Need printer recommendations

Questions on how we spend our money and our time - consumer goods and services, home and vehicle, leisure and recreational activities
Post Reply
Topic Author
Barefootgirl
Posts: 2288
Joined: Tue Oct 06, 2009 7:05 pm

Need printer recommendations

Post by Barefootgirl »

Good morning.

I currently have a Canon MF3010 laser printer/scanner purchased sometime in early 2013. Lately, it doesn't seem to play well at all with my Macbook Air and I see that it's been discontinued by Canon and there is no software support available for the current OS.

Ok, so my daughter tells me that this 3 year old printer is already considered a dinosaur and since it's hassling me, perhaps its time to consider a new printer/scanner.

I suppose that means some kind of wireless printer that plays well with my iPhone, Macbook, etc.

I've liked the economy of using laser vs. the old ink jet days and have little use for color printing for the foreseable. I only print, on average, a couple times per month.

I am seeking any user friendly suggestions. I also suppose price is an issue since it appears that the electronics market has become like the market for most household items - cheap, disposable and frequently replaced, not repaired :( (trying very hard not to consider the issue of waste, landfill, etc.) - but I need a printer/scanner for my home office - it's critical.

I use a Dell computer for my business...FWIW - sometimes I've emailed things and printed from the Mac.

Thanks! BFG
How many retired people does it take to screw in a lightbulb? Only one, but he takes all day.
student
Posts: 5305
Joined: Fri Apr 03, 2015 6:58 am

Re: Need printer recommendations

Post by student »

I have an old canon laser printer. What I have discovered is that every now and then I have to reboot it. (I use mac as well.)
Swansea
Posts: 1016
Joined: Sat Feb 13, 2016 5:16 am

Re: Need printer recommendations

Post by Swansea »

Mac user here also. Purchased a Cannon MX922 a couple of months ago. It is working fine. Note: I am a light user.
Topic Author
Barefootgirl
Posts: 2288
Joined: Tue Oct 06, 2009 7:05 pm

Re: Need printer recommendations

Post by Barefootgirl »

Everything has been tried and it's just too wonky and I don't really have the patience to spare to keep messing with it....basically, i have to reinstall everything, reboot, pray, spray holy water over it - I need to just accept that it's on its way out...as I said, losing patience with it - (printers will do that to a person, lol)
How many retired people does it take to screw in a lightbulb? Only one, but he takes all day.
finite_difference
Posts: 2208
Joined: Thu Jul 09, 2015 7:00 pm

Re: Need printer recommendations

Post by finite_difference »

Do you need color? Brother makes both a pretty good a) duplex and b) non-duplex black and white laser printer. The color lasers were still all pretty expensive last time I checked.
The most precious gift we can offer anyone is our attention. - Thich Nhat Hanh
carolinaman
Posts: 4433
Joined: Wed Dec 28, 2011 9:56 am
Location: North Carolina

Re: Need printer recommendations

Post by carolinaman »

I purchased a HP Officejet 8610e wirelss printer in December. It has worked really well except for a problem I had when I replaced my router recently. That is a long story but I was impressed with how well HP trouble shot and solved that problem. I am under warranty support for a year which includes phone support. This is the most efficient inkjet printer I have had. It consumers far less ink than previous Canons but the ink cartridges are more expensive.

If you do such a low volume of printing, an inkjet printer should be a good choice for you because the issue with them is the expense of ink cartridges.
bloom2708
Posts: 8358
Joined: Wed Apr 02, 2014 2:08 pm
Location: Fargo, ND

Re: Need printer recommendations

Post by bloom2708 »

If you have a little space, the Brother 9130 color laser has been very good. It is an all-in-one. Copy/Scan/Fax/Print.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Brother-MFC-913 ... Swc1FXXyM6

This is an Ebay link, but it is direct from Best Buy. Just to show the specs. Good sized toners will last a long time for home use. The quality is very good.

