Do laser printers mean much trouble?


P

Priam

I'm surprized by how many people here say they have problems with their
laser printers ans I wonder if it's that common. I thought laser
printers were no brainers.

Before I bought mine, I had a Canon BJ-300 and it was trouble all the
time, mainly because Canon Canada didn't give a shit, but also because
the print head often got dirty and had to be cleaned. The last time I
had trouble with it -- and I really didn't print that much. Less than
5,000 in its whole life -- I was unable to fix it and having it repaired
would have cost as much as a new printer. The huge thing looked like
brand new when I put it to the garbage!

So, I thought I'd go for a laser printer from a more serious company. I
had seen an HP 4L printing more than 500 pages/day with minimal
maintenance, so I thought HP must be OK. I could have bought a Samsung
for a bit less but went for HP.

For the first ~4 months the Linux driver had a bug, it would print only
two pages at a time. Then, the bug was fixed and since then, it prints
flawlessly. By this, I mean I don't remember a single letter not being
absolutely perfect.

The cartridge is guaranteed for 6 months once it's open but I don't
print much and I'm still on the original. The printer was bought in
December 2004. (I just checked the receipt. I thought it was younger.)

Installation has always been straightforward. All there was to do was
select the printer in a list. With the latest Linux versions, this step
is now unnecessary: you plug the printer and it prints.

After the hell I've know with my expensive ($550) Canon, this cheapo
($190 on boxing day) is really heaven: it just prints flawlessly time
after time, even if I don't print for months. So, my question is: is
this uncommon with cheap Laser printers?

Another question. A new cartridge, good for 2000 pages, is $85 (CAN).
Since the drum is in the cartridge, would you rather have it refilled
for about 1/3 of the price?
 
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P

Priam

I'm surprized by how many people here say they have problems with their
laser printers ans I wonder if it's that common. I thought laser
printers were no brainers.

Before I bought mine, I had a Canon BJ-300 and it was trouble all the
time, mainly because Canon Canada didn't give a shit, but also because
the print head often got dirty and had to be cleaned. The last time I
had trouble with it -- and I really didn't print that much. Less than
5,000 in its whole life -- I was unable to fix it and having it repaired
would have cost as much as a new printer. The huge thing looked like
brand new when I put it to the garbage!

So, I thought I'd go for a laser printer from a more serious company. I
had seen an HP 4L printing more than 500 pages/day with minimal
maintenance, so I thought HP must be OK. I could have bought a Samsung
for a bit less but went for HP.

For the first ~4 months the Linux driver had a bug, it would print only
two pages at a time. Then, the bug was fixed and since then, it prints
flawlessly. By this, I mean I don't remember a single letter not being
absolutely perfect.

The cartridge is guaranteed for 6 months once it's open but I don't
print much and I'm still on the original. The printer was bought in
December 2004. (I just checked the receipt. I thought it was younger.)

Installation has always been straightforward. All there was to do was
select the printer in a list. With the latest Linux versions, this step
is now unnecessary: you plug the printer and it prints.

After the hell I've know with my expensive ($550) Canon, this cheapo
($190 on boxing day) is really heaven: it just prints flawlessly time
after time, even if I don't print for months. So, my question is: is
this uncommon with cheap Laser printers?

Another question. A new cartridge, good for 2000 pages, is $85 (CAN).
Since the drum is in the cartridge, would you rather have it refilled
for about 1/3 of the price?

And should your 1000 series printer require service, check:

http://www.google.ca/search?&q=HP laserjet+1000+"service+manual

Canon asked $90 for their service manual and kept you waiting online for
hours to finally tell you they wouldn't send you the one page you needed
for a 1 min. fix.

Rotten company! I still have a Canon FTB-QL 35mm camera, but I never
bought another Canon product after the printer.
 
A

Andrew Smallshaw

I'm surprized by how many people here say they have problems with their
laser printers ans I wonder if it's that common. I thought laser
printers were no brainers.

For the most part they are. You've got to remember people don't
come here saying "My printer is working fine" so the picture you
get is always going to be distorted that way. On balance I would
suggest they are also less troublesome than inkjets on average,
based on my experience at least.

That isn't necessarily anything to do with technology as much as
market placement: the average inkjet is designed as a personal
printer for SOHO users whereas the typical laser is designed for
a higher duty cycle, quite possibly as a network printer. It stands
to reason they are going to be built for that.

There are exceptions of course. There are a few personal lasers
that seem incredibly flimsy and the odd inkjet built for a decent
life - HP's Business Inkjets come to mind straight away.

For the record, though, my primary printer is still a 4ML dating
from 1993 and is still going strong. I occasionally think of
replacing it - duplex printing would be nice for instance - but
it's never given me a compelling enough reason to do so. The only
problem it's had in all that time was perhaps twelve months ago
when the cog mounted on the motor spindle cracked, preventing the
mechanism from operating. That took about an hour to fix with a
salvaged cog.
Another question. A new cartridge, good for 2000 pages, is $85 (CAN).
Since the drum is in the cartridge, would you rather have it refilled
for about 1/3 of the price?

That's up to you. Personally I've never bothered - you talk about
the problems here and it seems the majority of problems are related
to refilling cartridges. I would advise shopping around. I can
easily spend £60+ here in the UK for an HP cartridge or perhaps
£50 for a compatible. However, I can also buy a compatible for
£25 elsewhere. If I go on ebay I can usually find new cartridges
for around £10 including postage. Personally I don't see that the
savings are worth the hassle, especially given the health concerns
over loose toner.
 
P

Priam

For the most part they are. You've got to remember people don't
come here saying "My printer is working fine" so the picture you
get is always going to be distorted that way.

