General discussion


Printers, Scanners, Faxes vs All-in-ones

By j.lupo ·
Hey everyone. I have been researching copiers/printers and all in one devices. Unfortunately, I must be brain dead because the literature and stuff assumes you know what they are talking about.

I need a copier and my printer is just about shot, so I figured I would look at all-in-ones that do copy, print, scan, fax, etc. I want something desktop or smaller, easy to use and setup and preferably wireless.

However, being as I am not understanding all the lingo being thrown around, I thought I would start a discussion here on TR about what your preferences are for printing, faxing, copying, scanning etc. I know you all have a preference and why you like it. I would love to hear your stories and opinions. I am still researching for type of printer, etc.

I would have posted in Tech Q&A, but my questions are more generic than that. Since I don't know anything about devices since the HP Laster Jet IV (the one I have still). Oh and that is another point - Laser or Ink for it?

Staples is going to have a wireless HP all-in-one on sale next Sunday for about $300-$400. It is an ink type. It seemed to have good reviews, but again I am hoping all of you can assist me out here.

Thanks in advance for your ideas, thoughts, likes, disliks, etc.

J. Lupo

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by twtrout In reply to Printers, Scanners, Faxes ...

I think the saying "Jack-of-All-Trades, Master of None" applies here.

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Simply as a user, my tuppence

by Hodgelett In reply to Printers, Scanners, Faxes ...

I've had an HP printer and Canon scanner combo for years. The scanner was actually more often in my dad's posession or just sitting sideways on the bottom shelf of the pc desk - the only way it could fit. It is...2000dpi I believe, pretty standard.
When I went to uni I knew I would have a tiny room and my printer was giving up the ghost anyway so decided to buy an All-in-one. Browsing in Tottenham Court Rd (as any Brit will tell you, the tech place to go) with some printouts from my dad in hand I enquired about different makes etc.
I was assured that Brother was going out of business and therefore their printer cartridges were going to soon become unavailable and that all the big companies used HP. Sure enough, most shops were pretty much only selling HPs, with a few Canons thrown in. Although the thing that convinced me was the online reviews.
Anyway, in the end I opted for the HP 1510, which wasn't the top of the range at the time but had very few differences, unlike the 1410 which my dad had used at work and was pretty flimsy and useless.
To cut a long story short, I've had brilliant photo-standard printing and have had no complaints with the scanner which I'm using more now, even though I scan at high dpi and resize down. It has the function to take not only the single colour cartridges but the tiny 5 colour cartridges, although the print is fine with the 3-colour-cartridge.
The only thing is that it is usb and not a print port, so I lose one of my usb ports, and they don't supply you with a cable but that's minor.

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Canon ink jets ...

by workit In reply to Printers, Scanners, Faxes ...

work best for me as most have easily refillable individual tanks-- saving lots of money. I've been refilling for years. My low-end i560 produces gorgeous glossy prints and sharp b&w text. HP socks it to the consumer because our huge newspaper-size industrial ink jets at work have individual tanks because industry wouldn't stand for the waste and extra cost. As a rule, the yellow runs out first, at work we replace the yellow. HP makes the poor consumer replace the yellow, magenta and cyan. Unthinkable for me.

Also, I prefer individual comonents 'cause when one goes, just replace or repair the one-- not the whole thing. Good luck and beware HP!

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Caution for business users

by Nick Linenberger In reply to Printers, Scanners, Faxes ...

I use an all-in-one HP at home and am satisfied with it.

When a user at work wanted to buy one I thought, sure great cost savings. After reading the posts and with some experience I agree it does not save money. My biggest concern was when I discovered the network card was not designed to be used with a server based print spooler. I had to load all the software (30 min. on new fast PC's) and then all the users had to be local administrators to make the connection work. There goes my security and now the problems begin.

Users need lots of training if they have never used a network scanner or fax.

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Printers, Scanners, Faxes vs All-in-ones

by lists In reply to Printers, Scanners, Faxes ...

>Staples is going to have a wireless HP all-in-one >on sale next Sunday for about $300-$400.

I bought an HP7410 All in-One over a year ago and have been very satisfied. The copies,scans and prints look good and unlike my previous Epsons, I'm not using all of the ink cleaning print heads. The FAX works over Time-Warner's voIP (receive and send) and the unit is quiet. The wireless is very handy with 2 notebook users around the house. I like this printer and have never regretted my purchase.-k-

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Printers, Scanner & Copier

by buland.a.mahmood In reply to Printers, Scanners, Faxes ...

I had a Brother 3 in One Machine, it was 100 bucks, w/three color and one black cartridge. Cartridges are 12+ each, and run out quickly. Printer cannot be networked. Scanner software was so-so.

Bought a Canon MP500, it works with Mac and windows, the color prints are very good, and the scanner software is excellent. On photo paper pictures are almost like professional, and the cost of $169; but the ink cartridges are $17+.

My son finds his graphics art images print great.

I have been very disappointed with HP's new inkjets. Their Quality in printer ruggedness is gone, and ink is too high.

Printers are sold at cost, while HP and most other make money on ink cartridges.

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Printers, Scanners, Faxes vs All-in-ones

by customsunlimited In reply to Printers, Scanners, Faxes ...

I am 55 years old, and been into computers since 1984, so my experience is as follows:

I perfer a full size scanner, legal document size with a very good OCR(optical character recgonition) software. Zerox has a top quality OCR. The newest HP OCR was barely acceptable. Their legal size scanners are dependable though. Finding a full size scanner is a bit of a problem in the last couple of years. This is a mistake the manufacturers are forcing us consummers to accept. Used to be the other way around, when full size scanners were the norm.

