The Brother DCP-1510 is a simple laser all-in-one. Often this is all that is needed for a home-office or student bedroom, when text output is the primary requirement. Such kit is normally £100 or more, but it’s possible to buy Brother’s DCP-1510 for around three quarters of this price.
This is a well-proportioned, discreet box in light grey and black. However, opening up the trays increases the footprint quite a bit. The front cover pulls down to become the feed tray, as is normal in this type of printer, and a two-stage paper support flips out from above.
This could be so much more compact, though, if Brother had positioned the DCP-1510's laser engine further back in the case. This engine is actually quite a small, neat unit. There’s a 100mm strip of ‘dead plastic’ behind the engine that appears to serve no purpose other than to support the rear third of the A4 flatbed scanner.
The laser division should perhaps take a look at the inkjet machines the company has been producing for years, where the paper cassettes fit fully inside the machine, and a minimal output support is just enough to grab documents you’ve printed – a much neater solution.
The scanner itself is a 600 x 1,200ppi device, quite capable of reproducing text pages well enough for OCR, though no recognition software is provided. The device can scan to an image, an email attachment or a file. The last option produces PDF files directly and you can OCR online, using Adobe’s £20/year service, or search for a free converter.
The Brother DCP-1510's control panel includes a 2-line by 16-character LCD display and options to scan an ID card (both sides on one sheet). The power button is small and unhelpfully mixed in with the others on the panel. The only connection is a single USB socket at the back. There’s no wireless facility. The power lead is integrated, which prevents you losing it, if moving the machine.
Hinge up the scanner section, which is supported on a ‘bonnet strut’, and you have access to an internal cover, which lifts to reveal a two-part drum and toner cartridge, with the handle intelligently coloured bright green to identify it. It’s a bit fiddly to slot back into place, but the design reduces page costs.