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Pantum P2502W Printer Review

Tested using Methodology v1.2
Reviewed Mar 08, 2022 at 10:21 am
Pantum P2502W Picture
5.2
Family
6.4
Small/Home Office
7.0
Student
7.2
Black & White
0.9
Photo
Type Printer Only
Technology Laser
Wireless Yes
Color No
SuperTank
No

The Pantum P2502W is a black and white print-only model that uses laser technology to print. It yields an excellent number of black pages before you need to replace the toner cartridge, and since the drum unit is built-in, you don't need to worry about replacing an extra part. Also, the cost-per-print is outstandingly low, keeping costs down over time. It prints text documents at an impressively fast speed, getting long reports out with very little wait. However, it can't automatically duplex print, so you need to reinsert printed sheets into the input tray yourself if you want to print double-sided documents. Unfortunately, it takes a while to warm up and begin printing, and it also tends to push printed sheets out of the output tray as it prints. Additionally, it's hard to set it up with your wireless network, and the iOS companion app is hard to use.

Our Verdict

5.2 Family

The Pantum P2502W is awful for family use. It can't print in color, so it isn't suitable for photos. It's best to use it for black and white documents like reports or essays. Also, there's no scanner, so you can't use it to digitize photos or important documents, and it's hard to set the printer up and use its mobile app. On the bright side, its cost-per-print is superb, which keeps costs low over time.

Pros
  • Outstandingly cheap cost-per-print for black and white prints.
  • Cartridges include the drum unit.
Cons
  • Not suited for printing photos.
  • No scanner features.
  • Difficult to set up with a Wi-Fi connection.
  • Mobile app is difficult to use.
6.4 Small/Home Office

The Pantum P2502W is poor for small or home office use, mainly because it's a monochrome unit that doesn't have any scanning features. However, it performs very well if you only need to print off black and white pages, as it has a fantastic page yield, very fast print speed, and a remarkably low cost-per-print. Unfortunately, it feels flimsy, pushes printed sheets out of the output tray as it prints, and tends to pick up multiple pages at once during long print jobs. Also, it takes a while to warm up and begin printing, it lacks an Ethernet port, and it doesn't support automatic duplex printing.

Pros
  • Superb black page yield.
  • Impressive print speed for black-only text documents.
Cons
  • Takes a while to warm up and begin printing.
  • Printer pushes printed sheets out of output tray.
  • No scanner features.
  • Can't automatically print double-sided sheets.
  • No Ethernet port.
7.0 Student

The Pantum P2502W is mediocre overall for student use. It's a monochrome unit that doesn't have any scanning features, meaning you can't use it to print color documents or photos, nor for digitizing any handwritten notes. It also takes a long time to warm up and begin printing, so it isn't ideal if you need to print your assignments at the last minute. On the bright side, it prints very quickly after it does warm up, and since the cost-per-print for black and white prints is outstandingly low, it's easy on your wallet in the long run.

Pros
  • Outstandingly cheap cost-per-print for black and white prints.
  • Cartridges include the drum unit.
Cons
  • Takes a while to warm up and begin printing.
  • No scanner features.
  • Mobile app is difficult to use.
7.2 Black & White

The Pantum P2502W is decent for black and white printing. It yields a superb number of pages at an outstandingly cheap cost-per-print, and it prints text documents at an impressively fast speed. Unfortunately, it takes a while to warm up and begin printing, it doesn't have an Ethernet port, and its body feels flimsy. It also doesn't support automatic double-sided printing, so you need to reinsert printed pages into the input tray yourself.

Pros
  • Outstandingly cheap cost-per-print for black and white prints.
  • Superb black page yield.
  • Impressive print speed for black-only text documents.
Cons
  • Takes a while to warm up and begin printing.
  • Printer pushes printed sheets out of output tray.
  • Can't automatically print double-sided sheets.
0.9 Photo

The Pantum P2502W isn't suited for photo printing. It's a black and white laser printer that produces poorly detailed photos and monochrome gradients with lots of visible banding.