That's why I ask. Mayeb soem people had a good experience with other
makes than HP.
That isn't necessarily anything to do with technology as much as
market placement: the average inkjet is designed as a personal
printer for SOHO users whereas the typical laser is designed for
a higher duty cycle

Well, at $190, I suppose the Laserjet 1012 doesn't qualify as an
industrial printer :)
There are exceptions of course. There are a few personal lasers
that seem incredibly flimsy and the odd inkjet built for a decent
life - HP's Business Inkjets come to mind straight away.

The Deskjet 500, which was one of the first inkjet printer, built itself
a reputation as an undestructible printer. Of course, since the
printhead was part of the cartridge, it didn't do as clean a job as the
Canon BJ-300. That's what I should have bought nonetheless.
For the record, though, my primary printer is still a 4ML dating
from 1993 and is still going strong.

Oh, only 17 years! I'm afrid that, mainly if you're ready to apply fix
onec in a while, you'll be stuck with it till the end of times... well,
at least your time.

I see no reason why home printers shouldn't last that long. I think some
companies plan breakdowns or just won't provide basic info on how to fix
the printer.

For instance, all there was to do the first time my Canon was to wash a
little sponge below the print head. Canon absolutely refused to tell
where the little sponge was. Since the ink made it black as the
printhead casing, it was hard to find.

I'm sure the second time it was the same kind of silly problem. They
wouldn't tell me where the pump was. This printer was like brand new and
I had to put it to the garbage. Industrial electronics, big stainless
stell rollers, etc.

But Canon kept suggesting that I buy their new flimsy models at half the
price. I bet you that's exactly what some customers do. They get screwed
and they ask for more. Maybe some other companies -- Brother, Epson,
Samsung? -- are the same. I don't know. I've have only experience with
Canon and HP.

With HP, you don't even have to ask, the service manual is online.
Still, some people who are, I suppose, used to throw things away after a
year or two, pretend that Canon printers are just great.
That's up to you. Personally I've never bothered - you talk about
the problems here and it seems the majority of problems are related
to refilling cartridges.

Yes, but I would think that most cratridges don't have the drum inside.
It's less risky to fill cartridges when the drum is included.
I would advise shopping around. I can
easily spend £60+ here in the UK for an HP cartridge or perhaps
£50 for a compatible. However, I can also buy a compatible for
£25 elsewhere. If I go on ebay I can usually find new cartridges
for around £10 including postage.

New cartridges? I doubt it. They're most probably refilled.
Personally I don't see that the
savings are worth the hassle, especially given the health concerns
over loose toner.

There shouldn't be any concern with refilled cartridges, I would think.
Since I don't print much I don't intend to buy a kit to do my own refills.
 
T

Trevor Wilson

Priam said:
I'm surprized by how many people here say they have problems with their
laser printers ans I wonder if it's that common. I thought laser printers
were no brainers.

**I've owned three laser printers since 1988 (all HP). None ever gave me any
trouble, except my present one. It developed a fault 6 months in, which was
repaired speedily by HP. In the 15 years since, the damned thing refuses to
stop printing. And THAT is what pisses me off. I have no excuse to buy a new
printer. Not only have my lasers been spectacularly reliable (don't ask how
many ink jet printers I've worn out in the same time), but my current laser
printer still prints as perfectly as the day I first purchased it.
 
M

Man-wai Chang

repaired speedily by HP. In the 15 years since, the damned thing refuses to
stop printing. And THAT is what pisses me off. I have no excuse to buy a new
printer. Not only have my lasers been spectacularly reliable (don't ask how
many ink jet printers I've worn out in the same time), but my current laser
printer still prints as perfectly as the day I first purchased it.

Like you, I still have a HP Laserjet 5L serving me. It's harder to fine
toners for it now.

--
@[email protected] Might, Courage, Vision, SINCERITY.
/ v \ Simplicity is Beauty! May the Force and Farce be with you!
/( _ )\ (x86_64 Ubuntu 9.10) Linux 2.6.35.5
^ ^ 16:12:01 up 5:40 1 user load average: 1.06 1.11 1.17
ä¸å€Ÿè²¸! ä¸è©é¨™! ä¸æ´äº¤! ä¸æ‰“交! ä¸æ‰“劫! ä¸è‡ªæ®º! è«‹è€ƒæ…®ç¶œæ´ (CSSA):
http://www.swd.gov.hk/tc/index/site_pubsvc/page_socsecu/sub_addressesa
 
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M

MD34

I had been using an HP 8100 (A3 B/W) printer to print some 6000 double-sided
A4 sheets every month together with a great deal of miscelaneous work. After
10 years I stopped using it, not because it was faulty, but because we had
bought a Xerox full colour print,collate, staple,and fold machine which
reduced the manual work of making booklets. This machine required frequent
visits from the repair engineers and has now been replaced by another make
(Sharp) which we hope will require less frequent attention.

The original HP machine still works but does need a full clean and service -
however it will probably be scrapped in more or less full working order.
During its working life I carried out standard routine maintenance only
which consisted of replacing the fuser unit and some rubber rollers at
infrequent intervals.

Color lasers have a lot of moving parts and extra things to break. Far more than
a B&W. But they look great and beat the pants off inkjets for price.

Things like the transfer belt and imaging drum can cost a lot of money and they
can't usually be repaired like an old HP fuser. :(

I picked up a used Konica Magicolor with some vertical stripes. Paid $50.
Cleaned the laser lens and refilled the toner carts from Ebay for $88 bucks.
Looks like new.
 
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E

Elmo P. Shagnasty

MD34 said:
Color lasers have a lot of moving parts and extra things to break. Far more
than
a B&W.

well, let's see: three more xerographic units than the b/w.

Other than that, at the home desktop level it's not any more complex.
 

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