Best All-In-One Inket With Fax?

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by MagnusVonMagnum, Jul 23, 2010.

  1. MagnusVonMagnum macrumors 601


    Jun 18, 2007
    My brother MFC-665CW All-In-One is suddenly refusing to print both Black and Cyan despite newer and still full ink cartridges. I've tried removing/re-inserting them several times and I get no joy. These are off-brand cartridges so there is the potential that getting a new set of Brother brand ones might work, but they worked fine for the past couple of years. I'd just hate to waste the money on ink for nothing.

    So I figured it might be a good time to get a BETTER quality all-in-one inkjet, but after spending HOURS reading reviews on various printers, I'm sad to say I'm starting to conclude ALL the printers out there (at least all-in-one types) must suck.

    The Canon MX870 sounded fantastic, but then I first read that there is no Mac fax driver (for ANY Canon printer) and then after reading yet more reviews, there seemed to be this consensus that it's an ink hog (typical of fixed print heads, though, I'm afraid; this Brother used the ink up in about a year's time regardless if you didn't print much but at least the off-brand cartridges were dirt cheap at $3.99 each and only 4 total). But the biggest issue seems to be very long print lags issues with no printer memory to buffer it out (i.e. turn off computer and you lose your print job). The latter seems absurd given how cheap ram is these days and the former seems to have no real explanation ("processing lags" were not mentioned in reviews of the previous model to this one or other Canon models so it sounds like a firmware bug and one that will probably never get fixed). People also complained it's noisy and pretty slow to print compared to other models (even by Canon) out there, but at least the quality reports were generally pretty good.

    I read horror story reviews about the current HP All-In-One OfficeJets, so I'm not even considering them (I think they may be the only ones out there with Mac fax drivers, though). Most of the problems seemed to be with firmware being buggy as heck. They're also more expensive and have the highest ink prices in the known Universe (almost cheaper to buy a new printer than replace the ink cartridges).

    Epson got ink quality and usage (less than 6 months even if you don't print, which would be beyond annoying; 1 year is bad enough) and reliability complaints. They also have no Mac fax drivers and relatively poor Mac support in general if I remember correctly.

    Lexmark seemed to have bad image quality reviews, poor ink quality compared to the newer inks out there and also generally unfavorable reviews.

    Brother I know personally and other than this ink issue I'm having and the fixed print head issue in general, their photo quality wasn't up to some of the other models, the MFC-665CW I have had a slower fax modem (14.4 only) and the thing has some very real problems with photo paper uptake with non-Brother brand 4x6 paper (jams EVERY time here while Brother brand paper works OK most of the time; I know other people had problem with any and all paper; their drive just seems poor in this respect. I don't know if it's been improved since then; I know the newer models have faster fax and what not). Their driver support is generally good on the Mac (no Fax driver here either) and works with Linux as well. Other than the paper thing, I had been happy with it up until now, but I don't do a lot of color printing on it and in the past year a and a half I picked up a duplex and network enabled Brother Laser Printer (HL-5250DN) during a sale for dirt cheap ($149) and since then I do most of my black printing on it instead (really does do 30PPM in single mode; that thing just FLIES and probably 20PPM in duplex/double-sided mode counting 1 side as a page). My only complaint about that printer is that it likes to trip my UPS and dim my lights while operating (huge power draw temporarily). Beyond that it's been awesome fo the money.

    Basically, I just use the Brother Inkjet most of the time for the occasional quick print (so as not to trip up the lights for a single page or two) and faxing and the occasional color photo.

    Overall, it sounds like the Canon model is still the lesser of all evils from the models I've read, but it's less than perfect. It seems like the market is wide open for SOMEONE...ANYONE to make a truly complaint-free inkjet with a full feature set for Macs. It's hard to believe after all these years since inkjets came out that they're still so buggy and problem ridden. What good is "cheap" if it refers to both the price AND the quality?

    I looked into color lasers at the time, but they apparently weren't that great for glossy photos and they were expensive compared to inkjets. Looking back, an all-in-one laserjet might have been the best choice as that would have covered what I use them for 99% of the time. I could have then just got a cheap color inkjet for the occasional photo print (I don't print a lot of photos because I tend to show them on my 93" HD projection theater at home and on my iPod Touch on-the-go; if anything I spent last year scanning all my prints and negative INTO the computer instead).

    If anyone has used some of the newer all-in-ones, feel free to share your experiences. I don't want to rush out and buy a replacement for this thing, but I can't print any faxes while the black cartridge isn't printing (I don't receive faxes very often so I'm still not in a rush so long as I can send them).
  2. CP123 macrumors regular

    Dec 22, 2008
    I have the HP j6480, and it has been great. In my house there are 4 macbooks, 2 dell laptops, a toshiba laptop, and an imac. All print wirelessly without any problems. I would definitely recommend it.

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