My Brother MFC 420CN($125.00), a 4-in-one, (letter size), bought at Staples, does OK. The ScanSoft PaperPort 9.0 software, that comes with it, is a bummer. ScanSoft hijacks your photo rendering software,(such as Adobe)and makes photos that cannot be modified(nasty!).It is not user friendly, and is SLOW. It has not been a shining example for editable scans, to Word documents either.

Good thing, is that this model can "stand alone". It is an excellent stand alone copier, fax, and PhotoCapture Printing Center.

Inkjets have their place, but they suck ink with a passion. I perfer to have separate color and b&w printers. I and my daughters, do a lot of printing, mostly b&w. Using ink got expensive, so we now use two printers.

My older HP LaserJet 2100M, does most excellent black & white printing. I haven't had to do anything except feed paper to it in the last 3 years. I clean it out twice a year to get out any foriegn stuff that may get into it. It has been the best, dependable printer I have ever had.

Fax capability is good with the Brother unit, but I very seldom use it. I perfer to e-mail with an attachment, as a document(s) can be scanned and saved as a photo copy of the original document(legally better than a fax). Larger files are uploaded to a remote site for downloading. This is handy for those 5 meg to 100 meg files. I can send a high resolution fax, but if the receiving fax is a low resolution model (or set to low resolution) - I have wasted my time.

Lastly, The computer system I use is not an off-the-shelf unit. I hate machines that are proprietary. The computer system is not the speed problem with the Brother unit.

You will get what you pay for in the long run. My old HP 2100M printer was used for years in a business LAN before I got it. Still spits out the goods though. The Brother color aii-in-one units seem to give better resolution than the HP's I've tried, at equal price range. That is just my observation though.

I am NOT a fan of the ScanSoft OCR/Twain. HP's was much more user friendly and did not hijack your other programs. It also worked well with Windows Office programs. Roxio software was another hijacker I, and my brother(also an engineer), had problems with, when needing to render photos/graphics. ScanSoft and Roxio hijacked our Adobe programs and produced uneditable graphics/photos. It went through the hard drive and changed every photo and graphics work we had to an uneditable format. This was costly to us both, and we were MOST UNHAPPY!

If your all-in-one is going to be working with your personal computer, these are issues to concider BEFORE installing the OEM software.

Rex Berry

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hp3210 photosmart all in one

by edward perez In reply to Printers, Scanners, Faxes ...

my needs:
+ great color photo printing [fairly often]
+ great scanning [less often]
+ ability to read digital memory cards [very often, every time i finish shooting photos]
+ fast b/w printing [often, my hp officejet 720 from '98 is dependable but sloooooooooow].

i bought a hp3210 photosmart all in one last nov [from hp shopping - no interest 90 days, no shipping, no state tax; was $300, now around $224]. it prints great b/w & color [text and/or images, photos], does a great job on copying text/images [even OCR, but that's not much of a need for me], does a good/great job scanning text/images/negatives/slides, accepts 5-6 memory card types. i had problems installing the drivers and software but eventually got it all going. s/w includes a control center, an image editing/printing pgm, album maker, etc. [hp image zone]

my first test print was a photo i took in cusco, peru. lots of color, lots of detail, wide range of lighting. excellent 4x6 from the photo CD jpeg i had!!

i've used the memory card transfer many times [so as to not use up batteries in camera] and it's very easy to use.

when i have a long document to print or a page that has lots of text [even airline boarding passes], and i dont want to wait on the slow hp officejet 720, i use fast draft mode and it works great.

since the oj 720 has fax capability, i keep it around for that [my wife faxes stuff several times a week]. hp offers a hp 3310 photosmart that adds networking and fax capabilities [around $430].

it uses 6 ink cartridges [seems a bit much to me] that run $10 for color ones, $19 for b/w. go to and get all 6 plus 150 4x6 sheets for $35. [HP Custom 02 Series 150-Sheet Photo Value Pack (Q7964AN#140)]

best of luck. just remember, after you but it, it WILL go on sale somewhere. dont even think about beating yourself up about that.

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Nobody mentions Brother Printers

by lazerous200 In reply to Printers, Scanners, Faxes ...

I see nobody even mentions the Brother series of printers. They have anything you want in a printer. Just check out I repair brother printers and they are a very good midrange printer with a wide range of capabilities at an affordable price. I can tell you from experience that they do have a very good track record as far as longevity. The company I work for has several thousand of them in operation. Everything from the old MFC 8300 to MFC 6460 printers. From a repair stand point they do hold up rather well. We also have HP laser printers, from the 4mv's to the 8150 models. These are a more expensive printer but they do with the proper maintenance last virtually for ever. We have had cannon printers but scrapped mostt of them as being to expensive to repair. One thing you will note is that most of the laser printers on the market use cannon laser's, since cannon holds the pattent on their design.
If you are looking for an MFC printer with a small footprint then I suggest you look at the Brother MFC 8460DN or the brother8640DN. They are both upgradable to wireless. They both have networking built in and are duplexing machines, wich means that they print on both sides of the page in one operation. They also have a 30 page per minute print speed with a first page out in under ten seconds in all print modes from 1200 X 1200 dpi down to 300 dpi. They also have a very high resolution scanner that does excellent color scanning.
Brother also has a very good color laser jet printer that is not to expensive.
Toner cartridges ar as a rule notto expensive,($40.00) range but the Drums are fairly expensive, about $85.00. You can however use four toner cartridges to one Drum. A high yield toner cartridge can print up to 7000 pages at five percent coverage. My best advice would be to check out and see what is available that suits your needs.

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Big Problem

by wcosales In reply to Nobody mentions Brother P ...

The only thing i have found with Brother is that the Laser machines have a toner and a drum cartridge. When you have to replace the drum cartridge you might as well buy a new machine as that is what the drum will cost you. Have had several business's throw them all out

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