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This printer proved not to be fit for the job it was intended for. Some faults with the model: 1) Picture quality was very poor, worse than a HP 5L the much earlier printer which it replaced. Faults with my printer: 2) Toner did not print nearly the number of pages it claimed to, less than half 3) After the toner ran out the drum developed a fault and all the pages came out with obstrusive black lines and smudges, resolved by a new drum, but each time the toner ran out, a new drum was required 4) Black specks were easily laid on to the paper. Although easy (laborious) to clean it was easy to get dirty. Not all the black marks were dirt though, some were a fault with drum or toner. The sepearte drum and toner technology may be at fault, but even when it worked the quality was poor with streaks and lines a continual problem as well. Even in perfect working order, (very rare) the results were only good enough for plain text, no bold print or pictures. But this was only 20% of the time as black lines wasted more paper than satisfactory print-outs, so it was not even good enough for rough drafts. Printer does not work on a parallel port with XP. Needs a USB. Communication errors occur too often. Suited for old computers and I will keep it as a spare, mainly because I have lots of drums because they kept going wrong. Brother replacement toners and general service I would describe as rude and unhelpful. This printer was listed as a best Buy. It is not. Worst Buy would be my description. I resorted to it again as an emergency when my HP inkjet broke down during the guarantee period and had to be replaced. Two drums produced completely unsatisfactory results and the third older drum worked with only four black spots on the edge. I will never buy another Brother printer again ! I will not even take one for free unless the toner is already in it and th
en afterwards I will throw it away. This printer was not cheap either. It has the extra memory as well.
The Brother HL-1050 is a fairly good laser printer. I've had mine for two and a half years and in that time I've had no problems with it until recently. It can be connected via either parallel port or USB, comes with 4MB of memory and has a claimed print speed of 10ppm with a maximum resolution of 1200x600dpi. It is fast and handles text superbly and graphics adaquately. Toner cartridges are twenty five quid a throw and last a couple of thousand pages (I think) depending on print density and stuff like that. The printer driver offers a useful little window that opens and tells you the status of the printer (if it's asleep, if the toner is low, if the paper is jammed, etc). It is a quick printer, but it's not that small with a footprint of roughly 14.5" x 14.5" and a height of approximately 11". It's not quiet either. The paper goes in the top (vertically) and comes out the front (horizontally) so with the paper out tray pulled out it takes up an awful lot of space. When it prints it sounds like a jet engine. As I said, mine is two and a half years old and for the last six months the print quality has deteriorated drastically with large pale streaks all over the page. I'm pretty sure this is down to the imaging drum going, but it really shouldn't have gone this quickly. I'm only on my third toner cartridge and I would expect the imaging drum to last at least ten cartridges. Since new imaging drums cost about £150, I'm going to get a new printer. I'm not sure whether to get another Brother printer or not. I was delighted with it, until the print quality dropped so drastically. UPDATE. Contacted Brother UK and after a couple of e-mails and phone calls, I was told that my imaging drum only had a life expectancy of eith thousand pages and that mine was at the end of it's life and needed replacing. Since I object to paying £150 every eight thousand pages, I boug
ht a Lexmark colour inkjet (Z42) for £89. Modern inkjets are very cheap to buy initially and for the cost of a new imaging drum for my Brother laser printer, I could buy six ink cartridges for my Lexmark printer (or even two whole, new printers if I picked the right one). UPDATE (29/4/01) An interesting situation has developed. After contacting Brother UK again with regards to the apparently short life of their imaging drums, the decision has been made to replace it for me free of charge. It turns out that that particular imaging drum has experienced some problems similar to mine in other countries. The result of this is that my opinion has slightly improved. I did have to push to get the problem sorted, but I suspect that was more due to a "by-the-book" tech support assistant, rather than the person who I had dealt with via e-mail. What this whole episode shows is that Brother UK do like to keep their customers happy, and that is a good thing and more companies could take a leaf out of Brother UK's book. UPDATE (1/4/02) After about two and a half thousand pages, the new imaging drum has started to print with thin white lines running down the entire length of the page. On top of this, the printer has also taken to printing three large (about 1mmx3mm) black blobs on the left hand side of the page. I have discovered that I can replace the imaging drum for about £50 (not the previously stated £150) but since there does seem to be an inherent problem with the lastability of the imaging drums, I will get a new laser printer this time. (Typically, the print quality has dropped just as I want to print out my 40 page dissertation.)
The Brother HL 1050 is a pretty standard printer, that's not an insult! The 1050 deos everthing most other printers can do, with the exception it deos it well!!! If you are looking for a nice standard printer with a load of thrills then this is your printer! It gives a good quality print very quickly! It is a good network printer for small to medium companies as it is quick, clear and holds alot of paper! I don't actually have anything bad to say about the 1050 except that it's boring! - Sorry I had to find something wrong with it! Overall I very nice printer!!!