With many small offices working on both Mac and PC platforms, it is impractical to buy a different printer and different software for each operating system. The Brother HL-1440 combats this problem with its multi-platform support and a low price of $299.
The HL-1440 printer is easy to set up, with both parallel and USB interfaces and a quick-loading CD-ROM. Two install wizards guide the user through the process. We encountered some trouble setting up the automatic e-mail printing function, which trolls the user's account and prints out any new mail. The wizard prompts for POP server name and SMTP addresses. For users who are unfamiliar with these terms, it can cause significant problems when trying to access new mail or waiting for messages to print out. Also once the POP address is entered, it is difficult to change.
As for the output, we were impressed with the HL-1440's shading capabilties and crisp printing. Brother touts its ability to print 15ppm and it came through when it comes to printing out Word documents. But in order to print 15 copies of a scanned document it only had enough memory to print at 300dpi. A printout informed us to change the driver settings in order to print at 600 or 1200dpi. After reconfiguring we were able to complete the original task at 1200dpi without a problem.
The HL-1440 is a worthwhile investment for a business looking to improve the quality of its printed documents. The price is more than reasonable and the cross-platform ability is convenient, as is the e-mail printing capability. But there is some degree of technical skill required to maximize the printer's functionality.
Brother HL-1440 Laser Jet PrinterRating: 85
Manufacturer: Brother908-704-1700; www.brother.com
Configuration: Multi-platform printer compatible with Mac and PC
Pros: Automatic e-mail printing software; quick and clean printing
Cons: May require some technical capability