A cheap, compact mono laser MFPBrother’s DCP-1610W is a surprisingly small laser MFP capable of prints, scans and photocopies. It can only print and make copies in monochrome, although scans are, of course, in full color. While it lacks a fax modem and an SD card slot – so you can’t print directly from a storage card – several people can connect to it over Wi-Fi.
Fit the remarkably small and light toner cartridge and you’re ready to go. The separate imaging drum is already fitted, and should last for around 10,000 pages – we doubt that many people will ever need to replace it. However, the toner lasts for just 1,000 pages. Even when excluding the cost of a replacement drum, running costs are a high 2.8p per page.Build quality is good, apart from the thin and flexible scanner lid. As expected for a laser printer at this price, the paper input tray is uncovered and there’s no bypass slot for feeding single envelopes or sheets of headed paper.The control panel consists of a simple black-and-white screen with a few buttons, including one for scanning.
This works unusually well: load up a document, press the button, and you’re asked whether you want to create an image, a PDF file or an email attachment. If you have more than one, you’re asked which PC or mobile device to send the result to. With this done you simply press Start and wait for the scan to finish. You can, of course, also control scans directly from a PC and here the DCP-1610W is quick enough, taking just 18 seconds to capture an A4 document at 300 dpi (dots per inch), which is a reasonably detailed resolution.
Prints were also swift, with a first page of text arriving in 12 seconds, and five pages completing in 23 seconds. Five pages of graphics took only a second longer. Text was excellent while graphics and photos were surprisingly good for a cheap mono laser. Photocopies – often a weak point for budget laser printers -were also good, and quick, with a single A4 page completing in just 12 seconds.Overall, this is a good choice if you want a no-frills MFP and don’t need colour printing or a fax modem. However, it’s certainly not as cheap to run as a good inkjet MFP such as Epson’s WorkForce WF-3540DTWF.
This is a great MFP for anyone who doesn’t need color printing or fax, but high running costs mean it’s only suited for occasional or light printing.