Most helpful positive review
34 of 34 people found the following review helpful
A good small office AIO
on May 14, 2009
I've been using this for a couple of months now and it's been performing very well. This replaced an old HP LaserJet 4050 with a network print server that finally died. This unit has not been setup or used for faxing, so that is not taken into account in this review.
Setup and installation was quick and easy, and the print quality is excellent. Crisp letters and text, as well as good b/w images.
The unit does take a little while to start printing a job - maybe 15 or 20 seconds - but when it does begin the speed is very good. This isn't a problem for us and I really don't see that it would cause anyone much of a problem at all. In most cases the job is done before you go to retrieve it. I just needed to mention it because I'm sure someone will give it a 1* rating just because of that... I guess if you need INSTANT prints, then don't get this.
The software that comes with it is very good, especially in that it allows you to easily configure the functionality of both the software and hardware 'buttons'. I liked the fact that in addition to changing the standard 'buttons', it also provides another 4 custom software buttons that you can use to setup specific scanning tasks without interfering with the normal buttons.
Scanning is a little slow, partly because the default resolution is quite high. Bringing this back down in line with other default scanner resolutions helps, but it is still slower than other AIOs I've used in the past. It won't be a big deal if you only use it occasionally or can lower the resolution a long way for your needs, but if you need frequent high-res scans then this is probably not the machine to get.
Scanning is also a little louder than on some other AIOs, almost like the mechanism belt is hitting some kind of specific vibration frequency every now and then. Again, this isn't really a big deal for me.
I did see another couple of reviewers that weren't happy with the hinges on the scanner cover, but they seem perfectly fine to me. The hinges are supposed to be loose and moveable to allow you to scan large books etc, and I don't see anything wrong with them apart from that.
I'm not really going to go into the Copy feature, since that is just a product of Scanning and Printing...
The paper feed tray seems pretty smooth and I get the feeling that it would be less likely to jam or pick up multiple pages than some other feed types, e.g. vertical feeds. Not very scientific I know, but just a hunch. Perhaps that's an indication of the build quality?
The paper out tray area is small, but that seems to be a standard feature of Brother AIOs. I don't know why they do it this way but it is certainly peculiar and it can make it tougher to get at your jobs than on other devices. This is more of an issue when the print job is quite large. I knew what I was getting having checked it out at the store first, so I'm not surprised, however its definitely an odd design "feature". It didn't put me off getting it because of the other good points, but this is certainly a weakness.
All-in-all this is a good network AIO for scanning, copying and printing. IMO, for the price, it is clearly a better buy than other name brands and the quality of the machine seems to be very sound.
I haven't yet used enough pages to verify the estimated number of pages per toner, but the high-volume toner I purchased at the same time was certainly cheaper than the HP equivalent (about half the price) so even if the count is off by some amount it probably won't be any more expensive in the long term.
As I mentioned at the top of the review, I have not taken into account the Fax features as I do not use them. If I ever do, I will update this review accordingly.
913 pages printed, mainly text, using the initial small "starter" toner that came with the unit before it needed replacing. In my experience that is pretty good for a starter toner. Print quality was good to the end, and it was only changed because it sensed it was empty and wouldn't let us continue printing otherwise. I suspect there might be a workaround to trick the sensor and get more pages but I haven't tried anything myself. Still recommend the product.
3987 pages printed when the next toner died. Putting a sticker over the clean hole either side of the cartridge allowed it to start working again. I will update when we actually replace it to indicate how many more prints we get without much degradation in print quality.