User Reviews
  • Buy Now
Dell 2150cdn
  • Expert Rating

    3.00 / 5

Pros

  • Affordable purchase price, very good print quality

Cons

  • Toner can be expensive

Bottom Line

A low price tag and good performance make the Dell 2150cdn colour laser printer appealing, but its standard-size toner is pricey.

Would you buy this?

If you're running a business the Dell 2150cdn looks like a bargain. It's cheap and has good performance, but if you're going to be printing a lot take into account the 2150cdn's moderately expensive toner costs.

Buying a printer? Read our home and business printer buying guide.

Dark, sharp-edged, and monolithic, the 2150cdn has a no-nonsense look that reflects its features. Standard paper handling includes a 250-sheet paper cassette, a manual-feed slot, a 150-sheet top output bin, and automatic duplexing (two-sided printing). The printer comes with 256MB of RAM (upgradable to 768MB) and carries a one-year warranty. Toner cartridges are easy to reach via a side panel, and the entire front of the printer folds down for easy access to paper jams (with removal of the drum). The control panel's two-line LCD and small cluster of buttons are simple to use, and the LCD's messages, while curt, are only occasionally confusing.

The 2150cdn provides middling speed. In tests, plain-text pages printed at 15.1 pages per minute on the PC and 13.7 ppm on the Mac. A half-page photo on the PC printed at 2.8 ppm at default settings and 1.24 ppm at finer settings. A full-page, high-resolution photo printed on the Mac exited at an underwhelming 0.8 ppm.

Although we liked the output quality from the 2150cdn, we had to work hard to achieve it. Our test model suffered colour-registration problems: The colours weren't lining up, resulting in fuzzy or off-kilter images. The printer's own automated registration-adjustment tool was unable to correct the issue. Several tedious rounds with the manual registration controls were necessary to set things right. (Notably, we ran into the same issue with the nearly identical Xerox Phaser 6500DN.) Once we tweaked the settings, colour graphics looked realistic and mostly crisp, with just a little fuzziness in finer details. Text was nearly impeccable.

Workgroups considering the 2150cdn should note that two sizes of toner cartridges are available. The standard-size, 1200-page cartridges are very expensive: The $103.40 black cartridge comes to 8.6 cents per page, while each $110 colour (cyan, magenta, yellow) is 9.2 cents per page. A four-colour page would cost 36 cents. The high-yield cartridges include a $129.80, 3000-page black (4.3 cents per page) and $143, 2500-page colours (5.7 cents apiece per page), which work out to cents for a four-colour page. These prices are a little above average.

The Dell 2150cdn offers a decent serving of workgroup-printing capabilities for a temptingly low purchase price. You won't get a break on the toner pricing, unfortunately. A model in about the same price range, with cheaper consumables, is the Brother HL-4570CDW.

Join the PC World newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments

Essentials

Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive

Learn more >

Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop

Learn more >

Mobile

Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive 

Learn more >

Exec

Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive 

Learn more >

Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards 

Learn more >

HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450

Learn more >

Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones

Learn more >

Budget

Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?