Konica Minolta bizhub 421

A capable multifunction for a more than reasonable asking price.

Konica Minolta bizhub 421
  • Konica Minolta bizhub 421
  • Konica Minolta bizhub 421
  • Konica Minolta bizhub 421
  • Expert Rating

    3.50 / 5

Pros

  • Web interface, direct print from USB, comparatively inexpensive

Cons

  • Mono scanning, relatively low resolution printing, Web interface could be easier to manage

Bottom Line

There is little difference in functionality or capability between the bizhub 421 and 501, so the price difference clearly favours the bizhub 421. Unless every ounce of performance matters, the bizhub 421 is a more reasonable purchase.

Would you buy this?

Konica Minolta’s bizhub 421 is a mid-range, lower-spec version of the bizhub 501, with a significantly lower price tag. There really isn’t much need to go for the more expensive model, unless the extra 10 pages a minute are of paramount importance.

The base model configuration of the bizhub 421 provides fairly standard functionality. Automatic duplex is included, and the unit has Ethernet, USB and RS-232 connections. It also has a Web interface for remote administration and a secondary USB port on the front of the unit to allow direct printing from a memory stick.

Most other functionality comes at a premium, though, with a finishing unit, extended paper input, internal hard drive and fax functionality all optional accessories that the salesperson will inevitably attempt to sell you. To take full advantage of the device the optional hard drive is a must-have; it enables the unit’s User Box system to be used, which allows document storage for printing and scanning.

Although the Web interface may require a slightly steep learning curve for the average office user, administration and monitoring is easy thanks to a comprehensive set of options. For the average user, the User Box is undoubtedly the most valuable feature, with one-touch scanning allowing users to easily scan documents to the optional hard drive. The only problem we had in this regard was with saving the documents; the interface requires a comparatively lengthy seven-step process in order to download the desired document, something which could have been made simpler.

The key difference between the bizhub 421 and the bizhub 501 essentially comes down to speed. Although the hardware in both multifunctions is essential identical, the bizhub 421 has slightly slower print times as well as an inferior monthly cycle volume. The bizhub 421 will print at an average of 42 pages per minute — though while testing the unit we managed 43ppm — at all quality levels, with the first page out in 11.4sec. Compared to the 501’s 54ppm capability, this difference in performance is largely negligible, making the saving of $4500 between models worth the slight compromise in performance.

Print quality is adequate though not outstanding. The bizhub 421 is limited to a maximum print resolution of 600x600 dots per inch, making it suitable for the average office document but a little too rough for mono presentation documents and the text perfectionist. Still, text is clean and accurate, though it’s slightly bolder than some high-end desktop laser printers due to the difference in resolution and text density.

Unfortunately, the bizhub 421 shares the same key fault as the bizhub 501 — mono scanning. Colour scanning mechanisms are almost ubiquitous in scanners and multifunctions of all sizes, and the seemingly conscious omission here compromises the unit’s functionality. Scanning is still done well — at a maximum resolution of 600dpi text is clear and sharp.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Stocking Stuffer

SmartLens - Clip on Phone Camera Lens Set of 3

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Aysha Strobbe

Microsoft Office 365/HP Spectre x360

Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications

Michael Hargreaves

Microsoft Office 365/Dell XPS 15 2-in-1

I’d recommend a Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 and the new Windows 10 to anyone who needs to get serious work done (before you kick back on your couch with your favourite Netflix show.)

Maryellen Rose George

Brother PT-P750W

It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!

Cathy Giles

Brother MFC-L8900CDW

The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?