Samsung SCX-4100

May 30th, 2005 | By

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Samsung SCX-4100


Date
: 05/31/05 – 12:34:38 AM

Author
:

Category
: Printers


Page 1 : Introduction

Manufacturer
: Samsung Canada

Price
: 199.99 (Canadian)

Despite making many appearances to Overclockers Online, Samsung has yet to disappoint us. Samsung offers a large number of products that excel in performance. In nearly every aspect of consumer and computer electronics, Samsung has a model for that category. While we've taken a look at some neat LCD TV's and monitors, and several of the home office and small business printers, today we get a chance to review our first Multifunction Product – the
SCX-4100
.

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Although there will be no overclocking, overvoltaging or tweaking of any sorts in this review, we'll be focusing in on what the SCX-4100 has to offer and whether or not it lives up to Samsung's prestigious name. We'll also go through some tests to see exactly how well this puppy works.

Before we go any further into the actual product, we'll get our feet wet with the specifications to see what we're up against.


Page 2 : Specifications

The following information was taken from Samsung's website:

General

Net Dimension (W x D x H)
422 x 400 x 239 mm (16.6"x15.8" x9.4")
Packing Dimension (W x D x H)
539 x 488 x 330 mm (21.2"x19.2"x13.0")
Weight with Consumables
9.6 Kg (21.1 lbs)
Packing Weight
12.0 Kg (26.5 lbs)
LCD
2 line x 16 characters
Interface
USB 1.1 (Compatible with USB 2.0)
IEEE 1284 Parallel
OS Compatibility
Windows 95/98/Me/NT4.0/2000/XP
Various Linux OS (via USB interface only) including Red Hat, Caldera, Mandrake, Slackware, SuSE and Turbo Linux
Warm-up Time
Less than 35 seconds (from Sleep mode)
Noise
Warm up : Less than 42 dBA
Stand by Noise
Less than 38 dBA
Printing Noise
Less than 49 dBA
Power Requirement
220 ~ 240 VAC
50/60 Hz, 2.5A
Power Consumption
Sleep mode :
10 W
Standby mode:
Average : 300 W
Operating Conditions
Temperature : 10 ℃ ~ 32 ℃ (50 ℉ ~ 89 ℉)
Humidity : 20 % ~ 80 % RH
Duty Cycle
Up to 10,000 pages monthly

Copy

Speed
Up to 14 ppm in A4 (15 ppm in Letter)
Resolution (Optical)
600 x 600 dpi
Text, Text/Photo mode
600 x 300 dpi
Photo mode
600 x 600 dpi
Resolution (Enhanced)
600 x 600 dpi
First Copy Out Time
12 seconds (from Stand by mode)
Zoom Rate
50~200%
Multi Copy
1~99 pages
Duplex Copy
N/A

Scan

Compatibility
Twain standard
Method
Color CIS
Resolution(Optical)
600 x 600 dpi
Resolution (Enhanced)
Max. 4,800 x 4,800 dpi
Effective Scan Length
297 mm (11.7")
Effective Scan Width
208 mm (8.2")
Color Bit depth
Internal : 32 bit
External : 24 bit
B/W Bit depth
1 bit for Text mode
8 bit for Gray mode
Gray Scale
256 Levels

Paper Handling

Input Capacity and Types
250-sheet Cassette Tray (75 g/㎡, 20 lbs)
1-sheet Manual Tray (60 ~ 120 g/㎡, 16 ~ 32 lbs)
Output Capacity and Types
150-sheet Face Down
1-sheet Face Up
Media Size (for Print)
Legal,A4,Letter, Folio, Executive, B5, A5, A6, Envelope6 3/4, 7 3/4,#9, #10,DL,C5,B5
76 x 127 mm (3" x 5") ~ 216 x 356 mm
(8.5" x 14")
Media Size (for Fax and Copy)
N/A
Media type Tray
Plain Paper
Manual Tray
Plain Paper,
Transparency, Label, Post Card, Envelope
ADF Capacity
N/A
ADF Document Size
N/A

Consumables

Type Single Cartridge
Yield
3,000 pages at ISO 19752 5% Coverage
(Ships with 1,000 pages Starter Toner Cartridge)
Ordering Code
SCX-4100D3




Page 3 : Features

Now that we know what type of product we'll be looking at and what type of performance we should expect, we'll see how Samsung markets the SCX-4100 as they also list these features on their website:

The new Samsung SCX-4100 Digital Productivity Center is where outstanding design meets multifunctionality. The result is a powerful yet easy-to-use laser printer, digital copier and color scanner. And with one of the world's smallest footprints, the SCX-4100 offers you versatility and productivity where you need it – right at your desk.