Pros
  • Supports various custom paper sizes.
Cons
  • Photos are very grainy and look too dark.
  • Monochrome gradients have lots of banding.
  • Mobile app is difficult to use.
  • 5.2 Family
  • 6.4 Small/Home Office
  • 7.0 Student
  • 7.2 Black & White
  • 0.9 Photo
  1. Updated Sep 21, 2022: Converted to Test Bench 1.2.
  2. Updated Sep 01, 2022: Converted to Test Bench 1.1.
  3. Updated Jun 21, 2022: We shortened the text of the Mobile App box to make it easier to read.
  4. Updated Mar 23, 2022: The test result for Color Ink Needed for Black & White was initially set to N/A, but it should say 'No'. The result was updated, and no scores were affected.
  5. Updated Mar 08, 2022: Review published.
  6. Updated Mar 02, 2022: Early access published.

Test Results

perceptual testing image
Design
5.5
Design
Build Quality

The Pantum P2502W's build quality is sub-par. The body is cheap-feeling plastic, and the printer's front output tray extender, input tray, and top cover feel thin and flimsy. Additionally, the paper input stays exposed since there isn't a full input cassette. On the bright side, it's easy to open the top cover to reach the sheet rollers and toner cartridge, and the input tray feeder has width sliders to properly align different paper types. Also, the power cord is removable for easy replacement in case it gets damaged. The exhaust is on the printer's right side close to the rear, so it isn't ideal to place the printer in narrow or tight spaces.

Design
Dimensions
Height 7.4" (18.9 cm)
Width 13.2" (33.5 cm)
Depth 8.7" (22.0 cm)
Height When In Use
8.5" (21.5 cm)
Width When In Use
13.2" (33.5 cm)
Depth When In Use
17.0" (43.2 cm)
Weight
10.4 lbs (4.7 kg)
7.5
Design
Expected Maintenance
Ink Related Maintenance
Not Needed
Drum Unit
In The Cartridge

The Pantum P2502W, like most laser printers, is easy to maintain compared to an inkjet printer. Since there's no ink-related maintenance, you don't need to run any printhead cleaning or printhead alignment tasks. To replace the toner cartridge, you only need to lift the printer's top cover, lift the old cartridge without needing to unclip anything, and slide the new one in. Also, the drum unit is included in the cartridge, so you don't need to worry about replacing it separately.

The Pantum P2502W's input tray only holds 150 sheets, so you need to refill the paper often if you print a lot. In case of paper jams, it's easy to reach the sheet rollers through the top cover just behind the toner cartridge. You can also remove the cartridge for even better access. That said, the area around the sheet roller gets quite hot when printing, making plain sheets curl, especially during long print jobs, and can cause paper jams.

0
Design
Display Screen
Display Screen No
Display Screen Size
N/A
Touchscreen No

The Pantum P2502W doesn't have a display. Instead, two LED indicator lights denote the printer's status and two buttons for "WiFi" and "Cancel/Continue". There isn't a power button in front, but there's a master power switch in the rear.

8.6
Design
Cartridge
Photo Cartridge
No
Number Of Color Cartridges
N/A
Black Cartridge Model
Pantum PB-210S
Tested Black Page Yield
110 prints
Estimated Black Page Yield
2,090 prints
Color Cartridge Model
No Color Cartridge
Tested Color Page Yield
N/A
Estimated Color Page Yield
N/A
Third Party Cartridge
Not Found At Time Of The Review
Ink Type
Toner
High Yield Cartridge
Yes

The Pantum P2502W has an excellent cartridge system and can yield many pages before needing a cartridge replacement. Since the drum unit is built into the printer, you don't have to worry about having to replace an extra component.

The Pantum P2502W's original standard and high-yield cartridge models, the PB-210S and the PB-210, respectively, aren't easily available from most major retailers at the time of writing. Currently, you can only get the PB-211EV (Economic Version) and PB-211 (standard) models, which are both compatible with this printer model. Pantum rates them both at 1,600 pages before they run out. For reference, the original PB-210S is rated at 1,000 pages.

