Touch screen controls are being used in a wide variety of devices, from phones to cameras to tablets. They’re also increasingly being used in printers and all-in-ones, so it’s not that surprising to find one in this Dell 3335dn office multifunction, though a panel with a 178mm (7in) diagonal is unusual.
This is a big machine with a substantial scanner mounted quite high above a workgroup size mono laser engine. The scanner comes with a 50-sheet Automatic Document Feeder (ADF), capable of duplex scanning.
The printer section has a 250-sheet paper tray – too low a capacity in our opinion for this level of office machine – with a 50-sheet multipurpose tray which folds down and pulls out directly above. If you need higher capacity, you can add an optional 550-sheet tray under the printer, but we'd prefer to see a 500-sheet tray as standard.
Physical buttons are restricted to a number pad for fax dialling, together with start, stop and home buttons. The main touch panel has a soft feel, as if overlaid with a plastic film. It's still reasonably sensitive and the main screen displays buttons for copy, fax and e-mail. There are also buttons for FTP and for printing or searching held jobs.
As this is a network machine, the e-mail and FTP facilities are useful additions as, for example, you can scan a multi-page job and send it directly to any computer where you have permissions.
The 3335dn can be connected locally to a PC, but this wastes many of its workgroup functions. Much better to use the 10/100 Ethernet link and share its capabilities. Dell provides a status monitor and printer alert, as well as PCL and PostScript drivers for both Windows and OS X. Linux is also supported, via a separate download.
A two-part print cartridge slots in from the front of the machine and comprises a drum unit, with a typical service life of 30,000 pages, and alternative toner cartridges, with yields of 8,000 and 14,000 pages. You won't need to replace consumables in this machine very regularly… though you will need to restock it with paper.