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  1. I need to upgrade from my HP Photosmart C6280.

    I do NOT need anything wireless or one that is "online" or works with a cloud or anything of that sort. In fact I prefer not to pay for those features as I'd never use them. I also prefer a printer that doesn't need to go online to update itself.

    I'd prefer to not buy an "ink hog", I have read reports of some that use way more ink than what I currently have. But most important is photo quality and scan quality.

    My current HP prints decent photos but I'm not crazy about the scan quality, especially if scanned pictures are resized. If I resize pics to 50% it looks like hell in most cases. Lots of scans look grainy.

    Next in order of importance is a printer that feeds reliably without paper jams. I do a lot of printing of CD labels, cards and that sort of thing and they are expensive to throw away because a budget printer that chokes on anything but plain paper.

    I also want one that is relatively fast, I do a LOT of photo printing and don't have time to waste with set up time and print time. This is another reason I don't want a bunch of features I won't need. If it has a fax option I wouldn't mind but it isn't critical.

    I'm more concerned with getting a good printer / scanner that will last than I am with buying a cheap one that is "good for the money."

    Seems every printer I look at has reviews that say "Best printer in the world" and "Worst piece of crap I ever bought." Hopefully you guys can get me steered in the right direction.

    I should also mention that I'm still using WinXP.
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  2. Member hech54's Avatar
    Join Date: Jul 2001
    Location: Yank in Europe
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    Nowadays the wireless feature(even if there is one available without this feature) is a price difference of a couple of dollars thanks to technology marching on....I certainly wouldn't "not" buy one because it had this feature. My HP printer has this feature and I do not use it.
    I've always considered HP printers as ink hogs, but I still use them faithfully. I don't print much of anything and I've never printed a CD/DVD in my life so lack of use(dust) is my "ink hog problem".
    I also am a firm believer in separate devices. I don't think I would ever by a combo scanner/printer. Right now i have an old Cano-Scan Canon scanner and my newer HP wireless printer hooked up via USB.
    As far as reviews go....just think of the Chevy vs. Ford vs. Foreign jap scrap, rice burner, kraut burner fanboys that America is plagued by....I rest my case.
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  3. Member
    Join Date: Oct 2004
    Location: Freedonia
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    You want to do "printing of CD labels". Do you mean that you print those stick on labels, which is a truly horrible idea and WILL shorten the lifespan of your discs, or that you print directly to inkjet printable discs? I have used Canon printers to print directly to discs and while I am very happy with the quality, I am not at all happy with the fact that Canon's current method of printing to discs is extremely hands on and CANNOT be automated at all. You have to push at least one button on the printer manually for every disc you print. Under some circumstances it may be two buttons. If you are going to do this a lot, you probably don't want Canon.

    Having a separate scanner is not a bad idea in my opinion. My Canon can't scan at all.

    I one time bought an Epson to replace an HP printer and the damn Epson refused to recognize the ink cartridges that came with the printer. I read that the only "fix" is to return the printer for a new one. I was so pissed off that I went with Canon and I will never buy an Epson again. All manufacturers want you to use only their official ink cartridges, but Epson's paranoia here is through the roof if their own printers sometimes are so fussy that they can't recognize any cartridges at all.

    Fax is dead technology unless you have a time machine and go into the past. Don't worry about that. Nobody promotes this any more. And hech54 is quite right that just about everything today will be wireless. I like it and it's been very useful to me, but if you don't like it you can still connect the printer to a PC via USB. Nobody's printers are really good at using little ink (this is somewhat deliberate as the printer is sold at a loss to get your money on the ink cartridges). And every printer there is has people who love it and hate it. If you must have an all in one printer, I'd either go with HP or Epson. I love Canon but the current models are so labor intensive for disc label printing that I cannot recommend them unless you are absolutely sure that this is not going to bother you.

    Finally, I have to warn you that there is some chance that current models will not have XP drivers. I suggest you be sure before purchase that your printer has a driver that works with XP. XP is getting pretty old now and I'm not sure how well supported it is for new printers any more.
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  4. Member
    Join Date: Jun 2003
    Location: United States
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    Firstly, YMMV.