0
Design
Scanner Features
Scanner
No Scanner
ADF Capacity
N/A
Scan Speed
N/A
Duplex Scanning
No
Max Flatbed Scan Size
No Flatbed
Max ADF Scan Size
No Scanner
Flatbed Hinge Adjustability
N/A
Fax
No
Copy
No
OCR Included
No Scanner

The Pantum P2502W is a print-only unit, so it doesn't have a scanner.

N/A
Design
Scan Quality
Max Scan Resolution
N/A
Max Scan Color Depth
N/A
Design
In The Box

  • Installation manual
  • CD-ROM with drivers, software, and documentation
  • Power cord
  • USB-A to USB-B cable
  • 1x PB-210E black introductory cartridge

Design
Battery
Advertised Battery Life
N/A
Tested Charging Time
N/A
Document
9.0
Document
Black & White Documents
Color Ink Needed For Black & White
No
0
Document
Color Documents
9.4
Document
Cost-Per-Print
Black Cartridge Price
55.99 US$
Color Cartridge Price
0 US$
Black-Only Printing Cost
0.027 US$/print
Color Printing Cost
N/A
Photo Printing Cost
N/A
Ink Subscription
No

The Pantum P2502W's cost-per-print is superb. The replacement cartridge is a little expensive, but since the printer can easily yield over a thousand pages, running costs remain low over time.

Note: The Pantum P2502W's original standard and high-yield toner cartridge models, the PB-210S and PB-210, respectively, aren't easily available from most major retailers at the time of writing. These results reflect the printer's cost-per-print when using the PB-211EV cartridge. Currently, the PB-211EV (Economic Version) and PB-211 (standard) are the only cartridges compatible with this printer model that you can get.

6.3
Document
Printing Speed
Black Only Text Document
23 PPM
Color Document
N/A
Photo Printing Time
23.0 s
Single Page Out Time (Black Only)
25.0 s
Duplex Printing
Manual
Input Tray Capacity
150 pages

The Pantum P2502W's printing speed for black-only text documents is only middle of the pack for laser printers, but it's still impressively fast. It means you can print even the longest research papers or dissertations in just a couple of minutes at most. Unfortunately, it takes a while to receive the print job and print the first page after the printer sits unused for a while, which can slow you down if you only use it occasionally. It can't automatically print double-sided sheets; instead, it first prints the odd pages out then prompts you to reinsert the printed sheets into the output tray without changing the paper's orientation. You then press "Continue" on the printer to finish printing the other side.

As you can see in the printing speed video, the Pantum P2502W tends to push other pages off of the output tray as it finishes printing each new sheet, which is due to the heated elements causing the pages to warm up and curl. It can be a great inconvenience as you might often need to pick up lots of fallen, out-of-order sheets. Additionally, you can see around the 0:54 mark that the printer grabs and outputs multiple sheets at once. It only happened when filming the video but didn't occur at any point afterward. That said, this occurrence is commonly reported online and can result in misaligned, badly centered prints and frequent paper jams. For a similar monochrome print-only model that prints even faster and doesn't have problems handling sheets, check out the Pantum P3012DW.

Document
Document Printing Sizes
Letter (8.5" x 11") Yes
Legal (8.5" x 14") Yes
Tabloid (11" x 17") No
A6 (105mm x 148mm) Yes
A5 (148mm x 210mm) Yes
A4 (210mm x 297mm) Yes
Max Paper Weight
163 g/mยฒ

The Pantum P2502W supports user-defined custom sizes from 2.95" to 8.5" in width and 5.82" to 14" in height. It's the only way to get the printer to accept 4" x 6", 5" x 7", and 8" x 10" sheets.

Photo
0
Photo
Color Gamut

The Pantum P2502W can only print different shades of gray. There's lots of uneven banding, so even if you want to print grayscale gradients, they still won't look smooth.

0
Photo
Color Accuracy
Average Color dE
N/A

The Pantum P2502W can't print in color, so the color accuracy image shown here is only for reference.

