Need to buy a gift for somebody who loves technology but you can’t afford the big ticket items?
Brother HL-2270DW laser printer
Brother HL-2270DW review: A quick mono laser printer without any fancy features
- Fast print speeds
- Good first page out time
- Other budget lasers have larger toner cartridges
- Manual feed is only a single sheet
Brother's HL-2270DW mono laser printer gets pages out quickly, making it a good choice for document-heavy offices that don't need colour. It's also got wireless so it's a smart choice for a large or notebook-heavy office.
Price$ 199.00 (AUD)
The Brother HL-2270DW is a simple mono laser printer. Apart from wireless networking it doesn't have any fancy features — it does a good job of printing monochrome pages quickly, with a fast time for the first page to be printed and quick overall print speeds. If simple document production is your main purpose and you won't be printing on specialty papers often, then the HL-2270DW is perfect.
Brother HL-2270DW: Design and set up
The HL-2270DW feeds paper in through a bottom-loading cassette, which can hold a maximum of 250 sheets at once. This is 100 more than the Fuji Xerox CP105b, which is identically priced. Both printers have the same 100-sheet maximum output capacity through the top, though. The Brother HL-2270DW has a single-sheet paper bypass, letting you feed in specialty paper like a set of labels — it's only a single sheet at once which is annoying for multi-page print-outs, but it's better than nothing.
We connected the Brother HL-2270DW to a Apple MacBook Pro, using both OS X and Windows 7. We used the HL-2270DW's integrated wireless adapter in preference to USB, and did the majority of our maintenance testing through the HL-2270DW's simple Web interface. This interface offers monitoring of printer status and consumable levels.
Brother HL-2270DW: Print quality and speed
The Brother HL-2270DW is very quick for a relatively cheap mono laser printer. Its fast first-page-out, which we tested to be consistently under 20sec, means getting a single page print-out doesn't require a long wait — an area where cheap laser printers are generally inferior to inkjets. After the first-page-out we timed subsequent sheets at around 2.5 seconds each, giving the Brother HL-2270DW a speed of just over 20 pages per minute over a 50-sheet test document run. This is an excellent speed for a cheap laser printer.
The fast print speeds of the Brother HL-2270DW don't come at the cost of print quality. Text down to 8pt sizes is easily legible and doesn't suffer from any text bleed, and larger text is evenly coloured. We wouldn't use the Brother HL-2270DW for printing monochrome photos or large graphics, as complex gradients of grey look grainy.
Brother HL-2270DW: Toner costs
The Brother HL-2270DW ships with a 700-page starter toner cartridge, and a standard refill will last 1200 pages. You can also purchase a 2600-page high-yield black toner cartridge. The standard Brother TN-2230 costs $70 and the high-yield Brother TN-2250 costs $120 — translating into a standard running cost of 5.8 cents per page using standard toner, and 4.6 cents per page using the high-yield cartridge. These costs are on par with other entry-level monochrome and colour laser printers.
Brother HL-2270DW: Conclusion
Buying a cheap monochrome laser printer is a smart choice if all you want to do is print off documents. Brother's HL-2270DW handles this task with ease and does a good job of it. If you want scanning and copying capabilities, then you will have to buy a multifunction device instead, but if all you need to do is print (for home or small business use), then this cheap Brother printer is perfect.
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