You can likely find a good price if you shop around a bit.
"We are here to provoke thoughtfulness, not agree with you." Unknown Boglehead
KlangFool
Posts: 18950
Joined: Sat Oct 11, 2008 12:35 pm

Re: Need printer recommendations

Post by KlangFool »

https://www.amazon.com/Brother-HL2280-W ... B004QM8J8S

Hi,

I have a Brother 2280DW: printer, scanner, duplex, wireless. It works well with both Mac and PC. Replacement cartridge around $10 if you stay with the generic. It works well. And, when it goes on sell, you can get it for less than $100.

KlangFool
badger42
Posts: 513
Joined: Thu Apr 09, 2015 9:01 am

Re: Need printer recommendations

Post by badger42 »

Buy the cheapest smallest brother or HP black and white laser printer. At low print volumes, supply costs aren't too important but toner doesn't dry out (ink doesn't like to sit around).

Skip the multifunction, just keep it simple. The HP P1102W or whatever replaced it is a great option.
User avatar
BolderBoy
Posts: 5175
Joined: Wed Apr 07, 2010 12:16 pm
Location: Colorado

Re: Need printer recommendations

Post by BolderBoy »

badger42 wrote:Buy the cheapest smallest brother or HP black and white laser printer. At low print volumes, supply costs aren't too important but toner doesn't dry out (ink doesn't like to sit around).

Skip the multifunction, just keep it simple. The HP P1102W or whatever replaced it is a great option.
Pretty much agree with this. I have a 13 y/o HP laser printer (happens to be multifunction, but I don't use it that way) and even Windows 10 figured out how to talk to this REAL dinosaur.

Don't encumber yourself with an inkjet printer in any regards.
"Never underestimate one's capacity to overestimate one's abilities" - The Dunning-Kruger Effect
amd2135
Posts: 212
Joined: Wed Apr 30, 2014 8:48 pm

Re: Need printer recommendations

Post by amd2135 »

A 3 year old printer is a "dinosaur"... I wonder what dad's fleet of HP LaserJet 4000 printers from the 90s are then?

Not sure if they're mac compatible, but I consider the 4000 series to be the best printers ever made. 1/4 million pages is just breaking one in. He has several over 1M pages. Once my Samsung CLP-315W finally falls apart I'm going to pick up a 4000 or 4100.

Bad experiences with Samsung laser printers by the way. I don't recommend any of them.
Last edited by amd2135 on Sat Jul 16, 2016 10:22 am, edited 3 times in total.
User avatar
8foot7
Posts: 2430
Joined: Mon Jan 05, 2015 7:29 pm

Re: Need printer recommendations

Post by 8foot7 »

I'd buy an HP LaserJet made for businesses (not the dinky consumer ones) and ride off into the sunset. The printer would probably outlive you. I'm still running a LaserJet 4P from the early 1990s and it works just fine.
User avatar
telemark
Posts: 2797
Joined: Sat Aug 11, 2012 6:35 am

Re: Need printer recommendations

Post by telemark »

Barefootgirl wrote: I suppose that means some kind of wireless printer that plays well with my iPhone, Macbook, etc.
For use with your iPhone, look for a printer that supports AirPrint. This is a protocol that the iDevice and the printer use to find each other; it has nothing to do with whether or not the printer is wireless. Unless you want to put the printer somewhere away from the router, there isn't a lot of advantage to wireless printing.
CFM300
Posts: 2009
Joined: Sat Oct 27, 2007 5:13 am

Re: Need printer recommendations

Post by CFM300 »

I like this site for tech recommendations:

http://thewirecutter.com/reviews/best-cheap-printer/
Dottie57
Posts: 9528
Joined: Thu May 19, 2016 5:43 pm
Location: Earth Northern Hemisphere

Re: Need printer recommendations

Post by Dottie57 »

finite_difference wrote:Do you need color? Brother makes both a pretty good a) duplex and b) non-duplex black and white laser printer. The color lasers were still all pretty expensive last time I checked.

