Desktop mono laser printers may not be as popular as they were a few years back, but there are still a lot of them about and any new model from Brother is worth a look. Brother now claims to sell more lasers than any maker except HP and if the HL-5350DN is anything to go by, you can see why.
There's nothing particularly unusual about the look of this machine, with light and dark grey panels much in evidence and a corrugated top surface with high-gloss highlights. It has a fairly conventional ‘print cube’ look about it and both internal and external layouts are conventional for this type of machine.
A 250-sheet paper tray at the bottom has a wide grab slot at the bottom and a second tray of identical capacity is available as an option. Pages all feed to the top cover, where there's a fold-up paper stop at the front and a second, rather unusual one, close to the output feed slot.
The control panel consists of five leds for various status conditions, including a tri-colour indicator that shows when data is being received or there’s a cover open. Two buttons in front of these indicators cancel a current print job and restart one, though this second Go button is of less use on a printer than on a multifunction machine.
At the back are sockets for USB, Ethernet and legacy parallel connections. This printer should be able to fit into most office environments without any noticeable changes in the infrastructure. There's no wireless connection, but the HL-5370DW offers this for around £35 more.
Pull down the whole of the front cover and you have access to the combined drum and toner cartridge. The drum is designed to produce 25,000 pages, while the clip-in toner cartridges offer enough toner for 3,000 or 8,000 pages, depending on model. The combined cartridge slides easily in from the front.
Software installation is easy enough and happens automatically when you run the setup program from the supplied CD. There are drivers for Windows and OS X and, for Linux users, support for both CUPS and LPD/LPR.