HP CB527A Custom Media Cassette for HP M600 Series Printers.

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HP Part CB527A is the custom media cassette tray for HP LaserJet Enterprise M601, M602 ans M603. The custom media tray doesn't have the click positions of the ordinary cassette and is intended specifically to support small and unusual paper sizes such as those used for forms, photographs and labels. Where the standard tray will take up to 500 sheets the custom media tray only claims to hold 400.

Cassette tray CB527A is compatible with the HP LaserJet Enterprise 600 series M601, M602 and M603 and with its predecessor the Laserjet P4014, P4015 and P4515.

The cassette slides into the drawer space normally occupied by tray 2 on a printer - or into one of the expansion feeder units CE998A. The 400-sheet Custom Media Tray gives the flexibility to print small items that might usually have been handled by thermal transfer or inkjet using the robust and lasting laser-print mechanism. CB527A has been designed to support some of the smaller media sizes (as small as A6) that are not supported on the standard input tray.

The standard cassette tray shipped with printers is RM1-4559, it is intended to be convenient for standard paper sizes and fingers on it's side can automatically tell the printer what paper is loaded. It is also much cheaper than the CB527A so buy the normal tray if you don't need the specific ability to handle custom media.

CB527A

Features

These are some of the things HP says about CB527A:

The custom media tray operates in much the same manner as the ordinary cassette. In the base of the tray is a metal lifter plate which brings whatever media is loaded up to the stack sensor using the RM1-4585 lifter motor when the tray is pushed home. The tray is rated for 400 sheets - on the whole it will be asked to hold rather thicker media than is used in the ordinary 500 sheet trays RM1-4559.

The only part likely to wear out with extended use is the RM1-0037 separation roller at the front. The roller is easily replaced. Note that any duplexer (CF062A) fitted to the printer will not operate when a custom -sized page is passing through (it can't reliably cope with odd media sizes).

CB527A side view

Warranty: One year. Warranty and support options vary by product, country and local legal requirements. (It isn't clear what could go wrong with a tray that would be covered under warranty - spontaneous degeneration perhaps ? )

Trays are not considered repairable and HP doesn't make any spares explicitly available except the feed-roller RM1-0037. The whole cassette is generally replaced if it is damaged.

One of the engineering diagrams puts the trays in a bit of context - click here. But a better view of how it fits in the printer is possibly the overview cross section here.

HP Information

HP Partsurfer didn't respond to any of the codes tried.

IceCat had

The EAN/UPC code quoted on several sites is 883585279975 however Icecat gave it as 5711045131684 and 0663072907297. There had been 43796 product views suggesting moderate interest in this accessory.


CB527A

Web Research

A Google query on cb527a without quotes gave About 364,000 results which seemed rather too many for a somewhat obscure topic. Putting it in quotes gave About 12,700 results which is a bit more manageable. The first 30 are noted:

www8.hp.com basic details only no price, www3.hp.com $229.00, staples.com no info, provantage.com $211.78, printware.co.uk £156.32, shopbot.ca shopping comparison $208.90 to $320.45, officespecialties.com $240.39, amazon.co.uk (IvoryEgg) refurb £84.00 new £192.21 + £1.75 UK delivery, cdw.com $258.99, fastprinters.com refurb $192.30 new $279.44, hpshop.ie no stock €166.76, bluedogink.com $204.99, micrtonerinternational.com $299.00, shopbot.com.au $213.87 to $266.00 AUS, officedirectsupply.com $236.78, ebay.com (re-freshtek) $99.99 +$35.00, myshopping.com.au (tammex) $247.84, myshopping.com.au (again), theprinterdepo.com $233.99, popprintertraysdrawers760.blogspot.co.uk no price, superwarehouse.com no info or price, colorhexa.com not relevant, overstock.com £150.03, adorama.com $249.88, bestbuy.ca $296.99, pantherdata.com.au $245.31 AUS, azcomputing.biz sold out $109.00, databazaar.com no stock $269.98, printerworks.com not available, govgroup.com $239.28

Prices noted are for a new item without tax. The list is as encountered. We haven't bothered with currency conversion - half of our readers are outside the UK and are more interested in dollar prices.

Non of the sites listed gave much information beyond a basic page-scrape of material on the HP site.

Supply Situation

The custom media cassette is quite widely advertised although it's use isn't often explained and together with a phenomenally high price of about £150 for a mere plastic tray probably explains low demand. Mono laser printers are quite good at jobs like labelling but they aren't going to get used that way if they cost too much. In fairness, the thermal printers that are often used are expensive specialist devices as well.

HP's own Partsurfer site doesn't seem to know about the CB527A either. All of the sites listed here gave the same information and usually the same picture; there was nothing to choose on except price.

The part is listed by a couple of distributors but only one holds stock of this item. We think demand for this accessory is not particularly high and usually expressed at the time the printer is bought as it will be intended for a special purpose.

Refurbished parts aren't available at the time of writing because these parts aren't widely used. Obviously that can change on a sixpence if someone disposes of printers that have the special trays.

We can provide these parts when required. The new price is about £150 - urgent requests can be met from European stock but at a higher price.

These are guidelines, our prices change with distribution lists - see the catalog. Stock numbers indicate there is not much call for this accessory but it can be available. The price is rather high, but then this is a specialist device.