You may think Brother is a comparative newcomer when it comes to providing office printers, but the company has been rapidly establishing a reputation as suppliers of solid and reliable machines to meet all your practical needs. Most recently it has released a number of affordable mono laser printers and the HL-2035 continues in this vein, being an entry-level mono printer for home and small office usage.
Once lifted out of the box you realise just how neat and compact it is, measuring a tidy 371 x 361 x 165.5mm and weighing in at a lightweight 6.5kg. Styled in low-key grey tones, preparing the machine for action is a matter of simply pulling forward the front flap, sliding in the drum unit until it engages, clicking on the power and then attaching a USB cable to your computer and following the instructions on the supplied installation disk.
A simple control panel on the side monitors toner levels, tells you when the drum is nearing the end of its life and flashes up error warnings if you’ve run out of paper or there’s a paper jam. A test page is printed when you first use the machine which will tell you whether the ink is flowing as it should. The standard TN-2005 toner manages around 1,500 A4 pages while the DR-2005 drum should last for 12,000 A4 pages.
The paper tray at the bottom contains the regular 250 sheets but you can also feed single sheets into the manual slot just above the tray. There’s no separate out-tray as such, but there’s an angled depression on the top, aided by a fold-down panel that will comfortably catch all of your assignment. As you’d expect from an economy printer there’s no duplex facility, but you can always manually feed your run-off through again.
Print speed is officially up to 18ppm and we were impressed by our test documents that averaged 15ppm at a maximum resolution of 2,400 x 600 dpi. You have to allow about 11 seconds for warm-up, which is negligible for the less than heavy usage you’d expect for printers of this type.
In terms of the finished, printed product, the deep blacks are solid, the shading clear and distinct and even small fonts emerge with commendable sharpness. Graphics, too, are consistent and unbroken. Bearing in mind Brother has included drivers for Windows 98, Me, 2000, XP and Vista as well as for Mac OS X 10.2.4 or greater and Linux, it’s hard to imagine any small business user being disappointed with the results.
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