Brother HL-3070CW colour LED printer
Brother's latest colour printer uses LED technology
- Wi-Fi is easy to configure, password-protected printing, user-upgradeable memory
- Small LCD display, no direct print support for Microsoft Word files and plain text documents, colour accuracy issues, expensive consumables
Extensive connectivity and simple configuration make Brother's HL-3070CW colour LED printer easy to setup and use in a networked environment.
Price$ 579.00 (AUD)
The Brother HL-3070CW colour printer is one of the company’s first to use LED technology. Competing with entry-level colour laser printers, the HL-3070CW is reasonably quick and it's easy to set up.
The Brother HL-3070CW prints in the same basic way as any laser: the printer uses toner powder to paint an image onto a rotating drum which is then transferred to paper. Instead of using a laser to paint this image, the HL-3070CW simply uses a line of LEDs; the same type used to backlight the some recent LCD monitors and TVs.
LED printers like the Brother HL-3070CW are allegedly smaller, cheaper, quieter and more durable than their laser counterparts. While the potential maximum print resolution is lower than with lasers, LED technology can actually produce more accurate characters at smaller text sizes.
The technology's benefits are definitely noticeable on the HL-3070CW. For a start, it's about half the height it would be if it was a laser printer. It still has quite a deep footprint. The reduced height makes it easy to replace consumables; just lift the printer's top cover and slide the toners out.
Page yields are still roughly the same; you'll get 2500 pages from the HL-3070CW's black toner (costing $101.95) and 1500 pages from each colour (at $94.95 each). This yields a total running cost of 23.1c, which scrapes in below the running costs of alternatives like the Dell 2130cn and Fuji Xerox DocuPrint C2120.
The printer only has a single-line monochrome LCD, but this is good enough for changing basic settings, navigating the contents of flash drives and locking settings access. You can also access features like Secure Print, which only prints a job once a four-digit PIN is entered, and Reprint, which stores the document for later reproduction. (Unfortunately, these two features can't be used together.)
The Brother HL-3070CW connects over USB, Ethernet and Wi-Fi. Despite the printer's tiny LCD screen, wireless setup is surprisingly easy. The printer defaults to its own ad-hoc network, which can be changed by running the wireless setup assistant directly from the install disc. This will configure the printer to join an existing network or, if your router supports Secure Easy Setup, WPS or AOSS, you can choose one of those automated systems as well. Our only qualm is that the Wi-Fi module is 802.11b, which means it won't be able to stray too far from the Wi-Fi router.
You can also directly print from USB flash drives and PictBridge-compatible devices. File format support includes JPG, PRN, TIFF, XPS and PDF documents. The effort is certainly better than Fuji Xerox's Phaser 3100MFP; there is no support for Word documents or even basic TXT/RTF files.
The front paper cassette has a maximum capacity of 250 sheets. This seems a little on the small side, particularly if you're planning to reach Brother's claimed monthly duty cycle of 25,000 pages.
The Brother HL-3070CW comes with 64MB of memory, which is good enough to handle a steady stream of print jobs in a small workplace. This is user-upgradeable to 576MB via a small side panel; upgrading the memory should let you store a few more Reprint jobs.
|Print Speed Results|
|Fuji Xerox DocuPrint C2120||$878.90||Laser||20||20||18.2||18.2|
|HP Colour LaserJet CP2025dn||$1179||Laser||20||20||20||20|
|Fuji Xerox DocuPrint C2200||$1208.90||Laser||26||26||26||26|
Print speeds aren't fantastic, but the Brother HL-3070CW colour LED printer produces decent output. Text quality is very accurate at all font sizes but the printer's fine line quality option makes for better results at 7pt. Colour isn't necessarily better than results from laser printers, as documents still occasionally suffer from mis-registration and poor alignment. Colour accuracy is mixed: the "vivid" option improved red and green hues in our test document, but it made blues look purple.
Brother's HL-3070CW colour LED printer may boast a comparatively new technology, but at the end of the day, it looks and performs like most laser printers. It certainly performs well for its price, but it's not without flaws commonly encountered on lasers.
Stay up to date with the latest news, reviews and features. Sign up to PC World’s newsletters
Follow PC World Australia on Twitter: @PCWorldAu
Join the newsletter!
Ballistix Tactical Tracer RGB 3000
Ballistix Sport AT
Bang and Olufsen Beoplay A9 Speaker
Apple iMac Pro
Cartier Calibre de Cartier Diver Watch
Samsung QLED 8K TV
Toys for Boys
Oregon Pro WMR500 Weather Station
Nix Pro Colour Sensor
Tivoli PAL BT
Little Bits DROID Inventor Kit
ESET Smart Security Premium
ESET Internet Security
Osmo Coding Awbie Game
ESET Cyber Security Pro for Mac
TimeFlip Magnet Simple Time Tracking Device
Naztech Xtra Drive Mini + 256GB microSD Card
Ikea RIGGAD work lamp with wireless charging
SmartLens - Clip on Phone Camera Lens Set of 3
Ultimate Ears Wonderboom Bluetooth Speaker
Office 365 Business Premium isn’t one-size fits all but if you’re the right sized business for it to make sense, there’s a good amount of value to be found in the package’s comprehensive software offering.
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Samsung Tab S4 review: Freestyle
- 2 Sony WF-SP900 review: One step forward, two steps back
- 3 Plantronics BackBeat Fit 3100 review: Safety first
- 4 Oppo R17 Pro review: Oppo's thriftiest flagship yet drives a hard bargain
- 5 Lenovo Smart Display review: The bigger, better buy
Latest News Articles
- Brother pitch themselves at SMBs with new 'Inkvestment' options
- Ted’s World of Imaging opening in Sydney
- McAfee QTR sees cryptocurrency mining surge continue in second quarter
- RMIT Online introduces two new Australian University courses for blockchain skills
- Telstra announces new IoT products to help locate things that matter most
PCW Evaluation Team
Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications
I’d recommend a Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 and the new Windows 10 to anyone who needs to get serious work done (before you kick back on your couch with your favourite Netflix show.)
It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!
The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.
I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.
If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.
- CES 2019 Round-Up:
- Samsung’s Galaxy S10 will launch on Feb 20, and we only have one question
- Huawei Mate 20 Pro review: Full, in-depth, Australian review
- Everything you need to know about Smart TVs
- What's the difference between an Intel Core i3, i5 and i7?
- Laser vs. inkjet printers: which is better?