0.5
Photo
Small Details
Max Print Resolution (DPI)
1200 x 1200
0
Photo
Photo Printing Sizes
Glossy Paper (4" x 6") No
Glossy Paper (5" x 7") No
Glossy Paper (8" x 10") No
Glossy Paper (8.5" x 11") No
Glossy Paper (13" x 19") No
Borderless Printing
No
Mobile App And Connectivity
7.0
Mobile App And Connectivity
Connectivity
Ethernet
No
USB Input To Computer
Yes
Bluetooth
No
Wi-Fi via Router
Yes
Wi-Fi Direct
Yes
External Storage Support
No
Apple AirPrint
Yes
Mopria Print Service
Yes

The Pantum P2502W requires a hard-wired setup before you can use it to print via a Wi-Fi network. To do this, you first need to install the printer's drivers, then use the provided USB-A to USB-B cable to connect it to your computer. At this point, you can set it up for use on your local network through Wi-Fi, then disconnect the connection to your computer. On the other hand, when using a mobile device, you first need to connect to the printer via Wi-Fi Direct to set it up with your router before you can print without connecting directly to the printer.

Additionally, the P2502W appears to have a spot for an Ethernet port in the back, but since it's blocked off in this model, you can't plug anything in.

10
Mobile App And Connectivity
Mobile App
Mobile App Yes
App Name Pantum Mobile Print & Scan
iOS Yes
Android Yes
Photo (JPEG, PNG)
iOS Only
PDF
Android and iOS
Microsoft Office Files
Android and iOS
Text Files (TXT)
Android and iOS
Webpages (HTML)
Android and iOS

The Pantum P2502W is compatible with the "Pantum" mobile app on iOS and the "Pantum Mobile Print & Scan" app on Android. They both have the same capabilities, but the iOS version has an additional iCloud icon. Both versions of the app have technical issues, like links for maintenance tasks and ink ordering opening the Pantum webpages instead. You can only print HTML by typing in your URL via the app's built-in browser; this means you canโ€™t print directly from whatever browser you normally use.

The iOS version of the app is especially hard to use. You can't print PDF, Microsoft Office, or TXT files by simply tapping the icon for each file type in the app. Instead, you have to tap "How to import files?" on the error screen, which brings you to this screen. You can tap on each one for instructions on how to execute each method, but each requires quite a few steps, so it isn't very easy to print from.

Even something as simple as connecting the Pantum P2502W to the mobile app is tedious. You have to press the "WiFi" button to print a setup sheet and scan the printed QR code to connect the printer. While the setup sheet says you can also connect by selecting "Configure printer WiFi", this option doesn't exist on the app.

Mobile App And Connectivity
OS Compatibility
Windows Fully
macOS Fully
Chrome OS Fully

The Pantum P2502W is fully compatible with all commonly-used desktop operating systems. On Windows, you need to install the printer's drivers to print. However, you don't need to do this on macOS or Chrome OS.

Differences Between Sizes And Variants

We tested the Pantum P2502W in black. It's also available in a white color scheme. It's closely related to other printers in the P2500 series, including the P2500W and P2509W. Models without the "W" like the P2500 and P2509 only support a USB-A to USB-B connection and don't have Wi-Fi connectivity. All the printers in the model line perform similarly, but each uses a different toner cartridge.

You can see our unit's label here.

Compared To Other Printers

The Pantum P2502W is a print-only laser model that prints only in black and white. Compared to other monochrome print-only models, its build quality is far worse, and it takes much longer to warm up and begin printing. However, its page yields are similar to much more expensive models, and it prints faster than other models in its price range. Unfortunately, its flimsy build, issues with paper feeding and paper output, difficult-to-use mobile app, and limited connectivity options mean that other models are likely more reliable and stress-free to use.

For other options, check out our recommendations for the best laser printers, the best printers under $100, and the best printers with cheap ink.

HP LaserJet Pro M15w

The Pantum P2502W and the HP LaserJet Pro M15w are both monochrome print-only models that use laser technology to print. The HP is better for family use as it's easier to set up, and its mobile app is much more reliable. The Pantum has a similar page yield and cost-per-print, but even though it prints faster, it has issues handling and outputting paper when printing that make it inconvenient to use.

