Konica Minolta has been producing top-notch laser printers longer than many people realise. The Magicolor 2450 is the company's low-end offering but it has a good range of features.

The impressive specification of this printer includes a 600x600dpi print engine and 128MB of RAM, which are joined by an Ethernet port, USB 2.0 and, interestingly for a laser printer, a front-mounted USB port for attaching a digital camera to print directly. The unit itself is very compact, although you do pay for this luxury by way of a paper tray that extends outside the unit.

There's a simple-to-follow menu system and a two-line LCD for management settings on top of the printer. The buttons are a bit plasticky and it does take some of the gloss off what's otherwise a sturdily-built printer.

In operation, the 2450 tends to be a bit noisy with an internal routine that physically shakes the printer when the unit warms up. We are a touch disappointed with the text results from the Magicolor, as although it is a deep black shade, it does lack the refinement and precision of other models here.

At smaller font sizes, text doesn't have crisp definition. Colours are accurate and images lean towards a green or yellow cast. Detail is good, though, but there are other printers around that produce more refined results. The Konica Minolta has many things in its favour. It's a compact design with easy-to-follow controls and an Ethernet connection all count for the machine. However, text isn't as sharp as you'd expect and fine detail isn't up to scratch.

If you work in a small office then the noises emanating from the 2450 might be a problem. But if space is at a premium, this is certainly a compact machine.