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Old 08-01-2010, 07:35 AM   #1
GeoffC
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Printers

Hi,

Can anyone recommend a good home printer .... which.co.uk the UK's comparison site recommends an HP .... But !

Preferably
wifi
good photo
fast(ish)
duplex printing ....

added scanner possibly (?)
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Old 08-01-2010, 10:26 AM   #2
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Unless you really need it, I'd avoid the "duplex printing" bit. Duplex paper-feed mechanisms are complex and error-prone.
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Old 08-01-2010, 11:13 AM   #3
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Thanks Harry, an issue we hadn't considered ...
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Old 08-01-2010, 11:50 AM   #4
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The modern multi-function printer/copier/scanner devices are all pretty good in my experience, and I do like HP equipment myself.
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Old 08-01-2010, 12:30 PM   #5
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HP - ..... okay ....
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Old 08-01-2010, 07:25 PM   #6
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I don't know about anyone else, but where I'm from the refill/toner cartridges on the multi-function printers cost more than the actual printer... So once it's run out, it works out cheaper to buy a new machine.
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Old 08-01-2010, 07:46 PM   #7
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Duplex printers invariable jam. One place I worked bought one to save on printing costs - it took 2 people to unjam it - the paper travel path was quite complex.

HP IMHO has the best all-around printers - esp. multi-function models. And yes - they do suck ink cartridges dry fast - and they are expensive.
We have some Dell multi-function printers at work - also work OK - but ink cartridges are expensive too.
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Old 08-01-2010, 08:00 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Adjust View Post
I don't know about anyone else, but where I'm from the refill/toner cartridges on the multi-function printers cost more than the actual printer... So once it's run out, it works out cheaper to buy a new machine.
For a while this was our MO too. The printer + included Canon black AND color toner was cheaper than a single toner at Walmart. So when the toner ran out, we would dump off the printer at the junk store on the way to get a new one.
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Old 08-01-2010, 08:26 PM   #9
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Epson for perfect color rendition in photos, but HP or Canon for regular printing. Although the HP cartridges are a bit more expensive than the Canon units, each HP cartridge has its own print head built into it. If you live in an area where print heads get clogged often, or if you don't do a lot of regular print and have difficulties with print heads, go with HP. It's cheaper than repairing a print head. Otherwise, I'm partial to Canon for reliability and color rendition.

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Old 08-02-2010, 12:10 AM   #10
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I have an ancient HP 4M-Plus with duplexer that hasn't jammed in years. Great for saving paper when printing long manuals. For colour I have an HP CP1518ni colour laserjet because the toner never dries out and clogs the print head... I just don't do that much colour printing, I guess - and it only cost $250 a couple of years ago.

I'll stay with HP, but probably never get another inkjet printer.
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Old 08-02-2010, 02:41 AM   #11
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I buy generic brands of ink to save money. I usually only print b&w with a little color so I am not fussy on quality. I just bought 3 color ink cartridges for $8 total.
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Old 08-02-2010, 05:54 AM   #12
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I have used HP printers in the past and was happy with them. I think all inkjet printer manufacturers keep margins low on printers to lure customers in, and high on cartridges to milk them once they're committed. It's useful to try and find info on price per page printed before buying. If the durability of photo prints is not an issue, generic brand cartridges are OK, but in my experience they don't last very long so I don't know what the actual cost difference per printed page really is.

If you plan to print a lot of photos, you should consider buying a printer branded as "photo". The difference will not necessarily be immediately visible on the quality of the prints, but the inks should be more resistant. Photos printed from an ordinary deskjet printer will fade within a few months if you leave them in the sun.

It's not that hard printing on both sides of the paper, you just need to print the even or odd pages only first, then put the sheets back in the printer and print the other set of pages. Of course you have to figure out which way to put the sheets in at first. I don't print very often so it's not a big problem even if it's a bit awkward. I also try to print in "booklet" form when I can. It's easy to do with recent Windows drivers, and on Mac there are free utilities to do it.

I have an Epson printer for high quality pigment prints (archival), and I also need to buy a new one for everyday printing (which in my case is not every day at all, more like once a month plus some simple scanning and faxing ability). The old one is telling me it needs maintenance, and I never liked it anyway so it's not worth it. The old one is a Brother, and based on this one experience, I wouldn't recommend that brand, especially if you have a Mac. It was OK for the use I made of it, but it wasn't very user-friendly.

Hope some of this is helpful...
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Old 08-02-2010, 06:10 AM   #13
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I gave up on printing photo's. I didn't use it enough and the ink kept drying up. So, we finally went for a Xerox colour laser printer. I could have added a duplex unit to it, if I wanted to. For me, the memory and netwerk connection were important.
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Old 08-02-2010, 08:23 AM   #14
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You can always go for laser printers. Somewhat better than ink jet.

I have also an HP ink jet and it's quite adequate for printing text/ photos. Only negative thing is the cost of the ink jet cartridges. So for that reason I would go for a laser printer if you print alot of photos.
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Old 08-02-2010, 08:38 AM   #15
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According to an Internet article I just read (in French, so I won't link to it), Lexmark and HP have now abandonned the built-in printing heads in cartridges. So their cartridges are now cheaper, but on the other hand the printer has to perform clean-up cycles regularly, which may be noisy and consumes ink, and there is a higher risk of clogging up if you don't print often.

This article also says there is now an ISO standard for calculating the printing cost per page, which should be very useful for comparing different printers.
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