I love my brother black and white laser as well. It uses wireless to print". I use it ever so much more than my color inkjet.
Look into brother printer -I think they make color lasers to. But have found b/w perfectly acceptable.
PetraZuri
Posts: 9
Joined: Mon Jul 04, 2016 3:09 pm

Re: Need printer recommendations

Post by PetraZuri »

I also use a Brother B&W laser and am very pleased with it. It's hardwired to my work PC (provided by my employer). And I wirelessly print from my personal mac mini, Macbook and iPhone. The apple devices are downstairs from the printer and it works flawlessly.

I do have a multifunction since I need a copier and scanner. It scans in color, so if you need to email something in full color, you have that available.

Edited to add model number of mine: DCP-L2540DW
Last edited by PetraZuri on Sat Jul 16, 2016 12:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.
DSInvestor
Posts: 11410
Joined: Sat Oct 04, 2008 11:42 am

Re: Need printer recommendations

Post by DSInvestor »

Take a look at Brother HLL-2380DW which is a black and white laser printer that has ethernet, wifi, duplex printing and a scanner/copier. We got ours on sale for around $120. It is AirPrint compatible and works well with mac, iPad, iPod Touch, iPhone. We can scan documents wirelessly to our Macs. Mine is plugged into my router using an ethernet cable and all devices on the network (wired or wireless) can print to it. It can connect to your WiFi if do not want to run a wire or want more flexibility with placement. No need to keep a computer on to print. It also works well with Google cloud print, windows and linux. Highly recommended. They may have a newer model available.

When looking at brother model numbers, W is for wireless, D is for duplex (print on both sides of paper).

OfficeDepot.com has HLL-2380DW for $129 right now. Reg price is $169. This price good until 07/16:
http://www.officedepot.com/a/products/7 ... r-Scanner/

Amazon has it for the same price:
https://www.amazon.com/Brother-HL-L2380 ... HLL-2380DW
Wiki
User avatar
Peter Foley
Posts: 5202
Joined: Fri Nov 23, 2007 10:34 am
Location: Lake Wobegon

Re: Need printer recommendations

Post by Peter Foley »

I would purchase a multi-function machine, a printer scanner. I find I use the scanning function a lot.

If you are getting a machine that prints in color as well a b&w, buyer beware! Some machines will not let you print at all if one of the color cartridges is out of ink. I print very, very little in color and my still have to spend $50 + per year to replace dried up color cartridges just so I can print black and white with my HP Officejet 6600.

Read the on line reviews before you purchase anything.
User avatar
Youngblood
Posts: 589
Joined: Fri Jan 04, 2008 7:18 am

Re: Need printer recommendations

Post by Youngblood »

Barefoot girl said she doesn't have a need for color.

Recommend Brother wireless laser printer with multi-function. As an investor I always seem to need either a scanner or copier to send and receive signed documents. A simple printer only would be virtually worthless. As I recall, the cost was under what three inkjet replacements would have cost.

YB
"I made my money by selling too soon." | Bernard M. Baruch
Small Change
Posts: 105
Joined: Wed Oct 20, 2010 11:51 am

Re: Need printer recommendations

Post by Small Change »

I bought a Brother MFC-L2740DW two weeks ago since a decade-old HP wasn't compatible with a new Mac.

It's a multifunction laser printer; the bottom half of it looks the same as ubiquitous, popular basic Brother laser printers. My partner loves his basic sub-$100 Brother laser (and I bought an identical basic Brother laser for my mother that has worked out well).

I chose this model over a very slick-looking HP laser based on my positive experience with Brother printers; my poor experience with HP personal printers; and positive reviews for this Brother vs. many cautionary negative reviews for HP.

Office Depot and Amazon had the Brother for about $200, but website indicated local store didn't stock it. Staples.com said local store had it and that Staples matched prices of Office Depot and Amazon. So picked it up at Staples. At register, it rank up at something like $300 (!); I asked clerk to match OfficeDepot.com's $200, which she happily did after pulling Office Depot site up on her smartphone.

This is my first Mac in about 20 years (been on Windows until now). Installation was simple. Plugged Brother into my router; Mac recognized it immediately; from the Mac, went to Brother website to update Brother firmware per instructions in Brother's online instruction manual (since, for Mac users, I'd read that updated firmware [whatever that is :) ]; updated Brother software from Brother site per Brother's online instruction manual.

