Lexmark CX522ade Review

Good: Compact footprint, versatile scanning features, e-Task touch screen that lets users customize workflows.
Bad: Doesn't accept 11" x 17" paper.
Bottom Line: Strong and compact color with versatile paper-handling for small-to-medium-sized offices.
Intended Users:
Small, Medium
Speed Black:
Speed Color:
35 ppm
35 ppm
1.2 GHz
2 GB

Product Overview

Lexmark has refreshed its color printer and MFP lineup intended for small-to-medium-sized workgroups. The new devices include upgrades, such a faster speed, mobile functionality, enhanced environmental features, and extensive security.

One of those devices is the CX522ade ($515), a color MFP that includes standard printing, copying, scanning and faxing features. It prints up to 35 ppm in both black and color, and includes a 4.3″ e-Task color touch screen. The e-Task touch screen has a tablet-like interface that lets users customize commonly-used printing and other workflows.

There’s a 1.2 GHz processor and 2 GB of memory that optionally expands to 6 GB. There’s an optional hard drive available. First-page-out-print-time in color is up to 8.5 seconds.

PCL and PostScript printing language are supported. Other standard printing languages include direct PDF, direct image, personal printer data stream (PPDS) and Microsoft XPS.

USB and Ethernet connectivity are standard. Wireless connectivity is optional. Mobile printing is supported via the Lexmark Mobile Print, Apple AirPrint, Mopria, Windows Mobile and Google Cloud Print apps.

The device also includes features that gives color output a more professional look, such as PANTONE® calibration, embedded color sample pages and Lexmark Color Replacement.

More details on this printer is in our Features section below.

The CX522ade is an affordable choice for small-to-medium-sized workgroups that need color output and multifunctionality.


Paper handling starts with a 250-sheet tray and a single-sheet manual feed. Lexmark offers optional paper trays for up to a maximum of 1,450 sheets. They include a 550-sheet tray and a 550-sheet duo tray with 100-sheet feeder. The trays can accept paper from envelope-size up to legal-sized (8.5″ x 14″).

Output is a 150-sheet bin. Duplexing is standard. There’s a 50-sheet reversing automatic document feeder (RADF).

The maximum monthly duty cycle is 85,000 pages. However, Lexmark recommends a monthly page volume range of 1,500 to 8,500 pages.

The scanning function features CIS technology, and supports scan-to-email, to USB, to FTP, to network, and to the Lexmark Document Solutions Suite. Users can send scans in the following formats: XPS, TIFF, archival PDF, BMP, secure PDF, and JPEG.

As with its older printers and MFPs, the CX522ade uses Lexmark’s Unison Toner. The Unison Toner’s print system has a separate toner, imaging unit and fuser, using a multi-piece architecture design that leads to reduced toner waste and long-life system reliability.

It also prints at up to 1,200 dpi for crisper print quality. And it alerts users when supplies are needed (e.g., low toner warning and number of pages left to print).

Just like it’s done for many years, Lexmark offers its Return Program, which is a loyalty program that provides customers with a free high-yield toner cartridge for every 10 toner cartridges sent back to Lexmark for recycling. It also provides a free imaging kit when needed. Consumable prices under the Return Program tend to be significantly cheaper.

Users have a choice of either standard or extra-high-yield replacement black and color cartridges. The extra-high-yield cartridges maxes out at a capacity of 8,500 pages in black and 5,000 pages in each color. Using the extra-high-yield capacities and prices, we’ve calculated the cost per page at 1.9 cents in black and 13.6 cents in color.

Users can also take advantage of other features to help keep printing costs down, such as sleep mode and duplexing. They can also take advantage of Lexmark’s suite of tools that help them control color printing costs, such as mono-only print drivers, user-based color print permissions, global color density control, object-specific Color Saver, and proof before printing.

The CX522ade includes strong security features that’s present on Lexmark’s other printers and MFPs. Some of those features include user authentication, network security, document security, and secure remote management.

Finally, there’s a one-year limited warranty.

  • Automatic Document Feeder?
  • Duplexing?
  • Ethernet Connectivity?
  • Wireless Connectivity?
  • Mobile Printing/Scanning?
  • Finishers?


The CX522ade doesn’t accept ledger-sized (11″ x 17″ or A3) paper.


Lexmark creates innovative imaging solutions and technologies that help customers worldwide print, secure and manage information with ease, efficiency and unmatched value.

Send feedback or corrections to feedback@betterbuys.com.

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