By Gerry K ยท 5 replies
Apr 18, 2007
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  1. I'm thinking of purchasing a new Dell computer E520 and was questioning if a 4 in 1 printer (scan-copy-fax-print), such as a Dell or HP would be a good choice. I like good quality printing etc. even though it is strictly for home use. If I purchase a new Dell computer is it advisable to also purchase a Dell printer so as to stay with the same manufacturer? Thank you in advance for your advice.
  2. LinkedKube

    LinkedKube TechSpot Project Baby Posts: 3,482   +44

    I despise dell, but I guess if you have to...It might be cheaper to buy from dell for your printer as well, I advise calling and say you recently saw a computer+printer deal. I bet they pull a good price out of their back side.
  3. raybay

    raybay TS Evangelist Posts: 7,241   +10

    My Bias: We repair printers and perform warranty work on them. We see only the problem printers. We do not see the happy users, and most are happy users. So here are my opinions based on this bias.
    Dell sells a decent printer. It is made usually by Lexmark for the Dell brand. It is designed to seel ink. A heavy user of a cheap printer can consume $1000 to $2000 a year in ink... which is mostly profit. You cannot buy Dell ink in the store. It is only available from Dell. This is an enormous inconvenience to order and await delivery. The Dell printers seem to last between one and two years before their encoder strip, print heads, or other parts wear out.
    HP makes some excellent printers, but their All-in-One is not one of them. HP has tremendous numbers of problems with many of their Printer-Copy-Scanner-Fax machines. If yours is till under warranty, they just send you another. If the warranty is expired, you are screwed.
    But there are a lot of good things about HP printers. For instance, the print head is built into the ink cartridge so you never have to worry about that failure. HP ink is plentiful from a number of sources... Wal-Mart, Office Max, Office Depot, Staples, etc... but I DO NOT ADVISE THE USE OF OFF-MARKET, NON-BRANDED INKS. This ink causes its own problems with the printer.
    The problem with HP AIO printers, is that many suddenly fail for no obvious reason. Either the scanner fails, or the printer fails. There are a lot of problems with drivers.
    I would buy an HP Deskjet, but not an HP Office Jet. I would not buy an HP All in One, but I would buy a Photosmart used to also print photographic images. The Deskjet and Photosmart are quite reliable.
    New, cheap, HP printers under $100 wear out quickly. Parts snap off.
    Epson printers that are All in One are similarly defective... and worse, they have the print head in the printer, and print heads are expensive to replace.
    The Brother All in One Printers, Konica Minolta, Samsung, and Fujica printers are reliable, but the ink is difficult to get.
    Canon has been a problem printer, but in the past year, there have been several excellent Canon printers such as the i4200, i4300, i1700, and a few others. They use four separate ink cartridges, but the ink is relatively cheap.
    We still use HP laser printers, but like the Konica Minolta laser printers for their reliable operation and low cost.
    We are now using Canon printers exclusively in our shop... but have less than a half year of experience, so we cannot state their long-term reliability.
    For your purpose, get a separate scanner made by Epson, HP, Canon,
    Visioneer, Agfa, or Fujitsu. Then get a Canon i4300, HP Deskjet, HP Photosmart, Brother, Konica, or Fujitsu printer... depending on the ready availability of ink in your area. The Canons are very low priced for what they do. I would NOT buy an inexpensive HP or Brother printer.
    Hope this is useful, despite the biases in our experience.
  4. halo71

    halo71 TS Rookie Posts: 1,090

    I bought a HP all in one a year and a half ago or so. It was well under $200. It does not fax though, it does have the card reader. I have not had the first issue with mine. For a cheap printer, it was money well spent. But then again I don't work in a shop repairing them either. But a friend of mine, my bro-in-law, and mother-in-law all bought the same printer after I did and have had no problems either.

    IMO...and experience, lexmark and brother printers really suck.
  5. LinkedKube

    LinkedKube TechSpot Project Baby Posts: 3,482   +44

    lexmark printers are good if you actually pay money for them
  6. nathanplane

    nathanplane TS Rookie

    HP and Dell both are reputable brands. the printing quality is almost equal.

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