Installation went flawlessly. Printer/scanner/copier so far are working great.
User avatar
Toons
Posts: 13893
Joined: Fri Nov 21, 2008 10:20 am
Location: Hills of Tennessee

Re: Need printer recommendations

Post by Toons »

"One does not accumulate but eliminate. It is not daily increase but daily decrease. The height of cultivation always runs to simplicity" –Bruce Lee
Cindyjrn
Posts: 395
Joined: Mon Oct 27, 2014 5:40 pm

Re: Need printer recommendations

Post by Cindyjrn »

I bought one of those HP printers that uses their InstantInk service. It's a color printer, scanner, color copier. They charge us by the page, which ends up being $3.99/month and the printer notifies HP when we're almost out of ink and they send more automatically as part of the fee. Pretty cool because now I'm never out of ink and I'm never paying Staples highway robbery prices for more ink on a moment's notice. I find myself using the scanner very frequently and our kids use the copier function. It's wirelessly connected to our home network and every computer and phone in the house can send documents to it or scan from it. The printer itself was pretty affordable, less than $100 IIRC. It's been hooked up for two years now and I've never once had to reboot anything or install anything. I just plugged it in, connected it to our network and it works like it's supposed to.

Looking at the internet, I believe we have the HP Envy 5530 which is discontinued now but the model that replaced it the 5660 can be had for less than $85 shipped from Amazon.
penumbra
Posts: 318
Joined: Thu Mar 29, 2007 2:42 am

Re: Need printer recommendations

Post by penumbra »

I have 3 Brother printers, 2 wireless and one hard wired. Oldest is 7 years old, 2170n, newest is 2 years old, mfc7680dw. All work flawlessly. I have had to reconnect with router or computer changes multiple times, as recently as yesterday. Lifetime customer phone support is excellent. They always walk you through all steps til it's up and running. I use third party toner from multiple sources, which all work very well. Replacement cost about $15. I LOVE Brother products, and would never use anything else.
rs899
Posts: 95
Joined: Thu May 17, 2012 7:52 am

Re: Need printer recommendations

Post by rs899 »

I will add to the Brother chorus. I will never buy anything else. They work. Generic ink works well and is cheap.
student5
Posts: 51
Joined: Wed Jan 06, 2016 8:07 pm

Re: Need printer recommendations

Post by student5 »

I have an HP multifunction Laser Jet Pro 400-I'd buy HP again if I had to.
User avatar
Watty
Posts: 21328
Joined: Wed Oct 10, 2007 3:55 pm

Re: Need printer recommendations

Post by Watty »

Barefootgirl wrote:I use a Dell computer for my business...FWIW - sometimes I've emailed things and printed from the Mac.
Barefootgirl wrote:(trying very hard not to consider the issue of waste, landfill, etc.) - but I need a printer/scanner for my home office - it's critical.
Your current printer will likely work just fine with the Dell so you can just move it there.

I really like having the duplex printing where it prints on both sides of the page so that is a feature worth getting.
Whakamole
Posts: 1210
Joined: Wed Jan 13, 2016 9:59 pm

Re: Need printer recommendations

Post by Whakamole »

Brad1 wrote:I bought a Brother MFC-L2740DW two weeks ago since a decade-old HP wasn't compatible with a new Mac.
I have this same printer and so far it's been excellent. Love the scanning functionality, allows a lot of paper record decluttering.

My previous printer was a Samsung laser which was a workhorse for 10+ years.
mouses
Posts: 4217
Joined: Sat Oct 24, 2015 12:24 am

Re: Need printer recommendations

Post by mouses »

carolinaman wrote:I purchased a HP Officejet 8610e wirelss printer in December. It has worked really well except for a problem I had when I replaced my router recently. That is a long story but I was impressed with how well HP trouble shot and solved that problem. I am under warranty support for a year which includes phone support. This is the most efficient inkjet printer I have had. It consumers far less ink than previous Canons but the ink cartridges are more expensive.