    I use a Brother MFC-J6710. It can handle up to 11x17 paper in its two trays. It also has a bypass tray which, IMHO, is necessary if you will be printing heavy card stock or slippery photo paper. As Brother MFCs feed from below and, therefore, flip the paper over during the feeding of the sheet, heavy/slippery paper doesn't feed well; hence, the need for the bypass tray (which has a straight-through path). The bypass tray also permits the use of paper that's longer than 17".

    Additionally, the scanner included is excellent (compared to others in this MFC-type class) and will scan up to 11x17. Do note that scanning at the maximum resolution is not necessarily what you want to do all the time. There are many websites that discuss this so I won't cover it here.

    The unit uses four separate ink cartridges so you only replace the empty one when required. I buy compatible cartridges from 4inkjets.com and have done so with a number of generations of Brother MFCs for some years. I'm very happy with the results (and the $$ savings!).

    Brother's print driver has some presets (which you may modify or create new ones). One useful preset is the "grey/fast" settings which prints only using the black ink and then only lays down about half the volume. This is useful when you don't need color nor the best quality (and you get a speed boost, as well).

    Finally, the J6710 is an older model so you shouldn't have any trouble with running it under XP.

    Downside: This is a large unit so it takes up about 75% more desk area than a standard 8.5x11 printer. However, if you want the bypass tray...

    Do note that some other brands of printers utilize a top-feed (straight path) mechanism so the need for a bypass tray may be moot.

    Hope this helps.

    Edit: Forgot to mention this unit has USB and 10-Base-T Ethernet. Scanning is much faster using the USB connection.
    Last edited by rumplestiltskin; 31st May 2014 at 09:04. Reason: Clarification
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  5. Member budwzr's Avatar
    Join Date: Apr 2007
    Location: City Of Angels
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    I love my Canon MFD Laser. $1000. 600 dpi. You can't tell the copies from the originals.
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  6. I have the Canon MF4770n and it is fantastic, monochrome laser, inexpensive toner. Works flawless.
    I am not responsible, and it's been proven over and over again.
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  7. Mod Neophyte Super Moderator redwudz's Avatar
    Join Date: Sep 2002
    Location: AZ, USA
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    I've had several HP printers over the years. My last HP all-in-one seemed to hesitate for about a minute before printing and use a lot of ink. I didn't miss it when it died.

    I needed a all-in-one that would also print on DVD discs, so I picked up a Epson. I have been happy with it. It prints fairly quickly and seems OK with ink usage. I've set up a Brother printer for my neighbor and I wasn't impressed, besides it was very difficult to set up. But with any brand of printer, it depends on the individual model on how well they work.

    I have a wired LAN, so I don't use the wireless feature on my printer. But I assume it works OK. My laptop uses a wireless connection to my router, so it does print wirelessly, just not directly to the printer.

    Most all printers now use a proprietary ink cartridge, so you are stuck with using their ink, so check on ink prices before you pick a printer as they will usually cost more than the printer over a years time.

    The Epson does a good job of scanning, but so did the HP. I have no use for a fax as I don't have a land line phone. Never had a problem with paper jams and that is important as the printer is in another room. I can hear it print if the doors open, but otherwise I don't know what it's doing until I check results.

    Shop around and read some reviews. I would stick with the major brands. Laser printers are best if you do a lot of B+W printing. I do more color printing and a color laser would be a bit too pricy for my needs.
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  8. Look for a printer that can be refilled easily. Ink savings alone will buy another printer within a year if you print a lot.

    If you print much B&W, get a simple monochrome laser. Dramatically lower ink costs, dramatically longer lifetime. Many are measured in millions of pages, not just thousands. Doing the mono documents on the laser will greatly extend the life of the printer.

    Paper handling is something few makers advertise, and is a completely and totally mixed bag. Heavy stocks, labels, and god forbid Envelopes are a feeding nightmare. Look for easily replaceable feed rollers, though few inkjets have these. HP laser feed rollers are a 10-second replacement, cost a few bucks. Often a new roller will feed great, but with usage they get smooth and jams begin. Some printers just won't feed some paper types. If you find one that does, then it will either print like crap or they quit making it.

