Product Type: Brother All in one Printer
Newest Review: ... straightforward. It does take longer to print/copy and so forth than some other brands but is sufficient for my needs. The features to ... more
He's My Brother
Brother DCP J315W
Member Name: rosebud2001
Brother DCP J315W
Date: 14/08/11, updated on 14/08/11 (296 review reads)
Advantages: Fairly cheap to buy, relatively inexpensive ink and longevity of ink, good quality of print
Disadvantages: A bit cheap looking
Sadly my love affair with HP came to an abrupt end this year when in the space of 2 months I experienced printer failure in three different HP machines. I had also purchased a desk which had limited space for a printer so I decided to buy a new machine which would fit the space on my desk and purchase a brand which wasn't so resistant to refilled ink cartridges.
I ended up choosing the Brother DCP-J315W as it ticked all the boxes I required really. It had the ability to be used wirelessly, it was a 3 in 1 printer which meant I could scan and photocopy as well as print, it had an SD card reader built in as well as fitting in the space in my desk and having cartridges which didn't have the potential to break the bank upon refill time.
This is an all-in-one printer which scans, photocopies and prints. The printer itself is rather compact with dimensions of 39 cm wide x 36.8 cm deep x 15 cm in height. The only thing worth mentioning regarding the fairly narrow width of the printer is that this is spoiled slightly by the fact the power cable sits on the left hand side, adding unnecessary width to the printer. Put that power cable to the back of the printer and it would probably be perfect.
The printer is fairly lightweight, coming in at just over 6 kilos. It is made from black plastic and I must say compared to previous HP All in One Printers it does look significantly cheaper and flimsier. The scan/copy bed is A4 sized.
I paid £79.99 for mine in Maplin and it's still available there at that price. Amazon also sells the printer with a price at time of writing of £89.65.
Setting up the printer was fairly straightforward. You can set it up to run wirelessly or wired. I did try to run this wirelessly but the connecting failed on such a regular basis that I swiftly gave in and wired it up. This wasn't a problem for me as my printer sits almost right beside my computer but its worth bearing in mind if you wish to locate your printer elsewhere or link it to other computers in the house. A USB cord wasn't supplied so this is worth considering if you don't wish to set this up wirelessly.
A software disc is included and once the software is installed it's a fairly intuitive process to set the printer up.
The printer takes 4 cartridges in black, cyan, magenta and yellow and these are fairly easy to insert into the printer. The cartridge type used is LC985 and compatible cartridges are available.
Paper sits in a tray which is fully removable and as such it's easy to refill but you can't see when you are running out of paper. There is a small plastic groove tray at the bottom of the paper tray which catches pages as they come out of the printer. This can be folded back for more space when the printer is not in use. The paper tray can hold up to 50 sheets of paper.
Controls on the printer front are very straightforward to use. The printer has a small screen to enable you to view documents and photographs held on memory cards and the screen also can be used to choose between various options when printing, copying and scanning by using the familiar up and down arrow keys and an OK button for "enter". There is an on/off button, menu access button, clear button and start buttons for copying in both monochrome and colour.
The Brother machine is designed to print 27 colour pages per minute and 35 monochrome pictures per minute. I would have to question this as it doesn't seem quite as fast to me but print quality is good in general with sharp results and no smudging.
I haven't used the printer to print photographs however purely because I haven't had the inclination and generally I find it cheaper to get them printed commercially. Photographs have been fairly sharp on regular paper but I have to say I don't think the quality is quite as good as that on my old HP photo printers.
I have owned this for almost three months now and have used the printer on a fairly regular basis to print general documents. You can check your ink level by opening up the printer's Control Centre and I was amazed to see that I have only used 20% of the ink in the cartridges. What is even more refreshing is the black ink hasn't drained quicker than the coloured ones as tended to happen with my HP printers.
Because the printer has a card reader slot for SD and Memory Stick cards it is easy to print documents prepared on other computers without linking them up wirelessly to the printer. The card reader enables you to completely bypass adding documents to your computer by printing direct from the card. You can easily view documents held on the card on the printer's screen.
Scanning a document is very straightforward and can be done by placing the document on the glass bed and then simply pressing the "Scan" button at the top of the printer. The screen will then prompt you to select where you want to scan the document to - your PC or to a memory card. You are then prompted to press the "start" button and the process starts.
Scans are sent to a "Control Centre 3" folder within "My Pictures" on your computer and are saved in the JPEG format.
I have been impressed with the scan quality - the scanner scans at a resolution of 1200 x 2400 dpi and this is more than adequate to scan documents and photographs. A document is typically scanned in less than a minute which is comparable to the length of time it took on my previous HP All in One printers.
Copying is even easier than scanning - simply place the document on the glass bed and hit the start button - being careful to choose between the monochrome and colour buttons depending on what sort of copy you require.
The copy will then be printed off although I do think it can be a little on the slow side to do this. It's also worth bearing in mind that folds in documents - typically found in letters - have a tendency to show up on the copy as a faint black line.
I have been very impressed with my Brother DCP-J315W. For the price it has easily out performed my HP machines at every level with the possible exception of photo printing. The print quality is sharp and scans are of an impressive quality too. Copies made on this printer have been very good too.
Where it really excels is in ink longevity and ease of use although I do concede I have struggled to use this in wireless mode. Using the printer wired up to my PC has been a doddle and even though Brother do provide you with an extensive user manual using the printer is simplicity itself and uses intuitive prompts to guide you through some of the functions.
When I consider I purchased this for cheaper ink and because it was compact enough to fit on my desk I have been delighted by the fact it works so well - especially when one considers the very reasonable purchase price for such a functional machine.
The only real downsides to this printer is the fact it does look a bit cheap - certainly the plastic doesn't look anything like as good as that on HP machines - and the fact it doesn't have a USB slot for a flash memory drive. In light of the SD card reader that's a minor quibble however.
If you too are getting tired of HP machines and the very high prices they charge for ink cartridges I would suggest you check out the Brother DCP-J315W as it's a cost efficient and very effective All in One Printer which won't break the bank.
Summary: A compact and effective all in one printer from Brother
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