If you do such a low volume of printing, an inkjet printer should be a good choice for you because the issue with them is the expense of ink cartridges.
Wow. I had hp products awhile back and waiting on hold with Bombay's greatest hits playing my ear for two hours before tech support answered lives in my memory as the worst customer service ever.

I bought a Canon PIXMA MG5722 White/Silver Wireless all in one recently and regret it. It is terrible at scanning. I have yet to figure out how to set the area it scans, so it is always clipping even a standard 8.5x11 source. When copying it uses the scan feature so that has the same problem. It is also very noisy even when Quiet mode is set.
mouses
Posts: 4217
Joined: Sat Oct 24, 2015 12:24 am

Re: Need printer recommendations

Post by mouses »

Peter Foley wrote:I would purchase a multi-function machine, a printer scanner. I find I use the scanning function a lot.

If you are getting a machine that prints in color as well a b&w, buyer beware! Some machines will not let you print at all if one of the color cartridges is out of ink. I print very, very little in color and my still have to spend $50 + per year to replace dried up color cartridges just so I can print black and white with my HP Officejet 6600.
I use the scanner a great deal to reduce paper in the house.

I find that periodically printing something in color, like using the test sheet function keeps the colored ink happy well past the expiration date.
finite_difference
Posts: 2208
Joined: Thu Jul 09, 2015 7:00 pm

Re: Need printer recommendations

Post by finite_difference »

8foot7 wrote:I'd buy an HP LaserJet made for businesses (not the dinky consumer ones) and ride off into the sunset. The printer would probably outlive you. I'm still running a LaserJet 4P from the early 1990s and it works just fine.
The 4P is legendary. I think it was too good, in that it never broke so that HP felt they couldn't make as much money. Unfortunately the newer HP printers aren't even in the same ballpark. Well, to be fair now that I think about it HP has made at least one newer B&W laser printer that has been halfway decent, but it was fairly expensive. Otherwise Brother seems to be the new HP in that regard but even those I would not compare to the 4P.

The only thing that would worry me about the 4P is energy efficiency. I think that's why we decided to retire ours, and it was finally after like 20 years becoming somewhat unreliable and jamming. Probably could've been fixed though.
The most precious gift we can offer anyone is our attention. - Thich Nhat Hanh
anoop
Posts: 1992
Joined: Tue Mar 04, 2014 1:33 am

Re: Need printer recommendations

Post by anoop »

I would recommend the cheapest Brother laser printer with wireless and automatic duplex. I have one that is about 5 or 6 years old and I am only on my 3rd toner cartridge. I use it very lightly.

For scanning, I use GeniusScan on my iPhone and then I can print the PDF. I don't do much scanning, and the low quality scans work fine for what I do.

An added bonus is that the printer is very light weight < 20 lb and it is very easy to move.

To get a color laser/LED printer with automatic duplex is pricey and the units are heavy. I'm waiting for technology to improve so they are < 20 lb!
finite_difference
Posts: 2208
Joined: Thu Jul 09, 2015 7:00 pm

Re: Need printer recommendations

Post by finite_difference »

mouses wrote:
Peter Foley wrote:I would purchase a multi-function machine, a printer scanner. I find I use the scanning function a lot.

If you are getting a machine that prints in color as well a b&w, buyer beware! Some machines will not let you print at all if one of the color cartridges is out of ink. I print very, very little in color and my still have to spend $50 + per year to replace dried up color cartridges just so I can print black and white with my HP Officejet 6600.
I use the scanner a great deal to reduce paper in the house.

I find that periodically printing something in color, like using the test sheet function keeps the colored ink happy well past the expiration date.
I hate the kludgey scanning software and terrible scan speed of the cheaper multi function units (I.e. personal, not the huge desk-sized business all-in-ones).

