With a four figure price tag and A3 as well as A4 output, the Oki C8800n is in a different league to the other models here. At 40kg - which is heavy enough to need two people to carry it - it stretches the definition of a home printer to the limit. However, the footprint is only marginally larger than the Epson Aculaser C1100 and, although it's big, it's not unfeasibly large considering its A3 capabilities.

The Oki C8800n's styling isn't anything to write home about, but the external build quality is solid (if not top-notch). Internally the paper path seems more solid, with plenty of reassuringly chunky plastic. And the paper path is flat instead of vertical, which should put less of a strain on the Oki C8800n's mechanism and help with long-term reliability.

Driver installation is trouble-free, and the supplied software spans three CDs and includes network drivers, a colour swatch utility, and colour profiling and correction tools for more accurate output.

The Oki C8800n's print speeds are blistering, with a time to print of 15 seconds and a throughput of 27ppm. This is as close to a high-volume instant print solution as you'll find in this round-up. Mono print speeds are even faster at around 30ppm, and running costs are unexpectedly low. So, if you print on an industrial scale, the Oki C8800n has the unexpected potential to become a low-cost option.

The one down side is print quality. It's still very good - second-best overall - but is slightly over-saturated and lacks the detailed definition of the Epson Aculaser C1100. Given the price, it's a surprise to see the Oki C8800n outclassed by a model that costs a quarter as much - although it's possible that colour profiling might help correct the exaggerations.

See also:

Colour laser printer buying advice

Epson Aculaser C1100

HP 2700n

Konica Minolta Magicolor 2550

Lexmark C530dn

Xerox Phaser 6180

Oki C8800n: Specs

  • 1,200x600 hardware resolution
  • mono print speed quoted/actual = 32/30
  • colour print speed quoted/actual = 26/27
  • time to first print 15 seconds
  • standard paper input 300 sheets (max 530)
  • USB/parallel interface
  • ethernet
  • standard toner = £43, 6,000 pages, 0.7p per page
  • hi-cap toner = £92, 6,000 pages, 1.5p per page
  • 341x485x593mm
  • 40kg
  • 1,200x600 hardware resolution
  • mono print speed quoted/actual = 32/30
  • colour print speed quoted/actual = 26/27
  • time to first print 15 seconds
  • standard paper input 300 sheets (max 530)
  • USB/parallel interface
  • ethernet
  • standard toner = £43, 6,000 pages, 0.7p per page
  • hi-cap toner = £92, 6,000 pages, 1.5p per page
  • 341x485x593mm
  • 40kg

OUR VERDICT

With blistering speeds and low running costs, the Oki C8800n is a difficult act to beat - but the price is wallet blisteringly high.

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