Which multi-function printer to buy?

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by macstatic, Oct 11, 2009.

  1. macstatic macrumors 65816


    Oct 21, 2005
    I would like to buy a multi-function printer (printer/scanner and copier in one) which will work with two Macs across a wired network.
    I would like the following features

    - Ethernet connection
    - duplex (double-sided) printing
    - print to CD/DVD
    - low cost in use (I'm not interested in a dirt-cheap device with ink cartridges costing more than the actual printer!)
    - good quality printing (it also won't hurt if it does good quality photos as well, although the main use for the printer will be documents)

    And of course be 100% Mac compatible! ;)
    Among the many such devices out there, which one(s) do you recommend, and why?
  2. jejagua macrumors member

    Oct 3, 2008
    I considered not posting because my suggestion does not fully meet your requirements, but I love this printer so much and it is such a good deal, I posted anyway.

    HP Color LaserJet CM1017 (there are several variants, similar model numbers)
    Got it refurbed for about $250 shipped, approximately six months ago. Got all original packaging/docs, like-new condition, new toners. No problems at all.

    The Mac drivers in my opinion are better than the PC drivers.

    After six months of mild-moderate use, the toners are less than 50% consumed. The only cons so far is lack of auto duplex and no sheet feeder for scanning/copying. It supports manual duplex. Not sure if there's a duplex adapter for this model...never looked into that.

    I print to CD/DVD labels. Don't do it often enough to want direct CD printing.

    I'm using a Linksys WET54G Ethernet/Wireless bridge because I don't have an Ethernet connection in the office. Works great.

    Sharing this device with five computers. One Mac, the others are PCs.

    I got so fed up of the high expense and low reliability of ink jets and decided to go laser. Extremely pleased with this printer.
  3. macstatic thread starter macrumors 65816


    Oct 21, 2005
    I hadn't considered a laser printer, but maybe I should look into that as an option. Low running costs are right down my alley :)
    Can color laser printers do "photo quality" images, and can they print directly to CDs, or do I need an inkjet for that?

    What kind of reliability issues have you experienced with inkjets?
  4. cube macrumors G5

    May 10, 2004
    Laser, LED are not for photos.

    For a low running cost printer that is also OK at photos you have to look at solid ink (Xerox exclusivity).
  5. jejagua macrumors member

    Oct 3, 2008
    How applicable lasers are for photos depends solely on your interpretation of quality. I have some framed photos that I printed on my HP CM1017 and they turned out surprisingly well. Keep in mind, we're talking about cheap printing options with good versatility.

    Reliability problems with ink jets are well documented. (Expired, dried up cartridges requiring frequent cleaning, low shelf-life after opening, etc..) I've encountered all these problems with several mainstream brands.

    The CM1017's toners are rated 2000 pages for the color carts, 2500 for the b/w.

    I am not aware of a laser that can print directly to CDs but that does not mean it does not exist. Could be a limitation of the drum design.

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