For scanning a couple pages I just take pictures with my phone. For multiple pages I recommend a document scanner like the Fujitsu ScanSnap one. Costs about $300 but you can just stick in a stack of papers, press a button, and it reads them all in, rapidly, and does both sides in one pass. And puts it in a single pdf.
The most precious gift we can offer anyone is our attention. - Thich Nhat Hanh
User avatar
8foot7
Posts: 2430
Joined: Mon Jan 05, 2015 7:29 pm

Re: Need printer recommendations

Post by 8foot7 »

finite_difference wrote:
The 4P is legendary. I think it was too good, in that it never broke so that HP felt they couldn't make as much money. Unfortunately the newer HP printers aren't even in the same ballpark. Well, to be fair now that I think about it HP has made at least one newer B&W laser printer that has been halfway decent, but it was fairly expensive. Otherwise Brother seems to be the new HP in that regard but even those I would not compare to the 4P.

The only thing that would worry me about the 4P is energy efficiency. I think that's why we decided to retire ours, and it was finally after like 20 years becoming somewhat unreliable and jamming. Probably could've been fixed though.
Agreed. Nothing comes close these days, but I still think the business printers HP makes are probably overengineered for a consumer usage profile.

That said I gave my son an $89 Brother laser printer and he's done a lot of trouble-free printing with it too. At $89 it is essentially disposable.

I've replaced the pickup roller a couple of times in the 4P over its service life but other than that it has been trouble-free. It gives me hope that since man once knew how to make things that last, perhaps in the future we shall do so as well :)
User avatar
8foot7
Posts: 2430
Joined: Mon Jan 05, 2015 7:29 pm

Re: Need printer recommendations

Post by 8foot7 »

finite_difference wrote:
For scanning a couple pages I just take pictures with my phone. For multiple pages I recommend a document scanner like the Fujitsu ScanSnap one. Costs about $300 but you can just stick in a stack of papers, press a button, and it reads them all in, rapidly, and does both sides in one pass. And puts it in a single pdf.
+~20 on the Fujitsu ScanSnap. It just works. If you're a heavy Evernote user they may still make the Evernote edition which ISTR had some special Evernote integrations, but the normal model works just fine too and you can plop the PDF right into Evernote.
mouses
Posts: 4217
Joined: Sat Oct 24, 2015 12:24 am

Re: Need printer recommendations

Post by mouses »

finite_difference wrote: I hate the kludgey scanning software and terrible scan speed of the cheaper multi function units (I.e. personal, not the huge desk-sized business all-in-ones).
I have a couple of very ancient HP Photosmart 3210 all in ones. They were perfect up to this year, then both broke but I managed to get one going again. However the scanning still works in both. It is a dream compared to the new Canon all in one's scanning I bought a few months ago.
mouses
Posts: 4217
Joined: Sat Oct 24, 2015 12:24 am

Re: Need printer recommendations

Post by mouses »

8foot7 wrote:
finite_difference wrote:
For scanning a couple pages I just take pictures with my phone. For multiple pages I recommend a document scanner like the Fujitsu ScanSnap one. Costs about $300 but you can just stick in a stack of papers, press a button, and it reads them all in, rapidly, and does both sides in one pass. And puts it in a single pdf.
+~20 on the Fujitsu ScanSnap. It just works. If you're a heavy Evernote user they may still make the Evernote edition which ISTR had some special Evernote integrations, but the normal model works just fine too and you can plop the PDF right into Evernote.
Is pdf the only output form?
BHUser27
Posts: 651
Joined: Mon Jan 18, 2016 3:07 pm
Location: A Midwestern Town

Re: Need printer recommendations

Post by BHUser27 »

If you want to print wirelessly from OSX (your Macbook Air) and IOS devices (like iPad & iPhone) then make sure the printer you buy is AirPrint compatible.

Here is a good article and list of compatible printers:
https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT201311

I second the recommendation for the Brother B/W Laser printers. Affordable, reliable, and compatible with almost everything.

Personally, I have sworn off all HP products (well, inkjets for sure). They suffer from feature bloat and their drivers and SW are garbage in my opinion. It is almost impossible to get a simple clean driver-only install from HP anymore. They pack their SW with low-ink spam messages and a bunch of useless apps and "features" designed to make you use more ink. I find their products just get more confusing to install and more confusing to use with every new generation (IMO & IME).
Post Reply