Four Entry-Level Monochrome Laser Printers, Reviewed

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dennisburke

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I just did an Amazon search: Electronics > Computers & Accessories > Printers > Laser Printers > Monochrome > 4 Stars & Up > New > $50 to $100 > ..."monochrome laser printer"....34 Results_ Lot's of great deals, but still needs research. I'm coming at this from not needing to do a lot of printing.
 

dennisburke

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I think there is a clearance sale going on because everyone is updating for Windows 8, and trying to accommodate Apple. As a Windows 7 user, there seems to be a lot of options available.
 

Tuishimi

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Hmmm... I have a super-inexpensive (about the same as the Dell) Brother laser printer. Shorter, smaller and some of the same issues (paper tray) as the Dell. But it is pretty quick and does a great job with text.
 

John Breeden II

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Hey folks. I'm the author of this review. I love printer technology and I'm really glad you all enjoyed this one. I'm happy to try and answer any questions that you have. I will try to answer the ones asked. Sorry if I miss any. Lets see. Adding a cost per page measurement would be a good thing, but its difficult to test so it would probably just be whatever the manufacturer says. I could add duty cycle to the next reviews though, so you could see how many pages it should print each month maximum. Great thought. The prices are the standard ones where you would buy the printer directly from the company with no discount. Most of these are on sale for a lot less if you look around. The Dell seems to discount itself quite often. As far as if you can refill these yourself, none of the toner cartridges had any electronics to prevent that from happening, but man, what a messy job that would be. I once spilled about an ounce of toner on the floor of the lab and despite a total clean-up effort, we were still getting colored dust on our lab coats for about four years afterwards. And that does not count the person who had a nice new pair of white sneakers that were suddenly cyan. Very groovy 80s vibe, but probably more trouble than its worth, especially since most companies offer free shipping and free recycling on toner carts these days. Hope that helps! Thanks folks for all the fine comments. I hope to be able to bring you more of these, and scanner reviews too.
 

Player911

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I have the Brother HL-2270DW. It's Monochrome and Wireless... and $75 at NewEgg. Toner is super cheap. Off-brand toners go for as low as $5 often but can be bought all day for $15. I ditched the color inkjet a few years ago for the brother and will never go back. The Brother is the best printer I've ever owned. Super fast, super quiet, super cheap. So cheap that I just bought my son a whole box of paper for christmas so he can print his own coloring books. The 2270 can print on both sides automatically and has wired/wireless connections. I can't recommend it enough. http://www.brother-usa.com/Printer/ModelDetail/1/hl2270dw/overview#.UwZw2_ldVP0
 

snakyjake

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Tough choice between multifunction inkjet + ink costs or laser printer. I need the automatic duplex document scanner and printer.
 

Player911

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The 2270 has automatic duplex and 27ppm for $75. Use your old printer combo solely for the scanner and the laser for printing. Ill never buy an AIO again. Waste of money when something breaks. I just take pictures of documents with my phone and email them. I've never regretted ditching color either. Grayscale is perfect for papers, coupons, maps, etc.
 

snakyjake

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Thanks for the suggestion.

 

snakyjake

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What is better for text and graphics:

2400 x 600 dpi = 1440000 (dots per square inch?)
or
1200 x 1200 dip = 1440000 (dots per square inch?)

Are they the same resolution?
 

gypsydan

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I agree. I had an Oki years ago and loved it. I'm sure politics are not involved in the selection criteria for choosing hardware for evaluation - maybe they choose the largest sellers? So how would OKI or Ricoh become big sellers if they never get on lists like this?
 


Wikipedia says that "From the 1940s until well into the 1990s the company concentrated on making electronic test equipment: signal generators, voltmeters, oscilloscopes, frequency counters, thermometers, time standards, wave analyzers, and many other instruments."

I can't say I've had much trouble with their drivers, but the only HP printer I've got is a very old business laser. And I generally install the driver-only packages.
 

cpt1nsano

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Need a cost per page or how about a cost after printing 10,000 pages. Some printers you can get cheap refills for, others not. These numbers are huge factoring criteria when choosing a printer.
 

iam2thecrowe

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I have also worked on just about every model out there including kyocera. i would not recommend them, ever, they arent reliable and have expensive components to replace. You must work for kyocera....
 

palladin9479

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I'd go with the HP due to it's universal support for HP Jetdirect network drivers. The articles first mistake, which I can understand, is trying to use the USB direct interface and software package. Using HP JetDirect network is the absolute best way to use HP printers, use PCL6 or PS as your language and you should be golden come hell or high water. If you gotta go direct attachment then either download the driver straight from HP or dig it off the CD, do not install the software if at all possible. Just plug it in, click browse for driver and chose the one you retrieved. It will put the control menu and printer configuration tools but not the rest of the clutter.This from someone who's had to do managed printing with a hundred+ printers inside an office building with 500+ people. Every office had a network printer that we centrally managed.
 

kalmquist

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The review notes that for inkjet printers, "low procurement cost hides substantial expenses down the road." What it fails to note that this is also true, to a lesser degree, for laser printers that use cartridges. In both cases, manufacturers has an incentive to make the selling price as low as possible in order to boost sales, and make their profits on consumables.The first printer reviewed, the Dell B1260dn, is rated at 20,000 pages per month. Lets say you do half of that. The Dell web site charges $83 for a 2,500 page cartridge, so your three year cost for the B1260dn will be $139 for the printer, plus $11,952 for the cartridges, for at total of $12,091.Now suppose you do the same volume of printing on the next printer reviewed, the Brother HL-6180dw. The Brother web site links to a bunch of retailers which sell cartridges, and the price is about $104 for a 12,000 page cartridge. This results in a three year cost of $300 for the printer plus $3,120 for cartridges, for a total of $3,420.Note that even with the Brother printer, you are spending $104 for a cartridge that probably contains less than $15 worth of toner.
 

Kross9

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@John The Reviewer. Slightly disappointed with this review. As someone who works retail in the printer business (staples) When we hear "Entry-Level" Would these not fill the bill better Brother 2270, HP 1606, Samsung SL-2825?
 

Kross9

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Well, if you are doing 10,000 pages a month, why would you get a entry level printer? And not a high end Xerox like Xerox® WorkCentre™ 4250SM 3k for the printer and the toner is 210 for 25k sheets.

Just cause they say the duty cycle is that many, is like saying you'll always get 500 pages out of that ink cartridge
 

booze99

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The max duty cycle numbers quoted are very misleading. Max duty cycle means the absolute maximun number of pages you can print without the printer breaking down outright. They are far above the recommended duty cycle, which is the number of pages the printer was actually made to print on a regular basis. The recommended duty cycle is usually a tenth of the maximum duty cycle.Taking this into account the Dell can print a fifth of the pages of the Brother (2000 vs 10000). It worthwhile noting this: depending on the volume you print regularly the Dell will have a much shorter lifespan due to wear and tear.
 

Very true (and they made good stuff, too); I might have clarified that as far as the PC business goes, they started as a very successful printer company, and built quite a reputation (well-deserved, IMHO) on their early Laserjets. Now, I consider the Universal [Failure] driver, applied to all models, an abdication. The problems they have may be especially prevalent in my particular work environment, but with competition from companies like Brother, I have no reason to choose HP any more. That said, I do have a HP 5610V AIO that has worked well for probably 8+ years (I got it well before the HL-2070N). Its only issue is that I print so rarely that sometimes the ink dries out.
 
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