Pros Value, Function, Network, Quick to Setup, Separate Inks
Cons Does not print double side automatically
Summary After endless problems with HP multifunction products it is a joy to use an inexpensive and properly functioning networked product. I install multifunction machines professionally.
Only problem found in a few installs was caused by the Scansoft supplied Paperport Installer program failing where Paperport was already on the target computer.. Scansoft recon they have a fix for this on their website. If you want a great compatable OCR program Omipage Pro Office is awesome for professional use.
The background processing fax machine scans the entire fax into memory before sending it, unlike the HP 7410, HP 7140Xi etc. This is a bonus because the HP scanners are not reliable and a missfeed multiage fax takes many minutes to resend.
The quick install of the software is a bonus. Installing the above HP products you could spent a couple of hours per machine.. a great waste of time when you want to install the networked printer onto a few computers. The Brother installs quickly. I detest the arrogance of HP, for after all that their product offering is unstable. Brother products works well. Networking multifunction machines are the future. They are quicker to setup for the functionality gained, scan faster, work with wireless access points and don't need other computers to be turned on.
One other trap, if you use the new better Internet Explorer called Firefox, the more secure and faster Firefox does not have a built in FTP program (unlike IE) so transferring images from the card reader will not work with Firefox. Use any free FTP program with no password or Microsoft Internet Explorer at the IP address of the Brother.
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Pros Separate color cartridges for each ink. I have a network at home...the scan to email function idenifies each machine. Am able to use from each computer through TCP/IP. I fed announcement size envelopes and fully expected the machine to mis-feed since
Cons Time to first page a bit slow. Upper paper tray a bit on the lightweight plastic side. Can't set the number of retries on a failed fax. One retry. (Petty complaint - I know).
Pros Complete features and relatively inexpensive ink, plenty fast enough for my moderate home office use, wife loves scanner/copy function, I love 35-page document feed and 2 paper trays (up to 350 pgs)!
Cons None for me yet. To be real picky I would have to compare it to a HP upper end model with dual sided printing and an lcd display to preview print selections from media card(s)
Pros Cheap, fully functional, great install, easy use
Cons none so far
Summary I can't understand why CNET gave this printer a 5.5 out of 10. Something doesn't add up somewhere.
I've used the HP G85, and R65 all-in-ones before (this Brother printer is replacing the R65) and I'm sorry, but HP really needs to take a lesson from Brother when it comes to ease-of-use and straightforward functionality. The install was extremely smooth (both my computers are connected to the MFC-5840 through a network hum) and the installation software just did everything for me.
Scanning is such a pleasure after the hell that the HP AIOs put me through. No autocropping that always messes up, no "ADF doesn't work with XP problems (as per HP and the R65). The control panel that is supplied with the Brother machine is configurable, sensible and easy to use - you can even set your own custom scanning/copying/faxing jobs to use time and again.
The CNET reviewer's comments didn't really do justice to this little machine. Two paper trays to feed different types of paper, 6000x1400 dpi photo printing, fax machine, network connections, ADF, both WIA and TWAIN support...it works.
The print quality is GOOD. Definitely better than either of the HP machines. Perfect to send to customers. I've even printed photos and they are better than the HP Photosmart that I have there - albeit a little slower to print over the network.
Oh, and individual color print cartridges! That will save a lot when it comes to changing them. No throwing out the whole head and unused ink! Just get the one you need!
If you need an AIO - you can't go wrong with this printer. If you are solely interested in printing speed, get a dedicated printer.
Pros Lots of features, good Mac support
Cons Slow, poor quality output, paper jams, won't feed glossy
Summary I wanted to like this printer so much. In fact, I ignored the fact that my last Brother MFC printer died prematurely because this one had so many features. But time after time waiting for the printouts to finish, trying to get it to do what I wanted, and trying to feed anything but plain paper through it, I give up. It's slow, the output is mediocre, it won't take more than one sheet of "specialty paper" (ie labels, cd jewel case stock, etc) at a time without jamming, and it won't feed glossy paper at all - just making terrible noises and giving up. It also seems to have a giant margin area that cuts off printing at the bottom of label pages. I'm just sorry I recommended this printer initially to friends.
If you want something cheap that does a lot, and can stand the slowness, it's not terrible. But it's not something I'd rely on.