Sharp AL-1641CS Review
The Sharp AL-1641CS’s extremely conservative specifications make it a fairly undesirable multifunctional device, though users will not be disappointed with its overall capabilities outside of its sluggish speed.
A 30 page automatic document feeder sits atop the Sharp AL-1641CS and makes multiple page copy and scan projects manageable. The ADF, as well as the unit’s paper storage trays and document glass, can handle paper up to 14” in length and 8.5” wide.
The unit’s copy speed exceeds that of its print speed, but is still fairly disappointing at 16 copies per minute. Continuous copies can be made in quantities of up to 99 at once and the device’s first copy and print out time slides just under the 10 second mark at 9.6 seconds. It will take a full 16 seconds when making a copy from warm up mode and from complete shut off mode it will take 23 seconds before the first reproduction appears.
Basic copy functions, such as reduction and enlargement, are present in the Sharp AL-1641CS. Zooming can be down to degrees from 50% - 200% in 1% increments or in one of six preset sizes (50%, 64%, 78%, 100%, 129%, and 200%). Both scanning and copying are made possible by a moving optics/stationary top system with built in automatic exposure. This system can output 256 levels of grey at 600 x 600 dots per inch.
Surprisingly, the otherwise fairly minimalistic Sharp AL-1641CS is equipped with a built in duplexor. When utilizing automatic duplexing, paper usage, and therefore cost, can be reduced by as much as half. Automatic duplexing also adds a special touch of professionalism to certain types of material that simply is suited better for two sided printing.
The unit’s optical scan resolution of 600 x 1200 dots per inch is fairly standard for a unit of this magnitude, but the optimized scanning for the device can reach only 2400 x 2400 dots per inch; a much lower maximum quality than almost any other multifunctional device.
With dimensions of 19.6 x 18.2 x 11.7 inches (W x D x H) and a solid weight of 43 pounds, the Sharp AL-1641CS is certainly not the smallest unit out there, but is still suitable for someone’s desktop.
With a print speed of only 12 pages per minute, the Sharp AL-1641CS is considerably slower than pretty much anything still operating today. A print speed this slow could effectively contribute to considerable wait times that could easily be considered unacceptable by today’s standards.
A similar printer, the Xerox XD100, came out at around the same time as the Sharp AL-1641CS with a similar price point but superior specifications in almost every area. This means that the device is not only dated and obsolete in today’s market, but that it was an inferior product right from the start.
A maximum monthly duty cycle of only 5,000 copies or prints means that the Sharp AL-1641CS is not suitable for high volume usage, and is really best for an individual user alone with light print and copy demands.