Brother MFC-L2710DW

The Brother MFC-L2710DW and the Pantum P2502W are both monochrome laser printers, but the Pantum doesn't have any scanner features, while the Brother has an ADF and a flatbed scanner for digitizing media like photos and important documents. The Brother is much better, with significantly better build quality, faster printing speed, automatic duplex printing, and an Ethernet port. On the other hand, even though the Pantum yields many more pages before its cartridge needs replacing, it has issues when handling and outputting paper that make it inconvenient to use.

Canon imageCLASS MF242dw

The Pantum P2502W and the Canon imageCLASS MF242dw are both monochrome laser printers, but the Pantum has no scanning features, while the Canon is an all-in-one with a flatbed scanner. The Canon is better overall, with a significantly higher page yield, a slightly cheaper cost-per-print, and a faster print speed. Also, its body feels significantly sturdier and better built, it supports automatic duplex printing, and it has an Ethernet port.

Pantum P3012DW

The Pantum P3012DW and the Pantum P2502W are both monochrome print-only laser models that are best suited for simple black and white printing. However, the P3012DW is the better model, with a faster printing speed, automatic duplex printing support, and an Ethernet port for easy setup with your local network. On the other hand, the P2502W has difficulty handling sheets and occasionally spills them from the output tray. Unfortunately, both printers are difficult to set up, and their mobile apps are hard to use.

Brother HL-L2370DW

The Brother HL-L2370DW and the Pantum P2502W are both monochrome print-only models that use laser technology to print. The Brother is much better overall, as it feels much more sturdily built, it has a slightly cheaper cost-per-print, and it prints significantly faster. Additionally, it supports automatic duplex printing to easily produce double-sided documents, and it has an Ethernet port. On the other hand, it's much easier to replace the Pantum's toner cartridge, and because the drum unit is built-in, you don't need to worry about replacing it separately.

Brother MFC-L3770CDW Laser

The Brother MFC-L3770CDW Laser and the Pantum P2502W are both laser printers, but the Brother is an all-in-one that prints in color, whereas the Pantum is a printer-only unit that only prints in black. The Brother is far better for most uses, as it has a high-resolution flatbed and a fast-scanning duplex ADF, it prints significantly faster and supports automatic duplex printing, and it has an Ethernet port. On the other hand, the Pantum printer is a good choice if you're on a budget, don't need to scan, and only need to print lots of black and white sheets in bulk. It produces more black sheets per cartridge, and its cost-per-print is much cheaper, but it has issues handling and printing sheets.

Kyocera ECOSYS P2235dw

The Pantum P2502W and the Kyocera ECOSYS P2235dw are both printer-only laser units that can only print in black and white. The Kyocera printer is better, as it yields significantly more pages at a much cheaper cost-per-print, prints much faster, and supports automatic duplex printing. Also, it has an Ethernet port for a stable network connection, and the printer can print directly from USB flash drives. However, the Kyocera printer's drum unit is separate from the cartridge, so it's an extra part you have to replace. On the other hand, the Pantum supports Apple AirPrint, and its cartridge is much easier to replace, but it has issues handling and printing sheets.

Xerox B210/DNI

The Xerox B210/DNI and the Pantum P2502W are both printer-only laser units that can only print in black and white, and they both perform about the same overall. The Xerox prints much faster, it supports automatic duplex printing, and its Ethernet port makes it easy to connect to a local network. On the other hand, the Pantum yields more pages, its drum unit is built into the cartridge, which is easy to replace, and the cost-per-print is slightly cheaper. Also, the Pantum mobile app has much more features and capabilities than the Xerox Workplace app, but the Pantum app is very difficult to use.

HP DeskJet 3755

The HP DeskJet 3755 is a compact color inkjet printer, whereas the Pantum P2502W is a monochrome laser unit. They're for different uses; the Pantum is better for high-volume black and white prints, whereas the HP is better for printing photos. The Pantum yields significantly more black pages, its cost-per-print is far cheaper, and it prints very quickly. However, it doesn't have a scanner like the HP, and it has issues when handling and printing sheets. On the other hand, the HP is better for producing photos as it prints in color, but keep in mind it doesn't support borderless prints.

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