Brother HL-5250DN

  • Review
  • Specs
  • Images
  • User Reviews
  • Buy Now
Brother International (Aust) HL-5250DN
  • Expert Rating

    4.00 / 5

Pros

  • Fast printing, quality output

Cons

  • Optional 250-sheet paper trays costs extra

Bottom Line

With fast printing, quality output, easy networking, and a built-in duplexer, the Brother HL-5250DN would be a great choice for a small office.

Would you buy this?

Brother has another winner on its hands with the HL-5250DN. Its low price tag and compact footprint make it a good fit for the tight budgets and crowded workspaces of many small offices. Yet this attractive monochrome laser also produces top output quality at outstanding speed, can print on both sides of the paper, and hooks up easily to your network.

In addition to a standard 250-sheet paper tray in the printer's base, the front panel folds forward to reveal another tray that can feed up to 50 sheets of alternate media. You have to use this secondary tray to feed envelopes, and though you can stack them only three high, that's better than other printers that take only one at a time. The printer lacks a rear exit to provide a flat paper path, so there's some chance of creasing the edges of your envelopes. However, the advantages of a built-in duplexer at this price should outweigh that risk. You can attach up to two optional 250-sheet paper trays to the bottom of the printer which isn't exactly a bargain.

The control panel to the right of the HL-5250DN's 150-sheet output bin consists of just two buttons and four lights. Even without LCD-based menus for entering network parameters, the printer is easy to install, thanks in part to Brother's efficient, if not colorful, setup booklet. You get no other printed documentation, but the software CD-ROM includes a video to illustrate the initial setup and the User's Guide as a PDF document. You can download Brother's useful set of network administration tools at no cost from the company's Web site.

Replacing the toner cartridge is easy enough, but you have to pull the drum assembly out from the front of the printer before detaching the cartridge and attaching a new one. Out of the box, the HL-5250DN comes with the standard-size toner cartridge rated by Brother (according to the industry standard of 5 percent page coverage) for 3500 pages. You can save money by buying high capacity cartridges rated for 7000 pages but when you factor in replacing the drum assembly every 25,000 pages, your cost of consumables would be a reasonable 3.1 cents per page.

Our staff positively glowed about the HL-5250DN's print quality. Text looked crisp and sharp, with just a few oddities visible in the shape of some characters. Although our line art sample was a little light, its nicely distinct close parallel lines and barely perceptible banding made it one of the best samples produced by a monochrome laser printer. Even our challenging grayscale image looked good--it was a little dark and showed some strong moire patterns in textures, but its fine contrast and minimal banding impressed us.

In our speed tests, the HL-5250DN printed text at 21.6 pages per minute, which is competitive with lasers costing several times as much. At 9.6 ppm, graphics also emerged quite fast from the HL-5250DN.

Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Join the PC World newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Matthew Stivala

HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer

The HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer is a great device that fits perfectly into my fast paced and mobile lifestyle. My first impression of the printer itself was how incredibly compact and sleek the device was.

Armand Abogado

HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer

Wireless printing from my iPhone was also a handy feature, the whole experience was quick and seamless with no setup requirements - accessed through the default iOS printing menu options.

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?