    Always fluff your paper, NEVER "add" paper to the magazine, empty the magazine, square up the sheets, fluff, replace entire contents.

    Take some paper samples with you to test if possible. Give up trying to feed envelopes. Run labels thru printer ONCE per sheet, MOST ESPECIALLY with laser labels which MUST be designed for use in a laser printer. They get hot, which will weaken the glue. There are few things worse than labels coming off inside the printer and wrapping themselves around various gears and rollers.

    Inkjet models are not designed to "last". They are disposable and non-repairable. A stand-alone scanner will give better results and last longer, also doesn't need to be replaced when the printer fails.
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  9. Member fritzi93's Avatar
    Join Date: Nov 2003
    Location: U.S.
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    Originally Posted by Nelson37 View Post
    Always fluff your paper, NEVER "add" paper to the magazine, empty the magazine, square up the sheets, fluff, replace entire contents.
    Good tip, I'll remember that one.
    While I don't recall my Epson ever actually jamming, once in a while it will pick up two sheets of paper.

    Best printer/scanner? I dunno. I've had several HPs, and disliked them all, for one reason or another. My current printer, an Epson Artisan 725 has been okay, but we don't use it heavily. Regularly (daily), but I wouldn't say heavily.
    Scans okay.
    Good photo printing.
    Good paper printing.
    Very good optical disc printing.

    Ink...well, I wish that was cheaper, but it seems to be par for the course. I actually tried a refill set and couldn't get the printer to recognize the refill cartridges. I probably should have done more digging for a way to do so, as evidently some Artisan owners use refills.
    Pull! Bang! Darn!
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  10. Yeah, HP ain't what they used to be. Up through the 4000-5000 series they would just keep on printing. Multiple millions of pages not unusual at all.

    Had a good refill system on my Epson inkjets before I found out the R200 model had a built-in "suicide" counter. Damn thing would print test pages all day long, but would lock up if sent a real print job. There's a prog to reset the "life" counter, but you have to use it before it triggers.

    The refill kit used the original cartridges with a chip resetter. Of course, it only had 8 pins, and the new Epsons use a 9-pin chip. Worked well for a couple years, though, and I am tempted to get another set. About $8 for a cartridge set rather than $50-$60.
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  11. Originally Posted by jman98 View Post
    You want to do "printing of CD labels". Do you mean that you print those stick on labels, which is a truly horrible idea and WILL shorten the lifespan of your discs, or that you print directly to inkjet printable discs?
    That's what I mean. But if I screw up a stick on label I can try it again without redoing the entire disc. And customers want labels and customers are always right.
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  12. Member fritzi93's Avatar
    Join Date: Nov 2003
    Location: U.S.
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    You've been a member here long enough to remember some of the monster threads about sticky labels.

    Summary: Sticky labels will cause discs to warp when temp/humidity changes. Warping= Playability issues.

    I'm not telling you what to do, but a printed disc will look more professional. And it should go without saying that an unplayable disc will not foster repeat sales nor good reputation. In this case the customer is presented with a false choice.
    Pull! Bang! Darn!
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  13. Member
    Join Date: Jun 2003
    Location: United States
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    Slot-loading optical drives produce more heat than tray-loaders. I have seen sticky labels come loose from the discs and have swapped out about two dozen optical drives over the last ten years or so.

    Make your own decision but think about how you will address the issue when a client tells you your disc ruined his drive.
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  14. Member
    Join Date: Aug 2006
    Location: United States
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    Originally Posted by SteyrAUG View Post
    Originally Posted by jman98 View Post
    You want to do "printing of CD labels". Do you mean that you print those stick on labels, which is a truly horrible idea and WILL shorten the lifespan of your discs, or that you print directly to inkjet printable discs?
    That's what I mean. But if I screw up a stick on label I can try it again without redoing the entire disc. And customers want labels and customers are always right.
    Good discs with a printable surface:
    http://www.amazon.com/Taiyo-Yuden-JVC-WaterShield-printable/dp/B0015EMZU8
    http://www.amazon.com/Verbatim-PrintableHub-Printable-Recordable-96552/dp/B001GR1C3A
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