Brother MFC-J895DW Review – There’s a trend for white devices at the moment, but the effect depends on the quality of the finish. And in this instance the basic matt plastic is unfortunately reminiscent of the beige computer kit of yore. A more important selling point is that it’s very compact for a machine with scanning, copying and fax.
Has average speeds, looks old fashioned, and is pricey to buy and run
A small colour touchscreen is set into the black control panel on the front. The ink cartridges are replaced in a similar way to other models, but there’s no guide to stop you mixing up the colours, so care will be required to avoid any filling-the- petrol-car-with-diesel moments. The paper-feeding mechanism feels clunky.
The MFC-J895DW isn’t cheap, partly because it’s stocked exclusively by Amazon, so there’s little incentive to discount it. It’s not easy to spot features that justify the price. The quoted 12 pages per minute (ppm) print speed exactly matched the results of our tests, although we got over 16ppm in draft mode.
That says a lot for Brother’s honesty, but not much for its printer, which is noticeably slower than the cheaper Epson WorkForce WF-3720DWF. Scanning and copying speeds were average too, and the automatic document feeder (ADF), which takes a meagre 20 pages, slowed things down further.
We don’t normally have any trouble with Brother’s software, but this time its TWAIN driver refused to scan to our Windows software on any of our three test PCs, leaving us to resort to Brother’s own app. We hope that’s a bug that will get fixed.
Print quality was generally good, bearing in mind this is aimed at office duties more than photo printing, but deteriorated when using the duplex (both sides) option, and scans tended to blot out darker areas.
At a time when other printer makers are listening to complaints about running costs, Brother is selling ‘high yield’ cartridges for this model that only last 400 pages. That’s 3.6p per black page or 12.6p for colour more expensive than the WF-3720DWF, which is pricey in any case.
Presumably designed to appeal to home offices, the MFC- J895DW misses the mark. Even at a lower price, we’d steer clear
Epson WorkForce WF-3720DWF
Faster and cheaper to buy and run, this is a better choice as an office printer/scanner
6000x1200dpi maximum print resolution • 1200x2400dpi maximum scan resolution • 6.8cm colour touchscreen • Ethernet • USB • 802.11n Wi-Fi • 172x420x341mm (HxWxD) • 8.5kg • One-year warranty