Going digital gives you more.

Now there's no need to leave your desk when you want a copier with digital editing capability. The Samsung SCX-4100's exclusive 2-sides-in-1 copying lets you scan and consolidate copies easily. Add in Auto- fit, Clone Copy, Poster Copy, 50-200% zoom and up to 99-page Multi Copy, and you've got editing functions beyond any analog copier!

Why settle for an inkjet multifunction printer when you deserve the sharp laser print quality of the Samsung SCX-4100, right on your desktop? Better yet, the brisk print/copy speed of up to 15 pages per minute will keep up with your pace of work. And with lower running costs than most ink-jet competitors, you'll be certain that the SCX-4100 was the right choice!

Multifunction convenience, designed for you.

Break through the clutter of separate copiers, printers and scanners with the multifunctional elegance of the SCX-4100. Samsung's user-friendly SmarThru4 software guides you through converting scanned pages into rich, editable text. Then you can edit, print and copy with the speed and ease you expect from Samsung. Now that's more talent for your desk!

Digital versatility, digital productivity, digital flexibility.

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SmarThru4 document handling software will let you edit scanned images, save them in various formats, and set up copy/print profiles – one click at a time.

We'll now proceed to the rest of the review where we take a look at how the printer is packaged and how well it performs at its various tasks.


Page 4 : Package

The SCX-4100 arrived in its retailed packaging directly from Samsung's Canadian head office.

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There is clearly some damage to the box, nothing serious and nothing that could possibly damage the contents.

The sides of the box give a good idea of what the MFP (multi-function printer) looks like.

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From the picture, the SCX-4100 doesn't look too big. Judging by the specifications, it's rather compact; especially true when compared to something like the CLP-550s and CLP-510s that we looked at a few months ago.

Another side of the box shows another picture of the MFP as well as some of the key features that you may be looking for when it comes to an MFP. The most obvious note is that it clearly says in bolded upper case that it is a 3-in-1 flatbed laser multifunction product.

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Once we rip the tape off, we can open up the box and take a look at the contents. Our first layer is the paperwork.

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We're presented with the paperwork to register the product and a folded up instruction guide explaining how to get the MFP running. The guide is written in many languages for your convenience.

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Also to remove from the top layer is the toner.

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Samsung starts you off with a starter toner cartridge; this is good for 1000 pages at 5% coverage. A full toner is good for 3000 pages at 5% coverage. Once you run out of toner, you'll want to pick up the right make and model for the SCX-4100.

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The last layer before getting to the MFP is the bag full of miscellaneous goodies: power cord, driver CD, manual and warranty information. All useful stuff to help users get the most out of their purchase.

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After removing a few things, we finally get to the printer; it's protected by a plastic bag and slotted into the box with some Styrofoam. Once we remove the protective layers, we get to physically touch what we would have paid for.

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Like most of Samsung's products, the SCX-4100 has a very contemporary feel to it. With the white plastic, the SCX-4100 will blend into any modern office.

Taking a look at the control panel, Samsung offers a very simple menu…nothing too complicated for anyone.

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The lack of the dialpad only reinforces the fact that although multi-functional, the SCX-4100 is not meant to be used as a fax machine. For that, you'll need to look into some of Samsung's other products.

Moving on to the bottom of the SCX-4100, the pull out tray stores more than enough paper for most single print jobs.

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Just above the paper tray is the cover for the toner cartridge. A two step toner installation process is shown on the inside cover. As we'll see later in the review, it really is only a two step job!

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Peering inside the MFP, there's not too much to show.

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Above the cover is a little slot used for single sheet loading.

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The output tray can angle up your paper with a little hinge.

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If you need more space, you can lift the flat bed scanner up and a little stand to hold it up pops out. This gives you about an extra inch of space.

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Now that we've covered every detail on the front of the SCX-4100, we'll go back to the top and take a quick little shot of the scanner bed.

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The coverage area of the scanner is 12" by 9".

Going around to the back, there are a few features to note.

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Clearly noticeable is the back side of the paper tray, the power inlet and the parallel port input. More discretely hidden is the rear paper output slot. To activate the rear paper output, you'll need to leave the cover open and manually feed each sheet in for printing. You can use this for envelopes, transparencies, post cards etc.

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From the backside of the MFP, we can see hinges on the scanner. This hinge will allow you to scan or photocopy larger objects, like placing a book on the flatbed to copy a few pages.

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On the sides of the back is the power switch and USB connector.

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Now that we've done a tour of the body, we'll set up the SCX-4100, install the drivers and run our tests.


