Brother MFC-J885DW Review


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Pros: The Brother Work Smart Series MFC-J885DW (starting at $100; available on Amazon) has more base features than any other printer we looked at, which certainly appeals to reviewers but is also reflected in its higher price. Top Ten Reviews reports that the printer was pretty fast in testing, producing black-and-white documents at 10 pages per minute and color graphics at 9 pages per minute. A 4 x 6 photo took just over a minute to print, which is just a little slow, but the color is quite good -- not the very best around but better than many top competitors. Likewise, the output from scans and copies is better than average. The MFC-J885DW supports SD and Memory Stick cards and has an Ethernet connection in addition to Wi-Fi and Wi-Fi Direct. This MFP even boasts NFC touch-to-print technology for use with compatible smartphones and tablets. The fax machine is a nice extra for those who need it.

Cons: While a Digital Trends reviewer says the Brother MFC-J885DW prints fast, copying was painfully slow in the site's testing, requiring a whopping 8 minutes to copy just five pages of an Excel spreadsheet. Also, while it can print double-sided sheets, it's not capable of duplexing from the automatic document feeder, so pages printed on both sides must be scanned manually.

Features: The Brother MFC-J885DW uses four ink tanks. Brother rates its speed at 12 pages per minute for black-and-white documents and 10 pages per minute for color. Its maximum resolution is 6000 x 1200 dots per inch, and it supports borderless printing. The 20-sheet automatic document feeder is helpful for those who need to scan multiple pages at a time. The 30-bit scanner's maximum optical resolution is 2400 x 1200 dots per inch, and users can scan from memory cards, flash drives, or even email. The fax machine can send files directly from a computer -- no need to print them out -- and has a memory of up to 200 pages. The input paper tray holds up to 100 pages and the output tray holds 50. The printer supports automatic duplexing. Naturally, the MFC-J885DW supports standard paper sizes such as letter, legal, 4 x 6, 5 x 7, 5 x 8, and A4 to A6.

Users can connect to the printer via USB, Wi-Fi, Wi-Fi Direct, Ethernet, or even NFC. The printer also supports Apple's AirPrint and Google Cloud Print. Brother's iPrint & Scan app is available for iPhone and Android users. The MFC-J885DW has a 2.7-inch touchscreen display. It measures 15.7 x 13.4 x 6.8 inches and weighs 16.8 pounds.

Takeaway: The Brother MFC-J885DW may be worth a little extra money for users who need an affordable, versatile, full-featured MFP that includes a fax machine. The diverse connection and printing options, including the latest NFC technology, make it easy to print from a variety of devices. The printer is generally fast (except when copying), and its output across the board is better than average.

Michael Sweet

Michael Sweet writes about consumer electronics. If something runs on electricity or ones and zeroes, he's interested in it. Sweet has written about PC technology and consumer electronics for 14 years.

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