by Brad Nelson 10/4/14
There are several things that need to be wiped off the face of this earth: the malaria parasite, “radical” Islam, and Epson inkjet printers, the kind that eat $30.00 cartridges with their endless “cleaning” cycles that never do actually clean or unclog anything but simply use up the ink until the cartridge is useless. Never again.
I have a cheap HP CP1525nw color laser printer in the office that I use for simple color proofs and such. I got it for less than $300.00 on sale a year or two ago. It’s still working fine but is overkill for most things.
For most of the stuff we print out, we don’t need color. We don’t need to keep one of those problematic inkjet printers hanging around, with an IV-drip of expensive ink dedicated to trying to keep it running — ink that is, ounce for ounce, more expensive than silver. And the toner cartridges on the color laser printers are expensive…and the less expensive aftermarket cartridges don’t work as well as the expensive OEM ones.
So I recently purchased the Samsung M2830DW laser printer from Staples on sale for about $79.00. It’s a black-and-white-only laser (not inkjet) printer. Unlike one of those
problematic inkjets, you can let a laser printer sit around for weeks without printing anything on them and they are none the worse. That’s just not true, in practice, with inkjets, which tend to gum up.
There was a competing HP printer in the same price range at Staples, but it looked like a piece of junk compared to this Samsung. It looked flimsy and its paper tray stuck way out the side. I’m normally a huge fan of HP printers. But this Samsung is much more compact and elegant. It’s easy to feed it paper and it will do up to 8.5 x 14 via manual feed (which I did find to be a process that is less than intuitive).
Granted, I don’t expect the replacement toner cartridges to be cheap. But they do tend to last forever. And with a toner-based printer, you can always find (cheap…in more ways than one) aftermarket or refurbished cartridges that will generally work pretty well. And they are often 1/3 the price of new ones (although, at times, can be problematic so be sure to buy from a source that accepts returns, something I have had to do before and was able to do without any muss or fuss).
It’s also nice that this printer is wireless. I’ve got this baby sitting in the other room next to my brother’s computer station where he really needed it to print out shipping labels and such. His PC connects to it effortlessly, and it was pretty easy to set up the wireless.
And my 27″ iMac in the other room (once I installed the drivers) can also print to it, so it’s a nice backup for my HP LaserJet 2300 which is several years old and keeps going and going. It’s another toner-based black-and-white printer. I have indeed forever given up on inkjets. They have caused me no end of frustration.
In fact, sort of in an act of intentional melodrama, a few years ago (upon having acquired a new printer) I dumped my old Epson inkjet printer into the parking lot and took a sledgehammer to it — which is what we should do to ISIS as well. But that’s another story.
But, really, if you’re looking for a good black-and-white printer, I’ll put the power and prestige of my name (such as it is) behind this nice little printer. You could certainly do worse.
Brad is editor and chief disorganizer of StubbornThings.
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