Page 5 : Setup

The first thing we'll need to do before going to a computer is install the toner. As I mentioned earlier, this is really a two step process and takes little to no effort. The instructions are already printed on the inside of the cover.

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Simply take your toner cartridge, holding it by the back edge, and slide it into the SCX-4100. By closing the access cover, the SCX-4100 will push the toner cartridge into the right spot.

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With the cartridge in place, we'll plug in the power cord and connect the SCX-4100 to a computer using a USB connector. It's a shame that Samsung doesn't provide these for you or the fact that the SCX-4100 is not USB 2.0. USB 2.0 operation would make for much faster scans, especially at the higher resolutions.

Once you power up your machine, you'll need to whip out the driver CD to install the drivers and the SmartThru scanner software.

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The whole process doesn't take very long, nor does it require very much hard drive space.

If you're looking for an additional manual, there are some located on the CD in a number of languages, and each is 160+ pages long!

We'll move onto some basic tests….

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Page 6 : Performance

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The first thing I'll be doing is printing 10 black and white pages full of text. The printer was powered on and left to go into sleep mode prior to any printing. The time before the first page was 34 seconds, just under the 35 listed by Samsung.

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The time for all 10 pages to be printed out was 41 seconds, with minor variation in turning on and off my timer. This works out to be 14.63 pages per minute. Just shy of the 15 ppm for letter print. So far everything is going as planned for Samsung.

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Taking a look at the text, it looks very clean with no smudging or deviations.

The next step is printing out some pictures. I'll be using 600 dpi for this round of printing. The photos I used were taken from a Hubble fansite and you can view the 3 different images: here, here, and here. :)

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All the pictures came out quite nicely. There was a variety of gray scales that showed some of the finer details in the images. It's amazing what an old telescope can do; too bad it's on its last leg of life before decommissioning.

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The second and third functions on this piece of hardware are the copying and scanning features. To copy images, you'll need to lay the original against the top left corner of the glass, select the quality you want and the number of copies that should be made. A maximum of 99 copies can be made per image.

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Selecting the type of scan job you're doing is very important! It makes the difference between a crappy print and a realistic copy.

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Original on the right, duplicate on the left.
The horror that happens when you select Text but really meant Picture.

When the proper setting is used….

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Original on the right, duplicate on the left.
As I mentioned earlier, this MFP has scanning capabilities; only natural since it can make copies. To enable the scanning options, you must have installed SmartThru. If that is already done, you can immediately jump to using this feature.

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Using one of the color prints from the CLP-550n, I scanned a picture at 600 dpi. There are many options that you can use, as seen in the pictures below.

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After making the scan, I saved it to my desktop and examined it through Windows Picture and Fax Viewer. There was little distortion in the color and details. I then proceeded to print the scan through Windows Picture and Fax Viewer. You can see the results below.

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Color original to the right, black and white scan copy to the left.
Another great print, though some inconsistencies with the toner. The peaks of the mountain tops seem a tad darker on the scan than on the CLP-550n copy. A similar effect can be found where a shadow is present; it's much too dark. You can lighten the amount of toner used through the handy menu. Here's a list of all the available features:

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To end off this section, I'll give you the run down on the noise output. Starting with the scanning feature, this is not a silent toy. Scans at 600 dpi take a couple minutes and during the entire process I could hear the motor winding to guide the light across the glass. I could only imagine the type of insanity one would encounter if they tried to scan something at 4800 dpi! It would be nice if Samsung looked into quieter motors for operation.

As for the noise during printing, it's far more bearable than the scanner. The only noise you hear is paper being rolled in from the paper tray and later spat out. It's far quieter than an inkjet printer, but by no means silent.


Page 7 : Conclusion

Having gone through all the basic features of the SCX-4100, this is one of those products that every house hold could use. Printing is a necessity in many households and once you get use to using the scanner and copier, you'll be wondering how you lived without it. Perhaps the same can be said about the other MFPs where faxing is an option.

The quick operation and high output will be a plus for those in a hurry. I was thoroughly pleased with the copying and scanning options despite the louder than desired operating noise. I suspect the reasoning for the noise was a trade-off in selecting a smaller motor spinning at a high RPM to have everything fit in such a compact body. This is a reasonable trade-off as the SCX-4100 is indeed compact and with its stylish look, it could easily fit into any home office or dormitory.

If you need a device that maximizes the performance to space usage ratio, the SCX-4100 is capable of satisfying your needs and should definitely be a product you don't overlook at your favorite retailer.

Advantages

Lots of features in a very small space
High quality prints
Fast output

Disadvantages

Not USB2.0 or network compatible
Somewhat noisy

Overclockers Online would like to thank Samsung Canada for providing the SCX-4100 for evaluation.

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