Excellent print performance; easy setup; good quality print output; affordable.
Abysmal scanning software; high-capacity tray and Wi-Fi cost extra.
Our five-page test document, consisting of mixed graphics, text and photos, printed in just 19.2 seconds from a cold start. (That’s the time taken from pressing the “print” button in Microsoft Word until final output.) Copying the same five pages (single-sided) took 21.5 seconds.
Printer cartridges are available in standard and high capacity sizes. The high capacity cartridge is rated to print 9,000 pages, and typically costs around $234. That translates to a 2.6 cents cost per page. You can opt to buy a “return program cartridge,” which you ship back to Lexmark for recycling. You’ll save some money if you opt for the return program, since the same high-capacity cartridge costs approximately $190. That reduces per page costs to 2.1 cents.
The Lexmark X264dn is a beefy, bulky device, weighing in at 43 pounds out of the box; you won’t regret asking for someone’s help to unpack it. Physical setup is a fairly complex process—many components are taped down for shipping and finding every last bit of tape is a chore. That’s just a one-time process, of course.
With the exception of 64-bit Windows 7 drivers, which we had to find and download from Lexmark’s website, the printer’s installation disc provides robust operating-system support, including most other flavors of Windows, various versions of Linux, MacOS, Solaris, and more.
The X264dn is an office device, supporting both USB 2.0 and hardwired Ethernet connections. The unit lacks built-in Wi-Fi capability, so you’ll need to buy a Wi-Fi print server if you’re environment requires wireless network access to the printer. Once connected to the network, software setup is simple and straightforward. Printing is simple and the control panel gives you all the usual options for output quality, duplex settings, and so on. You can even set the ability to watermark your output, so you can track revisions or keep tabs on sensitive documents.
Faxing is also fairly simple, and the Lexmark supports the usual sets of features, including the creation of phone books and faxing from lists. The two-line LCD, however, renders adding contacts a tedious effort. Scanning, on the other hand, is a royal pain. First, scanning appears to be a manual process. You start the scan in software, then walk over to the printer to initiate a “scanning profile.” Then you walk back to the computer and receive the document. If you’re scanning over a network, you can’t even see a preview scan, or make adjustments. Compared to the elegance of Epson’s network-scanning software, the Lexmark scanning solution is a major fail. Even HP’s clunky, slow scanning software is more network aware.
The Lexmark X264dn is a solid workgroup printer with the added capability of copying and faxing; but if your office’s workflow requires more than occasional document scanning, there are better solutions.
Editor's Note: This review was corrected on May 4, 2010 to correct an error introduced during editing. The correction had no impact on our verdict.